Business Notebook: Sales and use tax revenue exceed expectations; Shawnee picks president; SEMO foundation boards adds members

Cape Girardeau County's latest sales tax data, released last week by the county treasurer's office, continue to exceed expectations, especially in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to a spreadsheet distributed by Cape County Treasurer Roger Hudson at Thursday's County Commission meeting, the county received $807,608 this month, primarily on the basis of retail sales in the county during August. That was 10.12% more than the county received in September 2019

As of this month, the county has received $5,915,778.01 from its sales tax, 4.86% ahead of last year and more through the first nine months of the year than any year on record.

Although county officials aren't certain what's driving the county's strong retail sales, they theorize it has a lot to do with the county's positioning as the largest retail hub in Southeast Missouri, with several major retailers in Cape Girardeau and Jackson.

The county's use tax, which is generated by out-of-state sales, including purchases made through online retailers, is also setting revenue records.

This month, the county received $144,154.59 in use-tax receipts, mostly as a result of online purchases made by county residents over the past month. That amount was 30.1% more than the use-tax revenue the county received in September of last year.

Through the first nine months of 2020, Cape County's use tax has generated $1,360,973.64, almost 37% more than the county received in use-tax revenue by this point last year. For all of 2019, Cape County received $1,291,487.12 through its use tax.

August sales-tax revenue in Scott County was down about 9% compared to August last year, but for the year to date, the county is running about 2.6% ahead of last year's pace, according to Scott County Treasurer Joe Bill Davis.

As for Scott County's use tax, through the eight months of this year, Davis said it generated $461,137.61 for the county, significantly exceeding the county's use-tax total of $378,438.53 for all of 2019.

Meanwhile, Bollinger County Treasurer Scott Minson reported last week the county's year-to-date sales-tax revenue is running about $11,500 ahead of sales-tax revenue at this point last year. However, he said the county's sales-tax revenue is about $4,800 behind 2018's pace.

As of Friday afternoon, the Perry County Treasurer's Office had not responded to the Missourian's request for sales-tax data.

Shawnee College names new president

Tim Taylor

ULLIN, Ill. — Tim Taylor has been selected to be the ninth president of Shawnee Community College. His selection was announced last week during a meeting of the college's board of trustees and followed an extensive search.

Taylor most recently served as campus president of Oakland Community College in Southfield, Michigan, and was chief operating officer for that college's two largest campuses in Auburn Hills and Farmington Hills, Michigan.

Taylor's service as Shawnee Community College's president began last week. He succeeds Kathleen Curphy, who has been SCC's interim president since the departure of former president Peggy Bradford.

SEMO State foundation adds board members

The foundation at Southeast Missouri State University recently added three members to its board — Jason LeGrand of Concord, California, and formerly of Cape Girardeau; Patricia Reinhart of St. Louis; and Ron Wagner of Ferguson, Missouri.

Founded in 1983, the Southeast Missouri University Foundation furthers the mission of the university by obtaining and managing financial resources that allow the university to enhance the quality and extend the range of services provided to its students and the region.

Jason LeGrand

LeGrand is a senior director of principal gifts and strategic initiatives at the University of California, Berkeley. He graduated from Southeast in 1997 with a Bachelor of Science in mass communications and has spent more than 20 years working in university development and alumni relations.

LeGrand began his fundraising career at Cornell University in 1999 and currently serves the University of California, Berkeley, campus as a senior strategist on transformational gifts of $10 million to $100 million. Now in his fifth year with the University of California, LeGrand previously served as senior director of development for the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine. Earlier in his career, he led fundraising programs at the University of Maryland, College Park, and the University of Denver.

As a student, LeGrand worked in the university president's office under both Kayla Stroup and Dale Nitzschke. He was a member of the All-University Judicial Board and spent a summer working in the Missouri House of Representatives as a legislative intern. In addition, he was active in the Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity, and after graduation served a two-year appointment on the international fraternity's staff.

In 2010, LeGrand received the Southeast Alumni Association's Young Alumni Merit Award and is a member of the university's President's Council and Horizon Club. Last year, he established the Jason J. LeGrand and Neal E. Boyd Endowment through the university's foundation to honor his late friend and fraternity brother.

Patricia Reinhart

Reinhart graduated from Southeast in 1981 with a degree in home economics with a clothing and textiles option and a minor in marketing. She is a retired sales executive, having led sales teams with Brown Shoe, Nestle Purina, Stride Rite and Procter & Gamble.

Reinhart was active in student government and the Delta Delta Delta sorority. She was frequently encouraged and mentored by faculty members to continue her studies despite her financial challenges and earned 100% of the cost of her education through scholarships and campus employment.

She is a member of the university's President's Council and has established two scholarships. In 2018, Reinhart was keynote speaker at Southeast's Power of Women Luncheon, and in 2019, she was recognized as an Alumni Association Alumni Merit Award recipient.

Ron Wagner

Wagner graduated from Southeast in 1998 with a Bachelor of Science in health management with an athletic training option. He went on to earn master's degrees from Eastern Kentucky University and Bloomsburg University in Pennsylvania and a Doctor of Philosophy in kinesiology from the University of Arkansas.

He has served as a faculty member at Eastern Kentucky University, the University of Arkansas and the University of Tennessee at Martin. He is currently an associate professor at California University of Pennsylvania.

In 2008, Wagner founded Relearnit, a company that manages online education programs for colleges and universities throughout the United States.

In 2015, he established the Dr. Ronald Wagner Endowed Scholarship to support students interested in athletic training. Through his not-for-profit organization, Athleticare Sports Health Foundation Inc., Wagner leads high school students interested in athletic training on trips to Southeast to learn about the school's athletic training program.

He received an Alumni Merit Award from the Southeast Alumni Association in 2018.

CarGO, SEMO launch new transit service

CarGO Technologies and Southeast Missouri State University have launched SEMO on the GO, a new, on-demand food and ride-hailing service.

The partnership includes an app allowing users to order ahead or request food delivery from participating restaurants. App users can also schedule ride-hailing services.

CarGO and the university are exploring the potential of adding additional enhancements to their partnership, including an option to order ahead or request food delivery from on-campus dining venues.

According to information supplied by the university, carGO hopes to share a portion of sales generated through SEMO on the GO with the university to support a variety of student programs.

As an introductory offer, students who download the SEMO on the GO app will receive free delivery on food orders through Sept. 30 and can also take 50% off the base ride-hailing fee when using the app.

McDonald's honoring area educators with beverages, award program

McDonald's restaurants in the area are recognizing teachers this month with a weeklong free beverage offer and launch of the new Teach it Forward educator awards.

From now through Friday, teachers with a valid educator ID may receive a free beverage in the drive-through of participating McDonald's locations. The company is also accepting nominations through Oct. 16 for the McDonald's new outstanding educator awards, honoring educators who "exhibit the ultimate dedication to their students and contribute to the improvement of education in our most challenging times.

Winners of the awards will each receive a $100 Visa gift card to use for classroom needs along with a certificate and McDonald's coupons.

For more information about the award program and to submit a McDonald's Teach it Forward Outstanding Educator Award nomination, visit

Ambulance services receives donation for new equipment

PERRYVILLE, Mo. — Perry County Memorial Hospital's ambulance service recently received a $13,800 donation from the hospital's auxiliary for the purchase of a Lund University Cardiopulmonary Assist System (LUCAS).

The LUCAS device provides automatic chest compressions according to the latest international guidelines in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). The device reduces interruptions that affect the heart's preload and afterload blood flow. In addition, given health precautions surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, the use of mechanical CPR equipment such as the LUCAS device can help reduce the risk of face-mask leakage and the potential of disease transmission.

"Adding LUCAS devices to the PCMH ambulance service will allow paramedics to focus on other lifesaving efforts such as monitoring airways and vitals as well as administering IV and life-support drugs," said Jenni France, director of the ambulance service.

People on the Move

Bradley Beran

Dr. Bradley Beran has joined the emergency services staff at Saint Francis Medical Center.

Beran attended Southeast Missouri State University, earning his osteopathic degree at Des Moines University in Iowa in 2017. Between 2017 and 2020, he completed a residency at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. He also became a fellow of the Academy of Wilderness Medicine in July of this year.

Steve Schiwinger

Longtime marketing and sales executive Steve Schiwinger has been named business and relationship director at Element 74 in Cape Girardeau.

In his new role, which he assumed in late July, Schiwinger is responsible for large accounts and business relationships, including government contracts, joint ventures and investor relations. He will also oversee the marketing and sales activities for individual "software as a service" (SaaS) products.

Element 74 is located on Rust Avenue in the former McKessen building. Since being acquired by Red Letter Communications in December, Element 74's staff has grown to 26 and by next year its revenue is projected to be triple of what it was in 2019.

Carla Jordan

Historic preservationist and owner of C.L. Jordan Preservation Carla Jordan has recently contracted to work full time with the Cape Girardeau County Historical Society's History Center and the center's recently-expanded annex in Jackson.

Jordan has worked part time for the historical society for six years and has also served as director at the Lutheran Heritage Center in Altenburg, Missouri, the past 16 years.

Chamber Notes

The Jackson Area Chamber of Commerce's monthly business breakfast is scheduled for 7:30 a.m. Friday at the Jackson Civic Center.

Reservations and face masks are required to attend the free gathering for Jackson chamber members. Social distancing will also be practiced and attendance will be limited to no more than two people from each member organization.

The Jackson chamber's 2020 membership drive, "Mask-erade 2020," is scheduled for Oct. 30. Chamber members wishing to participate are encouraged to dress in costume. Breakfast and lunch will be included and prizes will be awarded.

Those interested in participating in the membership campaign are asked to sign up by Oct. 9 by emailing or by calling (573) 243-8131.

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