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Public Charter School Turning Out Great Students

LAS VEGAS -- Public charter schools are becoming a popular alternative for a growing number of Las Vegas parents who want a more unique and individualized learning experience for their children, without the pricey private school tuition.

The Explore Knowledge Academy teaches grades kindergarten through 12th to more than 600 students. There's a waiting list to get in, and it is about to become the state's first and only i-school campus. Not bad for a school that was created eight years ago in the kitchen of a Las Vegas family who home-schooled their kids because they wanted something different.

At the academy, you won't find students sitting in any nice neat rows of desks listening to a teacher lecture at a chalkboard.

"What you are going to see are engaged active students," said Abbe Mattson, Executive Director of Explore Knowledge Academy.

Community Sponsors

Big DUI Enforcement Planned for Holiday Weekend

LAS VEGAS -- The Nevada Highway Patrol says Labor Day is second only to the Fourth of July for being the deadliest day on the nation's roads. But in Clark County, there has not been a single Labor Day traffic fatality for the past three years.

Several sobriety checkpoints and saturation patrols are planned for Labor Day weekend, in what the group Stop DUI is describing as the nation's largest coordinated effort by law enforcement to prevent DUI deaths and injuries.

"We are proud to announce an unprecedented effort by seven different Nevada law enforcement agencies," said Sandy Heverly with Stop DUI.

Just days before the holiday weekend gets underway, DUI survivors, victim advocates, officers, and prosecutors gathered at NHP headquarters to kickoff a massive impaired driving awareness and enforcement campaign.

Home Prices Rise in 17 Cities in June

WASHINGTON -- Home prices rose in June for a third straight month as now-expired tax credits inspired a burst of home-buying.

But prices are expected to fall through the rest of the year now that demand has faded. The Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller 20-city home price index released Tuesday posted a 1 percent increase in June from May and was up 4.2 percent from a year ago.

Home prices nationally were up 4.8 percent in the second quarter compared with the first quarter. That was largely because buyers could take advantage of government tax credits of up to $8,000.

Home sales have dropped sharply since those incentives expired. Lending standards remain tight and unemployment is stuck near double digits.

Trash Services May Change All Over the Valley

LAS VEGAS -- The effort to go green may mean smelly garbage in your garage. A public meeting Tuesday night will bring together local governments with Las Vegas' sole trash collector, Republic Services.

Some possible changes to trash collection and recycling programs are being discussed. Republic Services says it has several pilot programs operating around the valley. For example, some families in North Las Vegas like having one day to get everything collected on the curb: trash and recycling. Some say that idea is terrible.

"Tonight's agenda will really be focusing on, is trying to drill down what the cost is for recycling, how much profit are they making, are there jobs we can create or manufacturing opportunities for commodities sales, and how to protect against, as Republic automates its trucks, how to protect against losing 300 to 350 jobs," said County Commissioner Chris Giunchigliani.

Community Sponsors

$83M in Education Funds Coming to Nevada

CARSON CITY -- Federal and state officials say $83 million to keep 1,400 Nevada teachers and support staff on the job is on the way, just in time for the new school year.

The funding was included in a $26 billion emergency jobs bill passed by Congress and signed into law Aug. 10 by President Barack Obama.

Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., said Monday Nevada was one of the first states to apply for the one-time funding that will help as the state faces a projected $3 billion budget shortfall and record unemployment.

Gov. Jim Gibbons says he appreciates the "speedy approval" of the state's application. He wants the money to be used to reduce class sizes at all grade levels, including high school math and science classes.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Human Remains Could be Missing Woman

HENDERSON - Billie Jean James vanished without a trace from her Henderson home on April 22. Police, friends and family spent months searching for the 67-year-old woman but never found her. Now, the case has taken a new turn.

While cleaning out a cluttered room of their home, Billie Jean James' husband found a body and called the cops. Police investigated the James home on Wednesday. Shortly after police left the home, Bill James emerged and delivered a brief statement to the media.

"I would like to say I appreciate everything you've done through this whole four months to help find her," he said. He says he believes his wife of 40 years died in their home, but declined to elaborate. "I don't feel like talking anymore. Thank you," he said.

Titus to Host Small Business Workshop in Henderson

HENDERSON -- A Nevada Congressional Delegate is reaching out to small businesses this month. 

On Aug. 31, Congresswoman Dina Titus will host her second small business workshop. The event is aimed at providing local small businesses with the tools they need to sustain and grow during these tough economic times.

The workshop will also focus on issues including securing contracts with the federal government, financing options available through the SBA and the best practices for doing business with city and state agencies.

The Small Business Workshop will begin at 8 a.m. on Aug. 31 and will run through 2 p.m. at the Henderson Convention Center.  While it's free, you'll need to register by sending an e-mail to TitusRSVP@mail.house.gov