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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri senators have passed legislation that could lead to a reduction in jobless benefits for people laid off in the future.
 
The bill would make Missouri one of only a few states to link the duration of unemployment benefits to the state's unemployment rate.
 
Missouri workers currently can receive unemployment benefits for 20 weeks.
 
Under the bill, the full 20 weeks of benefits would be available only if the state's unemployment rate is at least 9 percent. The maximum duration of jobless benefits would be cut by a week for each one-half percentage point reduction in the unemployment rate - bottoming out at 13 weeks of benefits when the unemployment rate is less than 6 percent.
 
The Senate's 24-8 vote Thursday sends the bill to the House.
Published in Local News
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - A bill revamping the management of Missouri's Medicaid program has been set aside after debate turned tense between two Republican senators.
 
Sens. Ryan Silvey and John Lamping engaged in a sometimes pointed discussion Wednesday during which they questioned each other's conservative ideology and rhetoric.
 
Silvey wants to expand health care coverage to thousands of low-income adults by tapping into an influx of federal Medicaid dollars available under President Barack Obama's health care law. The Republican from Kansas City says it can be done without busting the budget.
 
Lamping remains opposed to taking the new federal Medicaid money for expanded coverage. The Republican from St. Louis County says lawmakers need to stand firm against anything stemming from Obama's health care law.
 
The Senate legislation does not currently include Medicaid expansion
Published in Local News
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - High stakes gamblers could find Missouri more alluring if legislation passed by the Senate becomes law.
 
A bill approved Wednesday would let Missouri casinos extend a line of credit to gamblers willing to put up at least $10,000.
 
Supporters said the bill would free big bettors from having to carry large quantities of cash to casinos.
 
Casino officials also hope to attract more high rollers from other states, like professional athletes who may be traveling to Missouri to play in a game.
 
The Senate sent the bill to the House by a 24-9 vote.
 
Among those opposing the measure was Sen. Ed Emery. The Republican from Lamar raised concerns that high stakes gambling could be detrimental to families.
Published in Local News

St. Louis, MO (KTRS) - Missouri law enforcement officials have changed their tactics in the war on meth. New figures show that the changes are having an effect.

 

In 2013, for the first time in a decade, Missouri did not lead the nation in meth busts. The Show-Me state dropped to number 3 behind Indiana and Tennessee. The Post-Dispatch reports that changes in enforcement approaches and new laws may have caused the statistics to drop. The Jefferson County drug task force says they focused on making larger-scale labs.

 

Earlier in March, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported a seizure of 95 meth labs just outside Mountain Grove, Missouri. The drug raid was believed to be a record for a single seizure in Missouri.

Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — A Missouri House Democrat has introduced legislation that would repeal the state's ban on gay marriage.

Mike Colona, a House member from St. Louis who is gay, filed a proposed constitutional amendment this week that would go before voters in November. Colona was joined by 30 of his Democratic colleagues as co-sponsors.

Missouri in 2004 became the first state to enact a constitutional amendment prohibiting same-sex marriage after the Massachusetts high court permitted gay marriage there. The Missouri measure passed with 70 percent of the vote.

With only seven weeks left in the legislative session, Colona's proposal is unlikely to gain traction. And Missouri Republicans, who control both legislative chambers, remain opposed to overturning the state's ban.

Published in Local News
ST. LOUIS (AP) - A company that wants to build transmission lines to move wind energy from Kansas to Indiana has announced its proposed route through Missouri, but opponents say they'll continue the fight to keep the towers and lines away from their land.
 
Houston-based Clean Line Energy Partners hopes to begin construction as early as 2016 on its Grain Belt Express Clean Line. The company on Wednesday asked the Missouri Public Service Commission to approve the route through northern Missouri.
 
The route goes through eight counties: Buchanan, Clinton, Caldwell, Carroll, Chariton, Randolph, Monroe and Ralls.
 
Mark Lawlor of Clean Line says that in addition to providing access to clean energy, the project would create hundreds of jobs.
 
But many rural landowners say the project would reduce property values and create a health risk.
Published in Local News
Wednesday, 26 March 2014 13:32

Union members rally at Missouri Capitol

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - About a thousand Missouri union members rallied at the state Capitol to combat legislation that would prohibit labor contracts from requiring that all employees pay union fees.
 
The proposal is a top priority of House Republican leaders who say the so-called right to work bill is necessary for the state to compete for jobs.
 
But Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon disagreed while speaking at Wednesday's rally and said he would veto the bill. He called it "unnecessary and misguided," and vowed to fight the proposal if the Legislature decides to put it on the 2014 ballot.
 
The rally is an annual event sponsored by the Missouri State Building and Construction Trades Council. Rally attendees said it's important to talk with lawmakers about the impact of legislation affecting union membership.
Published in Local News
St. Louis, MO (KTRS) - The Chesterfield Police Department is asking for the public’s help in locating a suspect from a robbery and kidnapping which occurred about 5 p.m. on Friday.
 
Police say two female suspects were confronted by security during a shoplifting incident at the H&M store at Chesterfield Mall.  Suspect Cierra Baker, along with an unknown female, attempted to leave the store with stolen merchandise and when confronted, Baker reached into her purse, grabbed a can of mace, and sprayed the security guard before fleeing.
 
The two subjects then separated, with Baker carjacking a woman from the  parking lot.  Baker threatened the woman and forced her to drive from Chesterfield Mall to Big Bend and I-64.  There, the suspect was picked up in a white car with tinted windows.  The victim was not harmed.
 
 Anyone who may know the whereabouts of Cierra Baker or who may have information about this incident or the second suspect, is asked to contact the Chesterfield Detective Bureau or St. Louis Crime Stoppers at 314-725-8477 (TIPS). 
Published in Local News
St. Louis, MO (KTRS) - The Missouri Senate has endorsed legislation that declares the paper ballot as the official ballot of Missouri elections.
 
It needs one more Senate vote before moving to the House. The bill would require local elections authorities to phase out the use of some electronic voting machines. Under the bill, voters could only use electronic machines that produce a paper trail of marked votes.
 
All other types of electronic voting machines currently in use for elections could still be used, but could not be replaced once they malfunction.
Published in Local News
ST. LOUIS (AP) - A new research program at Saint Louis University's law school will analyze administration of the death penalty in Missouri over the past 25 years.
 
   Law students, professors and researchers with the Missouri Capital-Sentencing Research Program will review the 72 executions carried out by the state since 1989 as well as the death sentences handed down to 42 additional inmates.  That includes Jeffrey Ferguson, who is scheduled to die by lethal injection at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday for raping and killing a 17-year-old girl a quarter-century ago in suburban St. Louis.
 
   The state Supreme Court has kept detailed trial court reports from each judge presiding over capital cases since Missouri reinstated the death penalty in 1977. Saint Louis University School of Law Dean Michael Wolff is the court's former chief justice.
Published in Local News
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