The Boonville School District is standing by its superintendent following an investigation into the rodeo clown incident. The investigation by the district clears Dr. Mark Ficken of any wrongdoing stemming from the incident at the Missouri State Fair earlier this month. The report, prepared by a former Missouri Public Schools Superintendent and a former Missouri Attorney General, says Dr. Ficken was incorrectly credited as the man making disparaging remarks about President Obama, when in fact, they say, it was a rodeo clown.
Residents in South County reported a variety of snapping and popping noises in their neighborhood last night which turned out to be a small fire at the Ameren Meramec power plant. Authorities are trying to determine the cause. No one was hurt and electrical service was not disrupted. An Ameren official says some of the noise was the sound of safety valves on steam lines lifting due to the fire, which was quickly extinguished.
The vacancies on the St. Louis County Police Board will remain unfilled for the time being. The County Council Tuesday night postponed confirmation votes for two of County Executive Charlie Dooley's nominees.
The council had called a special meeting to consider the nominees to replace Gregory Sansone and Floyde Warman, but instead introduced legislation requiring police board members to undergo background checks and then adjourned without a confirmation vote.
Dooley had tapped Republican Dave Spence and Democrat Freddy Clark to fill two seats on the five-member board.
Earlier in the day, police board member Ray Wagoner announced that he too is stepping down. Wagoner cited personal and business obligations. The county executive has not yet named a successor for Wagoner.
CONWAY, Mo. (AP) - Gov. Jay Nixon is asking the federal government to issue a major disaster declaration for 22 southern Missouri counties hit hard by this month's floods.
Nixon said Tuesday the costs of emergency response and repairs will be high.
The floods that resulted from nearly two weeks of heavy rain caused widespread damage across the southern tier and left at least three people dead.
Nixon announced his request in Conway, where the waste water treatment system was heavily damaged.
The governor is asking the federal government to clear the way for individual and public assistance in 14 counties, public assistance in four counties and individual assistance in four others.
Individual assistance allows households to seek federal aid for uninsured losses. Public assistance allows local governments to seek help with response and recovery expenses.
Dozens of new laws take affect in Missouri today. Among them is the new carry conceal permit law, which shifts the process of issuing permits to county sheriff's departments and away from the state Department of Revenue.
Other new laws on the books today will hike the fines for passing or speeding in emergency zones on highways, allow drivers to show proof of insurance using their smartphones and tablets, and let cities decide if they want to allow ATVs on their streets.
There's a new law encouraging Missouri schools to teach first-graders the National Rifle Association’s Eddie Eagle Gunsafe Program.
And another that requires scrap metal dealers to keep records of transactions involving catalytic converters.
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Construction work on Illinois highways will be suspended for the Labor Day weekend to improve the flow of traffic and increase safety.
That's the word from the Illinois Department of Transportation, which announced its plans Tuesday. IDOT officials hope that by opening up as many traffic lanes as possible they will reduce congestion and make the holiday weekend more enjoyable for travelers.
Work will be put on hold starting at 3 p.m. Friday and will continue through midnight Monday.
The Department of Transportation reminds motorists that work zone speed limits remain in effect when they are posted, even if no workers are on site.
CHICAGO (AP) - Illinois will regulate the use of drones by law enforcement under a bill signed into law by Gov. Pat Quinn.
The Chicago Democrat signed the measure Tuesday. Quinn spokesman Grant Klinzman says the governor signed the law to protect people's right to privacy.
Drones are sophisticated, unmanned aircraft that authorities are considering for aerial surveillance. The law requires authorities to obtain a search warrant before using a drone to collect information.
Bill sponsor Democratic state Sen. Daniel Biss has said the law helps maintain a reasonable expectation of privacy. The American Civil Liberties Union praises the new law as appropriate and reasonable.
The legislation outlines a few exceptions, including when the Department of Homeland Security decides surveillance is needed to prevent a terrorist attack.
Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster says the drugstore chain Walgreens is overcharging customers on about 20 percent of the items it sells.
Koster has filed a civil lawsuit against the Illinois-based retailer after undercover investigators in his office visited eight stores across the state, including two in the St. Louis area.
Koster says in some cases, the price posted on the shelf was for a sale that had long expired. In other cases, the retailer promised discounted prices for rewards members, then charged the regular price at the checkout.
Koster says anyone who feels they were overcharged, or who witnesses deceptive pricing should call the Missouri Consumer Hotline at 1-800-392-8222 or visit his website.
In response to the lawsuit, Walgreens issued the following statement:
"We have a 112-year history of acting in our customers' best interests, and that will continue to be our focus. While we won't comment on the complaint itself, we were disappointed and disagree with the attorney general's comments. However, we are prepared to have a constructive dialogue about the issues he raised and address any appropriate concerns."
Law enforcement agencies around the St. Louis region are joining forces keep the roads safe during the upcoming "Ride of the Century" motorcycle event.
Hundreds or motorcyclists will converge on the area over Labor Day weekend (Aug. 30-Sep. 1). The Missouri Highway Patrol, St. Louis County Police and police in the City of St. Louis will be working together to crack down on unsafe stunt riding again this year.
In the past, these riders have been known to block traffic, drive erratically, and evade police all while performing dangerous stunts on crowded roads. Last year, more than 2,500 riders converged on the city for the event. Nineteen people were arrested and several riders were injured. In 2011, two riders were killed.
Two jockeys are recovering from injuries and a horse has been euthanized after a racetrack collision at Fairmont Park.
It happened just as the horses turned into the final stretch of the third race yesterday (Tuesday) afternoon. Fairmont officials say the No. 2 horse, Shakkarena, ridden by jockey Robert Cummings, fell because of a leg injury. The No. 5 horse, She’s on Her Way, ridden by Rohan Singh, was unable to avoid the fallen horse and also tumbled.
Shakkarena had to be euthanized because of the serious leg injury.
She's on Her Way didn't appear to be injured in the collision.
Both jockeys are hospitalized with serious injuries.