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Ferguson Mayor James Knowles listens to public testimony on Saturday about a proposed consent decree. Knowles and the rest of the city council could vote on whether to accept the 131-page agreement on Tuesday.
Carolina Hidalgo I St. Louis Public Radio

Ferguson in the balance: Councilmembers set to vote on consent decree

It’s not hyperbole to say that Tuesday’s vote on a proposed consent decree with the federal government is the biggest decision in Ferguson’s history. The 131-page document casts a huge structural and financial shadow of a municipality still reeling from the shooting death of Michael Brown. If the Ferguson City Council votes to accept the agreement, it could deliver monumental changes to the city’s police department and government – at a hefty price tag.
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Missouri and Illinois have some similar gun laws, but several areas where they diverge.
M Glasgow | Flickr

The Missouri Supreme Court has upheld a state law that bans all felons -- even those convicted of nonviolent crimes -- from possessing a weapon.

"Missouri's constitution does not prohibit the legislature from restricting nonviolent felons' right to possess firearms," judge Laura Denvir Stith wrote for the five-judge majority in one of three opinions on the issue released Tuesday. "Section 571.070.1 survived strict scrutiny review under the prior version of article I, section 23, and this Court already has held that Amendment 5 did not substantially change article I, section 23. The statutory bar is valid."

Saint Louis University professors Ness Sandoval and Ken Warren.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

Saint Louis University professors Ken Warren, professor of political science, and Ness Sandoval, associate professor of sociology and anthropology, have been working diligently for the past several months to parse through data in a study about the different experiences St. Louis-area residents have had with municipal courts based on race and class.

Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

Imagine you could remember every day of your life in exquisite detail. Would you love it or loathe it? That’s what Jake Hausler, a local 12-year-old with Highly Superior Autobiographical Memory, has been able to do ever since age 8. Now, researchers at Washington University are mapping his brain to discover what makes his memory so powerful and if there are lessons to be learned that impact people with normal memory capabilities.

The U.S. Department of Defense has included an order of 16 F/A 18 Super Hornets in their budget for the next two years.
(via Boeing)

This story will be updated as more details become available. The new U.S. Department of Defense budget request could provide breathing room for Boeing production in St. Louis. 

Rembrandt van Rijn, Dutch, 1606–1669; The Three Trees, 1643; etching, drypoint, and engraving; image: 8 5/16 x 10 15/16 inches; Saint Louis Art Museum, Museum Purchase
Provided by the St. Louis Art Museum

Ten years ago, the St. Louis Art Museum carved out an institutional work of art in the World’s Fair-era Cass Gilbert building on Art Hill. This architectural artistry is a bright and comfortable place for research and reflection, dedicated not only to scholars but also to you and to me, the general public. It is called the study room for prints, drawings and photographs and is run by a friendly, accommodating staff upstairs in the East Wing.

Maria Chappelle-Nadal Sen. D. U City
Provided by Chappelle-Nadal's office

The Missouri Democratic Party’s voter list is once again a target of candidates who currently can’t get access to the sought-after files – this time because they’re challenging Democratic incumbents.

State Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal, D-University City, is furious that so far she is blocked from the file – known as VAN – for the 1st Congressional District. She is challenging U.S. Rep. William Lacy Clay, D-University City, in the August Democratic primary. And although Clay and his rival are African-American, Chappelle-Nadal contends that race may be an issue in the voter-file fight.

Flares at the Bridgeton Landfill are used to burn off smelly underground gases.
Véronique LaCapra | St. Louis Public Radio

The St. Louis County health department said a health survey of residents living near the West Lake and Bridgeton landfills will begin in about two weeks, a year after its initial announcement.

This figure from the USGS West Lake Landfill groundwater report shows levels of radium in groundwater wells under and around the landfill. Red, orange, and yellow dots show radium contamination above the federal safe drinking water standard.
U.S. Geological Survey

In a move that environmental groups say they are “excited” and “pleasantly surprised” about, the Environmental Protection Agency said it plans to create a specific unit to study groundwater contamination at the West Lake Landfill Superfund site.

At a meeting of the West Lake/Bridgeton Landfill Community Advisory Group Monday night, the EPA also said it would conduct more testing to see if any radiological sediment had moved off the site during widespread flooding last year.

Missouri House Committee on Workforce Standards hears legislation that would eliminate Missouri's prevailing wage for public works projects.
Marshall Griffin | St. Louis Public Radio

Legislation being considered by a Missouri House committee would dump the state's prevailing wage for public works projects.

This base wage is set annually for a variety of jobs. It is calculated using what workers are actually earning. House Bill 1931's sponsor, Rep. Warren Love, R-Osceola, says it would allow contractors to start negotiations for salaries at minimum wage instead.

Grand Center vice president Michelle Stevens and National Endowment for the Arts chairman Jane Chu in the Public Media Commons on Olive Street.
Nancy Fowler | St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis is on the right track, according to the head of the nation’s largest grant-making organization for the arts.

Jane Chu, chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, visited St. Louis Monday as part of a tour of NEA grant recipients. Her stops included the Grand Center Arts District,  which has received two “Our Town” awards totaling $125,000 to help with plans to make the area more walkable and attractive.

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St. Louis on the Air

As UMSL faces a $15 million budget shortfall, Chancellor Tom George joins us

On Wednesday’s “St. Louis on the Air,” UMSL Chancellor Tom George will join the show to discuss the future of the university, especially considering the changes across the board in the UM System.

A Prairie Home Companion Live

Don’t miss your opportunity to see Garrison Keillor perform!

St. Louis Public Radio's advance tickets are sold out. Fox Box Office sales begin Jan. 22 for the June 18 performance. Sponsored by SSM Health-SLU Hospital.

Curious Louis voting

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