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St. Louis Public Radio News
9:33 am
Thu February 6, 2003

MO-DOT Reopens All of Blanchette Bridge

MO-DOT crews had two lanes closed to repair cracks under the bridge.
(MO-DOT Photo)

St. Louis, Mo. – The two lanes on the eastbound Blanchette Bridge that were closed this week are now open. The Missouri Department of Transportation closed the lanes when it found cracks on a support beam under the bridge.

The agency is also stepping up efforts to reinspect all bridges over the Missouri and Mississippi rivers to look for damage, possibly the result of the fluctuating temperatures in recent weeks.

The agency is adding an inspection team in hopes of looking over its 36 major river bridges within three months.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
4:35 pm
Wed February 5, 2003

Two Lanes Closed on Blanchette Bridge

(MO-DOT Photo)

St. Louis, MO – MO-DOT says commuters should consider avoiding the Blanchette Bridge. Two lanes on the eastbound bridge will be closed for several weeks because crews Tuesday found five cracks on the structure.

But MO-DOT's Mike Fitzpatrick says the bridge is safe. "If it wasn't safe, they'd have closed the whole bridge," Fitzpatrick said.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
3:31 pm
Wed February 5, 2003

St. Charles Voters Approve Convention Center

St. Charles, Mo. – Voters in the City of Saint Charles have approved a new convention center by a wide margin.

The advisory referendum passed 60%-40% in a special election yesterday, and awaits the city council's approval.

"It's been a really long fight," said Council President Kevin Riggs.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
1:10 pm
Wed February 5, 2003

Missouri Executes Kenneth Kenley

(Reuters file photo)

Potosi, Mo. – The state of Missouri executed its first prisoner of the year last night. Kenneth Kenley was sentenced to die after killing a man in a Poplar Bluff tavern in 1984.

Department of Corrections spokesman Tim Kniest said Kenley died at 12:03 a.m., two minutes after the first of three injections were administered at the Potosi Correctional Center.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
1:02 pm
Wed February 5, 2003

Missouri Roads Among Worst in Nation

Washington, D.C. – A new study ranks Missouri's roads the second worst in the nation.

Results of the Surface Transportation Policy Project show that more than 87 percent of the state's roads are in bad shape. Urban and suburban roads fared worse.

The study says Missouri spends $155 million dollars year repairing roads each year. That breaks down to $20,218 per mile.

The only state with worse roads than Missouri is Hawaii. Nearly 90 percent of that state's roads are in less than good condition.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
12:53 pm
Wed February 5, 2003

St. Louis Police Join LEADS Online

St. Louis, Mo. – The St. Louis Police Department is now using a computer database to track stolen property.

The city is joining 44 other area law enforcement agencies in using LEADS Online, an Internet tool that lets police search pawn shop records for missing items.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
11:44 am
Wed February 5, 2003

CEO says American Airlines Important to City

St. Louis – American Airlines CEO Don Carty says despite financial hardships, the company still values keeping St. Louis as one of its three hubs.

Speaking in St. Louis Wednesday, Carty said the airline is asking pilots, flight attendants and other employees for $1.8 billion in wage and benefit reductions and changes in contractual work rules.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
10:11 am
Wed February 5, 2003

Lawmaker Hopes to Close 'No Call' Loophole

Jefferson City, Mo. – A Missouri State Representative from St. Louis County is trying to close the loopholes in Missouri's so-called "no call law."

Currently, businesses that are federally regulated or based out of a home are exempt from the legislation and can make unsolicited telephone calls.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
10:04 am
Wed February 5, 2003

Man Who Stole Nicholas Cage's Car Gets 5 Years

Actor Nicholas Cage
(Reuters file photo)

Arnold, Mo. – A man from Arnold has been sentenced to five years in prison for stealing a Porsche owned by actor Nicholas Cage.

Police found the $100,000 car last year submerged in a lake, after Michael Gramling stole it from a parking lot in Arnold. The car was being delivered to Pennsylvania at the time.

Gramling pleaded guilty last year. Another defendant, 21-year-old Scott Air Force Base airman Robert Clerkin, was previously tried on stealing charges in a
military court and sentenced to six months in the stockade.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
1:42 pm
Tue February 4, 2003

Bush Budget Effects on Missouri & Illinois

Washington, DC – The federal budget that the president sent to Congress yesterday includes $22 million to improve fish and wildlife habitat along the lower Missouri River.

The Missouri River portion of the budget funds habitat establishment all the way to Nebraska.

But to spend tens of millions of dollars on environment projects, the budget drops other projects for the Army Corps of Engineers.

The Bush plan also seeks $33 million for environmental restoration of the Mississippi River in both Illinois and Missouri.

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