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St. Louis Public Radio News
4:41 pm
Thu March 6, 2003

Mo. Prison Officials Look to Curb Population Growth

(KWMU Staff Photo)

Jefferson City, MO. – Missouri's prison population has topped 30,000. The Department of Corrections says it wants to slow the growth rate by reducing the number of convicts who return.

The department is seeking proposals for community supervision centers. They would serve as a place to send some parole breakers, instead of locking them up again.

The centers would only be for those with technical probation or parole violations and not for those arrested for another crime.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
4:12 pm
Thu March 6, 2003

Boeing Settles With State Dept. Over Aiding China

Washington, DC – The U.S. State Department has reached a $32 million settlement with St. Louis-based Boeing Satellite Systems.

The government had accused Boeing, as well as Hughes Electronics Corporation, of illegally helping China analyze why two of their rocket launches failed. Congressional investigations during the 1990s found China gained valuable missile information from those reviews. China, though, says it needed no help.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
12:34 pm
Thu March 6, 2003

Washington U. Research May Help Norwalk Virus

St. Louis, MO – Scientists at Washington University in St. Louis have found a new mouse virus that is closely related to the Norwalk virus that infected many cruise ship passengers last year.

Christiane Wobus worked on the study. She says finding the disease in mice will help in the effort to find a human vaccine.

The Norwalk virus causes flu-like symptoms, and can be fatal to the elderly or people with weak immune systems.

The results will be published in tomorrow's issue of the journal Science.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
11:47 am
Thu March 6, 2003

Missouri House Passes Concealed Guns Bill

Jefferson City, MO – The Missouri House today passed a bill to
allow most civilians to apply for a license to carry hidden guns.

The bill would let people age 21 and older request a concealed gun permit. They'd also have to complete a gun-safety training
course.

Concealed firearms would be banned in prisons, airports, schools, arenas and other public places.

Businesses also would be allowed to ban concealed guns by posting a sign.

The bill goes now to the Senate.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
11:02 am
Thu March 6, 2003

Ill. Lawmakers Consider Taxpayer-Funded Judicial Races

Springfield, Ill. – Taxpayers would be asked to pay for Illinois Supreme Court political campaigns under legislation approved Wednesday by a state Senate committee.

The measure would create a voluntary check-off system to let taxpayers donate. Candidates for the Supreme Court would get $750,000 to run their campaigns.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
10:41 am
Thu March 6, 2003

Russ Carnahan Leaning Toward U.S. House Race

Jefferson City, MO – Another Carnahan is strongly considering
a run for federal office.

Democrat Russ Carnahan says he is leaning toward running for the congressional seat held by fellow Democrat Dick Gephardt.

Gephardt is passing up a re-election bid next year to run for president.

Carnahan says he expects to announce a decision within the next few weeks. He's the son of former US Senator Jean Carnahan and the late Governor Mel Carnahan.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
9:46 am
Thu March 6, 2003

Illinois House Committee Votes to Abolish Death Penalty

(Reuters file photo)

Springfield, IL – An Illinois House committee Thursday approved legislation that would ban executions in the state.

The bill, which now goes to the floor for a vote by the full House, was approved by the Judiciary Committee after dramatic testimony from men who were sentenced to die for crimes they said they did not commit.

Three years ago, then-Governor George Ryan halted executions in Illinois after 13 men on death row were found to have been wrongly convicted.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
4:54 pm
Wed March 5, 2003

Has Ford Set Closing Date on Hazelwood Plant?

St. Louis, MO – Ford Motor Company and Missouri officials are downplaying a newspaper report that the automaker plans to close its Hazelwood assembly plant in August 2005 and move production of two SUV's to Louisville.

A Ford spokesman says no fixed date has been set for the closure, aside from that move coming by mid-decade. And Missouri congressman Dick Gephardt says a state task force is still working to change Ford's mind.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
4:25 pm
Wed March 5, 2003

School Board Candidates Meet at First Forum

St. Louis, Mo. – Eight candidates vying for two seats on the St. Louis school board met at a city high school Tuesday night to answer questions from the public.

The candidates fielded questions ranging from enhancing student achievement to financial management. Each of the eight agreed the district is responsible for addressing its students' social problems and echoed the need for community partnerships.

Candidate Antonio French wants to see the district shift 35% of its non-instructional budget back into the classroom.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
3:47 pm
Wed March 5, 2003

Southtown Gets Federal Funding Boost

St. Louis, MO – St. Louis mayor Francis Slay says a federal grant to revitalize a once thriving retail area in south St. Louis is a positive step forward.

Slay joined Missouri Congressman Richard Gephardt at the former Famous Barr site at Kingshighway and Chippewa Wednesday, where Gephardt announced an $810,000 economic development grant for the site. Slay says redeveloping the Southtown area is a major priority for the city.

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