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St. Louis Public Radio News
4:38 pm
Thu January 16, 2003

Coast Guard Closes Two Parts of Mississippi R.

St. Louis, MO – The Coast Guard yesterday closed two stretches of the Mississippi River near St. Louis because of near record low water.

Two mile stretches south of the Jefferson Barracks Bridge in St. Louis and near Sainte Genevieve were closed; at least five barges have run aground this week. The groundings didn't cause any injuries or pollution.

The Casino Queen in East St. Louis has been closed since Tuesday because customers couldn't get on board.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
3:51 pm
Thu January 16, 2003

Highway Funding Up In The Air

A group in Jefferson County wants the federal highway bill to include money for a new Highway MM.
(KWMU Staff Photo)

St. Louis, MO –

Last week's decision by the Missouri Highway Commission to change the road money formula will mean $40 million less for St. Louis area projects, starting in 2007.

A state commission made that decision, but the formula also applies to money that comes from the federal government. With the region already set to lose money, the fight for Washington funds will be even more crucial. KWMU's Tom Weber reports.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
3:06 pm
Thu January 16, 2003

Foam Products Building Gutted in St. Louis

St. Louis, MO – A five-alarm fire destroyed a St. Louis foam factory this morning. And petroleum products in the block-long building created major smoke problems.

Fire Captain Robert Hennicke said the thick, black smoke from the three-story, two-building complex rolled across neighboring Interstate 70. The poor visibility closed the highway for a time, during rush hour.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
11:27 am
Thu January 16, 2003

Coast Guard Reopens Upper Mississippi

St. Louis, MO – The low levels of the Mississippi River around St. Louis are having an effect on commerce.

The Coast Guard had closed two-mile stretches of the river at St. Louis and Sainte Genevieve because there wasn't enough water to keep boats moving. Those two spots reopened this morning, but five barges have already run aground this week.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
3:43 pm
Wed January 15, 2003

Man Gets Probation For Killing Family Dog

St. Louis, MO – A Kansas City judge has sentenced a St. Louis County man to three years probation for beating his family dog to death with a sledgehammer. 34-year-old Micael Welch of Affton pleaded guilty last year. The case was moved to Kansas City because it triggered an outcry from animal lovers. Welch could have received up to five years in prison for the killing of Dusty, a Dalmation-Labrador mix. Jackson County Circuit Judge Preston Dean cited a desire to keep Welch from losing his job as a truck driver in granting probation.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
3:34 pm
Wed January 15, 2003

Laclede Gas Prices Going Up

Jefferson City, MO – Laclede Gas customers will be paying an average of $46 more on their bills over the next three months.

Missouri regulators yesterday cited higher wholesale gas prices when they approved the higher rate for just the months of January, February, and March.

Under the price effective today, customers who have been paying about $0.44 er 100 cubic feet of gas will see their rate
increase about eight cents for that measurement unit for January,
February and March.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
11:57 am
Wed January 15, 2003

Kmart Closings Will Affect Four Area Stores

Kmart announced yesterday it would close another 300 stores.
(Reuters Photo)

St. Louis, MO – Kmart's announcement to close more than 326 stores nationwide will affect four stores in the St. Louis area.

The company will close stores in Arnold, Crestwood, Overland, and north St. Louis on Lewis and Clark Boulevard.

In all, Kmart will fire 37,000 people nationwide. The move is a bid to recover from bankruptcy; the company says it will provide some benefits to employees who are affected, including extended health care and job placement assistance.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
11:56 am
Wed January 15, 2003

Governor Holden Calls For Tax Increases

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St. Louis Public Radio News
10:20 am
Wed January 15, 2003

County Approves Loan for Cards' Stadium

Clayton, MO – The St. Louis County Council last night agreed to lend St. Louis city $45 million to help build a new stadium downtown.

The council must still approve the actual terms for the loan and the sale of bonds to raise the money. If those two steps happen, all the public funding needed to replace Busch Stadium would be in place. Organizers still need to find private funding.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
9:58 am
Wed January 15, 2003

Coast Guard Limits Barge Traffic

St. Louis, MO – The Coast Guard is limiting barge traffic on the Mississippi River near St. Louis. The advisory limits the size and number of vessels on the water as the river reaches near historic lows.

The move affects 185 miles of the Mississippi from St. Louis to Cairo, Ill. Three barges needed towing yesterday near Hartford, Ill. after they went aground. There were no reported injuries.

The Coast Guard says the advisory remains in effect until conditions turn more favorable.

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