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St. Louis Public Radio News
6:15 pm
Tue February 23, 2010

New report criticizes Corps plan for locks and dams

St. Louis, MO – A new report by several environmental groups says that a $2 billion locks-and-dam project planned for the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers is unnecessary and harmful.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers wants to build seven new locks on the rivers north of St. Louis. The agency says they're needed for better navigational efficiency.

But Brad Walker with the Isaac Walton League argues that barge traffic is down and the Corps could spend a lot less money and still accomplish its goal.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
6:06 pm
Tue February 23, 2010

Fruit extract found to kill breast cancer cells

Bitter melon (Momordica charantia) is a fruit in the same family as cucumbers and squash.

St. Louis, MO – New research out of Saint Louis University finds that a fruit extract can kill breast cancer cells in the lab. The fruit, called bitter melon, is a popular ingredient in Indian and Chinese cooking, and is also used in traditional medicine to treat diabetes.

SLU pathologist Ratna Ray led the study. She wanted to see whether bitter melon has any anti-tumor activity. To do that, she tested it on breast cancer cells and on normal, non-cancerous controls.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
12:44 am
Tue February 23, 2010

Mo. Senate committee hears indoor smoking ban bill

Jefferson City, Mo. – Legislation that would ban indoor smoking in public buildings throughout Missouri is being considered by a State Senate Committee.

Under the bill, smoking would not be allowed in restaurants, bars, sports arenas, businesses, or any other public building.

Exceptions would be allowed for homes not used for daycare, tobacco shops and 20 percent of hotel rooms.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
12:30 am
Tue February 23, 2010

Mo. House committee considers casino license bill

The President Casino on the Admiral (KWMU photo)

Jefferson City, Mo. – Missouri lawmakers conducted a hearing Monday evening on legislation that would bar the State Gaming Commission from revoking the license of a casino for underperforming financially.

The bill was filed in reaction to the Gaming Commission's decision to revoke the license of the President Casino in downtown St. Louis.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
5:10 pm
Mon February 22, 2010

Flood risk high along area rivers this spring

The Mississippi River floods in 2008
(photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI)

St. Louis – A wet October and a snowy winter could mean serious flooding in the St. Louis region.

Forecasters at the National Weather Service in St. Louis say there is a high probability that the Mississippi and Missouri rivers will flood this spring. Ground saturated by record rainfall in October did not have time to dry out before the winter, said service hydrologist Mark Fuchs, and there's a heavy snowpack in states at the head of the Mississippi and Missouri rivers.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
4:51 pm
Mon February 22, 2010

Police commissioner resigns

St. Louis, MO. – A St. Louis police commissioner accused of abusing his post to help a family member resigned Monday.

Vince Bommarito said in his letter to the governor that he made his decision after much thought and prayer.

Bommarito has admitted he called a patrol sergeant to get his nephew out of jail following the nephew's arrest on suspicion of drunken driving.

Governor Jay Nixon said in a statement that he had accepted the resignation and called it appropriate following the recent events.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
10:36 am
Mon February 22, 2010

Small plane hits Metro East house

The plane that crashed was a Piper PA-46 similar to the aircraft in this file photo.

Belleville, Ill. – A single engine plane crashed into a home near Belleville Sunday night.

Nobody on the ground was injured, but two people are believed to have been aboard the aircraft.

Signal Hill Fire Chief Greg Render would not confirm any fatalities yet, but he said the accident does not appear survivable.

The Piper PA-46 was on its way from Florida to the St. Louis Downtown airport in Cahokia.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
10:28 am
Mon February 22, 2010

State senator wants higher seatbelt fine

St. Louis – A bill in the Missouri Senate would raise the fine for driving without a seat belt from $10 to $50.

The bill is sponsored by Democratic Senator Joseph Keaveny of St. Louis. He said since Missouri does not have a primary enforcement law, raising the fine for not buckling up is the next best solution.

"At $10, it's not much of a deterrent not to use a seat belt," Keaveny said "If a person is charged $50 for failure to use a seat belt, it get a little more attention."

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St. Louis Public Radio News
9:01 am
Mon February 22, 2010

St. Louis County officials try again to redevelop Jamestown Mall

St. Louis – St. Louis County officials say they're in the early stages of another effort to redevelop the struggling Jamestown Mall in north county.

The mall has been struggling for years, following the departure of Sears and Dillard's, two anchor tenants, several years ago.

A report from the Urban Land Institute commissioned last year suggests the county redevelop the property, and use eminent domain if necessary.

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St. Louis Public Radio News
8:50 am
Mon February 22, 2010

Legislature unlikely to end Missouri income tax, top lawmakers say

Jefferson City, Mo. – Top Missouri lawmakers say they're doubtful the legislature will pass a major tax overhaul this year.

Backers of the plan want to dump Missouri's income tax and replace it with expanded sales taxes on a wider range of goods and services.

GOP Senate President Pro Tem Charlie Shields says there will be robust debate, but he does not think the proposal will pass.

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