Illinois Gambling
8:17 pm
Mon July 9, 2012

Quinn: Won't sign gambling bill for ethics law

Ill. Gov. Pat Quinn.

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn says he won't sign a gambling expansion bill in exchange for a promise that legislators will pass an ethics measure in the fall.
Quinn made the comment Monday at a ceremony during which he signed a measure into law that expands a tax credit program for businesses that hire veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The Legislature passed a bill earlier this year that would create five new casinos - a land-based site in Chicago and four more on riverboats.

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Toll Roads
6:34 pm
Mon July 9, 2012

Still no love for toll roads as special transportation panel meets in Columbia

Interstate 70 outside Rocheport, Mo.

A panel created by the Missouri House to review the state's transportation needs met Monday in Columbia.

Most of the testimony heard by the Blue Ribbon Citizens Committee on Missouri's Transportation Needs centered on improving the state's highways, and whether those improvements should include a toll road -- be it I-70 or another major highway.  Bob Gilbert with the Jefferson City Chamber of Commerce told the panel that the state should also upgrade U.S. Highway 50.

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Health Care
6:17 pm
Mon July 9, 2012

Report: new federal health care law could cover two thirds of Mo. uninsured

A map detailing a county-level look at the percentage of Missourians who were uninsured and under age 65 in 2009. Click on the map to expand and learn more.
(Courtesy Missouri Foundation for Health)

A new report by the Missouri Foundation for Health estimates that about two-thirds of Missouri's more than 800,000 uninsured could get health insurance under the federal health care law  - and the county-level data suggest that rural counties will benefit the most.

The analysis uses census data to project how the number of uninsured could change in every county in Missouri under the Affordable Care Act.

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Roger Wilson
2:14 pm
Mon July 9, 2012

Former Mo. Gov. Wilson sentenced to probation

Former MO Gov. Roger Wilson
Sydney Miller St. Louis Public Radio

Former Missouri Governor Roger Wilson was sentenced to probation in federal court today for one count of misdemeanor campaign finance fraud.

Wilson pleaded guilty in April to accusations that from 2009-2010 he helped funnel $8,000 in campaign contributions to the Missouri Democratic Party.

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Cupples 7
12:33 pm
Mon July 9, 2012

Court denies Cupples 7 demolition

A composite image from an engineering report by ABS Consulting shows the partial collapse of the timber supports for the east wall of Cupples 7. A judge on June 28 denied a demolition permit for the structure.
(ABS Consulting)

The owners of a crumbling warehouse building in downtown St. Louis are out of legal options at the state level.

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Morning round-up
6:51 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Morning headlines - Monday, July 7, 2012

(via Flickr/Indofunk Satish)

Storms bring some relief to St. Louis

Strong thunderstorms that moved through the St. Louis area last night have brought some relief from the extreme heat that’s been pounding the region for the last two weeks.

The ten days of triple digit temperatures fell just three days short of the 1934 record, when high temperatures hit 100 degrees or more for 13 days straight. The summer of 2012 is only three weeks old, but eight record high temperatures have already fallen.

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Safe driving campaign
6:34 am
Mon July 9, 2012

IDOT launches road safety campaign

(via Flickr/Be.Futureproof)

Starting today, motorists in Illinois will see safe driving messages on the state's digital road signs.

The campaign from the Illinois Department of Transportation is an effort to reduce the number of fatal accidents in the state. So far this year, 479 people have died on Illinois roads, compared with 418 by the same time last year.

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Morning News Round-up
9:41 am
Sun July 8, 2012

Morning headlines: Sunday, July 8, 2012

(via Flickr/Indofunk Satish)

Early drought exacting a toll on regional corn farmers

Extreme heat and drought are driving down what many farmers expected to be a bumper corn crop.  

Back in March and April, warm weather had Midwestern farmers planting corn at a record setting pace.

In Illinois alone, an estimated more than 13 million acres of corn were planted this year.  

Now, many growers are in full on damage control as record setting heat continues to drive down expected yields.

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Vehicle Tax
1:18 pm
Sat July 7, 2012

Gov. Nixon urged to sign Mo. vehicle sales tax

Local officials and Missouri vehicle dealers are sending emails urging Gov. Jay Nixon to sign legislation allowing communities to continue levying taxes on vehicle purchases.

But it appears to be an uphill effort because Nixon previously said the legislation would "bypass" a public vote and improperly impose a tax. Nixon has not specifically said whether he will sign or veto the bill.

Animal Welfare
4:39 pm
Fri July 6, 2012

Hardee's to end use of cramped crates in pork supply chain

This photo shows sows in gestation crates. The Humane Society of the United States provided the photo, which the organization says was taken during its 2012 undercover investigation at a Wyoming breeding facility supplying pigs to Tyson Foods.
The Humane Society of the United States

The fast food chain Hardee’s says it will stop buying pork from suppliers who use gestation crates – the cramped metal cages where many industrial pork producers house pregnant sows for most of their adult lives.

The cages are not much bigger than the pigs themselves, making it difficult for the animals to move or lie down comfortably.

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