Mo. Gov. Jay Nixon is asking President Barack Obama to issue a major disaster declaration for 23 northern counties hit by severe storms and flooding along the Missouri River. He announced the request Monday.
The disaster request would cover events since June 1. If approved, it would allow government aid to flow to families and public agencies that have suffered losses. The counties included in the request are:
Missouri officials say the May 22 tornado in Joplin contributed to the net loss of 13,000 jobs in the state. Joplin alone lost 9,400 jobs in June. The State Department of Economic Development says Missouri’s jobless rate fell from 8.9 percent in May to 8.8 percent in June. In recovery efforts, Gov. Jay Nixon will make a speech Tuesday in Joplin to announce what he calls a “major initiative to address both the near-term and long-term housing needs.”
An organization called Show-Me Cannabis wants to ask Missourians to vote on the legalization and medical regulation of marijuana.
Under the proposal, pot use, possession and small-scale growing would be decriminalized for Missourians who are 21 or older. The state would also be required to issue retail licenses to sell the drug and oversee a medical marijuana program.
Campaign Director Amber Langston said it’s important to at least have a discussion about the benefits of marijuana.
Reporting by WBEZ’s Robert Wildeboer used in this report.
Within the next few weeks, attorneys for ousted Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich will be asking Judge James Zagel for a mistrial. That’s unlikely to succeed, which means they’ll move on to a higher court. Still, Blagojevich’s testimony could cause problems for an appeal.
Reporting by Illinois Public Radio’s Sean Crawford used in this report.
Illinois has a reputation not only as a hotbed for public corruption, but also as a place where high ranking officials are prosecuted for misdeeds. Former U.S. Senator Peter Fitzgerald, who is known for his clashes with the GOP’s old guard, is partly to thank for that.