Kelsey Proud

Engagement Editor

Kelsey Proud is a graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism, where she earned a Convergence (Multimedia) Journalism degree. She has worked at PBS Interactive in Washington, D.C., MSN UK News in London and is a social media enthusiast. Kelsey feels journalism is truly a public service and hopes her work enhances community and reaches those who need information most.  Though she's "from" Chicago, Kelsey has also lived in several different regions of the United States, including periods of time in North Carolina, Ohio, New Mexico and Illinois. Her extended family has roots in Boone and Audrain counties in Missouri, too. She is a wannabe chef and globe trekker, former competitive golfer and band-ie (trumpet), and honorary Missourian.

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Cracking Down on Animal Abuse
3:32 pm
Wed December 15, 2010

City of St. Louis, Stray Rescue fighting animal abuse

Gulliver, a dog rescued this week, was used as a "bait dog" in dogfighting. Dogfighting, and other animal abuses, will be carrying heftier fines for the offenders soon.
(Julie Bierach, St. Louis Public Radio)

The City of St. Louis and Stray Rescue are taking additional measures to encourage responsible pet ownership in the City of St. Louis.

This week, the City's Animal Control Officers will begin issuing tickets for fines from $100 to $500 for those who violate city animal laws and ordinances. The City will also enforce animal abuse violations, including illegal chaining and dogfighting.

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Firemen's Retirement System
2:45 pm
Wed December 15, 2010

New St. Louis fire department proposal increases minimum retirement age, but no layoffs

File photo

The City of St. Louis announced a proposal to reduce Fire Department expenditures today, but it did not include any layoffs.

The Firemen's Retirement System (FRS) currently provides one of the best emergency services retirement plans in the country - but that's not without a huge cost to taxpayers.

Some facts about the plan contained in the city's press release:

  • The fire department budget has gone up by more than 40% in the last decade.

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Morning News Roundup
10:02 am
Wed December 15, 2010

Beer Mad at Baseball / Smoking Ban / Towing Scandal

Inside the Anheuser-Busch brewery in St. Louis, Mo.
(Flickr Creative Commons User nan palmero)

Good morning! Here's a look at the headlines:

Coal Landfill in Franklin County
5:32 pm
Tue December 14, 2010

Ameren to build coal ash landfill in Missouri River floodplain? No way, say Franklin County residents.

This diagram is an excerpt of “figure 1” from Ameren’s “Detailed Site Investigation”, showing the location of the company’s proposed coal ash landfill near Labadie, Missouri.
(Ameren Missouri website)

Ameren operates a coal-fired power plant in Labadie, Mo., about 35 miles west of St. Louis, and wants to build a 400-acre landfill near the plant to store coal waste.

Some Franklin County residents are definitely not happy about a possible landfill in the Missouri River floodplain and the effects it might have on drinking water.

Tonight they will once again be voicing their opposition to proposed regulations that would allow Ameren to go ahead with their plan.

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Missouri Rx
3:14 pm
Tue December 14, 2010

Nixon calls for Missouri prescription program for seniors, disabled to continue

Missouri Governor Jay Nixon outlines how he will ask the General Assembly to reauthorize Missouri Rx, the state program that provides prescription drug assistance to low-income seniors and individuals with disabilities, for five more years.
Bill Greenblatt UPI

Often programs called "important" and "a blessing" by lawmakers on both sides of the isle aren't in much danger of elimination, but this time might be different.

207,000 low-income seniors and disabled people in Missouri participate in the Missouri Rx prescription drug assistance program. Well, at least until it expires in August 2011.

Unless the Missouri General Assembly reauthorizes it.

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Death of Springfield, Ill. Mayor
10:59 am
Tue December 14, 2010

Springfield, Ill. mayor found shot dead in home, investigation underway

Springfield, Ill. mayor Tim Davlin speaking at the Capital City Bicentennial Celebration in 2009. Davlin was found shot to death in his home today.
(Flickr Creative Commons User aka Kath)

UPDATED 2:54 p.m. Dec. 15:

According to a news release from the Sangamon county Coroner's Office Davlin died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

UPDATED 4:20 p.m. Dec. 14:

In a press release, the Illinois State Police announced that they have been asked by the Springfield Police Department to conduct an investigation into Davlin's death. The Illinois State Police will also be performing the autopsy on Dec. 15.

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Disaster Preparedness
10:47 am
Tue December 14, 2010

Illinois' score on disaster preparedness? 6 out of 10.

North Dakota National Guardsmen work together with volunteers in sandbag lines to to hold back the rising Red River March 16, 2010 in Fargo, N.D. Illinois scored a 6 out of 10 criteria in a report on preparedness for disasters, such as floods.
(Flickr Creative Commons User The National Guard)

Asking "what if?" is usually pretty benign, but when a new report asks the same question, the answers are about preparedness for disasters, diseases and bioterrorism.

Illinois scores a 6 out of 10 on the Ready or Not? Protecting the Public from Diseases, Disasters, and Bioterrorism report.  The score is unchanged from last year's study.

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Health Care Law
9:54 am
Tue December 14, 2010

Mo. politicians react to ruling on federal health care law

Mo. Gov. Jay Nixon, accused by the Missouri GOP of ducking the issue of healthcare.
(Flickr Creative Commons User aflcio)

Republicans in Missouri are praising Monday's ruling by a federal judge in Virginia that declared portions of the new federal health care law unconstitutional.

The Missouri Republican Party released a statement criticizing Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill for supporting the bill.

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Department of Natural Resources
6:13 pm
Mon December 13, 2010

Nixon names new Dept. of Natural Resources director

Sarah Parker Pauley, the woman picked by Mo. Gov. Jay Nixon to become the next director of the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.
(Marshall Griffin, St. Louis Public Radio)

Governor Jay Nixon has picked a new Director for the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.

Sarah Parker Pauley, 45, will succeed former Director Mark Templeton, who left the DNR to run a trust fund for victims of the BP oil spill. She told reporters her priorities include promoting clean energy use.

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Auto Warranty Scam
5:44 pm
Mon December 13, 2010

Telemarketers in "auto warranty" scam plead guilty in East St. Louis

Two men pleaded guilty to federal charges today in East St. Louis in an auto contract robo-calling scheme that had 15,000 victims in all 50 states. Here's a breakdown of the people, places and charges involved:

These two men were the president and vice president of Transcontinental Warranty...

- Christopher D. Cowart, 49 of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida and

- Cris D. Saganelli, 45, of Boca Raton, Florida

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