Maria Altman

Reporter

Maria is a reporter at St. Louis Public Radio, specializing in business and economic issues. Previously, she was a newscaster during All Things Considered and has been with the station since 2004. Maria's stories have been featured nationally on NPR's Morning Edition, All Things Considered, and Weekend Edition, as well as on Marketplace.

Maria has won numerous awards, including from the Illinois Associated Press, the Missouri Broadcasters Association, the Missouri Bar Association, and the Missouri State Teachers Association.

She came to St. Louis from Dallas, where she worked at KERA. Maria has also worked at WUIS in Springfield, and WSIU in Carbondale, Ill. She received her M.A. in Public Affairs Reporting at the University of Illinois-Springfield and a B.A. in journalism from the University of Iowa.

In her spare time she serves as an adjunct journalism instructor at the University of Missouri-St. Louis and Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.

Maria lives in St. Louis with her husband and two kids.

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Battle of Boonville
4:02 pm
Fri June 17, 2011

Thousands of visitors expected at anniversary of Civil War battle

The Battle of Boonville, Missouri, sketched by Orlando C. Richardson. A reenactment will take place this weekend, on the 150th anniversary of the battle.
(via Wikimedia Commons)

Thousands of spectators are expected in Boonville, Mo. this weekend for the 150th anniversary of one of the Civil War’s first battles.

The Battle of Boonville took place June 17, 1861 as Confederate-leaning Missouri Guard members met Union troops.

Boonville, a town of about 6,400 is expecting 700 re-enactors and 10,000 to 20,000 visitors.

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Nixon on compromise legislation
1:43 pm
Tue June 14, 2011

Nixon adds $1.1 million for oversight of dog breeders

Governor Nixon made the announcement Tuesday at the Humane Society of MIssouri office in St. Louis.
Bill Greenblatt UPI

Missouri’s budget for next fiscal year includes $1.1 million more for oversight of dog breeders.

Governor Jay Nixon highlighted the funding at a press conference Tuesday at the Humane Society of Missouri in St. Louis.

The move comes after the governor helped craft a compromise bill this spring that toughened state oversight of dog breeders but scaled back some provisions of the voter-approved initiative Prop B.

Humane Society of Missouri president Kathy Warnick says the group has no regrets about the compromise.  

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Morning round-up
9:14 am
Mon June 13, 2011

Morning headlines: Monday, June 13, 2011

Minor flooding is predicted along the Mississippi River at St. Joseph, Mo.
Flickr/USACEpublicaffairs

Minor Flooding Expected this Week in Mo.

Minor flooding is expected along the Mississippi River in Missouri this week. In St. Louis, the river is slightly above flood stage at 30.5- feet, and expected to stay that way for the next four days.

There is a flood warning in effect towns from Quincy, Mo., down to Chester, Ill. until Sunday. National Weather Service meteorologist Butch Dye says the flooding is expected to remain minor, barring significant rainfall.

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Clean Water Act settlement
7:14 am
Fri June 10, 2011

MSD board gives preliminary approval to Clean Water lawsuit settlement

MSD crews make repairs along Hampton Ave. in 2010. The agency's Board of Trustees gave its approval last night to a settlement that will require $4.7 billion in infrastructure upgrades over 23 years.
(via Flickr/Paul Sableman)

The Board of Trustees for the Metropolitan Sewer District gave its initial approval last night to a multi-billion dollar plan to settle a Clean War Act lawsuit.

The state of Missouri and the EPA filed the suit in 2007, which the Missouri Coalition for the Environment later joined. It alleged, among other things that

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MoDOT
6:46 pm
Wed June 8, 2011

Mo. transportation officials approve plan to cut spending

Missouri Department of Transportation director Kevin Keith.
(Missouri Department of Transportation)

Missouri transportation officials have approved a plan to cut positions, close facilities and sell equipment to bolster money for road and bridge projects.

The Highways and Transportation Commission approved the proposal today.

Under the plan, about 1,200 positions will be cut, 131 facilities will be closed and 740 pieces of equipment will be sold.

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Carondelet Park
5:40 pm
Tue June 7, 2011

Carondelet Park Grand Stand destroyed by fire

St. Louis firefighters dig through the rubble of a historic bandstand looking for hot spots after a fire destroyed the structure in Carondelet Park in St. Louis on June 7. The bandstand was built in 1898, and was fully involved when firefighters arrived.
(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

The Carondelet Park Grand Stand burned to the ground today. A spokesman for St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay says it’s considered a total loss.

Built in 1898, the stand was used for Sunday concerts and rented out for picnics.

Firefighters got the call shortly after 2 p.m. There’s no word on the cause of the fire.

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MSD / Environmental Protection Agency
5:58 pm
Thu June 2, 2011

Lawsuit against MSD by EPA may be near resolution

Updated 3:30 p.m. June 3 to include comment from MSD.

Updated at 9:55 a.m. June 3 to reflect that the State of Missouri has not signed on to the consent decree.

A lawsuit brought by the Environmental Protection Agency against the Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District back in June 2007 could soon be resolved.

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Joplin Tornado
12:56 pm
Wed June 1, 2011

SLPD sends 60 officers to Joplin

St. Louis police officers load their gear into a van as they prepare to leave for Joplin.
Maria Altman St. Louis Public Radio

The St. Louis Police Department is sending 60 police officers down to Joplin to help as the city recovers.

The officers leave Wednesday and will be there for a week.

They’ll be working 12-hour shifts dealing with traffic control, check points, and manning squad patrols through the impacted area.

Police Lieutenant Colonel Tim Reagan says the officers all volunteered for the work.

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Backyard Chicken Movement / Education
6:35 am
Wed June 1, 2011

Backyard chicken movement moves to schoolyard

Kaila Nong is among three chicken stewards who take care of the Maplewood Richmond Heights School District's 16 chickens.
(Maria Altman/St. Louis Public Radio)

Raising chickens has become a bit of a trend in urban and suburban areas.

But one St. Louis area school is embracing the so-called backyard chicken movement as a teaching tool.

The Maplewood Richmond Heights School District has 16 chickens, and the group of students who care for them has now written a guide to help others raise hens.

They’ll be signing "Chickenology: The Art & Science of Keeping Chickens" at 2 p.m. Sunday at Left Bank Books’ Downtown.

St. Louis Public Radio’s Maria Altman met the school’s “chickenologists” just before the school year draws to a close Thursday.

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Joplin Tornado
7:22 am
Tue May 24, 2011

Joplin hit by devastating tornado, recovery underway

The scene today near 23rd and Main St. in Joplin, Mo. following last night's tornado.
(KCUR/Dan Verbeck)

Updated at 8:20 a.m. May 24:

According to the Missouri Department of Public Safety, 117 people are now confirmed dead. The latest information from DPS is available here.

Updated at 7:19 a.m. May 24:

Joplin Asst. City Manager Sam Anselm says rescuers found no new victims or survivors as they worked through the night. The death toll remains at 116.

So far, 17 people have been rescued from debris left across the city.

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