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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2011 World Series
5:00 pm
Fri October 28, 2011

Getting "Red-y": St. Louis anticipates Game 7 of the World Series

The fountain at Kiener Plaza in downtown St. Louis runs red on Oct. 28, 2011 in recognition of the St. Louis Cardinals' appearance in the 2011 World Series. Game 7 of the series is tonight.
Maria Altman | St. Louis Public Radio

In Kiener Plaza in downtown St. Louis Friday afternoon locals mixed with out-of-towners taking pictures of the red fountain.

Those on their lunch break, including Missi Wood and Kerry Anne, admitted they were a bit tired from the late night Game 6 World Series win over the Texas Rangers.

But Anne says she never doubted the Cardinals would pull it off.

“I was calm the whole game,” Anne said. “They were like, ‘last out’, and I was like, ‘we’re going to win.’”

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2011 World Series
8:19 am
Wed October 26, 2011

World Series cash brings relief to St. Louis

A crowd gathers outside Busch Stadium in St. Louis before Game 1 of the World Series on Oct. 19.
(Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)

Our own Maria Altman did a story for NPR's Morning Edition on the economic impact of the World Series on St. Louis. Here's the summary of her story as stated on NPR.org (below) and, of course, you can listen to her story here.

Summary:

The Texas Rangers are leading the World Series 3 games to 2 going into Game 6 Wednesday in St. Louis. The fact that the Cardinals will be playing at home is good for both the team and the town. The game will bring a welcome infusion of cash. As St. Louis Public Radio's Maria Altman reports, the unexpected sales tax revenues have already allowed the city to cancel expected furloughs for its employees.

Morning round-up
9:28 am
Tue October 18, 2011

Morning headlines: Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Mo. Gov. Jay Nixon (L) welcomes China's Ambassador to the United States, Zhou Wenzhong during a state dinner last year. Nixon says Mo. officials expect to finalize billions of dollars of export agreements during an upcoming trip to China.
UPI/Bill Greenblatt

Nixon to announce details of China trip

Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon says state officials expect to finalize billions of dollars of export agreements during an upcoming trade trip to China. Nixon plans to announce more details of the trip today during a visit to a Cargill soybean processing facility in Kansas City.

The governor said Monday the trip will allow the state to sign export agreements with Chinese agencies and provide a chance for numerous Missouri businesses to close deals with Chinese customers.

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Fairmount race days
5:16 pm
Tue September 27, 2011

Fairmount gets 67 racing days

Horses speed around the track at Fairmount Park Racetrack during a summertime race in 2011.
(Robert Altman)

Fairmount Park Racetrack in the Metro East is getting 67 race days next year.

The Illinois Racing Board approved the race dates Tuesday.

This year Fairmount was awarded 75 days and raced 69.

But both the track and horsemen say they’re happy with next year’s 67-day schedule, which they requested.

Fairmount will be offering bigger purses for winner horses next year, and spokesman Jon Sloane says that’s good for the track.

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Morning round-up
9:30 am
Wed September 21, 2011

Morning headlines: Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The United Auto Workers announced Tuesday, Sept. 20 that GM plans to invest $380 million and bring more than 1,800 jobs to its Wentzville plant.
Flickr/GoTRISI

Wentzville Mayor: news couldn't be better

The United Auto Workers announced Tuesday that GM plans to invest $380 million and bring more than 1,800 jobs to its Wentzville plant as part of a proposed contract with the union.

Mayor Paul Lambi says he's hoping the union will ratify the contract on Monday.

"The announcement made by the UAW seems to be a positive indication that contract negotiations went well," said Lambi. " And it seems to me that I would expect that contract to be approved and ratified."

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Illinois Gambling / Horse Racing
4:17 pm
Tue August 30, 2011

Language of law keeping money from Ill. horse racing industry

Horses speed around the track at Fairmount Park Racetrack in Collinsville, Ill.
(Robert Altman)

$2.6 million dollars is waiting to be distributed to Illinois’ horse racing industry but the law’s wording is keeping that from happening.

More than a decade ago Illinois legislators promised horse tracks 15 percent of the tenth casino’s gross revenue receipts.

That license was caught up in the courts for years.

Finally a new owner opened the Rivers Casino in Des Plaines in July, yet the portion slated for horse racing remains in the state’s Gaming Fund.

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Trade Law / Claire McCaskill
4:58 pm
Mon August 29, 2011

McCaskill to introduce trade law enforcement legislation

Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo.
(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

Senator Claire McCaskill says after a month of traveling to Missouri businesses she’ll introduce legislation to better enforce U.S. trade laws.

The Democrat says too many foreign companies are engaging in unfair trading practices, such as mislabeling products to avoid paying duties.

McCaskill says her bill will require all importers to have a physical address to ensure easier tracking and new shippers will be required to pay cash for duties instead of posting bonds that sometimes go unpaid.

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Joplin Tornado /FEMA
11:20 am
Mon August 29, 2011

McCaskill: funding for Joplin not in jeopardy

The view of some of the damage following the strike from a massive tornado to the area on May 22.
(via Flickr/Meagan)

Updated at 3:47 p.m. following a press conference with McCaskill

Missouri Senator Claire McCaskill says federal funding for Joplin is not in jeopardy.

Federal Emergency Management Agency officials said last week that funding for some long-term projects in the tornado-ravaged town would be put on hold because of Hurricane Irene.

McCaskill said she was worried initially (see earlier story below) but says she got a better explanation over the weekend.

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Employment rate of Young People
3:30 pm
Fri August 26, 2011

The employment rate of the young is at an all-time low, but why?

(via Flickr/srqpix)

This summer, fewer young people in the U.S. are employed than at any time since the government began keeping track.

On Wednesday the Bureau of Labor Statistics released a report that found just 48.8 percent of 16-to-24-year-olds had jobs in July.

St. Louis Public Radio’s Maria Altman spoke with Michael Saltsman, a research fellow at the Employment Policies Institute, about what the numbers mean.

Business
5:45 pm
Tue August 16, 2011

Wehrenberg Theatres has new zero tolerance policy for cell phones

(via Flickr/number657)

Officials with Wehrenberg Theatres say when the announcement was made Friday some movie goers actually applauded.

The St. Charles-based company says as cell phone screens have gotten bigger, they’ve gotten more complaints.

Instead of blocking phone signals as some movie chains have done, Wehrenberg is asking patrons to put their phones on vibrate.

If they’re caught talking or texting, they’ll be asked to leave without a refund.

Spokeswoman Kelly Hoskins says they’re stepping up monitoring, and so are other movie goers.

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