Wayne Pratt

Reporter / Newscaster

Wayne Pratt is a veteran journalist who has made stops at radio stations, wire services and websites throughout North America. He comes to St. Louis Public Radio from Indianapolis, where he was Assistant Managing Editor at www.insideindianabusiness.com. Wayne also launched a local news operation at NPR member station WBAA in West Lafayette, Indiana and spent time as a correspondent for a network of more than 800 stations. His career has included positions in Sydney, Nova Scotia, Toronto, Ontario and Phoenix, Arizona. Wayne grew up near Ottawa, Ontario and moved to the United States in the mid-90s on a dare. Soon after, he met his wife and has been in the U.S. ever since.

Steelworker Jerry Koroby
Wayne Pratt|St. Louis Public Radio

Updated September 1, 2015 at 1:23 p.m.

A contract between the United Steelworkers and U.S. Steel is set to expire midnight Tuesday, and a last-minute deal is not expected. The company employs roughly 2,000 in Granite City, and operations at the plant will likely continue past the deadline.

Members of the United Steelworkers say they are not planning a strike at this point and the company says it remains committed to operating "without disruption as labor contract talks continue."

Kevin Kliesen, Business Economist and Research Officer,
Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

Many Midwest farmers will be feeling the effect of this summer’s abnormally wet weather for the rest of this year and into 2016. A new agricultural survey from the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis suggests farmer income will continue to take a hit into next year in part because of the delayed planting of soybeans and the inability to bale hay.

Pat Guinan, University of Missouri Extension Climatologist
University of Missouri, Missouri Climate Center

This could be a record-breaking year for Missouri’s farmers. Unfortunately, that’s due to all the rain.

The final numbers won't be known for a few weeks, but University of Missouri Extension says the May-to-July crop-planting period is already the second-wettest since the state started keeping track in 1895.

Convention and visitor business in the St. Louis region appears to have bounced back following a rough period after last year's violence in Ferguson.

Ameren Missouri

Ameren is not moving forward with plans for a second reactor at its Callaway Nuclear Power Plant in mid-Missouri near Fulton. Ameren's application for a second reactor at Callaway was filed with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in 2008.  But funding issues hampered the project. State lawmakers have balked at the utility's efforts to allow Ameren to charge customers for the facility as it was being built.

During a conference call Friday morning with analysts, Chief Executive Officer Warner Baxter cited several reasons for the decision to pull the plug.

futureatlas.com | Flickr

If you’ve noticed lower gas prices when filling up, you are not imagining things.

GasBuddy.com's most-recent survey shows the average price for a gallon in the St. Louis region is about 20 cents lower than a week ago.

August 2014 St. Louis Metropolitan Police Chief Sam Dotson
File photo | Bill Greenblatt | UPI

Updated with arrests - St. Louis police have arrested three individuals in connection with the shooting Tuesday morning of an off-duty officer in the Central West End.

Police chief Sam Dotson says officers had to use a Taser on one individual who was arrested in Maplewood. A fourth man remains at large, but Dotson says the department knows who they are looking for.

Geoff Turk, U.S. Steel
U.S. Steel

Steel produced in Granite City is part of an international trade case that is subject to new regulations signed by President Barack Obama.

Energizer Bunny
Energizer Holdings Inc.

St. Louis-based Energizer Holdings Inc. is splitting into two companies. The complicated move was announced in April 2014 and takes effect July 1.

It is the beginning of a new chapter for a company that dates back more than 100 years with the Wilkinson Sword brand razor.

Monsanto
St. Louis Public Radio

Updated at 12:30 pm June 24, 2015 with comments from Monsanto CEO Hugh Grant

The chief executive officer of St. Louis-based Monsanto says the company is still committed to putting together a deal to acquire a European agricultural chemical manufacturer.

Interest in Syngenta remains high, but Hugh Grant has told analysts on Wednesday that Monsanto is keeping options option in case a deal is not reached.

"This isn’t something we’re gonna turn into an epic struggle," he stated during the company's quarterly earnings conference call.

Our previous story from June 23, 2015:

The chairman of Syngenta is laying out the general terms for any possible acquisition by St. Louis-based Monsanto.

Granite City Steel Mill
Davd Schaper|NPR

Updated at 11:30 a.m., May 28, 2015:

U.S. Steel now says it will not be temporarily shutting down its plant in Granite City. The company announced on Thursday that it will continue to operate one blast furnace and another will be off while new equipment is installed.

U.S. Congressman Mike Bost’s office says about 80 workers will be laid off as production is modified.

The steel maker had announced plans in March to temporarily idle the plant in a move that would have affected more than 2,000 workers (see below.) The company closed coke ovens in Granite City earlier this year, leaving 176 people out of work.

Our earlier story:

A Metro East community is dealing with the temporary shutdown of a major employer for the second time in less than a decade.

St. Louis Public Schools students thank Jack Taylor and family.
St. Louis Public Schools Foundation

A philanthropic family that prefers to remain low-key is making a high-profile statement to help underserved communities and St. Louis-area youth.

The family of Enterprise Holdings Founder Jack Taylor is donating $22 million to several charitable and educational organizations throughout the region.

Proposed Carson, California stadium
L.A. Times| Manica Architecture

The Rams' future in St. Louis continues to be uncertain.

National Football League owners are meeting this week in San Francisco and are expected to receive updates on stadium plans in St. Louis and two Los Angeles suburbs: Carson and Inglewood.

Atul Kamra, SixThirty
SixThirty

The new managing partner of St. Louis-based financial technology business accelerator SixThirty is bringing plenty of experience to the job.

United Steelworkers Sub District 2 Director Dave Dowling
Wayne Pratt | St. Louis Public Radio

Members of the United Steelworkers are pressing U.S. Rep. Mike Bost of southern Illinois to vote against legislation that would fast-track a multi-national trade agreement.

AOL's Steve Case at LockerDome's Lockerdorms
LockerDome.com|Gabe Lozano

As the Midwest economy continues to shift from a traditional manufacturing base, the spaces that many area workers and employers spend their days — and nights — in are also evolving. Research suggests more and more workers are shifting to non-traditional offices, ranging from pet-filled apartments to shared spaces, complete with bunk beds and craft beer.

Mayor Francis Slay, SBA Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet
Wayne Pratt|St. Louis Public Radio

A new partnership will focus on training and business development in the St. Louis region’s immigrant entrepreneurship community.

Air pollution from coal-fired power plants, industrial activities, and cars contributes to asthma and other health problems in the St. Louis area.
Syracuse University News Services

The American Lung Association says a data collection glitch in Illinois means it can’t determine whether air quality in the city of St. Louis has worsened.

Brewing tank outside The Schlafly Tap Room in downtown St. Louis.
Wayne Pratt|St. Louis Public Radio

The increasingly competitive craft beer sector has at least two high-profile St. Louis companies looking to make inroads in Chicago, one of the largest markets in North America.

Urban Chestnut and Schlafly recently struck separate distribution deals to start selling in Chicago, which the Brewers Association says is the third largest overall beer market in the country.

Martin Brodeur and reporter
Wayne Pratt, St. Louis Public Radio

Even though he only played a handful of games with the St. Louis Blues, the National Hockey League’s most successful goaltender ever is comfortable enough with the organization, and the city, to hang around a bit longer.

Martin Brodeur officially hung up his skates Thursday and accepted a front office job with the hockey team.

He is now senior advisor to the team’s General Manager Doug Armstrong, as the Blues prepare for a Stanley Cup push by relying on a new executive who did it all as a player.

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