Good morning! Here are a few headlines to start your day:
- Missouri House members are set to consider legislation to require drug tests for welfare recipients. The bill requires the Department of Social Services to develop a testing regimen for applicants for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families. Tests would be given to people whom state officials reasonably believe have used drugs. Recipients who test positive for drugs would be ineligible for benefits for one year. But the children of adults who test positive could continue receiving their benefits through a third party. House leaders planned to consider the legislation today.
- The University of Missouri system is proposing an average 5.5 percent tuition increase for in-state undergraduates in the next academic year. University curators will consider the proposal at a meeting Thursday and Friday in Columbia. The planned increase meets the goal of keeping any tuition hikes below 10 percent. For the first time, the proposed increases vary among the system's four campuses. They vary from 4.7 percent at UMSL in St. Louis to 6.6 percent at Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla. The flagship Columbia campus wants a 5.8 percent increase, while UMKC in Kansas City is recommending a 4.8 percent increase. Tuition has remained flat at the system's campuses the past two years.
- According to the St. Louis Business Journal, Boeing has reported a lower fourth-quarter profit after the company made few commercial airplane deliveries than a year ago. The Chicago-based aerospace giant said its fourth-quarter profit totaled $1.16 billion -- that's down 9 percent from $1.27 billion a year earlier.
- Illinois legislators could begin the process of redistricting as early as next month. For the first time in 40 years, one party has control of both the legislature and the governor's seat during a re-map. That means Democrats could pass a new map without any Republican input. In Missouri, Republicans hold much of the control over redistricting with big majorities in the House and Senate, but face the threat of a veto if Democratic Governor Jay Nixon dislikes the maps.