Morning headlines: Friday, Feb. 25, 2011
By Julie Bierach • Feb 25, 2011
- St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay calls a new report documenting a plummeting population "absolutely bad news." News U.S. Census figures released Thursday show that the Gateway City lost nearly 29,000 people over the past decade, a decline of about 8 percent of its population. The reports said the city had a population of a little more than 319,000 in 2010. The numbers were doubly disappointing because city leaders were expecting to see an increase. Federal funding for many of the city's program is tied to population.
- The Missouri House has voted to change the state's laws about workplace discrimination. In a 95-59 vote Thursday, the House passed legislation that would change the legal standard people must meet when alleging in a lawsuit that they were fired for discriminatory reasons. The bill now goes to the Senate. Plaintiffs would have to prove the discrimination was the "motivating factor" when they were fired, rather than a "contributing factor." The law would also limit which employers can be sued and the amount of damages that people can recover.
- The Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry and is supporting legislation prohibiting union fees as a condition of employment. Senate President Pro Tem Rob Mayer tells The Associated Press that he plans to take up the so-called "right-to-work" legislation next week in the Senate. The Chamber of Commerce had not previously taken a position on the bill. But the Chamber said Thursday that it decided to back the legislation after surveying its members. The legislation would prohibit closed union shops in which union dues or fees are required of all employees. Mayer, a Republican from Dexter, contends that some businesses are shying away from Missouri because it lacks a "right-to-work" law. Democrats counter that unions have helped to improve wages and working conditions.
- The St. Louis Cardinals have confirmed that Adam Wainwright will have surgery on his right elbow and miss the entire season. Cardinal GM John Mozeliak confirmed the prognosis after the 29-year-old pitcher sought a second opinion in Los Angeles. Wainwright felt stiffness in his arm after Monday's throwing session. Wainwright won 20 games last year and was runner-up for the NL Cy Young Award. His loss leaves the team with a big hole in what looked to be a stable starting rotation.