Chris Koster

Véronique LaCapra, St. Louis Public Radio

A study conducted for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has concluded that the underground fire plaguing part of the Bridgeton Landfill site isn’t a hazardous threat, even if it reaches radioactive material stored at a neighboring landfill.

wikipedia images

(Updated 1:10 p.m. Mon., Feb. 10)

Within a few weeks, it’s Show-Me time for Missouri’s two major political parties — the Republicans and Democrats – as they showcase their new chairmen and their biggest stars for what could be a crucial election year.

At a time when the public is increasingly turning away from organized political parties and classifying themselves as independents, it’s still largely up to the political parties and their networks to round up the contenders to run for office.

Jason Rosenbaum, St. Louis Public Radio and the Beacon

Every week, St. Louis Public Radio and the Beacon's Chris McDaniel, Jo Mannies and Jason Rosenbaum talk about the week’s politics. 

St. Louis Comptroller Darlene Green joins the podcast this week. Green is the city's chief fiscal officer and one of the longest-serving comptrollers in modern history.

Marshall Griffin, St. Louis Public Radio

(Updated 11:45 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 22)

Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder’s office in the Missouri Capitol is just around the corner from the official quarters of Gov. Jay Nixon.

But they might just as well be in different universes.

At least that’s the view of Kinder, a Republican, who on Wednesday vented about his long-standing lack of communication with Nixon, a Democrat.  Kinder believes their non-relationship has had a negative impact on public policy.

kevindooley via Flickr

The state of Missouri recovered more than $47 million in fraudulent claims made by Medicaid providers in 2013.

That's about an average year for Attorney General Chris Koster's Medicaid Fraud Unit. The office has recovered as much as $100 million, and as little as $20 million, in a year.

Koster, a Democrat, says those wide variations are triggered by how much money Missouri receives from national settlements. But even though more national settlements means more money for the state's coffers, he says the fraud that concerns him the most is conducted by the smaller providers.

Chris McDaniel, St. Louis Public Radio.

Updated 11:50 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 15

The latest campaign-donation numbers are adding more intrigue to St. Louis area’s marquee contest this year between St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley and County Councilman Steve Stenger.

Stenger outraised fellow Democrat Dooley during the last quarter of 2013 -- $245,032 to $115,414. Their latest campaign reports, filed Wednesday, also show Stenger with more in the bank: $638,158 to $458,154.

(via Flickr/401K)

For most intents and purposes, it was all quiet on Missouri's electoral front in 2013. But that didn’t stop the money from flowing to candidates and campaigns. 

Throughout last year, a diverse group of donors gave well over $21 million worth of donations of $5,000 or more. That money flowed to candidates, political party committees, ballot initiatives and political action committees in all corners of the state.

(via Flickr/hlkljgk)

As soon as the snow melts, Missourians may find themselves confronting a horde of people stopping them outside stores, on the streets or at their front doors.

The object: to get their signatures on petitions that would put a variety of issues – such as early voting, income taxes and teacher tenure – on the August or November ballot.

via Flickr/Nottingham Vet School

Lawyers representing death row inmates have filed a complaint with the Missouri Board of Pharmacy, citing St. Louis Public Radio and the Beacon’s investigation from earlier this week.

On Tuesday, we reported that the Department of Corrections has been obtaining its execution drug from an out-of-state compounding pharmacy that isn't licensed to do business in Missouri. Under normal circumstances, the pharmacist could be guilty of a felony.

(via Wikimedia Commons/California Department of Corrections)

In an investigation spanning the past few months, St. Louis Public Radio and the Beacon has discovered the state of Missouri may be ignoring its own laws in carrying out the death penalty by buying execution drugs from a pharmacy not licensed to do business in Missouri.

As we’ve reported in previous months, a shortage of willing drug suppliers led Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon to direct the state to adopt a controversial new execution method.

Target Brands, Inc.

In the wake of a massive data breach committed against the Target retail store chain, con artists may be targeting victims of the scam in Missouri and elsewhere.

(Official Portrait, Missouri Attorney General's office)

While Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon, Secretary of State Jason Kander and even some Republicans talk about restoring limits on campaign donations, the man considered the likely Democratic nominee for governor in 2016 is collecting large donations at a frenetic clip.

Just this year, Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster has raised more than $1.2 million from 68 donations larger than $5,000 apiece, according to the Missouri Ethics Commission’s records. In fact, most of his large donations have been more than $10,000 each.

This article originally appeared in the St. Louis Beacon. - Five years after she endorsed a Republican for Missouri attorney general, state Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal is holding a fundraising event where the headliner is the Democrat she had rejected in 2008: now-Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon. - Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster appears to be siding with Gov. Jay Nixon’s announcement this week that same-sex couples married in another state can file joint tax returns in Missouri.

Koster, a former Republican who’s now a Democrat, declared through a spokeswoman late Friday that “Governor Nixon appears to be following the requirements of Missouri law on tax filing, as passed by the legislature.”

(Véronique LaCapra/St. Louis Public Radio)

Attorney General Chris Koster has asked the federal Environmental Protection Agency to conduct radioactivity tests at the West Lake landfill in Bridgeton that were delayed because of the government shutdown.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Although billed as a “Urban Crime Summit,’’ one of the key crime statistics offered by the four-day event’s host, Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster, affected rural Missouri as well.

Missouri’s per-capita crime rate is the 9th highest in the nation, Koster said in his opening address at Wednesday’s session, the third day of the Summit – and the first of two days in St. Louis.

(Official Portrait, Missouri Attorney General's office)

Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster is siding with fellow Democrat, Governor Jay Nixon, in opposition to legislation that would challenge the federal government's ability to enforce federal gun laws in Show-Me State.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Attorney General Chris Koster has warned lawmakers that he would “emphatically distance his office” from defending aspects of the Second Amendment Preservation Act, which seeks to "nullify" federal gun laws and bar federal agents from enforcing them.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster has a message for every Missourian who shops at Walgreens: “Double and triple check the prices on the shelves and compare them with your receipts.”

That’s because, he says, Walgreens often overcharges.

Chris McDaniel, St. Louis Public Radio.

Updated 5:12 p.m. with comment from Walgreens.

Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster is accusing Walgreens of engaging in false and deceptive pricing schemes, that he said amounts to stealing. In St. Louis Tuesday, Koster announced a lawsuit against the company.

Koster had investigators go to stores across the state, and said they found display tags were often inaccurate, and that membership rewards didn’t always deliver on the price reduction.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Missouri Attorney General Koster was the lead-off signature on a bipartisan letter sent today by most of the nation’s state attorneys general that calls on Congress “to amend the law to help fight prostitution and child sex trafficking.”

Sent to top legislative leaders, the letter advocates that Congress “amend the Communications Decency Act to provide criminal jurisdiction to state and local prosecutors.”

At issue, wrote Koster and others, was the fact that the act was drafted in the mid-1990s before the internet became such a dominant force.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster is keeping up his financial momentum for his acknowledged bid for governor in 2016. His latest campaign-finance report shows that he already has banked $781,410 – with two-thirds of it raised just since April 1.

Véronique LaCapra, St. Louis Public Radio

Attorney General Chris Koster says Missouri may have to resort to using the gas chamber to carry out death sentences as an "unintended consequence" of the state Supreme Court's refusal to set execution dates.

Executions have been on hold in Missouri since the state Supreme Court has declined to set execution dates. The court says execution dates would be "premature" until a federal legal challenge is resolved regarding the use of the drug propofol as Missouri's new execution method.

File photo

Former Missouri House Speaker Steve Tilley, a Republican, donated $7,500 to Democrat Chris Koster last night. Koster has made very clear his interest in the Governor's office.

What's more, the donation comes just a few days after Koster pledged to give $400,000 to Democrats running for legislative seats in the next four years.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Casting their Republican counterparts as ineffectual extremists, some of Missouri’s top Democratic officials provided a blueprint of sorts at the Jefferson-Jackson Dinner to gain even more ground in the Show Me State.

And Attorney General Chris Koster, a former Republican, pledged to put up a substantial amount of campaign money to help the cause.

Véronique LaCapra, St. Louis Public Radio

Updated Wednesday, May 22, 5:30 p.m.: The Department of Health & Senior Services is also posting its evaluations of the air monitoring data here. The regulatory standards that DHSS is using to estimate the health risks from landfill fumes are here.

Véronique LaCapra, St. Louis Public Radio

Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster announced a preliminary agreement on Tuesday with the owner of the Bridgeton Landfill.

Koster filed a lawsuit against Republic Services six weeks ago, alleging violations of state environmental laws. A fire has been smoldering underground at the landfill for two and half years.

Véronique LaCapra, St. Louis Public Radio

Updated 1:02 p.m. May 10 to reflect missing data has now been posted.

The Missouri Department of Natural Resources has released more air sampling results for the Bridgeton Landfill.

According to a written summary on the DNR's website, the Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services analyzed the data collected from mid-March through April 23 and found unhealthy levels of sulfur dioxide at two sites near the landfill.

(Mo. Atty. General's Office)

Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster says he is making preparations to run for governor in 2016.

Koster, a Democrat, has served as attorney general since 2009 and previously was a state senator and local prosecutor.  He has the potential to move up because Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon is prohibited by term limits from seeking re-election again.

Asked Tuesday by The Associated Press whether he will run for governor in 2016, Koster replied: "We are making the necessary preparations and building consensus around the state toward that end."

Chris McDaniel, St. Louis Public Radio.

Every week, St. Louis Public Radio’s Chris McDaniel joins the St. Louis Beacon’s Jo Mannies and Jason Rosenbaum to talk about the week’s politics.

On this week's episode: The results from the mayoral primary are in. Why did Reed lose? Did Slay win by as much as he had hoped? Then Jo shares some stories from Democrat Days and we close it out with Lt. Governor Peter Kinder's lawsuit.

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