City of St. Louis

(Johanna Mayer/St. Louis Public Radio)

Accusations of political gamesmanship are flying today after the introduction of a new St. Louis Board of Aldermen resolution giving about $255,000 to the non-profit animal rescue organization Stray Rescue.

(St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department)

Four jail breaks in 15 months make the city of St. Louis look like a joke.

That was the general consensus of members of the Public Safety committee  on Wednesday following two hours of testimony on the rash of escapes.

(Screenshot via Google Maps)

Updated with comments from the city, preservationists.

Pedestrian and car traffic will be restricted at Spruce and 11th streets in downtown St. Louis indefinitely because the historic Cupples 7 building  has become structurally unsound.

(Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio)

Good morning! Here are some of today's starting headlines:

Heat wave decreases flood threat on Missouri River

The heat wave that's plagued Missouri for most of July has had a positive side effect:  it's lessened the flood threat along the Missouri River between Kansas City and St. Louis.

Mark Fuchs is a hydrologist with the National Weather Service office in St. Louis.  Fuchs said the extreme high temperatures have dried up the soil along the Missouri River's tributaries.

(via Flickr/Aka Hige)

The city of St. Louis has  confirmed a third heat-related death.

The latest victim is a 79-year-old woman who lived alone in an apartment in the 2900 block of Cass. She had a functioning window AC unit that she used mostly at night, and which was not turned on when officials found her early Wednesday.

The city also reported six heat-related illnesses on Wednesday.

(Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)

What Ald. Stephen Conway called a comprehensive animal control strategy for St. Louis is somewhat in limbo tonight after an aldermanic committee passed one bill, rejected a second, and waited to take action on a third.

What passed:

(via Flickr/_J_D_R)

Next Tuesday, St. Louis City voters will vote on Proposition E.  If the proposition passes, the city will retain its 1 percent earnings tax.  If the proposition fails, the tax will be phased out over the next ten years.  Supporters and critics of the earnings tax disagree on many things, including how the tax affects the economic vitality of the city and how prominently the tax figures into people’s decisions to live or work in St. Louis.  But many agree on this: no replacement for the earnings tax is in place and a transition to any combination of alternatives could prove painful.

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

Francis R. Slay, father to St. Louis Mayor Francis G. Slay has passed away at age 83. He was suffering from a heart illness.

The elder Slay was deeply involved in St. Louis City politics.

He served as a State Representative during the 1960's, was a 23rd Ward Committeeman for 45 years and served as the city's Recorder of Deeds.

Former Aldermanic President Jim Shrewsbury said Slay's reputation was one of integrity and respect.

City of St. Louis to lay off 30 firefighters

Mar 15, 2011
(Adam Allington/St. Louis Public Radio)

The St. Louis firefighters union lashed out at city hall today after the mayor announced the layoffs of 30 firefighters.

The mayor's office claims that firefighter pension payments are doubling to nearly $11 million in just two years and risk bankrupting city government.

Chris Molitor is the President of Firefighters Local 73.  Among other things, he accused the mayor of refusing to negotiate in good faith.

"When I woke up this morning, I had to see if I was living in Wisconsin or St. Louis, Missouri…this is wrong," Molitor said.

(St. Louis Public Radio)

After some budget restructuring by chief Dan Isom, the St. Louis Police Department will not have to lay off any police officers, the City of St. Louis announced today via a press release from the mayor's office.

Previously, it was reported that the Police Retirement System will saddle increasing costs, with layoffs as a feared consequence if budget restructuring did not happen.

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The St. Louis City Justice Center

Talks between the American Civil Liberties Union and the city of St. Louis on an independent panel to oversee the city's jails have stalled.

The talks were prompted by a 2009 ACLU report that alleged abuse and medical neglect at the city's Medium Security Institution (more commonly known as the city workhouse) and at the higher-security City Justice Center.

Peabody Energy to stay downtown, expand

Mar 2, 2011

St. Louis-based Peabody Energy announced today that it will keep its headquarters in downtown St. Louis for at least another 15 years.

Peabody is a Fortune 500 company employing more than 600 people in St. Louis.

The company had been offered a package of $10 million in Federal New Market tax credits to fund upgrades to their downtown high-rise.

(via Flickr/alkruse24)

The St. Louis Public School District is adopting a more inclusive policy for charter schools.

Historically, the district has accused charters of siphoning away students and resources.

St. Louis Public Schools Superintendent Kelvin Adams says the time has to be more proactive in regard to charters.