Politics & Issues

St. Louis schools
5:18 pm
Thu January 17, 2013

Bill In Mo. Senate Would Restore Elected School Board For St. Louis

St. Louis Public Schools

Legislation has been filed in the Missouri Senate that would lay the groundwork for restoring an elected school board for the city of St. Louis.

The city's school district regained provisional accreditation last September, and if it can maintain it for a full year, the bill would then require that a locally elected school board replace the state-appointed board on July 1st, 2014.  It’s sponsored by State Senator Jamilah Nasheed (D, St. Louis).

Read more
Lt. Gov. succession
6:39 pm
Wed January 16, 2013

Special Elections Bill Passes Another Mo. House Committee, Floor Debate Next

UPI/Bill Greenblatt

Legislation to require special elections in Missouri to fill vacancies in statewide offices has cleared another hurdle.

The bill today easily passed the House Rules Committee and is expected to be debated on the floor of the House next week.  If passed, House Bill 110 would only allow the governor to appoint a temporary placeholder if a statewide office is vacated, and that person would be ineligible to run in the special election to fill the vacancy.  State Representative Jeff Roorda (D, Barnhart) sits on the Rules Committee and cast one of the few “no” votes.

Read more
2013 mayoral race
6:34 pm
Wed January 16, 2013

Mayoral Rivals Spar Over Who Should Negotiate Contracts

(via City of St. Louis websites)

Tensions between the two main Democrats running for mayor of St. Louis were on broad display today during a dispute over who should negotiate contracts with St. Louis city employees.

Read more
5:54 pm
Wed January 16, 2013

Veolia Contract Could Get Public Airing

Opponents of a city contract with Veolia North America, like those pictured here, may get a chance to express their concerns at a public hearing.
Credit Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio

Opponents of a contract that asks Veolia North America to look for efficiencies in the St. Louis city water department could get a public hearing. 

Board of Aldermen president Lewis Reed announced today that he’ll ask an aldermanic committee to look into allegations of corporate misbehavior at the company, which is headquartered in France. His request would have to be approved by the entire board.

The move for public debate heartened Kathleen Logan Smith, the executive director of the Missouri Coalition for the Environment. 

Read more
4:14 pm
Wed January 16, 2013

Mo. House GOP Defeats 2nd Effort By Democrats To Ban Smoking In Lawmakers' Offices

Flickr Creative Commons user SuperFantastic

Republican members of the Missouri House who smoke will still be able to, while Democrats won’t.

A new rule adopted today by the full House allows each party caucus within the House to set its own rules for such things as whether a lawmaker can smoke in his or her own Capitol office.  Shelley Keeney (R, Marble Hill) chairs the House GOP Caucus.

“I do think it was a good compromise," Keeney said.  "Clearly there were a wide range of views and opinions on the issue.”

Read more
St. Louis on the Air
2:51 pm
Wed January 16, 2013

Candid With The Carnahans: End Of A Political Dynasty?

Robin Carnahan and Russ Carnahan
Alex Heuer / St. Louis Public Radio

For the first time in a long time, no member of the Carnahan family is holding public office in Missouri.

Secretary of State Robin Carnahan left office earlier this week after deciding not to seek re-election last November.  Her brother, Congressman Russ Carnahan (MO – 3), served four terms in the U.S. House of Representatives.  After re-districting, he challenged Congressman Lacy Clay in the Democratic primary and was unsuccessful.

Read more
12:57 pm
Wed January 16, 2013

Mo. Lawmakers Want To Nullify Federal Gun Limits

Missouri Capitol
(Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio)

President Barack Obama's call for greater gun restrictions is being met with opposition in the Missouri Legislature.

Obama called upon Congress on Wednesday to ban assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines as part of a sweeping package aimed at reducing gun violence.

Read more
National Politics
10:34 am
Wed January 16, 2013

President Obama Reveals Plan To Reduce Gun Violence

President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden announce their plan to reduce gun violence on Jan. 16, 2013.
(White House video screen capture)

Updated 11:18 a.m. Thank you for joining us earlier for this live event. It has now concluded.

President Obama revealed a multiple-part plan to reduce gun violence today. 

NPR's The Two-Way reports on the details. What do you think about the plan? 

History Museum
7:50 pm
Tue January 15, 2013

Circuit Attorney Will Look Into Issues At History Museum

Circuit attorney Jennifer Joyce has agreed to review concerns raised about governance at the Missouri History Museum.
Credit (via Flickr/Reading Tom)

Updated at 8:00 p.m. with statement from Missouri History Museum.

The prosecutor in the city of St. Louis will look into some of the governance and oversight issues plaguing the Missouri History Museum.

"Upon request, we have agreed to review concerns brought to the St. Louis Board of Aldermen in connection with the Missouri History Museum. At this point, it would be inappropriate to discuss this matter further," Jennifer Joyce said in an written statement. 

Read more
5:07 pm
Tue January 15, 2013

Mo. House Republicans Defeat Attempt By Democrats To Ban Smoking In Members' Offices

(via Flickr/Drongowski)

A proposal to ban smoking in the Capitol offices of Missouri House members has been snuffed out by a committee.

The House Rules Committee rejected the office smoking ban Tuesday on an 8-4 vote, with all Republicans against it and all Democrats for it.  House rules already prohibit smoking in the hallways and the chamber while lawmakers are in session. But legislators can allow smoking in their own offices.

Read more