Politics & Issues

Drought / Agriculture
11:13 am
Thu July 26, 2012

Intense demand prompts Nixon to announce more water funding for farmers

(via Flickr/KOMUnews/Malory Ensor)

More money is being put into an emergency program to aid farmers and ranchers battling water shortages in Missouri.

Governor Jay Nixon (D) has added $5 million to the $2 million set aside for crop and livestock producers who want to drill new wells or deepen existing ones during the ongoing drought.  More than 600 applications have been sent in since the program’s announcement on Tuesday.

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letterhead scam
6:21 pm
Wed July 25, 2012

Scammers using govt. letterheads to steal money, Mo. AG Koster says

Mo. Attorney General Chris Koster (D).
Mo. Atty. Gen. office

The latest scam designed to separate Missouri residents from their money involves phony letters from the State Attorney General’s office, the IRS and other government agencies.

The letters include a fake government letterhead, and state that the recipient has won a million dollars or more in prize money.  Attorney General Chris Koster (D) says the intended victims are then informed that they owe thousands of dollars in taxes and fees on the winnings and are instructed to pay them via Western Union.

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Campaign Finance
3:35 pm
Wed July 25, 2012

Lawsuit seeks to remove campaign donation limits in Illinois

(via Flickr/c_ambler)

Reporting in this story from Brian Mackey.

A federal lawsuit filed Wednesday challenges Illinois' campaign finance laws. It seeks to remove limits on how much individuals and groups can donate to candidates.

The case argues there are two sets of rules under Illinois campaign law.

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Election 2012
12:09 pm
Wed July 25, 2012

First-ever gubernatorial endorsement from Mo. Corn Growers backs Nixon

(via Flickr/Muffet)

The Missouri Corn Growers Association has endorsed Gov. Jay Nixon's re-election campaign.

The group says this is the first time it has made a gubernatorial endorsement.

Association President Billy Thiel says the group decided to endorse Nixon because he has promoted Missouri agriculture by helping to expand its markets globally. The group also cited Nixon's support for ethanol cooperatives, among other things.

Nixon, a Democrat, faces no serious opposition in the Aug. 7 primary. Four Republicans are competing to challenge him.

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Nuclear Power
3:42 pm
Mon July 23, 2012

Local task force assigned to Ameren, Westinghouse nuclear project

Ameren Missouri's Callaway County plant near Fulton. Ameren and Westinghouse Electric Co. have a plan in the works to build up to five smaller nuclear reactors near the Callaway facility.

Governor Jay Nixon (D) has announced the formation of a task force to help Missouri land a federal grant to build small modular nuclear reactors, or SMR’s.

The task force is made up of officials from counties adjacent to Ameren Missouri’s Callaway County nuclear plant, which would build the reactors in a joint project with Westinghouse.  Nixon says it’s important to have input from local-level officials.

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Ag disaster
12:56 pm
Fri July 20, 2012

Nixon calls for 'flash grazing' for Mo. livestock owners

Veronique LaCapra/St. Louis Public Radio

Governor Jay Nixon (D) has called on the Missouri Soil and Water Districts Commission to allow livestock farmers to let their herds flash graze temporarily in so-called “exclusion areas.”

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Missouri Supreme Court
12:22 pm
Tue July 17, 2012

One of these people could be Missouri's next Supreme Court judge

The Missouri Supreme Court building in Jefferson City, Mo.
(via Flickr/david_shane)

Judge William Ray Price, Jr. vacates the Missouri Supreme Court effective Aug. 1, so someone will need to replace him.

Today, the the Appellate Judicial Commission released the names and demographic information of those vying for the position. 

Interviews will begin Oct. 10, and from these 18 applicants, the Commission will select three people to recommend to Gov. Nixon. The public is allowed to view the interviews in October.

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Energy efficiency plan
7:52 pm
Mon July 16, 2012

Ameren Missouri discusses efficiency plan w/ Mo. PSC

Ameren’s 2,400-megawatt plant near Labadie, Mo. is the state’s largest coal-fired power plant.
(Véronique LaCapra, St. Louis Public Radio)

The Public Service Commission heard details Monday on Ameren Missouri’s proposed efficiency plan.

The proposal is designed to promote energy efficiency while still allowing the St. Louis-based utility to earn a profit.  It has an estimated price tag of $145 million and it would be paid by the utility’s customers, whose residential bills on average would be about $3 a month higher.  But Ameren Missouri’s Warren Wood says if approved, customers would save money in the long run.

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Election 2012
5:48 pm
Mon July 16, 2012

Nixon adds $2.1 million to campaign chest

Mo. Gov. Jay Nixon in St. Louis on Jan. 24, 2011.

Gov. Jay Nixon’s re-election war chest continues to grow, according to new figures released today.

Nixon raised $2.1 million between April and June, and had over $7.6 million in his account as of July first.  His campaign calls it his strongest fundraising quarter this election cycle and says his bank account is twice the size it was around this time in July 2008.

The Democrat from DeSoto will face the winner of the August 7th Republican primary.

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Missouri Elk
6:14 pm
Fri July 13, 2012

Elk herd "doing well" after first year in Missouri

In the fall, male elk bugle and fight to attract females. A bull can weigh as much as 1,100 pounds.

Missouri’s elk population appears to be settling into their new home state, according to state conservation officials.

Dr. Joseph Millspaugh of the University of Missouri -- Columbia updated the Missouri Conservation Commission today on the state’s elk herd, which he says seems to be doing well.

“(We have) evidence of survival rates (and) reproductive rates that are average to high," Millspaugh said.  "We see diet quality certainly within the range of what we would expect.”

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