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An active coal-ash pond at the Meramec Energy Center in St. Louis County in February 2018.
File Photo | Eli Chen | St. Louis Public Radio

EPA Says Missouri’s Plan To Regulate Coal Ash Ponds And Landfills Is Too Weak

The Environmental Protection Agency notified Missouri environmental regulators this month that the state’s plan for overseeing the disposal of toxic waste from coal-fired power plants is not strong enough to protect human health and the environment. In a recent letter to the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, EPA officials noted several provisions in the state’s plan that are weaker than the 2015 federal coal ash rule. Some allow the Missouri Department of Natural Resources to waive requirements for utility companies to clean up groundwater contamination or even monitor groundwater for toxic chemicals if they can show that it doesn’t affect drinking-water supplies or harm the environment.

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St. Louis, MO – The former prime minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, was in St. Louis Wednesday for several speaking events.

Netanyahu told a small audience of students and faculty at Maryville University that the U.S. should not hesitate to launch a military attack on Iraq. He says Saddam Hussein needs to be stopped from amassing chemical, biological and nuclear weapons immediately.

Topeka, KS – A reversal and apology to her Show-Me State
neighbors Thursday from Kansas gubernatorial hopeful Kathleen Sebelius. The Democratic candidate issued verbal and written statements saying she was insensitive Wednesday in suggesting that driving on Missouri roads was more terrifying than the 9-11 attacks.

Springfield, IL & Jefferson City, MO – Missouri collected 2.7% less tax money this July, August, and September than it did during those three months last year.

Budget Director Linda Luebbering says state revenue was $76 million short of what lawmakers budgeted for the first three months of the fiscal year. But Luebbering says she wants to study the outlook more before recommending any more budget cuts to Governor Holden.

St. Louis, MO – The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported Wednesday that while state law mandates that absentee balloting for next month's election was to begin more than a week ago, the city's absentee ballots still were not ready.
At a press conference Wednesday Sheila Greenbaum with the City Board of Election Commissioners attempted to clear up confusion.

Jefferson City, MO – Tobacco companies are joining forces to try to defeat a tobacco tax increase on the November ballot in Missouri.

They have formed a group called Missourians Against Unfair Taxes, whose members include R.J. Reynolds, Phillip Morris, Lorillard, and Brown and Williamson.

The referendum will ask whether voters want to raise the cigarette tax from $0.17 to $0.72 cents a pack. The new money would go to health care treatment and anti-smoking efforts.

Collinsville, IL – There will be school in Collinsville today, even though teachers there have authorized a strike.

The teachers' union voted yesterday to give at least five days' notice before walking out, with negotiations continuing until then.

At issue is a salary increase. Teachers want a 5% raise the first year, followed by increases of 6% and 7% the next two years. The district has offered a 4% raise in each of the three years.

Jefferson City, MO – State auditor Claire McCaskill says some drunk drivers with multiple offenses are not being forced into the level of substance abuse treatment they need. An audit of the Missouri Department of Mental Health found that five percent of drivers with at least two DWI offenses were still being assigned to entry-level treatment programs. McCaskill says the study also found that offenders living at least 30 miles from advanced treatment providers were not required to attend those programs.

St. Louis, MO – In an effort to avoid a repeat of problems that occurred on Election Day in November, 2000, St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay will allow city employees to work the polls next month at full pay. To recruit more election judges he's asking other employers to do the same.

St. Louis, MO –

While Marshall Faulk doesn't exactly have to fear for his job, there is a new football team in town trying to make it's mark.

The National Women's Football League is starting a team in St. Louis to debut next April. As KWMU's Tom Weber reports, the intrigue of women's football may get people to games, but it doesn't guarantee they'll keep coming back.

St. Louis, MO – In an effort to avoid a repeat of problems that occurred on Election Day in November, 2000, St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay will allow city employees to work the polls next month at full pay. To recruit more election judges he's asking other employers to do the same.

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St. Louis on the Air

Friday: Talking Rising Property Values With County Assessor Jake Zimmerman

Host Don Marsh will talk about rising home values and what people who own homes in St. Louis County – and in St. Clair and St. Louis City – can expect to see as a result.

Curious Louis Answers Your Questions About The St. Louis City-County Merger Plan

Readers have submitted dozens of questions about Better Together's proposal to unify St. Louis and St. Louis County. We'll answer as many as we can in the weeks and months ahead.

St. Louis Public Radio Investigates

Taken: How Police Profit from Seized Property

A data-driven investigation of civil asset forfeiture by St. Louis Public Radio, supported by the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting.