John Rizzo | St. Louis Public Radio

John Rizzo

Hydrocodone is a common opioid that is prescribed for pain relief
Jonathan Ahl | St. Louis Public Radio

The Missouri Senate is set to debate legislation next week that would create a statewide prescription drug monitoring program, and it appears to have a better chance of finally passing, leaders said. 

The program is designed to stop the misuse and abuse of opioids. Missouri is the only state in the country without such a program. The measure passed through a Senate committee last week after passing the House earlier in February. 

Senate Majority Floor Leader Caleb Rowden, R-Columbia, said he hopes to see the bill pass this year. 

Missouri Senate Minority Leader Gina Walsh speaks to reporters on the last day of the legislative session in Jefferson City on Friday.
File photo I Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

Missouri Senate Democrats are going through a leadership change.

Senate Minority Leader Gina Walsh announced on Tuesday that she would step aside as her caucus’ leader. The Bellefontaine Neighbors Democrat had served in that leadership post since 2017. Sen. John Rizzo, D-Independence, will replace Walsh as minority leader.

Sen. John Rizzo, D-Independence
Jason Rosenbaum / St. Louis Public Radio

State Sen. John Rizzo is the latest guest on the Politically Speaking podcast.  The Democrat from Independence talked to St. Louis Public Radio’s Julie O’Donoghue and Jaclyn Driscoll.

Missouri Gov.-elect Eric Greitens hugs Rev. Ken McKoy, a pastor with Progressive Zion A.M.E. Church. Greitens walked with McKoy as part of NightLIFE, a group that seeks to curb violence in north St. Louis neighborhoods.
Jason Rosenbaum | St. Louis Public Radio

The bone-chilling streets of north St. Louis were largely empty last Friday night. An icy mist brought both automobile and foot traffic on Kingshighway to a halt, with the exception of a few cars and trucks – and a governor-elect.

On pavement that at times resembled an ice skating rink, Gov.-elect Eric Greitens walked methodically through the sidewalks and on the streets with a medium-sized scrum. The Republican chief executive-to-be was out with NightLIFE, a group seeking to curb violence in Fountain Park and Lewis Place neighborhoods.

Flickr |neil conway

Updated 1/14/14 4:43 pm with news of scheduled hearing and Speaker Tim Jones' response.

Several state lawmakers are calling for an investigation into how the Missouri Department of Corrections has carried out executions in the previous months.