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Susan Smith-Harmon

Susan Smith-Harmon

   A heat wave is taking hold of the metro-area and reminding us that it's August in St. Louis.  

   The National Weather Services has issued a heat advisory for the St. Louis area from noon Tuesday until 7:00 Saturday evening.  

   Temperatures are expected to rise into the mid and upper 90's, with heat indices around 100 over the next several days.  There will be little relief at night, especially in the urban heat island of St. Louis.  

   At least a few schools are closing early today as a precaution.  They include the Legacy Christian Academy in Caseyville which will close at noon and St. John the Baptist in Villa Ridge which plans to close at 11:30.  Also, all schools in the Bunker Hill District are closing at 2 p.m. today.

   And the extreme heat is forcing some high school football teams to change game times this weekend. Hazelwood School District officials rescheduled games for Hazelwood Centrals and Hazelwood East. Both games have been moved from 1 PM to 10 AM. 

   Extra precaution is warranted, especially for those spending time outside.  OSHA recommends drinking extra water and taking frequent breaks in the shade or in air conditioning.  

   For information about cooling centers, call the United Way by dialing 2-1-1 from any land line phone.  Or call 1-800-427-4626. 

IL Sen. Kirk advocates missile strike on Syria

Tuesday, 27 August 2013 03:04 Published in Local News

   QUAD CITIES, Ill. (AP) - U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk is advocating for the U.S. to launch a missile strike at the Syrian regime which is believed to have used chemical weapons on civilians.

   The Quad City Times reports that Kirk made the comments Monday while visiting the Rock Island Arsenal.

   Kirk opposes extending "boots on the ground" U.S. military involvement in Syria. He likened an air strike to the 1998 attack on Iraq aimed at curbing weapons of mass destruction. Kirk is a Highland Park Republican and a recently retired Naval intelligence officer.

   Secretary of State John Kerry has decried what he called Syria's "indiscriminate slaughter of civilians," but hasn't indicated whether the U.S. will take action. Syrian President Bashar Assad has denied launching a chemical attack.

 

   SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - The estimated savings on a pension proposal backed by Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan earlier this year is nearly $25 billion less than originally thought.

   That's because the Teachers Retirement System - one of Illinois' five pension systems - says it made a mistake in its calculations. The change was outlined in a Monday letter to a bipartisan panel tasked with coming up with an approach to solving Illinois' nearly $100 billion pension crisis.

   Madigan's plan involves across-the-board cuts in benefits. It was originally touted to save Illinois about $187 billion over 30 years. However, the new estimate is about $163 billion in the same time period.

   Another plan from Senate President John Cullerton, which had union support, was estimated to save roughly $47 billion over the same timeframe.

 

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