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Colin Jeffery

Colin Jeffery

Illinois unemployment rate stays the same in February

Thursday, 20 March 2014 13:49 Published in Local News
CHICAGO (AP) - The Illinois Department of Employment Security says unemployment held steady across the state in February at 8.7 percent.
 
The department said Thursday that the statewide jobless rate was unchanged from January. The federal government said earlier this month that the nationwide unemployment rate was unchanged at 6.7 percent. Illinois has one of the highest jobless rates among U.S. states.
 
The department said Illinois added a net 6,400 jobs in February. That's an improvement from January when the state lost jobs.
 
Companies that work in the professional and business services sector added 10,400 jobs in February and leisure and hospitality employers added 4,000 jobs. But firms in trade, transportation and utilities cut 6,100 jobs.
 
Manufacturing companies continued their decline in January by dropping a net 1,100 jobs.
 
St. Louis, MO (KTRS) - Certain cancer patients won’t be paying as much for their medicine anymore.  
 
Governor Jay Nixon has signed Senate Bill 668 into law, which prevents insurance companies from charging higher prices for oral chemotherapy medicines.  Currently, insurance companies cover chemotherapy pills as a prescription drug benefit, rather than a medical benefit.  Because of that, cancer patients who would prefer to take their medications orally have to pay quite a bit more.
 
Nixon says providing quality care if a priority. "Missourians struggling to overcome this terrible disease deserve access to the most effective treatments available, not a $10,000 prescription bill", says Nixon.
 
The new law limits the out-of-pocket costs insurance companies charge for orally taken anticancer medications to $75 dollars for a thirty day supply.
St. Louis, MO (KTRS) - A couple of St. Louis restaurants want to make sure their workers are getting a fair wage.  
 
Pi Pizzeria and Gringo co-founder Chris Sommers has announced starting April 1st, he will be increasing the minimum wage he pays his workers to $10.10 an hour.  Sommers says this minimum wage needs to be mandated at a federal level. "If they're not going to do it on their own, then it comes down to the federal government" says Sommers,"because the federal government ends up making up for the slack anyway.
 
An employee working at Missouri’s current minimum wage of $7.50 an hour averages $15,600 dollars a year.  

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