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Susan Smith-Harmon

Susan Smith-Harmon

Metro union workers symbolic vote: 2 yes, 1 no.

Wednesday, 14 August 2013 04:21 Published in Local News

   It appears union workers and Metro Transit still have a long way to go before agreeing on new contracts.  Union members from the St. Louis area cast a symbolic vote Tuesday.  

   Labor leaders says workers voted in favor of a mediator's recommendations related to pensions and pay but rejected recommendations related to health insurance.  

   John Nations, Metro president and CEO says the transit agency doesn't have the money to meet workers demands.  He's urging the two sides to sit down and negotiate.

   Union officials say they don't expect a strike this month, but say if transit officials don't negotiate in good faith, a work stoppage could come next month.

Metro-east town latest to mull allowing chickens

Wednesday, 14 August 2013 03:36 Published in Local News

   A metro-east village is considering an ordinance that would allow residents to raise poultry.

   The Alton Telegraph reports that Godfrey trustees early next month will consider an ordinance related to raising chickens on property zoned as residential. The Godfrey measure is patterned at least partly after one in nearby Alton.

   Godfrey resident Kenny Feazel is hungry for the change. Unaware they were illegal, he's been raising chickens since April to have fresh, organic eggs because his wife is too sensitive to store-bought ones. The couple also raises their eight chickens to produce fertilizer for their organic garden.

   A Feazel neighbor complained about the birds, prompting Grafton officials to take a look at the issue.

   Godfrey lies along the Mississippi River in Madison County, north of St. Louis.

 

 

More questions raised over County PD crime lab contracts

Wednesday, 14 August 2013 03:14 Published in Local News

   More questions are being raised over contracts for the new St. Louis County Police Crime Lab.  

   At Tuesday night's St. Louis County Council meeting, Councilman Gregg Quinn (R-Ballwin) called for an inquiry into the $3.75 million contract awarded to a company co-owned by Police Board Chairman Gregory Sansone.  SM Mechanical, LLC was hired by the general contractor to install the ventilation system at the new crime lab.

   Last week, County Police Chief Tim Fitch asked the FBI to investigate the deal.  Fitch had questioned the subcontracting process earlier this year, but County counsel Patricia Redington ruled that the situation didn't violate the conflict of interest provisions in the county charter.

   Quinn says the County Charter specifically prohibits appointed officials from benefiting financially from such contracts.

   County Executive Charlie Dooley responded to the concerns by proposing legislation Tuesday night that would modify county ordinances to hold subcontractors to the same ethical standards as contractors. 

   Dooley told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that he's disappointed that Chief Fitch went to the FBI instead of coming to him with his concerns.

 

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