Illinois environmental officials say it will be at least a year before the process of hydraulic fracturing or "fracking" is conducted in the state.
The Springfield State Journal reports the new state regulations for the practice are nearly complete.
Marc Miller, the director of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, says it will take months before permits are issued. That's because the state still needs to hold public hearings.
Miller says no companies have registered to conduct fracking since the state started sign-ups last month.
Fracking uses a high-pressure mixture of water, sand or gravel and chemicals to crack underground rock formations and release oil and natural gas.
The search for a pair of bank robbers continues and the FBI says PNC Bank is now offering a reward of up to $20,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the persons responsible.
The PNC branch in the 41-hundred block of South Grand was robbed just after 10:30 A.M. on November 5.
Both subjects are considered armed and dangerous.
Subject #1 is described as a black male, 6' 2" tall, and 250 lbs. He was wearing a flannel shirt, a dark hoodie, and a red knit cap that may have the words "St. Louis" on the front. He was also wearing jeans and tennis shoes.
Subject #2 is described as a black male, slender, and 6' 5" tall. He was wearing a maroon athletic jacket with white sleeves, jeans, and gloves. He draped some type of blue clothing over his head.
The stolen money may be identifiable as a result of possible dye stains on the bills. If you have information, please contact FBI St. Louis at 314-589-2500.
If you have information, please contact FBI St. Louis at 314-589-2500.
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri utility regulators have signed off an agreement involving Ameren Missouri over solar rebates.
Ameren Missouri asked the Public Service Commission last month for permission to suspend payment of the rebates.
The agreement approved Wednesday calls for the utility to continue the rebates up to a maximum of nearly $92 million. Ameren had paid nearly $22 million from August 2012 through October of this year.
Other parties to the agreement included the Missouri Solar Energy Industries Association and the state office that represents utility customers before the PSC.
A 2008-voter approved law requires investor-owned utilities to derive a certain percentage of their electric generation from renewable resources. It caps rate increases derived from that measure at 1 percent.
LAKE ST. LOUIS, Mo. (AP) - Police are investigating illegal withdrawals from hundreds of bank accounts, possibly through the use of a so-called ATM skimming device.
Lake St. Louis Police Chief Mike Force says about 300 people have been victimized so far, and there may be more.
Thieves outfit ATM machines with skimming devices that read bank card numbers, along with hidden video cameras that record people typing in their passwords.
Force says police in the St. Charles County town began getting reports of illegal withdrawals last week. Investigators are trying to determine the stores, gas stations and other places where a skimming device might have been used.
The Normandy School District will pay the tuition bills for students who've transferred away from the unaccredited district. The school board voted Wednesday night to reverse its October decision to withhold the funds.
Board members had objected to paying the nearly $1.4 million bill because the cash strapped district is already struggling to cover the cost of educating its remaining students. But withholding of the tuition had put the district at odds with state law, and in jeopardy of losing state funds.
Parents and teachers again asked the board to reconsider planned budget cuts that will result in teacher layoffs and one school closure.
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - A top aide to House Speaker Michael Madigan is telling Illinois lawmakers to be ready for a special session in Springfield in December.
Madigan chief of staff Tim Mapes told Democrats in an email Wednesday that a "possible" session could begin Dec. 3. He told lawmakers to "keep other days that week available."
The email was sent around the time Madigan and other legislative leaders were meeting in Chicago to discuss a deal to solve the state's $100 billion pension crisis.
Dec. 3 is the day after the deadline for candidates to file paperwork in the 2014 campaign, including anyone challenging incumbents.
House Republican Leader Jim Durkin says progress is being made on pensions but any agreement is on hold until the cost savings of proposed solutions can be calculated.
Homeownership in the St. Louis area remains among the highest in the nation, despite a recent decline.
Figures released by the U.S. Census Bureau today shows a homeownership rate of just over 70 percent from 2010 through 2012. That's down almost two-percent from the prior three-year period. But the current statistics put St. Louis second behind Minneapolis in the nation's 50 largest metro areas.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the numbers vary widely across the region, with more than 80 percent of homes in Jefferson and St. Charles counties being owner-occupied, compared with less than 45 percent in City of St. Louis.
Parents, local politicians and other are demanding to know why the Ferguson-Florissant School Board placed Superintendent Art McCoy on administrative leave.
About 1,500 gathered Wednesday night at McCluer North High School to demand answers from their school board. Dozens spoke at the board meeting for more than three hours. Some hurled allegations of racial motivations at the all white board. McCoy is black.
Board President Paul Morris denies race was a factor. He told the crowd that the issues revolved around McCoy's failure to comply with board directives. Morris also told the crowd that he couldn't say more because privacy rules prevent him from being more specific in a personnel matter.
"This would be a whole lot easier if I could say what's going on," Morris told Fox 2 News, "but I can't."
One parent told the board he planned to file a "Sunshine Law request" Thursday morning.
The board took no actions regarding McCoy's status at last night's meeting, but a decision on the superintendent's future is likely in the the next week or so.
An off-duty St. Louis Police is recovering from a leg wound after being shot last night (Wednesday) at a home in the Walnut Park neighborhood.
The shooting happened just after 7:00 in the 5900 block of Lalite Avenue near Riverview Boulevard, according to the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department.
The officer had reportedly gone to his sister's home to help resolve a dispute she was having with a man. Police Chief Sam Dotson says the officer was escorting the man from the home, when the man's companion opened fire.
Dotson says the officer returned fire, but didn't believe he'd hit the suspect.
The area was cordoned off for several hours while police searched for the suspect, who is still at large.
Chief Dotson says police know the identity of the suspect and he is a felon.
Police have blocked off several streets surround a home in St. John.
Officers say a man has barricaded himself inside a home in the 3600 block of Marvin. The SWAT team is on site and they are attempting to negotiate with the man. Police are advising neighbors to stay inside their homes.