ST. LOUIS (AP) - Two former Missouri political leaders are teaming up to share the lessons of their high-profile falls from grace.
Former Missouri House Speaker Rod Jetton and ex-state senator Jeff Smith each wrote a chapter in a new book called "The Recovering Politician's Twelve Step Program to Survive Crisis." They appeared at a University City pizzeria in a recent promotional appearance.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch (bit.ly/15UonUO ) reports that the one-time political adversaries are now contrite about their mistakes.
Smith is a Democrat who served nearly a year in prison for lying to federal investigators after an unsuccessful 2004 campaign for Congress.
Jetton, a Republican, pleaded guilty to misdemeanor assault and received probation following a 2009 consensual sexual encounter in which a woman claimed he choked her into unconsciousness.
CHICAGO (AP) - Missouri Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder is predicting that voters will get a chance to decide whether to make Missouri the 25th state to enact a right-to-work law.
Kinder said while attending a Chicago conference of the American Legislative Exchange Council that he believes fellow Republicans in the Legislature will refer the measure to the ballot next year.
The measure would prohibit union membership or fees from being a condition of employment in Missouri.
Kinder's comments came during a session highlighting how the historically unionized state of Michigan enacted a right-to-work law last December.
The American Legislative Exchange Council is an association of legislators, businesses and nonprofit groups that advocates for free-market policies. It has been sharply criticized by unions and others for its close ties between big businesses and lawmakers.
CHICAGO (AP) - A group of states forging ahead with plans for high-speed passenger rail have put out a call for bids for the production of 35 next-generation locomotives.
The request for proposals released Thursday calls for lighter, cleaner-burning locomotives that can reach speeds of up to 125 miles per hour.
Illinois is leading the procurement. The other states taking part are California, Michigan, Missouri and Washington.
The Federal Railroad Administration has allocated $808 million for the new locomotives and for the construction of 130 bi-level passenger cars.
Those cars will be built at a new plant in Rochelle, Ill., by the American subsidiary of Nippon Sharyo, the company that built Japan's bullet train.
Illinois is working on 110-mph service on routes from Chicago to Detroit and Chicago to St. Louis.
The State of Missouri may have to pay part of the costs for the school transfer program. The unaccredited Normandy School District will spend between 15 and 18 million dollars to send hundreds of students to Francis Howell and other, better performing districts. Missouri Education Commissioner Dr. Chris Nicastro told Fox 2 News that at that rate, Normandy will likely run out of money before the end of the school year.
"If Normandy cannot meet their obligations, then there's going to have to be some money come from somewhere," Nicastro said. "The legislature's the only body I know of that can appropriate those funds."
Dr. Nicastro says the costs could go up next year. That's when new education standards kick in across the state, which she believes will cause more districts to become unaccredited.
A small west St. Louis County hamlet is the richest community in the U.S. according to the "Wall Street Cheat Sheet." The website compared the annual incomes of the top five-percent of earners and found the City of Huntleigh topped the list. The median income of the top five-percent in Huntleigh was just over $2.7 million.
About 400 people call the city nestled between Frontenac, Ladue and Kirkwood home. Among them are August Busch IV, Carnival Cruise Lines chief Arnold Donald and several other well heeled families.
The top 8 cities and the median income of the top 5 percent in each:
1. Huntleigh, MO: $2.700 million
2. Mill Neck, NY: $2.511 million
3. Chenequa, WI: $2.498 million
4. Cove Neck, NY: $2.383 million
5. Jupiter Island, FL: $2.090 million (Home of Tiger Woods)
6. Chevy Chase Village, MD: $2.090 million
7. Westover Hills, TX: $2.045 million
8. Westlake, TX: $2.041 million
WAYNESVILLE, Mo. (AP) - Victims of this week's Missouri floods are being warned of possible scammers.
Pulaski County Sheriff Ron Long issued a statement Thursday cautioning residents to be alert for identity thieves posing as government officials or charity workers offering help. Long says the scammers may request personal information, such as a Social Security number. The sheriff says the scammers might also go through trash and flood debris set out for disposal.
Other threats come from people representing fake charities who pressure potential donors for cash contributions for flood relief.
The sheriff also says natural disasters tend to attract shoddy contractors known as "storm chasers" who go door-to-door claiming to specialize in flood repair. Long says it's a good idea for homeowners to contact their insurance carriers for names of approved contractors.
It took standing in line for hours, but hundreds of drivers were able to resolve traffic tickets in Pine Lawn yesterday.
The city had sent out letters warning ticket holders that they had outstanding $50 fines. All of the letters warned that failure to appear at court on August 8th at 3:30 PM would result in a warrant being issued. That meant a line of ticket payers that wrapped all the way around the block.
It took several hours for everyone to get into court, but by late Thursday evening, everyone had seen the judge.
Several people in line said they had received no prior warning about the tickets, but city officials say previous warnings had been distributed and that the long waits could have been avoided if violators had paid their fines on line.
A Missouri company tested a bullet-proof shelter in a school for the first time Wednesday.
A Christian School in western Missouri served as the testing grounds for the shelter. Teachers were excited to see the shelter was shot several times with armor piercing rounds and the bullets showed no signs of penetrating the steel.
The same shelter could also be used for protection during a tornado.
ST. LOUIS (AP) - An Illinois appeals court has thrown out 31 convictions involving a woman who drunkenly caused a 2009 wreck that killed four people, although the panel let stand a 20-year prison sentence the woman said was excessive.
On Wednesday, the Mount Vernon, Ill.-based 5th District Appellate Court threw out all but one of Melissa Weiser's 32 convictions for felony aggravated driving under the influence, ruling them redundant even though the former East Carondolet woman pleaded guilty to the charges.
The 31-year-old unsuccessfully pressed to have her 20-year prison sentence reduced in connection with the Clinton County wreck that killed her fiance and three occupants of the another vehicle on Memorial Day weekend in 2009.
Weiser admitted she had been drinking and had smoked marijuana before the accident.
The former massage therapist who videotaped clients while they undressed, will spend nearly a decade behind bars.
Kirk Jackson faced 56 years in prison after pleading guilty to 14 charges of invasion of privacy. The judge sentenced him to four years on the first two charges and issued a suspended sentence on the remaining 12 charges. That means if he violates parole after release, he faces 48 years in prison.
Authorities uncovered Kirk Jackson's hidden videotaping operation at Atlas Massage Therapy after a tip from a victim. A search of Jackson's office uncovered 140 videos of women in the restroom, tanning beds, and massage rooms.