JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri lawmakers have until Friday to finalize the state's roughly $25 billion operating budget.
The House and Senate have each passed their own budget and now must hammer out an agreement on the spending plan that will take effect July 1. Budget negotiators were scheduled to begin formal talks Monday, but delayed that until Tuesday.
The House and Senate must reconcile differences on higher education funding and whether to keep intact cuts made to state agencies over concerns about the new drivers' license procedures.
One item not up for debate this week is Gov. Jay Nixon's plan to draw down nearly $1 billion from the federal government to expand Medicaid coverage for about 260,000 adults. Neither the House nor Senate included the federal money in their budget proposals.
FESTUS, Mo. (AP) - One of the oldest residents of Missouri has died at age 110.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Ada "Irene" Cooper of Jefferson County died Saturday, according to an obituary from Vinyard Funeral Home in Festus.
The Post-Dispatch wrote a story in 2007 on Ada Cooper and her sister, Hazel Reeder. At the time, Mrs. Cooper was 105 and Ms. Reeder was 102. She died at age 104.
The sisters grew up on a farm in Ste. Genevieve County and attended a one-room schoolhouse.
Mrs. Cooper was married to her husband, Wendell, for 67 years before he died in 1992, at age 100.
Mrs. Cooper's funeral is at 1 p.m. Tuesday at Vinyard Funeral Home.
A building on the national historic registry now has an expiration date.
If a buyer does not come forward to purchase the building in the next month, it will be torn down. Cupples 7, at 11th and Spruce in downtown St. Louis, has been designated for demolition after engineers said the building is an imminent danger.
Mayor Slay says the only hope for the building is for an angel investor to step forward and renovate it. Cupples 7 was built between 1894 and 1917.
Road closures are underway on the Chain of Rocks Bridge.
The daily closures are set to run from 9 AM to 7 PM every weekday for the next two weeks. Today and tomorrow, the westbound right lane will be closed. Then through the end of the week, the westbound left lane will be closed.
The closures will move to the eastbound lanes next week. All work and closures are weather permitting, but IDOT hopes to have the work completed by May 17.
St. Louis is well-represented on the most recent Fortune 500 list of the largest companies in the country.
Express Scripts got the highest ranking of the nine area companies at number 24. The company jumped 60 spots after acquiring Medco Health Services in the last year. Some of the other companies on the list from the area, Emerson, Monsanto, and Ameren.
The top company in the country this year was Wal-mart.
Here are the St. Louis companies that made the list:
24. Express Scripts Holding
275. Reinsurance Group of America
315. Peabody Energy
465. Graybar Electric
491. Jones Financial
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - State senators are expected to consider two possible paths toward addressing the nation's worst pension crisis.
One option is legislation approved in the Illinois House last week. That bill is sponsored by House Speaker Michael Madigan. It would require public employees to pay 2 percent more toward their retirement benefits. It would also reduce annual cost-of-living increases for retirees and raise the retirement age for workers under 45.
Labor unions also are expected to pitch a plan. The details of that proposal have not been disclosed. But a spokeswoman for Senate President John Cullerton says it would offer employees a choice between health insurance or cost-of-living increases.
Lawmakers are expected to discuss the two options in a closed-door meeting on Monday before convening on the Senate floor.
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri officials are celebrating the 100th anniversary of groundbreaking for the state Capitol.
Dirt first was turned in 1913 at a ceremony held in Jefferson City for the start of construction. The current building replaced one that burned in February 1911 after lightning struck its dome.
The cornerstone was laid in 1915, the first government offices moved into the structure in 1917 and the building was dedicated in 1924
Gov. Jay Nixon, Senate Majority Leader Ron Richard and House Speaker Tim Jones attended Monday's ceremony, praising the Capitol's design and appearance.
ST. LOUIS (AP) - A bankrupt St. Louis-based coal company's push to significantly cut thousands of retirees' health care and pension benefits is in the hands of a judge.
U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Kathy Surratt-States has until May 29 to decide the matter that last week was argued before her by attorneys for Patriot Coal Corp. and the United Mine Workers of America union. It's not clear how soon any ruling may come.
Patriot's proposed benefits cuts have been the most contentious aspect of its bankruptcy case since the Peabody Energy Corp. spinoff filed for Chapter 11 protection last summer. The company says it would have to spend $1.6 billion to cover retirees' health care costs, and that if that didn't change it might risk liquidation.
The union considers the cuts immoral, drastic and unfair.
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - The leader of the Missouri House says an attempt to access a secure website listing Missouri's concealed gun permit holders was part of an investigation into whether the state had appropriately shielded the information.
In an interview with The Associated Press, House Speaker Tim Jones declined Monday to identify the person who tried to access the information last Thursday. But Jones said it was an appropriate action.
Gov. Jay Nixon's administration revealed last week that someone using a House computer address repeatedly tried to access the site. It said those attempts were unauthorized because information on concealed gun permit holders can only be shared with law enforcement.
The information was posted online for a federal fraud investigator, who testified last week that he opted not to download the information.
No leads after a teen was shot North St. Louis on Sunday afternoon.
Police say the 16-year-old boy was shot in broad daylight--3:30 Sunday afternoon. Officers found the victim lying on the front porch of a home with gunshot wounds to his chest and back. Fox 2 reports the teen remains in critical condition.
Police have released no information on a suspect.