JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri's Republican House leader wants a legislative hearing on allegations of a hostile workplace in parts of Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon's administration.
House Speaker Tim Jones said Friday that he has asked the House Government Oversight and Accountability Committee to convene a hearing on the issue. That comes after former employees in the departments of agriculture and labor recently went public with assertions of intimidation and discrimination by former department directors.
Nixon spokesman Scott Holste said Friday that the administration tries to foster a workforce that is "professional in demeanor and inclusive in its composition."
Republican House member Jay Barnes, of Jefferson City, is chairman of the oversight committee. He says the hearing will focus on whether Nixon's office is diligently vetting applicants before making appointments to key positions.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - A temporary order barring a return to domestic horse slaughtering has expired. And an attorney for plants in New Mexico and Missouri says they are preparing to open.
Blair Dunn, who represents Valley Meat Co. in Roswell, N.M., and Rains Natural Meats of Gallatin, Mo., says a temporary restraining order in a lawsuit from animal protection groups trying to block the plants from opening expired Thursday night without a ruling from a federal judge in Albuquerque.
Dunn says the groups suing the Department of Agriculture over its permitting procedures are expected to seek an extension of the restraining order, but that he will fight it.
Dunn says the Missouri plant could be up and running on Monday. The Roswell plant is also preparing to open. An Iowa plant that had also planned to slaughter horses has converted to beef because of the litigation.
EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. (AP) - A southwestern Illinois fire chief has been sentenced to two years in federal prison for violating his probation related to a previous drug case.
A federal judge in East St. Louis revoked Carlos Darough's probation on Thursday. That's roughly two weeks after Darough was found to have a felony amount of marijuana in his Alorton village vehicle during a traffic stop.
Thirty-six-year-old Darough of Belleville had been serving five years of supervised release connected to a cocaine-related charge that drew him an eight-year federal prison term in 2007.
Court records show Darough has been issued more than 100 citations and repeatedly has been arrested over the past two decades on charges ranging from speeding to domestic battery.
ST. LOUIS (AP) - Two brothers have been charged in the late July killing of a St. Louis hotel caterer who was shot and robbed while driving home from work.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch (http://bit.ly/1agL3uT ) reports 22-year-old Lorenzo E. Milton was charged Thursday with second-degree murder, robbery and armed criminal action in the death of John Paulsen. He was jailed without bond.
His older brother Ronald Milton was charged with threatening to kill a witness in the case and jailed on a $30,000 bond. Online court records did not list their attorneys.
Paulsen had left a Saturday night wedding at the Chase Park Plaza hotel when he was shot to death pulling over his car in south St. Louis. Relatives have said they think he stopped to close his car's convertible top.
ST. LOUIS (AP) - The new dean of the business school at the University of Missouri-St. Louis is an UMSL graduate.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch (http://bit.ly/17x5VUt ) reports that Charles Hoffman took over in September. Hoffman grew up in St. Louis County and had a long career in telecommunications before retiring in 2008 as CEO of Covad Communications.
Hoffman is 64 and earned his bachelor's in business from UMSL in 1974 and a master's in business administration from the university in 1976.
NORMANDY, Mo. (AP) - The Normandy School District in St. Louis County is changing course and will pay transportation costs for students who transferred away from the unaccredited district.
But the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Normandy is still refusing to pay tuition costs.
A Missouri Supreme Court ruling requires unaccredited districts to pay transportation and tuition costs for students who transfer to better-performing districts. Normandy board members voted last week not to pay.
In a special meeting Thursday, the board agreed to pay $108,000 to the bus contractor hired to bus about 440 children to the Francis Howell School District. The board did not reconsider the $1.3 million in September tuition payments for the 1,000 or so students who have left to go to Francis Howell and 13 other districts.
ST. LOUIS (AP) - Alcohol sales will be banned at youth-related events within the Archdiocese of St. Louis starting Friday.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the Archdiocese of St. Louis' new policy prohibits drinking at any events directed primarily toward minors, including sporting events. That means athletic associations will no longer be able to generate revenue from beer sales at concession stands.
The change was announced by Archbishop Robert J. Carlson in a letter to parishioners last week. He says the change was passed unanimously by an advisory committee of clergy in September, but the letter did not give a reason.
Some St. Louis-area Catholics say the change will hurt parish fundraisers. Others say there's no need for alcohol and children's events.
The Cardinals are back in St. Louis after losing the World Series to Boston last night.
The team flew back on Delta, this time no delays. The team was aboard a Delta charter flight Tuesday, when the plane had a mechanical issue on the runway.
The team was stranded on the tarmac for over six hours while a new plane was flown into Lambert.
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - A Missouri Senate leader has put forth a new, pared-back proposal dealing with the enforcement of federal gun control laws.
Senate Majority Leader Ron Richard released a draft Thursday of proposed legislation for the 2014 session seeking to nullify federal gun control laws that infringe on Second Amendment rights.
The new proposal comes about seven weeks after Richard and Senate President Pro Tem Tom Dempsey voted against an attempted veto override of a bill addressing the same subject because of concerns about its constitutionality.
Unlike the original bill, the new proposal would not subject federal authorities to state misdemeanor charges for trying to enforce certain federal gun control laws. It also eliminates a provision that could have resulted in charges against journalists for publishing the names of gun owners.
CHICAGO (AP) - More than 2 million low-income Illinois residents who receive food stamps will soon see their benefits cut.
Beginning Friday, a temporary increase in food stamp dollars from the 2009 economic stimulus will expire.
The change will affect more than 47 million Americans. It comes as Congress is negotiating additional cuts to the program, now called the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP.
The Illinois Hunger Coalition says about 349,000 seniors and 886,000 children statewide will be affected.
Executive Director Diane Doherty says the benefits have provided "an important stepping stone" for struggling families.
Benefits vary based on income and other factors. The Agriculture Department says the cuts will mean a family of four will receive $36 less per month.
Nationally, the program has more than doubled in cost since 2008.