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 JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - A state funding shortfall is hitting some Missouri school districts harder than others.
 A report released Wednesday by the Missouri Budget Project says the state is underfunding public school districts by $656 million this year. That's based on the amount called for under a 2005 law that re-wrote Missouri's school funding formula.
The report says the shortfall amounts to about $700 per student on a statewide basis. But those figures vary widely by district.
The largest discrepancy is a $978 per student at the Potosi School District in Washington County in rural eastern Missouri. The smallest state funding gap is a $34 per student shortfall at the Clayton district in St. Louis County.
A budget plan pending in the Missouri House would narrow but not eliminate the funding shortfall.
Thursday, 20 March 2014 10:15
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   Despite months of speculation and tweets this week indicating a big announcement, former Missouri State Senator Jane Cunningham says she's not going to run for St. Louis County Executive.  

   The West County Republican says the party has another candidate in mind, but declined to name names.  Cunningham says voters should expect an announcement on Monday.  

   There had been some criticism of a potential run by Cunningham, since she's only one year into a six-year term as director of the Monarch Fire Protection District and had promised constituents that she wouldn't leave the post early.  

   The GOP will formally nominate a candidate for County Executive in the August primary.

Thursday, 20 March 2014 03:52
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   Bridgeton city officials want to transfer control of the of the West Lake Landfill and the radioactive waste buried there to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.  The Bridgeton City Council Wednesday night passed a resolution asking the Corps to take charge.  
   Proponents say some of the materials buried at West Lake came from other sites controlled by the Corps, so it makes sense for them to take over of the Bridgeton site too.
   Bridgeton homeowner Dawn Chapman agrees. She spoke with Fox 2 News about the vote. "We want the experts to come in and figure out what needs to happen to this," she said.  "We want objective, scientific results and then let's make a decision." 
   Concern continues to grow over the risks posed to the local community by a slow-smoldering fire at the adjacent Bridgeton Landfill.  EPA officials have said the fire is inching closer to West Lake.
 
Thursday, 20 March 2014 03:14
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   The St. Louis Police Department's move to its new headquarters building is being delayed again.  Chief Sam Dotson tells the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that the $6.3 million renovation of the department's new home won't be finished until June and the move will take about three weeks.  Dotson says the good news is that renovations to the seven story building at Olive and 19th Streets are still within budget.  
   Police had hoped to move into the building last spring, but disputes over the bidding process delayed the project's start to summer.  Other construction delays have pushed back next month's move until summer.
   The police department used $2.7 million in asset forfeiture money to buy the building after engineers said it would cost at least $75 million to bring the Clark Street headquarters up to code.  
   Renovations of the building are being financed through a $3 million donation from the St. Louis Police Foundation, private donations, asset forfeiture money and city bond funds.
 
Thursday, 20 March 2014 02:53
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   CHICAGO (AP) - Chicago's mayor and the governor of Illinois are among those celebrating the life of gay rights activist Vernita Gray, who died Tuesday at age 65.
   Gray and her partner, Patricia Ewert, wed in the state's first same-sex marriage in November. Her terminal cancer and her wish to marry convinced a federal judge to order an expedited marriage license. That allowed the couple to get married before the June 1 effective date of Illinois' new same-sex marriage law.
   Gray had worked for gay rights for decades.
   Mayor Rahm Emanuel praised Gray's work for equality and civil rights in a statement Wednesday, calling her "an inspiration to all who crossed her path."
   Gov. Pat Quinn says Gray "fought for what she believed in and made a difference for people across Illinois."
Thursday, 20 March 2014 02:41
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St. Louis, MO (KTRS) - Certain cancer patients won’t be paying as much for their medicine anymore.  
 
Governor Jay Nixon has signed Senate Bill 668 into law, which prevents insurance companies from charging higher prices for oral chemotherapy medicines.  Currently, insurance companies cover chemotherapy pills as a prescription drug benefit, rather than a medical benefit.  Because of that, cancer patients who would prefer to take their medications orally have to pay quite a bit more.
 
Nixon says providing quality care if a priority. "Missourians struggling to overcome this terrible disease deserve access to the most effective treatments available, not a $10,000 prescription bill", says Nixon.
 
The new law limits the out-of-pocket costs insurance companies charge for orally taken anticancer medications to $75 dollars for a thirty day supply.
Wednesday, 19 March 2014 16:47
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St. Louis, MO (KTRS) - A couple of St. Louis restaurants want to make sure their workers are getting a fair wage.  
 
Pi Pizzeria and Gringo co-founder Chris Sommers has announced starting April 1st, he will be increasing the minimum wage he pays his workers to $10.10 an hour.  Sommers says this minimum wage needs to be mandated at a federal level. "If they're not going to do it on their own, then it comes down to the federal government" says Sommers,"because the federal government ends up making up for the slack anyway.
 
An employee working at Missouri’s current minimum wage of $7.50 an hour averages $15,600 dollars a year.  
Wednesday, 19 March 2014 16:44
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OZARK, MO (AP) – A southwest Missouri police checkpoint aimed at drunken drivers on St. Patrick’s Day instead snared 10 people suspected of possessing methamphetamine.
 
The Springfield News-Leader reports 12 arrests stemmed from the checkpoint Monday in Christian County, of which only one was for driving while intoxicated. The other was for possession of marijuana.
 
Ozark Police Chief Lyle Hodges says three of the 12 arrested in the operation also had outstanding warrants. He says the number of drug arrests -- and lack of drunken driving charges -- was unusual.
 
Wednesday, 19 March 2014 15:23
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