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Susan Smith-Harmon

Susan Smith-Harmon

   The St. Louis County Library System will go ahead with plans to tear down two older library buildings and replace them with new structures despite recent opposition.  

   About 100 people attended the Board of Trustees meeting Monday, many pleading with board members to spare the buildings that house Lewis and Clark branch in Moline Acres and the Tesson Ferry library in Green Park.  Preservationists pleaded to save the modern architecture and stained-glass windows of the Frederick Dunn designed Lewis and Clark branch.  It's slated to be razed and replaced with a $6.2 million building with more space for computers and technology.  

   The Tesson Ferry branch on Lin-Ferry Drive will be replaced by a new $16 million structure on Musick Road, across from Grant's Farm.  

   Despite the opposition, Director Kristen Sorth tells the St. Louis Post-Dispatch the library is moving forward with its plans.

Illinois primary Tuesday

Tuesday, 18 March 2014 02:10 Published in Around Town

   Illinois voters are going to the polls Tuesday to choose a Republican challenger to Democratic Governor Pat Quinn.  Billionaire businessman Bruce Rauner is leading in the polls and fundraising heading into today's primary election against state Treasurer Dan Rutherford and state Senators Bill Brady and Kirk Dillard.  

   The race has drawn intense interest from labor unions after Rauner said he would model his governorship after Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, who championed anti-union legislation.  Dillard is seen by many as the more union-friendly alternative.

   Quinn isn't unchallenged for the Democratic nomination.  He's expected to win his party's primary over the lesser-known political activist Tio Hardiman.

   Besides nominees for Governor, voters will also choose party candidates for U.S. Senator, Lieutenant Governor, State Attorney General, Secretary of State, Comptroller, Treasurer, U.S. House members - All 18 Districts, State Senators in 19 districts, State Representatives in all 118 districts along with several judgeships, county and regional officials.   

   Polls are open from 6:00 a.m. until 7:00 p.m.   

 

   MOSCOW (AP) — Russia's President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday approved a draft bill for the annexation of Crimea, one of a flurry of steps to formally take over the Black Sea peninsula.
   Crimea on Sunday voted overwhelmingly to secede from Ukraine and seek to join Russia. The West and Ukraine described the referendum which was announced two weeks ago as illegitimate.
   The United States and the European Union on Monday announced asset freezes and other sanctions against Russian and Ukrainian officials involved in the Crimean crisis. President Barack Obama warned that more would come if Russia didn't stop interfering in Ukraine.
   Russian troops have been occupying the region for more than two weeks.
   The decree signed by Putin and posted on the official government website Tuesday morning is one of the steps which would formalize the annexation of Crimea. Russia, however, still has a room to back off. The treaty to annex Crimea has to be signed by leaders of Russia and Crimea leader and then ratified by the parliament.
   Putin is set to address both houses of the parliament at 3 p.m. Moscow time (1100 GMT) in a nationally televised speech where he is widely expected to stake Russia's claim on Crimea.
   Crimea had been part of Russia since the 18th century until Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev transferred it to Ukraine in 1954. Both Russians and Crimea's majority ethnic Russian population see annexation as correcting a historic insult.
   Ukraine's turmoil, which began in November with a wave of protests against President Viktor Yanukovych and accelerated after he fled to Russia in late February, has become Europe's most severe security crisis in years.

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