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   CHICAGO (AP) - Gov. Pat Quinn heads into a critical election-year State of the State address this week with his top priority of pension reform inked into the law.
   The speech on Wednesday is a chance for Quinn to lay out goals for the year and recap his accomplishments.
   But how much credit the Chicago Democrat can take for what he's called the signature achievement of his governorship is up for debate.
   Quinn has won praise for keeping pension reform in the public sphere with his populist tactics, like withholding legislator pay. Pension reform was once a topic more common among economists and business groups.
   However, he's also been criticized for those methods and not doing more to broker the deal himself. Some say he only took notice when there weren't other options.
 
Monday, 27 January 2014 03:18
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   Sunday was a doggone good day for one St. Louis dog-owner after firefighters rescued her puppy from a drainpipe.  It happened at Union Blvd. and Enright Ave. in north city about 9:00 a.m.  

   Fire Department officials say the small grey puppy had slipped into a foot-wide drainage pipe that wasn't properly covered.  The puppy's owner had been walking another dog on a leash, when it happened.  

   Firefighters lowered a noose 26 feet down and snagged the puppy, pulling it to freedom.  

   The puppy wasn't injured and was returned to its owner.

Monday, 27 January 2014 02:00
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   COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) - The president of the University of Missouri system is seeking an independent review of how the university handled allegations from a swimmer that she had been sexually assaulted by a football player more than a year before she committed suicide.
   The move Sunday by UM System President Timothy Wolfe comes after an ESPN story questioning the University of Missouri's response to the alleged sexual assault of Sasha Menu Courey, who committed suicide in 2011, about 16 months after the alleged rape.
   In a letter to chancellors of the university's four campuses, Wolfe says he'll ask the board of curators to hire "outside independent counsel" to investigate how the university handled Menu Courey's allegations.
   The university also says it turned its information on the matter over to police on Saturday.
   
 
Monday, 27 January 2014 01:18
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   Here we go again.  After a warm and spring like Sunday afternoon, winter is returning to the St. Louis area with a vengence.
 
   About 3:00 Monday morning, the National Weather Service in St. Louis canceled a wind advisory that had been set to expire at 6 a.m.  Winds had dropped to between 15 and 25 mph with gust up to 35 mph, below the threshold for an advisory. 
 
   Nevertheless, the strong northwest winds are pushing a powerful arctic cold front through the region.  Wind chills are still expected to dip below zero by morning.  Some schools have already cancelled classes for Monday.
 
   The wind is being blamed for causing spotty power outages across the St. Louis metro area.  As of 3 a.m., Ameren is reporting more than 3,300 St. Louis area customers without power -- about 1,000 in Missouri.  The rest are in the metro-east, most in St. Clair County.  That's down from nearly 9,000 around midnight. 
 
 
Monday, 27 January 2014 00:52
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