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WASHINGTON, Ill. (AP) - State officials say federal disaster assessment workers are expected to arrive in Washington and other areas hit by Sunday's tornadoes starting today.

And state spokesman Brian Williamsen said Thursday that Washington Community High School was open for the first time since one of those tornadoes tore through the central Illinois town.

Washington was hit hardest with hundreds of homes destroyed and one local resident killed. Five people died elsewhere in Illinois.

Williamsen said Federal Emergency Management Agency workers were expected to start assessing damage in some areas around the state Thursday afternoon.

Those assessments are part of the process of applying for federal disaster relief.

Williamsen said Washington residents whose homes can't be lived in are being kept out of their neighborhoods Thursday as large-scale debris removal continues.

 
Thursday, 21 November 2013 16:22
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KTRS, St. Louis - A pair of former Rams players are on the shortlist for the hall of Fame.

Cornerback Aeneas Williams and running back Jerome Bettis are both semifinalists for the hall of fame. The list is pared down to 15 names in January before the class of 2014 is announced the day before the Super Bowl. 

Thursday, 21 November 2013 16:21
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri will allow health insurance companies to continue offering policies that otherwise would have been cancelled under the terms of the new federal health care law.

Gov. Jay Nixon announced Thursday that the state will let insurers sell individual and small-group policies in 2014 that were to be canceled because they didn't meet federal coverage requirements taking effect next year.

Nationwide, more than 4 million people who buy their own insurance have gotten received notices because their plans didn't meet the requirements of the federal law.

Missouri's decision comes after President Barack Obama recently proposed to allow those customers to keep their existing insurance policies for another year.

 
Thursday, 21 November 2013 16:14
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ST. LOUIS (AP) - A St. Louis County mother is charged with stealing more than $6,000 from an elementary school parent-teacher organization to pay her rent and other bills.

Thirty-seven-year-old Toni Taylor of St. Ann faces 14 counts of forgery for allegedly falsifying checks from the PTO account at Drummond Elementary School over a three-month period.

Police say that Taylor, the group's treasurer, forged the PTO president's signature.

KSDK-TV reports that Taylor's scheme unraveled after her landlord contacted the school about a suspicious $4,000 check to him from the PTO account.

Bail for Taylor was set at $25,000. She was expected to surrender on Wednesday, accompanied by her lawyer.

 
Wednesday, 20 November 2013 09:53
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