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 JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Public water systems could be required to notify Missouri customers before eliminating fluoride from drinking water.
 
The Missouri House gave first-round approval Tuesday to the legislation. It would require notification at least 90 days before a vote to permanently cease fluoridation.
 
Water systems would need to inform customers, the Department of Natural Resources and the Department of Health and Senior Services.
 
The measure needs a second affirmative vote before moving to the state Senate.
Wednesday, 16 April 2014 07:49
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri's unemployment rate increased in March, though the size of payrolls also grew.
 
   The Department of Economic Development reported Tuesday that the jobless rate grew to 6.7 percent from 6.4 percent last month. Employers added a net of 3,500 jobs in March.
 
   Top gainers were the construction and education and health services. Construction jobs grew by 2,000 and education and health services grew by 1,600. On the other hand, the leisure and hospitality sector declined by 1,900 jobs.
   Missouri's civilian labor force of about 3 million people grew by 8,450 during March. The labor force counts people with jobs and those who are on unemployment but looking for work.
Wednesday, 16 April 2014 07:41
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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Illinois officials say a strip club tax has generated less than 40 percent of the money that was expected when the surcharge was approved.
 
The Springfield bureau of Lee Enterprises newspapers reports the "pole tax" raised about $380,000 in 2013. That's far less than the $1 million predicted when the measure passed the General Assembly in 2012.
The money is earmarked for rape crisis centers.
 
Strip clubs can pay a $3 tax for every customer or an annual fee ranging from $5,000 to $25,000 based on sales.
 
Polly Poskin is executive director of the Illinois Coalition Against Sexual Assault. She attributes the lower revenue to the fact that the requirement only applies to strip clubs that sell or allow alcohol. Chicago bans alcohol at its strip clubs.
 
Wednesday, 16 April 2014 07:35
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri could award additional tax credits for donations to pregnancy resource centers, food pantries and maternity homes under legislation endorsed by the Missouri Senate.
 
Under the bill given first-round approval Tuesday, the current annual tax credit cap would increase by $500,000 for all three programs. The pregnancy and maternity center tax credits would be limited to $2.5 million per year and the food pantry program would be capped at $1.75 million annually.
 
The legislation would also expand an existing tax credit program to apply toward donations for programs that provide food for students during non-school hours. That credit would be capped at $500,000 per year.
 
The measure needs one more vote before moving to the House.
 
 
Wednesday, 16 April 2014 07:20
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