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ST. LOUIS (AP) -- Few people are being fined or facing jail time for marijuana violations since St. Louis changed its law last summer.
 
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that 127 people have been charged under a new city ordinance that reduced penalties for those caught with small amounts of marijuana. Just one person who pleaded guilty to a possession charge has been fined under the new ordinance.
 
Of cases that reached disposition, many resulted in suspended sentences.
 
The biggest proponent of the change, Alderman Shane Cohn, says the intent was to free up police and prosecutors to focus on more serious crimes while also lessening penalties and helping offenders avoid costs associated with cases that go to state court.
Published in Local News

The Mega Millions jackpot has jumped to $636 million dollars.

 

The cash option for the jackpot is around $341 million. The near record-setting jackpot was helped in large part due to a change in the way Mega Millions is played.  

 

Players now choose five numbers from 1-75 and one number from 1-15. That change raised the odds from 1 in 176 million to the current odds of 1 in 259 million.

 

Those long odds are not slowing down ticket sales. Officials say it is still possible that tonight's jackpot could be raised again.

Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Legislation awaiting action by Gov. Jay Nixon seeks to comply with federal mandates for Missouri's unemployment benefits system.

The measure also could make it more difficult for workers to receive jobless benefits if they are let go after an unapproved absence or if they knowingly violate a company rule.

The legislation would broaden the definition of what constitutes "misconduct." Jobless benefits can be denied to workers who lose their position because of misbehavior.

The unemployment legislation also includes changes aimed at complying with requirements from the federal government. Failing to comply could cost employers more than $800 million in federal tax credits while state government could lose a couple hundred million dollars for programs.

Lawmakers gave the legislation final approval before adjourning last week.

 

Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri lawmakers have given final approval to legislation that would require scrap metal dealers to collect more information from the people who sell them metal.

A 2008 state law required scrap dealers to keep records for transactions involving aluminum and copper. The new legislation would require dealers to also record sales involving catalytic converters. Dealers also would have to keep track of the license plate numbers of sellers.

Scrap metal dealers would be prohibited from buying metal that is identified as belonging to telecommunications or cable providers.

The legislation gained final approval Friday, and it now goes to Gov. Jay Nixon.

 

Published in Local News

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