Associated Press

A Missouri bill would confiscate licenses from teenagers accused of unlawful driving.

The Springfield News-Leader reports that lawmakers on Tuesday heard the bill proposed by Republican Rep. Galen Higdon.

The dangers of opioids are forcing police to change the way they test drugs found during traffic stops or arrests.

For decades, officers have put suspected drugs in liquid-filled vials. If the liquid turns a certain color, it's supposed to confirm the presence of cocaine, heroin or other narcotics.

Missouri Capitol Building
j.stephenconn / Flickr

The Missouri House has given initial approval to a bill legalizing industrial hemp.

Proponents said Tuesday that the bill was a development opportunity that could be a boon for farmers and businesses.

St louis
paparutzi / Flickr

A Missouri health care company says a pharmacy it recently bought will not provide execution drugs to the state.

Centene Corp. on Tuesday said Foundation Care has not and will not provide any drugs for executions. Centene bought the suburban St. Louis compounding pharmacy in October 2017.

File / KBIA

A rural Missouri county is moving to a privatized system for public defenders, a system that some advocates would like to see become more common.

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens has hired former St. Louis Judge Jack Garvey to represent him during an investigation to determine if he broke any laws while having an extramarital affair.

St. Louis Public Radio reports Garvey confirmed Sunday that he was hired last week to represent the governor during St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner's investigation.

Garvey declined to say who is paying him. He also wouldn't say if he's being added to the legal team or replacing one of Greitens' current lawyers.

KBIA/file photo

The Missouri House has passed a bill to ban marriages of children under 15 years old.

House members voted 95-50 Monday to send the bill to the Senate. Backers say it would help stop abuse through coerced marriages, while opponents argue it would take away parents' rights to decide whether to allow their children to marry.

Children ages 15-17 now can get married with a parent's permission. Those younger than 15 need approval from a judge.

KBIA/file photo

The man serving as interim U.S. attorney for the Western District of Missouri may soon be able to lose the interim tag.

Republican Sen. Roy Blunt said Friday that President Donald Trump intends to nominate Timothy Garrison as U.S. attorney. Garrison has served in an interim role leading the Kansas City-based office since January.

Senate floor at the Missouri Capitol
File / KBIA

The Missouri Senate passed legislation Thursday that could allow the state's largest electric companies to recoup more of their costs for infrastructure improvements from their customers.

The legislation, which sparked an overnight filibuster last week and threats of another one this week, cleared the Senate by a 25-6 vote. But passage came only after several Senate opponents who fear it will lead to higher rates pledged to continue pushing for additional changes when the legislation moves to the House.

St. Louis Public Radio

Investigators from the St. Louis prosecutor's office have visited the Missouri Capitol and interviewed at least two dozen lawmakers as the office checks into Gov. Eric Greitens.

St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner launched an investigation in January after Greitens admitted to a 2015 affair with his St. Louis hairdresser, before Greitens was elected in 2016. Greitens has denied taking a compromising photo of the woman as potential blackmail.

A judge is weighing on whether to void the Missouri Board of Education's decision to fire the former education commissioner.

Attorneys representing the board argued in circuit court Tuesday against lawyers representing Springfield teacher Laurie Sullivan, who sued the board in November, the Springfield News-Leader reported.

missouri house floor
File photo / KBIA

The Missouri Supreme Court is siding with the state Ethics Commission after it charged a former state lawmaker nearly $230,000 in fees for campaign finance violations.

Judges on Tuesday unanimously ruled that fees against former St. Louis Democratic Sen. Robin Wright-Jones were constitutional and within legal limits. Wright-Jones had argued the charge amounted to an unconstitutionally excessive fine.

drought farm field soybeans
Camille Phillips / Harvest Public Media

Weather experts say Missouri is experiencing its driest winter in more than 40 years, worsening a drought that started last summer.

File Photo / KBIA

Missouri lawmakers are trying again to reduce the duration of state jobless benefits to one of the shortest periods nationally.

House members gave the measure initial approval in a voice vote Tuesday. It needs another vote to move to the Senate.

University of Missouri Law School / MU

Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley says if a military parade doesn't happen in Washington D.C., the state of Missouri would be happy to host it.

 President Donald Trump says he wants a parade of troops, tanks and other military hardware in the U.S. capitol. The idea has been criticized by former military personnel, veterans' groups and other politicians.

missouri capitol
Ryan Famuliner / KBIA

Even as Missouri's Republican governor takes to the road to promote his $800 million tax overhaul proposal, a Republican-led Senate panel has endorsed its own tax cut plan worth an estimated $630 million.

KBIA/file photo

The Missouri House is advancing a bill to make it legal for organizations to provide free needles to drug users. 

Republican Rep. Holly Rehder on Tuesday said Missouri groups now pass out clean syringes to intravenous drug users with the goal of preventing the spread of hepatitis C and HIV through dirty needles. 

The Missouri Board of Education has now missed two of 11 meetings scheduled for this year because it still doesn't have enough members for a quorum.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the board has lacked a quorum since early January, when Gov. Eric Greitens withdrew and re-submitted his five appointees in an effort to buy more time for their Senate confirmations. Lawmakers upset with Greitens' move have threatened to hold up the appointments.

KBIA/file photo

The Missouri House has passed a bill to change how public-sector union members pay dues.

House members voted 91-55 to send the bill to the Senate Monday.

The legislation would require public employees to annually reauthorize paying their dues through paycheck withholdings. It would also require those unions to make financial records available to workers.

A business watchdog has found that only a small portion of money from a Missouri-based veterans' group that Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach is associated with actually goes toward helping veterans.

Kobach is listed as a member of the advisory board for Veterans in Defense of Liberty, a Springfield-based nonprofit with a stated mission of upholding the Constitution, the Kansas City Star reported. Kobach is also running for governor of Kansas,

missouri capitol
File Photo / KBIA

Democratic Auditor Nicole Galloway on Thursday warned that the state is moving toward similar financial hardship that Kansas faced after the neighboring state enacted tax cuts.

Galloway told reporters in her Capitol office that the state economy hasn't grown enough to offset losses from recent tax breaks, including perks for some industries and a gradual individual income tax cut passed in 2014 that's now starting to take effect. She said Missouri is not financially prepared to deal with another economic downturn.

KBIA/file photo

Missouri lawmakers are considering a bill that would increase penalties for protesters who block highways.

A Missouri Senate committee heard the bill sponsored by Republican Sen. Jeanie Riddle this week.

j.stephenconn / flickr

The Missouri Senate on Thursday advanced legislation that could reward utilities making improvements to their infrastructure with more consistent rate increases on their customers, a move that came after a more than 20-hour, overnight filibuster finally ended.

The legislation changing the way utilities are regulated drew intense opposition from some senators who said it would drive up costs for millions of residents and businesses. Supporters countered that rates are likely to rise anyway, and the bill would provide predictability by limiting annual average rate increases to 2.85 percent.

Missouri's top election official is asking lawmakers to overhaul the initiative petition process by charging fees to file them and verifying collected signatures.

The number of initiative petitions filed in the hopes of making it on the statewide ballot went from 15 a decade ago to 330 so far this year, the Kansas City Star reported.

The Missouri House has given initial approval to a bill requiring both custodial parents to receive notice when a minor is seeking an abortion.

The legislation endorsed Wednesday would expand Missouri's current law that requires the written consent of one parent or guardian before girls younger than 18 can have abortions.

University of Missouri - Kansas City logo
File Photo / KBIA

An official from the University of Texas at San Antonio will be the new chancellor at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

A new report from Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley says lawsuits against the state cost taxpayers at least $23 million last year.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that a year-end report from Hawley, a Republican, showed that 16 of the 45 major payouts were related to employee discrimination, including six from cases involving workers at the Missouri Department of Corrections.

A Missouri lawmaker has introduced a bill that would address the issue of pregnant inmates being shackled and chained during labor.

The Columbia Missourian reports that the bill would ban a state correctional center or a city or county jail from using restraints on a woman in the third trimester of her pregnancy during medical care. It would also require correctional centers and jails to create policies for the care of pregnant inmates, including mental health evaluations, substance abuse treatment, dietary supplements and postpartum recovery.

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens does not have to provide the state attorney general with records related to his social media accounts such as private messages and names of blocked users.  The Kansas City Star reports that the office of Attorney General Josh Hawley said in a letter this week that the governor's Twitter and Facebook accounts are not public records. Both Greitens and Hawley are Republicans.  The Star also reported that Hawley's office on Thursday announced it found no open records violations from Democratic Auditor Nicole Galloway's office.

Veronique LaCapra / St. Louis Public Radio

The Environmental Protection Agency has announced a $236 million plan to clean up a suburban St. Louis landfill where Cold War-era nuclear waste was illegally dumped decades ago.

The EPA said Thursday the plan calls for removing all of the radioactive contamination that poses a health risk by partially excavating the West Lake Landfill in Bridgeton. Crews will also install a permanent "engineered cover system" at the site.

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