Associated Press

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A former worker for the marketplace under President Barack Obama's health care law says she'll challenge Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill for the Democratic U.S. Senate nomination.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported Wednesday that Democrat Angelica Earl plans to create a campaign committee for the race soon.

Republicans have won two special elections for seats in the Missouri Legislature.

Voters elected Rep. Sandy Crawford to the state Senate and Sara Walsh to the state House during Tuesday elections. Democrats were unable to flip the seats to gain ground in the Republican-led Legislature.

Claire McCaskill
Kristofor Husted / KBIA

U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill is holding another round of town halls in rural Missouri.

McCaskill's office said Wednesday the Democrat will spend the Senate's August recess touring the state. She'll be in cities including Cuba, Potosi, Sullivan and Farmington on Friday.

More than two dozen people gathered to rebuild a makeshift memorial to a black 18-year-old Ferguson resident who was killed three years ago by a white police officer.

Residents and community activists met Tuesday night on the Ferguson street where Michael Brown Jr. was shot to death by then-officer Darren Wilson on Aug. 9, 2014.

The shooting sparked months of protests and a U.S. Department of Justice investigation that found racial bias in Ferguson's police and court system

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  Missouri Auditor Nicole Galloway alleges a rural hospital under financial strain in northern Missouri has engaged in a $90 million billing scheme.

An audit released Wednesday alleges Putnam County Memorial Hospital acted as a shell organization to funnel insurance payments to another lab company.

A request for comment from the hospital wasn't immediately returned Wednesday.

Police in Kansas City, Missouri, say bones found Monday at a downtown construction site are human, and the county's medical examiner and archaeologists are investigating.

A police statement Tuesday offered no additional details about the bones unearthed by construction workers the previous day beneath a former Kansas City Star building, which is now vacant but being renovated.

Police are unsure how the bones came to be there or how old they are.

Kansas City voters have agreed to raise the local minimum wage, ignoring a law Missouri legislators enacted earlier this year that bars cities from setting their own rates.

Under the proposal approved Tuesday, Kansas City's minimum wage would increase from $7.70 to $10 on Aug. 24. But it may only be in place for a few days because the new state rules take effect on Aug. 28.

Though largely symbolic because of the state law, the Kansas City vote calls for annual rate hikes starting Sept. 1, 2019. It would eventually reach $15 per hour in 2022.

A man charged with killing a western Missouri police officer during a traffic stop was arrested Tuesday evening, authorities announced.

Missouri State Highway Patrol dispatchers said Ian McCarthy, 39, was taken into custody in Henry County, which includes the city of Clinton. McCarthy is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Clinton police Officer Gary Michael on Sunday night.

The St. Louis branch of the NAACP now "wholeheartedly supports" its national headquarters' decision to issue a travel advisory in Missouri amid concerns about a state law that rolls back discrimination protections for workers in the state.

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KBIA file photo

Voters in Kansas City, Missouri, will on Tuesday consider raising the city's minimum wage well above the state minimum, even though a new Missouri law forbids cities from making their own rules on the issue.

The measure is among several in local elections across Missouri.

The Kansas City proposal would create a minimum wage of $10 per hour on Aug. 24 and increase it annually starting Sept. 1, 2019, eventually reaching $15 per hour in 2022.

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An audit says former Democratic Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon spent $2.2 million more on his office than what lawmakers budgeted for and used taxpayer dollars for personal food and security costs.

Democratic Auditor Nicole Galloway's office released a report Monday that says Nixon exceeded lawmaker-approved spending on his office, flights, mansion and security in fiscal years 2015 and 2016 by shifting expenses to other agencies and delaying paying bills. Galloway's office says that hides the cost of running the governor's office.

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An observatory in southwest Missouri has reopened after completing renovations.

The Joplin Globe reports that the Stilabower Public Observatory in Lamar has a new replacement telescope that allows visitors to specify an object or coordinates to find in the sky.

Kansas City's mayor has threatened to file ethics complaints against his city council colleagues if he learns they have revealed information from closed council meetings.

The Kansas City Star reports that Mayor Sly James made the threat during a closed session.

KBIA file photo

The day after Gov. Eric Greitens advocated increasing education and job training programs for inmates, he signed a budget that cut $1.4 million from Missouri Department of Corrections rehabilitation programs, with most of the reduction coming in education programs.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that in a June 29 Facebook post, Greitens said programs that help inmates learn a trade, be better parents or earn a high school diploma makes the millions of tax dollars spent on the prison system worth something.

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A new Missouri law has made 183 St. Louis teachers eligible for retirement, though the district's top administrator and union members don't expect an exodus of teachers.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the school district is sending teachers a letter signed by Superintendent Kelvin Adams and the American Federation of Teachers' local president, Sally Topping, urging retirement-eligible teachers to stay.

Congress has passed a proposal pushed by Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill that's aimed at helping World War II veterans she says were exposed to mustard gas by the military.

McCaskill told reporters Thursday that the measure will show veterans that the government believes them and could help them get benefits.

Senators sent the proposal to President Donald Trump as part of another bill to expand college aid for military veterans.

Express Scripts gave $10,000 to help fund Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens' inauguration months before it received a no-bid contract with the state.

The Kansas City Star reported Thursday that the donation was listed on Express Scripts' website among other political contributions. Greitens had released a list of "benefactors" to his January inauguration but did not disclose how much donors gave.

A nonprofit group and two St. Charles County residents are suing the county over its prescription drug monitoring program.

Carl Bearden, executive director of United for Missouri, said in a news release Thursday that the drug monitoring program violates citizens' right to privacy and against unreasonable searches and seizures.

St. Charles' program requires those prescribing and dispensing prescription drugs to provide information to the Department of Public Health. The goal is to prevent people from "doctor shopping" to obtain several prescriptions from different doctors.

Flickr

A St. Louis-area branch of the NAACP is pushing back against an advisory supported by state and national NAACP members that urges caution while traveling in Missouri.

St. Louis County NAACP President Esther Haywood said in a statement Thursday that the advisory could end up hurting workers in the state's hospitality industry.

Doug Kerr / Flickr

An appeals court has revived a man's lawsuit claiming police violated his civil rights in 2014 when they arrested him during protests of the Ferguson, Missouri, police shooting death of Michael Brown.

A three-judge panel of the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday reversed a judge's dismissal of Dwayne Matthews Jr.'s case against police. Matthews says police beat him, held his head under water in a culvert and used pepper spray on him.

University of Missouri Law School / MU

Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley is taking a first step toward entering the race for U.S. Senate.

Hawley spokesman Scott Paradise on Wednesday confirmed the Republican will launch an exploratory committee this week for a possible challenge to Democratic U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill.

File Photo / KBIA

A recent special legislative session on abortion policies cost Missouri taxpayers nearly $92,000.

Figures provided to The Associated Press show the House spent about $60,000 and the Senate nearly $32,000 on the session that ran from mid-June to late July.

The session resulted in a new law that will tighten abortion regulations, give the attorney general power to prosecute violations and exempt pregnancy resource centers from a St. Louis ordinance banning discrimination based on "reproductive health decisions."

A lawyer for Backpage.com is declining to comment on efforts by Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley to dismiss a lawsuit the company filed against him.

Hawley filed a motion Tuesday against Backpage, saying its lawsuit seeking to block him from investigating Backpage is frivolous and should be tossed.

Hawley launched an investigation of the company this year and in May issued civil investigative demands seeking documents from Backpage, which hasn't complied.

The Rams are long gone from St. Louis, but they still may owe more than $350,000 in taxes to the state of Missouri.

The Missouri Supreme Court on Tuesday reversed a ruling from an administrative hearing that determined the NFL team did not have to pay state sales tax on a special city entertainment fee added to tickets from 2007 to 2013. The state said during oral arguments in March that the Rams owe up to $352,000.

Attorneys for the Rams have argued that the state owes the team $401,000 in improperly assessed sales taxes.

If you plan to livestream next month's solar eclipse from one of the prime viewing spots, here's a thought: Stick the cellphone in your pocket, put on your paper glasses and enjoy the celestial wonder.

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Video from a police dashboard camera and witnesses, along with DNA evidence, are expected to play a big role as a white former St. Louis officer goes to trial for killing a black suspect in 2011.

Paul Sableman / flickr

  A murder trial begins this week for a white former St. Louis police officer accused of killing a black suspect nearly six years ago.

Jason Stockley is charged with first-degree murder and armed criminal action in the December 2011 shooting death of 24-year-old Anthony Lamar Smith. Charges were filed last year. Then-Circuit Attorney Jennifer Joyce cited unspecified new evidence.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Smith was shot following a police chase during a drug investigation. The bench trial begins Tuesday. It's expected to last two weeks.

Updated at 11:35 a.m. Aug. 1 with reaction from the Illinois Federation of Teachers — Illinois Gov.

Columns at University of Missouri
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  Missouri Republican Gov. Eric Greitens has appointed a top Express Scripts official and a former Mizzou basketball star to the University of Missouri Board of Curators.

Greitens on Monday announced the choices of Express Scripts Vice President and Associate General Counsel Julia Brncic and former basketball player Jon Sundvold to help lead the four-campus University of Missouri system.

Former Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon initially appointed Sundvold to serve on the board during Nixon's final few months in office.

File Photo / KBIA

Some Missouri lawmakers are questioning Gov. Eric Greitens' plan to spend more money than the Legislature approved for foster care families.

Republican House Budget Committee Chairman Scott Fitzpatrick said the GOP governor's effort to increase the spending infringes on lawmakers' authority to decide how state dollars are spent.

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