Associated Press

(Will be updated.)

A judge in St. Louis has ruled that Missouri's ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional. Already several same-sex couples have made their way to City Hall to get their marriage licenses.

Scott Davidson / Flickr

ST. LOUIS (AP) — The city of St. Louis is looking to boost minority recruiting efforts in its police and fire departments.

Mayor Francis Slay and Chief Sam Dotson joined other city officials Tuesday at City Hall to announce details about the new effort, which will enlist off-duty members of the Ethical Society of Police to work as paid mentors to prospective recruits. The society's 250 members represent black officers in the city.

Marjie Kennedy / Flickr

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Republicans are expected to hold on to their majorities in the Missouri House and Senate, but the strength of their numbers could determine how much they can accomplish.

Half of the 34 Senate seats and all 163 House seats are up for election Tuesday.

Hey Paul Studios via Flickr

A monthly economic survey index for nine Midwestern and Plains has dropped again.

Kyle Stokes / KBIA

Missouri's local election authorities are expecting about 40 percent of registered voters to cast ballots in Tuesday's elections.

The voter turnout predictions are compiled by the secretary of state's office from figures submitted by local clerks and election officials. They are based on rolls showing more than 4 million registered voters in Missouri.

Joplin Schools / Facebook

Some child-care providers in Joplin are upset with a proposal to expand the size of the Joplin School District's early childhood program.

District administrators want to build a $14 million early childhood center that could double enrollment in the program. They say the expansion would meet a community need and allow the district to prepare students for kindergarten.

A voter report card mailer is grading residents on how often they vote compared to their neighbors and some Missourians aren't happy.

Jason Rojas / Flickr

The embattled police chief of the suburban St. Louis town where a white officer's fatal shooting of a black 18-year-old remains under investigation has criticized Attorney General Eric Holder's recent call for "wholesale change" in the department.

j.stephenconn / flickr

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - A voter report card mailer is grading residents on how often they vote compared to their neighbors and some Missourians aren't happy.

Grow Missouri sent the mailers the week before the Nov. 4 election to spur residents into voting during the first general election in nearly a quarter-century featuring no race for president, U.S. Senate or governor.

The group is financed by investment firm founder Rex Sinquefield, the state's most prominent political donor.

WallyG / FLICKR

The U.S. Supreme Court has stayed the scheduled execution of a Missouri man who was convicted of killing a woman and her two children in 1998.

steakpinball / Flickr

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Brian Stumpe says his experience with a robbery inspired him to run for Cole County Circuit judge, coincidentally against the woman who sentenced his attacker to 99 years in prison.

The Republican faces incumbent Democrat Pat Joyce, a Cole County judge since 1994 who's running on experience.

execution gurney
California Department of Corrections / Wikimedia Commons

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Missouri is preparing to execute a man who wasn't able to appeal his conviction in federal court because his attorneys missed a filing deadline to do so.

Mark Christeson is scheduled to die at 12:01 a.m. CDT Wednesday for the killing of a woman and her two children in 1998.

Shawn Semmler / Flickr

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Seven school districts have asked the St. Louis County prosecutor to wait until classes aren't in session to make any announcement about whether a grand jury decided charges were warranted in the Ferguson police shooting case.

Riverview Gardens School District Superintendent Scott Spurgeon last week sent Prosecutor Bob McCulloch a letter signed by six other superintendents asking that any announcement be made after 5 p.m. or on a weekend.

Claire McCaskill
Kristofor Husted / KBIA

Top Missouri Democrats are continuing to pump money into state campaigns as the Nov. 4 election approaches.

Bryan Green / Flickr

  St. Louis Cardinals manager Mike Matheny says he's stunned by the death of 22-year-old outfielder Oscar Taveras. He says his players are struggling with deep anguish after losing their young teammate.

Taveras and an 18-year-old woman were killed Sunday afternoon in a car crash in the Dominican Republic

Matheny says the team had forged deep ties and affection for Taveras, who debuted in the majors this past season and batted .239 in 80 games with three home runs and 22 RBI.

Several Cardinals players have expressed their sadness on Twitter.

rexsinquefield.org

Missouri's most generous political donor is hosting an election night fundraiser for Republican Senator Roy Blunt in St. Louis.

Blunt isn't up for re-election until 2016. But St. Louis Public Radio reports that financier Rex Sinquefield and his wife Jeanne are hosting an early-evening event on Nov. 4 for the incumbent at their Central West End home.

Tickets start at $1,000 and go as high as $10,400 a couple. The reception is scheduled to end when polls close at 7 p.m.

hospital room
jodimarr / Flickr

A Missouri board has approved a bond issuance to finance a new mental health facility at the Fulton State Hospital.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — The ride-sharing company Lyft will temporarily stop operating in Kansas City while it works out an agreement to operate legally in the city.

Lyft officials said Wednesday that the drivers will stop working Friday for up to 60 days.

The Kansas City Star reports the agreement, which requires a federal judge's approval, also temporarily stops a federal court lawsuit scheduled to go to trial in December.

Lyft uses a smartphone app to link passengers with part-time drivers in their own vehicles.

St. Louis Arch
paparutzi / Flickr

ST. LOUIS (AP) — The family of an 18-year-old killed by a St. Louis police officer is planning to release details of an independent autopsy.

The owner of Austin Layne Mortuary says relatives of Vonderrit Myers Jr. will release the autopsy findings Thursday at the funeral home.

Myers was fatally shot Oct. 8 by an officer working off-duty security. Police say Myers ran after seeing the officer, who gave chase, and a scuffle ensued.

Police say Myers pulled a gun and shot at the officer, who returned fire. The family has said they believe Myers was unarmed.

Baseballs
paul.hadsall / Flickr

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — The mayors of Kansas City and San Francisco have a bet riding on the outcome of the World Series.

If the Royals take the crown, San Francisco Mayor Edwin Lee will travel to Kansas City to read to students. If the Giants prevail, Kansas City Mayor Sly James will serve meals to the homeless in San Francisco and sing with a church musical group.

KBIA

FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) — Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon says he will create an independent commission to study issues that have surfaced since the fatal police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson.

taylor.a / FLICKR

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — The search for a new education commissioner in Missouri is causing friction between the state school board president and an association of school superintendents.

File Image / KBIA News

Missouri officials have approved tougher regulations for deer ranchers and hunting preserves in an attempt to prevent the spread of disease.

A sit-in to protest police shootings is in its fifth day at Saint Louis University.

david_shane / Flickr

Missouri Governor Jay Nixon says the state now has a designated Ebola testing lab approved by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

lake of the ozarks
bsabarnowl / flickr

OSAGE BEACH, Mo. (AP) — A member of the Missouri State Highway Patrol says trooper training was deficient before the May drowning of a man under arrest in the Lake of the Ozarks.

Patrol Sgt. Randy Henry told a panel of state lawmakers Tuesday that the lack of proper training was obvious. He spoke during a second hearing in a review of the 2011 merger of the highway and water patrols.

marijuana
LancerenoK / Flickr

  A bill that would decriminalize the cultivation of small amounts of marijuana in Columbia has been endorsed by one city commission.

The Columbia Disabilities Commission voted unanimously last week to endorse legislation offered by Sixth Ward Councilwoman Barbara Hoppe.

The Columbia Daily Tribune reports that Hoppe's bill would allow people who grow two marijuana plants to face a fine of only $250, while people who are considered seriously ill could grow two plants without any penalties.

Shawn Semmler / Flickr

  Several hundred people, led by clergy members, marched from a Ferguson church to the city's police headquarters on Monday, part of a four-day weekend of rallies and marches.

Sully Fox / KBIA file photo

Missouri voters will decide next month whether they want six days to vote early without needing an excuse for why they won't show up on Election Day.

MarkyBon / Flickr

The Missouri Lottery says it expects to save about $700,000 a year with a vendor contract finalized amid criticism that the agency is funneling too little money to education.

The Lottery Commission on Thursday approved a seven-year contract with Rhode Island-based GTECH Corp. to provide computer gaming systems and related services.

The governor's budget office has been examining why the lottery had record sales in the latest budget year but transferred less money to schools.

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