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Sherman A1

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Gender: Male
Current location: U.S.
Member since: Sat May 13, 2006, 07:37 AM
Number of posts: 25,639

Journal Archives

St. Louis Organization Asks Gov. Parson For State Support To Boost Urban Neighborhoods

At the corner of Dr. Martin Luther King Drive and Hamilton Avenue, there are vacant lots, several abandoned businesses and the construction site of the St. Louis nonprofit, Beloved Streets of America.

The organization invited Gov. Mike Parson out on Thursday to examine the desolate areas surrounding the 5900 block of Dr. Martin Luther King Drive. Parson walked down the block on Hamilton Avenue with the organization’s CEO Melvin White.

White explained to Parson, on his first trip to the neighborhood, how the Wells-Goodfellow community was once a thriving area for families.

While surveying the area along with White, Parson asked, “If someone wants to go to the grocery store, where do they go?” White quickly responded, “They don’t have one.”

https://news.stlpublicradio.org/post/st-louis-organization-asks-gov-parson-state-support-boost-urban-neighborhoods

Pritzker Signs Plan to Raise Minimum Teacher Salary to 40K

The minimum salary a teacher can be paid in Illinois will soon increase. Governor J.B. Pritzker joined educators and activists to sign a wage increase plan into law Thursday.

It’s a four year plan state lawmakers cooked up to address a teacher shortage. The Illinois Education Association, one of the state's teacher unions, estimates about 1,500 teaching jobs went unfilled in the last school year alone. Numbers for this school year have not yet been provided.

Illinois’ current minimum salary for teachers is between $10,000 and $11,000 per year, an amount set in 1980.

The wage increases will start next year, bumping up minimum salaries to a little more than $32,000. By the start of the 2023-24 school year, Illinois teachers will have to be paid at least $40,000.

https://news.stlpublicradio.org/post/pritzker-signs-plan-raise-minimum-teacher-salary-40k

Low Wages, Sexual Harassment and Unreliable Tips. This Is Life in America's Booming Service Industry

Published in partnership with The Fuller Project, a non-profit newsroom that reports on issues impacting women.

After an eight-hour shift on her feet, shuffling between a stuffy kitchen and the red vinyl booths of Broad Street Diner, Christina Munce is at a standstill in traffic. Still wearing the red polo shirt and black pants required for work at the diner in South Philadelphia, she’s arguing with her colleague Donna Klum. They carpool most days to spare Klum a two-hour commute on public transportation that involves three transfers.

“It’s not O.K. for people not to tip,” Munce says from the driver’s seat, the Philly skyline passing by. Klum believes that bad karma will catch up with non-tippers, but Munce, a single mother who relies on tips to live, doesn’t care much about their fate. “I have to make sure that my daughter has a roof over her head,” she says. The desire for cash over karma is understandable: Munce’s base pay is $2.83 an hour.

The decade-long economic expansion has been a boon to those at the top of the economic ladder. But it left millions of workers behind, particularly the 4.4 million workers who rely on tips to earn a living, fully two-thirds of them women. Even as wages have crept up–if slowly–in other sectors of the economy, the minimum wage for waitresses and other tipped workers hasn’t budged since 1991. Indeed, there is an entirely separate federal minimum wage for those who live on tips. It varies by state from as low as $2.13 (the federal tipped minimum wage) in 17 states including Texas, Nebraska and Virginia, up to $9.35 in Hawaii. In 36 states, the tipped minimum wage is under $5 an hour. Legally, employers are supposed to make up the difference when tips don’t get servers to the minimum wage, but some restaurants don’t track this closely and the law is rarely enforced.

Waitresses are emblematic of the type of job expected to grow most in the American economy in the next decade--low-wage service work with no guaranteed hours or income. Though high-paying service jobs have been growing quickly in recent months, middle-wage jobs are growing more slowly and could decline sharply in the event of a recession, says Mark Zandi, chief economist with Moody’s Analytics. Those who lose their jobs in a recession usually move down, not up, the pay scale. Jobs like personal-care aide (median annual wage $24,020), food-prep worker ($21,250) and waitstaff ($21,780) are among the fastest-growing occupations in America, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). They have much in common with the burgeoning gig economy, in which people turn to apps in the hope of getting shifts delivering food, driving passengers and cleaning houses.

https://time.com/5658442/tipped-restaurant-workers-american-economy/

What's The Deal With Airport Privatization In St. Louis?

For more than a year, city officials and an army of consultants have been exploring the possibility of leasing St. Louis Lambert International Airport to a private entity.

Conversations about leasing the city’s largest public asset began during former St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay’s time in office. But the official exploration process started in June of 2018, when the city hired a consultant group called FLY314, a subsidiary of Grow Missouri, Inc. The political action committee is funding the effort thus far.

On Thursday’s St. Louis on the Air, host Sarah Fenske explored where things stand and what happens next with St. Louis Public Radio reporter Corinne Ruff.

“Right now, what's been happening is several meetings [about] sort of preliminary negotiations with airlines. So they have to make sure that most of the airlines are on board with this before they even continue the process,” Ruff said. “There's also just finalizing all of the legal jargon that has to go into a [request for qualifications] to make sure that this is actually what the city wants.”

https://news.stlpublicradio.org/post/whats-deal-airport-privatization-st-louis

Parson Calls Special Legislative Session For Car Sales Tax

Gov. Mike Parson is calling a special session next month to clear up an issue regarding sales tax bills on new cars.

In June, the Missouri Supreme Court ruled in Kehlenbrink v. Director of Revenue that the sale proceeds of only one used vehicle can be applied as a credit on a new car. The Department of Revenue was allowing couples to turn in more than one used vehicle to bring down the sales tax on a new model.

“After reviewing the court’s decision, we’ve decided to call a special session because it’s simply the right thing to do for the people of our state,” Parson said in a statement Wednesday. “The enforcement of this decision would create a financial burden on Missouri taxpayers and unnecessary government red tape that we can proactively prevent.”

According to estimates from the governor, this affects roughly 3,000 Missourians.

https://news.stlpublicradio.org/post/parson-calls-special-legislative-session-car-sales-tax

Four Illinois Coal-Burning Power Plants Closing

Vistra Energy announced Wednesday it is closing its coal burning power plants in Canton, Havana, Hennepin and Coffeen.

The company said in a statement it will retire the four power plants in order to meet new revisions to the Multi-Pollutant Standard Rule introduced by the Illinois Pollution Control Board.

About 300 people will lose their jobs in the closures. The company is working to provide support services for those workers.

Vistra said it was closing the four power plants to save the other four plants it operates in Illinois. The company's emissions in Illinois will be driven down 57 to 61 percent by the closures, getting it under the new cap, the company said.

https://news.stlpublicradio.org/post/four-illinois-coal-burning-power-plants-closing

Wash U Researchers Find Blood Test Can Detect Early Alzheimer's Symptoms


For years, doctors have used an expensive brain scan to detect symptoms of Alzheimer's disease.

But researchers at Washington University have found that a simple blood test could be similarly effective, according to a study published this month in the journal Neurology. A blood test to diagnose early symptoms could help make finding a cure easy or cheaper and even guide treatment for the disease in the future, the study’s authors say.

“For a long time, a blood test for Alzheimer’s disease was referred to among the Alzheimer’s researcher community as the holy grail,” said Suzanne Schindler, a Wash U neurologist and author of the study. “Really, until three years ago, a lot of people thought this was far in the future.”

Alzheimer’s patients develop tangles and plaques of amyloid protein in their brains. Scientists have not determined the plaques are what cause Alzheimer’s memory loss, but they do know those proteins are present in the brain decades before symptoms start.

https://news.stlpublicradio.org/post/wash-u-researchers-find-blood-test-can-detect-early-alzheimers-symptoms

Wash U Researchers Find Blood Test Can Detect Early Alzheimer's Symptoms

For years, doctors have used an expensive brain scan to detect symptoms of Alzheimer's disease.

But researchers at Washington University have found that a simple blood test could be similarly effective, according to a study published this month in the journal Neurology. A blood test to diagnose early symptoms could help make finding a cure easy or cheaper and even guide treatment for the disease in the future, the study’s authors say.

“For a long time, a blood test for Alzheimer’s disease was referred to among the Alzheimer’s researcher community as the holy grail,” said Suzanne Schindler, a Wash U neurologist and author of the study. “Really, until three years ago, a lot of people thought this was far in the future.”

Alzheimer’s patients develop tangles and plaques of amyloid protein in their brains. Scientists have not determined the plaques are what cause Alzheimer’s memory loss, but they do know those proteins are present in the brain decades before symptoms start.

https://news.stlpublicradio.org/post/wash-u-researchers-find-blood-test-can-detect-early-alzheimers-symptoms

Trial Over New Missouri Voter Photo ID Law Begins

A trial over whether election officials are doing enough to help voters navigate Missouri's new voter photo identification law has begun.

Cole County Circuit Judge Jon Beetem heard testimony from critics of the law Monday. The trial is scheduled to last all week.

Groups including the Missouri NAACP and the American Civil Liberties Union of Missouri are arguing that the state didn't spend enough money or resources educating people about the new requirements and helping them obtain proper identification.

Attorneys for Missouri say the secretary of state's 18-month informational campaign "far exceeded" what's required by law to educate voters.

https://www.kbia.org/post/trial-over-new-missouri-voter-photo-id-law-begins#stream/0

Change In Policies On Main Street St. Charles Reduces Violence. But Business For Bars Is Down, Too

Friday and Saturday nights don’t draw nearly as many people to St. Charles’ North Main Street as they did a year or so ago.

Eric Sohn, general manager of Quintessential Dining and Nightlife, said he used to have two DJs on weekends, one for each of the building’s floors. On a Friday night in August, there was only one DJ at work. Also, five bartenders were covering on that evening; last summer, he needed eight on weekends.

“The main thing down here right now is that the crowds are just a lot smaller,” Sohn said. “This time last year, you’d have 3,000 people down here on a Friday. And tonight, between all the bars, there’s maybe 500 or 600 people down here.”

Last fall, after a few well-publicized incidents drew attention to crime in the area, the St. Charles City Council passed a new liquor ordinance that went into effect in January. It includes special requirements for establishments in the Historic Downtown District, which includes the three blocks of North Main Street. While crime in the area has dropped since the new rules came into effect, bar owners say they're unfair to businesses on North Main Street and eating into their bottom lines.

https://news.stlpublicradio.org/post/change-policies-main-street-st-charles-reduces-violence-business-bars-down-too
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