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Laclede Gas Customers Get Temporary Rate Cut

Customers of Laclede Gas Co. will get a temporary cut of 1.4 percent in their natural gas bills effective Saturday, the Missouri Public Service Commission said Wednesday.

The cut is based on lower prices charged by wholesale suppliers of gas. These prices account for 60 percent to 70 percent of a customer's natural gas bill, the commission said.

Under present rates, a typical residential customer would pay $21.19 for gas during September. The rate cut will reduce that monthly bill to $20.89, the commission said.

Post-Dispatch Grand Canyon Party Blimp Up In Air

A team of Ukrainian scientists wants to send a $28 million "party" blimp on scenic tours over the Grand Canyon, but some officials wonder if they will get the plan off the ground.

Worldwide Aeros Corp. of Atwater, Calif., formed by Ukrainian scientists who moved to the United States in 1993, is proposing to build a 276-foot blimp that would glide regularly over the canyon with up to 80 passengers.

The helium-filled blimp would feature a restaurant, a bar, dance floor and possibly gaming tables and slot machines. The price tag for the trip: $120 to $800 a person.

Skeptics, citing federal gambling rules, airspace regulations and financial hurdles, question whether the plan will ever fly.

Reuters Santa Fe-Burlington Merger OK'd

Santa Fe Pacfic Corp. and Burlington Northern Inc. said Wednesday they received Interstate Commerce Commission approval, with certain conditions to prevent competitive harm, for their proposed merger.

The merger, effective Sept. 22, is valued at about $4 billion. It will create the nation's single largest rail carrier, with more than 35,000 miles of track in the United States and Canada. In 1994, the two railroads generated more than $7.5 billion in operating revenue.

The new company will be called Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corp.

Reuters GM Losing To Daewoo In Poland

General Motors Corp. appears to have lost out to South Korea's Daewoo Motors Co. in Poland, whose second-largest carmaker, Fabryka Samochodow Osobowych (FSO), said Wednesday that it was unlikely to resume partnership talks with GM. …