Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

141203digest

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

141203digest

Article excerpt

ST. CHARLES COUNTY > Refuge closes for habitat-enhancing project * Cora Island, part of the Big Muddy National Fish and Wildlife Refuge north of St. Louis in the Missouri River, has been closed to the public while contractors work on a channel project.

The work at the 1,265-acre island refuge is aimed at improving the habitat for several species of fish and reconnecting the Missouri River with its flood plain, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said Tuesday. The work will take place over the next year, the agency said.

A contractor for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will excavate a side channel that is about two miles long. (From staff reports)

CHESTERFIELD > Mayor vows budget item vetoes * Citing fiscal responsibility and other concerns, Chesterfield Mayor Bob Nation is vowing to veto four items in next year's budget, which the City Council approved on Monday.

Nation said he supports most items in the budget, which projects general fund revenue of about $21.9 million and expenses from that fund of about $21.6 million. Those projections exclude revenue in the capital improvement and parks funds.

But Nation said he opposes and will veto:

* 3 percent employee salary increases. He wants the increases kept to 2.5 percent, a savings of about $42,000.

* Giving each of the city's 220 full-time employees $200 in holiday gift certificates. He proposes no more than $125 per employee.

* Spending $102,000 including nine months' salary and fringe benefits to hire two more school resource officers to serve the Parkway and Rockwood districts.

* Spending $100,000 redirected from an allocation for Chesterfield Arts organization for hiring and promotion of personnel for arts management by the city. Plans are to hire a recreation specialist, while a recreation manager position would be converted to a parks superintendent position to oversee art and entertainment in the city.

Councilwoman Connie Fults criticized Nation for his vetoes and their timing. "I heard about these vetoes at only 2 p.m. today," she said on Monday night.

The council is expected to vote Jan. 5 on whether to override Nation's vetoes. …

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