State and Regional News

Bill would lower licensing barriers for former criminals

By MARIA BENEVENTO
Peggy Albers introduced herself to a Senate committee as "one of the worst of the worst that you guys would probably ever meet."
"I’ve been in more prisons in the United States than you can really believe," Albers, a real estate agent from Lake Ozark, told the General Laws Committee during a hearing Tuesday. She was testifying in favor of a bill that would make it easier for people with criminal records to get professional licenses.

Women and children might soon be eligible for fresh produce voucher program

By MADISON CZOPEK
Women, infants and children in low-income families could soon have access to vouchers that can be exchanged for fresh produce at select farmers markets. Rep. Martha Stevens' bill, which proposed the program, received strong support Tuesday during a Children and Families Committee hearing.

Lawmakers consider easing access to mental health care for teens who are on their own

By MADISON CZOPEK
A bill that would make it possible for minors aged 16 and 17 who live on their own to sign up for mental health care received support in a House Children and Families Committee hearing Tuesday.

Senators follow party lines — with one exception — in Clean Missouri vote

BY ASHLYN O’HARA
Clean Missouri just got one step closer to reappearing on November’s ballot.
The Missouri Senate voted 22-9 in favor of Senate Joint Resolution 38, sponsored by Sen. Dan Hegeman, R-Cosby, on Monday, which would change amendments that were made to the Missouri Constitution in fall of 2018.

Senate bill would require DNA testing for all felony arrests

By JORDAN MEIER
Katie Sepich was raped, strangled and set on fire outside her New Mexico home in 2003. After DNA was found under her fingernails, her family hoped that police would be able to catch the murderer. The DNA, however, was not in the federal DNA database, so there was no evidence to tie someone to the crime.