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The Missouri Supreme Court upheld an order barring an apartment leasing website from accepting money for tenant referrals without a real estate license. . . Gov. Jay Nixon outlined his key priorities today to be included in a comprehensive job-creation package that will be introduced during a special legislative session in September. Six priorities he outlined for the inclusion in the comprehensive, bi-partisan package are: the Missouri Science and Innovation Reinvestment Act to spark economic growth in essential, next-generation scientific and technology industries; Complete Missouri to cut red tape for businesses and make the state’s economic tools more effective and user friendly; Foreign Trade Incentives to make substantial investments in infrastructure around Lambert Field to make Missouri a hub for international exports and the sale of American-made goods; incentives for the development of high-tech, next generation data centers to create IT jobs; Tax Credit Reform to sharpen the state’s existing economic tools and provide funds to pay for additional incentives and resources to pay for critical disaster-recovery priorities. . .Meanwhile, Attorney General Chris Koster has filed a lawsuit against Alivio Foundation, Inc., based in Puerto Rico and Steve Blood of Georgia, for allegedly fraudulently soliciting donations through the internet to help victims of the May 22 Joplin tornado. Following the tornado, Koster said that Alivio began soliciting donations through a PayPal link on its website and through the online donation conduit, Crowdise, to aid victims, St. Peters Apostle Catholic Church and Catholic Charities of Southern Missouri. Neither the church nor Catholic Charities had ever heard of Alivio.


There’s nothing deader than a scorching summer for those in the media. But the whole town had lived with it so long and with so much emptiness and letdown.  The air seems out of the balloon, even the hills on I-44 seem flat.  There must be something left to write for a column. There’s the Muny, something called baseball and the Cards are trying to get better at it, the opera and symphony seasons are over, the Fox is closed, the Peabody was on fire, people are bawling at the funeral scene in “Harry Potter Deathy Hallows, Part 2,” – the end to the fantasy franchise, and the next comic book hero is being dug up for the movie, “The Lone Ranger,” which will star Helena Bonham Carter and Johnny Depp and pushing the Del Taco out of business.
> A few days ago, we were delighted or chagrined, according to our various tastes, to learn that Mizzou won’t go entirely smoke free until 2014.  SLU and Webster have not begun to revise smoking policies. A Mizzou researcher has found that children who witness domestic violence, are most likely to be in abusive intimate relationships and experience psychological problems known as post traumatic stress stress disorders in adulthood. In its promotional materials, Mizzou is touting A-listee alums such as Jon Hamm, Brad Pitt, Sheryl Crow, Armie Hammer and Tennessee Williams.
> WashU School of Law has formed an alliance with the University of Queensland in Australia, allowing students to study at both
> Lawyers from 21 states filed court papers supporting Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder’s challenge to President Obama’s administration’s health care reform law.
The Hip-Job Co-op employment agency is about to open in The Grove.
> Carleen Goddard Mazur still languishes in a vegatative state at Delmar Gardens, where the walls in her room are covered with memorabilia. Why not?  It figures since the fancy woman said “I do” eight times.
> There was adulation in the air among recipients of PR operative Mark Polzin’s blog, “It Went By In A Flash,” referring to the August debut 20 years ago of the World Wide Web. Polzin, an exec with Fleishman-Hillard, wrote, “I was watching a futurist on a late night talk show site who anticipates very soon we’ll get chip implants and be walking PDAs (an iMe?)”


High-profile doyenne Joan Kiburz recalled her selection by then Archbishop John May to handle the official canonization of Saint Philippine Duchesne 22 years ago.  It resulted in her rounding up of 539 alums from Villa Duchesne, Maryville and other schools around the world founded by St. Duchesne. They were booked into eight hotels in Rome. (Kiburz and her family own Coronet Travel.)  She said, “I was asked to invite Potowatomi Indians to bring obligatory gifts. After much research, I learned that Marge Schott, some Kennedy’s and a dear Franciscan priest named Charles Chaput, who is part Potowatomi,, would be invited. I tracked down Father Chaput and he and four Potowatomis were part of our entourage.”  Archibishop Chaput has come a long way from archbishop of Denver to becoming Pope Benedict, XVI’s choice as leader of the embattled Philadelphia archdiocese, succeeding Cardinal Justin Rigali, who is retiring. Cardinal Rigali is also marking the 50th anniversary of his ordination.


Look for some of our leading corporations to be hit by marketing reps from MGM and Sony for product placements in the new James Bond film, “Bond 23.” More than $45 million is being sought by brand ambassadors, who cinched plugs for Aston Martins, BMWs , watches, clothing and other accessories in previous Bond movies.


Carmelo Natoli, founder of Natoli Engineering, and his wife, Marcia, are heading for divorce in the St. Louis County courtroom of Commissioner Philip Jones. Carm is repped by barrister Jerome Raskas.


Scribe Gordon Burnside is writing a book on the life of iconic labor leader and Teamsters boss Harold Gibbons. That’s the word from Gibbons’ son and attorney, Larry, who dined with his partner, Polly Burtch of Webster University at Protzel’s Deli in Clayton.  Larry recalled his dad’s friendship with Jimmy Hoffa of whom Gibbons was believed to be the likely heir. “Hoffa never drank or smoked,” began Larry. “He would come to our house and enjoyed conducting a contest of push-ups, which he did with one hand. Harold and dad’s friendship with Frank Sinatra led to the Rat Pack’s performance in 1965 at Kiel Auditorium to benefit Dismas House.” (The Rat Pack consisted of Dean Martin, Sammy Davis, Jr. and Sinatra.) Gibbons was vice-president of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, with which he helped research and submit a plan for the desegregation of schools as well as serving as a member of the American Civil Liberties Union and the NAACP. Harold is also credited with helping to create the University of Southern Illinois-Edwardsville, where its archives contain Gibbons’ papers. He died in 1982 at the age of 72.


An OBGN Dr. Ted Mimlitz and his colelague, Andy Wolf have created a new product coming soon on your supermarket shelves. It’s call ManDip, which they’ve already begun filling orders for 50 Schnucks Stores.  “We’re entering an industry that neither of us have ever worked in,” said Mimlitz.  Grocers’ predictions have it that the “chip and dip” product, containing spicy sausage and cheese, will become a mega-hit, according to Mimlitz. . .Then, there’s Jim Hoffman of Clean Market Design, which markets, designs and procures renewable energy systems for electrical contractors exclusively. One of the systems – a 10kw is being installed on the roof of Birkel Electrical in Chesterfield.  “Mike Birkel’s company will be the first electrical contractor in Missouri to get the renewable energy system installed on the roof, which will cover one-third of his current electrical requirements,” said Hoffman.


The Beacon online paper’s editor Margie Freivolgel had some interesting comments in her weekly newsletter on Rupert Murdoch’s News of the World and the scandal that’s sweeping Great Britain and the world.  She wrote, “. . .many newsrooms are similarly chasing eyeballs.  Crime and celebrities occupy a growing share of news budgets while public-spirited coverage shrinks. Like Murdoch’s British tabloids, his Fox News operation caters to a particular point of view. This blurring of lines between opinion and reporting can be lucrative, and it’s caught on.  Even the New York Times in its newly redesigned Sunday Review intermingles columnists and reported analysis”. . .Ed Martin continued his crusade as declared candidate for Congress having raised $245k in the last eight weeks.  He claimed that he has a 22 percent lead over Ann Wagner, the only declared candidate. . . The Rev. Nickolas Eugene Pinkston, who was arrested on child porn charges, is the third sexually troubled cleric who has worked at St. Ambrose Church on The Hill.  The others: Father Darrell Mitchell and Father Nicholas Volker. . .Following an almost 30-year career with the St. Louis Archdiocese, Frank Cognata has landed as chief development officer for Sisters of Mercy Health System. His colleague is newly-arrived Nancy Schnoebelen. . .



Brent Farris, former owner of the Farris Gallery, was sentenced to 20 months in prison in 2004 and released on bond until he was to serve. He fled abroad. The U.S. Marshals tracked him down  after Farris traveled in 14 countries and three continents for five years.  He obtained a fake British passport to aid his flight.  He also used the passport to live and find work in China.  Italian authorities arrested and detained him and then the U.S. sought extradition. He was charged today with failure to appear for which he was sentenced.  In July, 2004, Farris pled guilty to one count of bankruptcy fraud.  He admitted with his plea that in January, 2002, he transferred ownership of an oil painting to another person, and then had the person auction the painting at Christie’s in New York City. in order to conceal the proceeds in bankruptcy. Farris, 49, of St. Louis, 63105, appeared today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Catherine D. Perry.


It’s an odd and sad feeling to have outlived Forest Park Highlands amusement park on Oakland Avenue. The midway was alive with laughter, the Flying Turns, a ride I never liked, stood suspended above picnickers and at the old rifle range I emptied shells at targets that hardly moved.  The Dodgems crashed around amid the familiar smell of graphite to keep the metal floors slippery.  The glory disappeared when the Comet was torn down and I recall the shrieks and losing our breath on the first dizzying descent and never found it until the end. There was Skee Ball and the prizes you gave to your best friend.  The amusement park also had a dance stand that was graced with such notables as Eddie Howard, Benny Goodman and Jimmy and Tommy Dorsey. My school picnic, a rite held every year, was where I’d meet pals from other schools and we scurried to the refreshment window for ice cream, hot dogs, popsicles or cherry limeades. Goodbye to all that, to part of our youth, and like that youth, we expected the Highlands to last forever.


Coeur Loyal, LLC is poised to close  next week on the purchase of the building on the site in Ladue where the historic Busch’s Grove once stood.  Restaurateurs Carmello and Frank Gabriele, owners of Il Bel Lago in Creve Coeur, will create a classic restaurant with a coal-fired pizza oven neighboring a Clarkson Jewelers facility.  Other tenants are being sought. Hensley Construction, Inc. will transform the structure into the mixed-use, 13,000 square-foot property.  The Gabrieles are managing partners of Coeur Loyal, LLC.  The cost for conversion of the property is about $4.5 million. A Nov. 1 opening is planned. The historic Busch’s Grove opened in 1897.


Former St. Louis Planning & Zoning chairman Doug Morgan is being quoted online ( using his former title as chairman of the Missouri Employers Mutual (MEM) insurance endorsing the business consulting services of former MEM president and CEO Dennis Smith. Morgan proclaims, “His (Dennis Smith’s) leadership was invaluable in helping the board with strategic and long-range planning necessary to ensure a sound financial footing.”  Morgan and Smith were side-by-side at MEM for more than a dozen years, until Smith’s exit in 2009 and Morgan’s resignation this year.

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