Missouri Minute: Express Scripts unveils $25 monthly cap; Emerson plans new $49 million headquarters

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Today’s news menu features plant-based burgers and fresh fruit juices, which should pair nicely with updates on Sprint’s proposed merger and a controversial wind transmission line. Bon appétit.

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Missouri House advances bill barring eminent domain use for Grain Belt Express
House Bill 1062 would force the 750-mile wind power transmission line project to either zig-zag around unwilling landowners or fold altogether. (Associated Press)

Express Scripts unveils $25 monthly cap on insulin cost
The St. Louis County company said about 700,000 people filed a claim for insulin last year through Cigna or Express Scripts plans. (New York Times)

Emerson unit plans new $49 million headquarters
A new facility in Connecticut will house 220 staff and engineers working on the company’s Branson assembly technologies products. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

State lawmakers try again to wrangle businesses boycotting Israel
House Bill 1006 would disqualify companies with more than 10 employees from vying for state contracts exceeding $100,000 if they boycott the state of Israel. (Columbia Missourian)

EPA agreement could revive dormant Missouri mining site
The agreement permits Missouri Cobalt to implement a cleanup plan at the Madison County Mines near Fredericktown and use them to mine for cobalt. (Associated Press)

PedNet Coalition wins $500,000 grant
PedNet will use the grant to boost its advocacy for funding public transit, sidewalks and bike lanes in Columbia. (Columbia Missourian)

Show me

The transportation sector remains the king of Missouri exporting. Today’s graphic looks at the state’s top five exports over the last five years, and transportation equipment topped the list again in 2018, according to a recent report from the Missouri Economic Research and Information Center. Missouri sold more than $3.9 billion of transportation equipment abroad in 2018. Chemicals were next, at about $2.5 billion.

Say that again

“Without the merger, the trajectory for Sprint will worsen and Sprint’s prospects will be limited. Sprint will be forced to further reduce its operating expenses, which means more job reductions in Kansas City and throughout the company, and our future as a standalone company will be in jeopardy.”
Sprint CEO Michel Combes has painted a bleak future for the Kansas City-area telecommunications company if its proposed merger with T-Mobile is denied, the Kansas City Star reports. Combes wrote to the Federal Communications Commission Commissioner Geoffrey Starks, a Kansas City native, stating jobs will be lost in the area if the deal doesn’t come to fruition. The FCC’s “shot clock” for a decision on the deal resumes Thursday.

Go figure

18.6 percent 
That’s the jump in annual giving to the University of Missouri since last year, the Columbia Missourian reports. The university raised almost $117 million from July 2018 to February 2019, compared to about $98.4 million over the same period last year. MU’s total endowment reached $1.04 billion as of Feb. 28, system president Mun Choi said Wednesday.

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Since Ruby Jean’s Juicery founder Chris Goode announced his business had been struck by an overnight robbery on March 28, supporters of the Kansas City juicery have rallied on social media and launched a crowdfunding campaign to help the small business recover, Startland News reports.

Hello, my name is

Impossible Whopper
Fast-food giant Burger King plans to roll out vegetarian versions of its staple menu item in 59 stores in and around St. Louis, Reuters reports. Made using plant-based burgers from Silicon Valley startup Impossible Foods, the new Impossible Whopper will cost about $1 more than the original non-vegetarian option.

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