Missouri Minute: Council approves funds for America’s Center project; MLS unlikely to pick its 28th team this week

As you sip on your cup o’ joe this morning, read about the growth of niche influencers on Instagram, another turn in EmpowerHMS’ legal woes and what Sprint’s chairman said of reports about the company’s proposed merger.

From our newsroom

As brands seek social media authenticity, ‘micro-influencers’ seize opportunity
Mega celebrities are increasingly sharing the Instagram influencer market with “micro-influencers,” who offer an alternative for brands trying to reach niche local audiences on social media.

Evergy reports progress of renewables programs
Green tariff programs from the Kansas City-based utility have garnered interest from businesses and residential customers since the company’s merger last year.

Stay alert

St. Louis County Council approves funds for America’s Center project
The council voted to devote $6 million annually for 40 years to pay for the convention center upgrades. (St. Louis Public Radio)

MLS unlikely to pick its 28th team this week
Neither of the two frontrunners for the league’s last team spot are scheduled to present at this week’s meeting to discuss league expansion. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

St. Louis wins partial victory in court battle with Paul McKee’s Bank
A circuit court judge in St. Louis said Bank of Washington could not undo a contract it had entered with the city to assemble 99 acres for the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

EmpowerHMS faces federal criminal probe
Bankruptcy filings for the hospital operator once based in Kansas City revealed that the U.S. Department of Justice is investigating Empower and a web of related companies used to purchase hospitals. (Kansas City Star)

Waddell & Reed settles class-action case for $4.9 million
A class-action lawsuit filed against the Overland Park, Kansas-based financial services firm alleged that Waddell & Reed breached its fiduciary duty by making prohibited transactions using employee retirement plans. (Kansas City Business Journal)

Bill would force sale of state park
The Missouri House of Representatives gave initial approval to a bill that would require the sale of Eleven Point State Park in Oregon County, which faces a lawsuit claiming an easement limits the land to being used only for agricultural purposes. (Associated Press)

Jack Galmiche, CEO of Nine Network of Public Media, dies at 71
The St. Louis native returned home in 2006 to head the KETC Public Broadcasting System station. (St. Louis Public Radio)

Go figure


That’s the number of consecutive months that Missouri’s unemployment rate has been lower than the national rate. The state’s rate increased slightly to 3.3% in March.

Say that again

“It sounds redundant, but ‘unsustainable’ means unsustainable. It doesn’t matter if we want to change these things, they literally must be changed.” 

Ryan Wing, founder of The Sundry, says the sustainable food problem still remains, Startland News reports. The Kansas City market and restaurant concept closed abruptly last week because it couldn’t achieve its goals of sustainability and local agriculture as originally envisioned.

Send tweet

The Sprint chairman’s tweet challenges a report published by The Wall Street Journal Tuesday, in which anonymous U.S. Department of Justice sources claimed the proposed Sprint and T-Mobile merger would not be approved as it is currently structured.

Hello, my name is


The popular culture convention, one of southwest Missouri’s largest, will come back home to Springfield this May after several years in Branson, the Springfield News-Leader reports. The convention celebrates popular culture for fans enamored by comics, tabletop games, video games and television.

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