Missouri Minute: Bayer seeks Roundup reversal; cities ditch waste firm

Good morning, MBA readers,

Kansas City’s new mayor will be the city’s youngest leader in more than a century. Voters elected Kansas City Councilman Quinton Lucas, 34, by a decisive margin Tuesday. A Kansas City native who was homeless at times growing up, Lucas went on to earn an Ivy League law degree and now will become mayor of his hometown, where he has vowed to tackle affordable housing and crime, among other issues. Elsewhere, Monsanto’s parent company Bayer is looking to reverse a $2 billion jury decision on a Roundup case, and a Netflix favorite is returning to Kansas City. Let’s get you caught up on these and other top business headlines from across the state.

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Kansas City Councilman Quinton Lucas claims decisive mayoral win
Lucas, 34, will become the city’s next mayor after notching a double-digit victory Tuesday over Kansas City Councilwoman Jolie Justus. (MBA)

Judge says Missouri lawmakers unlawfully cut Planned Parenthood’s Medicaid funding
Judge David Dowd in St. Louis ruled that lawmakers violated the state constitution by referring to other laws when fixing Medicaid payments in the 2019 appropriations bill. (KCUR)

Bayer asks judge to reverse $2 billion Roundup verdict
The German pharmaceutical company blames last month’s jury decision, which linked Monsanto’s Roundup weedkiller to a couple’s cancer, on “inflammatory, fabricated and irrelevant evidence” from the plaintiffs’ lawyers. (Reuters)

Missouri offers $4 million in energy improvement loans
The Missouri Division of Energy began accepting applications Monday for loans intended for energy efficiency improvements at public schools, airports and other public structures. (St. Louis Business Journal)

Three cities ditch waste haul firm over residents’ complaints
Florissant has joined Crestwood and Wildwood and ended its contract with Georgia-based Meridian Waste Inc., citing “woefully inadequate trash service” and numerous complaints by residents. Florissant Mayor Tim Lowery has noted a “dip in service” since Meridian was acquired by Warren Equity Partners of Florida last year. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

Moniteau County health board tables CAFO proposal
The mid-Missouri board has delayed a vote on an ordinance that would further restrict confined animal feed lots after opposition from local farmers. (Missourinet)

Clearent invests in U.K. software firm
The St. Louis-based payment processor seeks to establish an international foothold with a minority stake in CleanCloud, a London-based platform for dry cleaners and laundromats in 70 countries. (St. Louis Business Journal)

Probiotic Holdings secures $6 million in new financing for expansion
The Kansas City-based consumer chemical firm will use more than $9 million in total financing to support and expand its 44,000-square-foot lab in Kansas City. (Kansas City Business Journal)

St. Louis business groups give $1 million to community organizations
Civic Progress and the Regional Business Council announced funds ranging from $15,000 to $200,000 for nine St. Louis organizations. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

Netflix’s “Queer Eye” will return to Kansas City
The show, which filmed in Kansas City for five months last year, will feature the city again in its upcoming fourth season. (KCUR)

Say that again

“We’re not going to violate federal law, but at some point, that is going to have to be federally legal. (About) 160 million people live in cannabis-legal states. Are you going to put millions of Americans in jail for breaking federal law? I don’t think so.”

That’s Stifel Financial Chairman Ron Kruszewski in an interview with the St. Louis Business Journal Tuesday. A day earlier, the St. Louis investment bank announced its all-cash, $52 million purchase of the capital markets business of Canadian firm GMP Capital. While the deal excludes GMP Capital’s U.S. cannabis business, Kruszewski said Stifel is interested in using the relationship to advise Canadian cannabis firms on mergers and acquisitions. Unlike in the U.S., the recreational and medical use of cannabis is legal in Canada.

Show me

Where in Missouri is development hottest? Follow the permits. St. Peters led Missouri in permitted units per 10,000 residents in 2018. The St. Louis suburb issued 618 unit permits, or 108.1 for every 10,000 people that live there. Blue Springs (72.6 unit permits per 10,000 residents) and Lee’s Summit (56.3) ranked second and third on the list, which included only cities with populations of at least 50,000.

Go figure

That’s how many students nationwide play video games at school through the Kansas City-based High School eSports League, Startland News reports. The platform allows students and schools to play in tournaments and offers scholarships and other prizes. The number of school affiliates has skyrocketed from just 200 a year ago to about 1,700 today, according to EdTech.

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The Fab Five is coming back for Seasons 4 and 5. “Queer Eye” announced Tuesday that it has signed on for two more seasons with Netflix. For Season 4, the reality show will focus on Kansas City, where it also filmed its third season.

Hello, my name is

Seigfreid Bingham

The Kansas City-based law firm has launched a new practice focused on the growing cannabis industry, the Kansas City Business Journal reports. The practice will be led by veteran litigator Chris McHugh, who gained national fame after defending his client’s right to own a lunar sample bag from the Apollo 11 mission.

It’s been a pleasure doing business with you this morning.


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