Missouri Minute: KC Council gets answers on convention hotel; Greitens wants to roll back ag regulations

Here are today’s top business headlines from across Missouri:

KC Council skeptics say hearing offers sufficient answers on hotel project finances

The last-minute turbulence that threatened to upend the start of construction on a new 800-room convention hotel in downtown Kansas City calmed on Wednesday, as developers and city officials responded to questions from three Kansas City Council members seeking more details about the deal. More than new data, members of the council wanted the essentials of the $322 million venture brought into clearer focus: the sources of the money, the city’s risk as an investor, and how taxpayers were protected if the deal went bad. Read more

Greitens vows to roll back ‘tens of thousands’ of ag regulations

Gov. Eric Greitens is taking his smaller-government message to Missouri’s agriculture industry, ahead of the 2018 legislative session that begins next month. The first-year Republican governor told Missouri Farm Bureau members at their annual gathering this week that his administration is poised to roll back “tens of thousands” of regulations that affect farmers, ranchers and agribusiness. He also blamed the state’s legal environment for harming agriculture and rural Missouri. Read more

Auditor Galloway seeks to reinstate eliminated whistleblower protections

Missouri State Auditor Nicole Galloway on Wednesday voiced her support for a bill that’s been pre-filed for the upcoming legislative session in Jefferson City. The legislation would roll back the part of a new discrimination law that eliminated whistleblower protections for government employees. Read more

H&R Block targets customer gains over price increases for upcoming tax season

H&R Block’s new CEO Jeff Jones targeted increasing customer counts over price increases in the upcoming tax season as he outlined the company’s strategy Wednesday. Jones, in his first quarterly conference call with analysts since joining Block in October, said the Kansas City-based tax preparer strives to improve on the rebound in client totals it enjoyed last tax season. Read more

Developer of St. Louis County retirement community plans $201 million expansion

The parent company of the Friendship Village retirement communities is planning a $201 million expansion in Sunset Hills and Chesterfield. St. Louis County-based FV Services Inc. announced Wednesday that its board of directors approved the expansion that will add senior living apartments and expanded assisted living units, in addition to new skilled nursing buildings outfitted with rehabilitation clinics, therapy gyms and fitness classrooms. Read more

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