Author

Rudi Keller

Rudi Keller

Rudi Keller covers the state budget, energy and the legislature. He’s spent 22 of his 30 years in journalism covering Missouri government and politics, most recently as the news editor of the Columbia Daily Tribune. Keller has won awards for spot news and investigative reporting.

A photo of Truman Medical Center in Kansas City showing the six-story hospital on a sunny day.

Truman Medical Center pulls out of Missouri Medicaid provider tax pool

By: - August 10, 2021

Kansas City’s Truman Medical Center will stop contributing to a financial pooling arrangement that helps maintain political support for a tax that pumps hundreds of millions of dollars into Missouri’s Medicaid program every year. The move, which lawmakers began learning about last week, has raised concerns that other providers could follow Truman’s lead — and […]

A man in a red shirt is shown standing and speaking to a woman seated at a table outside a COVID-19 vaccination clinic Thursday in Columbia.

After COVID cases tripled in July, Delta continues its spread through Missouri

By: - July 30, 2021

The month of April was a good one for the Dallas County Health Department. It was the second straight month with less than one new COVID-19 case per day. Vaccinations opened to everyone on April 9. When a handful of cases pushed active infections to 11 on April 30, the message on social media was […]

Springfield officials: Cancelled request for temporary hospital not sign COVID crisis abated

By: and - July 29, 2021

A request for a temporary hospital was canceled because the state was too slow to act and local providers made emergency accommodations, not because the Delta variant crisis has diminished, the Springfield-Greene County Health Department said Thursday afternoon. Gov. Mike Parson cited a decline in cases in Greene County and surrounding areas when his office […]

Shannon County vaccination clinic sign

Fight over mask orders growing at rate to rival Missouri Delta variant cases

By: - July 29, 2021

Politicians are fighting over masks.  Public health officials are begging people to get vaccinated.  And meanwhile, the Delta variant continues to spread almost unchecked in the state.  St. Louis County Executive Sam Page and St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones defended their mask mandates during separate appearances Wednesday. Page held a press conference stating that the […]

Eric Schmitt lawsuit targeting St. Louis mask mandates riddled with data errors

By: - July 28, 2021

In his lawsuit challenging mask mandates in St. Louis and St. Louis County, Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt questioned the effectiveness of past COVID-19 restrictions there. “Despite having the most restrictive and unconstitutional orders in Missouri, St. Louis County and St. Louis City suffered some of the highest COVID-19 case rates and death rates in […]

Missouri housing commission sets hearings on low income housing tax credits

By: - July 27, 2021

The plan to speed up redemption of low income housing tax credits to increase their value to investors will be the subject of two public hearings Thursday by the Missouri Housing Development Commission. The hearings, to be conducted online, will be the last chance to comment on the plan before it goes before the commission […]

Missouri health official calls COVID vaccine falsehoods ‘a bunch of baloney’

By: - July 23, 2021

Missouri Gov. Mike Parson’s top adviser on COVID-19 is lashing out at vaccine falsehoods on social media, adding to the chorus of health officials around the state working to get shots distributed as the Delta variant continues to surge. Robert Knodell, Parson’s deputy chief of staff and acting director of the Department of Health and […]

Medicaid expansion rally

Missouri Supreme Court rules voter-approved Medicaid expansion is constitutional

By: - July 22, 2021

Missouri must expand Medicaid to 275,000 eligible people who were expecting coverage under a constitutional amendment that took effect July 1, the Missouri Supreme Court ruled Thursday. In an unanimous opinion, the court overturned a trial court ruling that the amendment, passed in August 2020 was unconstitutional because it may increase the state’s cost for […]

Shannon County vaccination clinic sign

Missouri hits new peak in Delta variant summer surge with almost 3,000 COVID cases

By: - July 21, 2021

The summer surge of infection tied to the easily spread Delta variant of COVID-19 is accelerating in Missouri, with state health officials on Wednesday reporting the highest case total since mid-January. The Department of Health and Senior Services reported 2,995 additional cases, with at least one case in 105 of the state’s 117 local health […]

Missouri’s plan for spending federal stimulus money is months away

By: - July 20, 2021

Missouri may need a special legislative session for some of the stimulus money coming to the state from the American Rescue Plan Congress approved in March, but the bulk of spending will likely wait until the next state budget is proposed in January, Budget Director Dan Haug said Tuesday. In testimony to the House Subcommittee […]

People hold up signs that read "Protect safe, legal abortion."

Federal appeals court will review decision in Missouri abortion ban lawsuit

By: - July 20, 2021

In a move long-time legal observers say is unusual, the Eighth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals will, on its own motion, review a June 9 ruling that blocked enforcement of a 2019 Missouri law criminalizing abortions after eight weeks of pregnancy with no exceptions for rape or incest. The order, issued last week, puts the […]

Springfield Mayor Ken McClure speaking against a purple background with his name and title placed at the bottom of the image.

‘The surge is coming,’ Springfield Mayor Ken McClure warns other Missouri cities

By: - July 18, 2021

With hospitals swamped and hundreds of cases daily from a Delta variant surge of infection, Springfield is a warning of what is ahead for the rest of the state if vaccination rates do not increase dramatically, Mayor Ken McClure said Sunday morning on a national news program. And McClure defended door-to-door efforts to boost vaccinations, […]