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Morning headlines: Monday, January 16, 2011

The dome shines brightly on the Missouri State Capitol as the sun begins to set in Jefferson City, Missouri on March 22, 2011.
UPI/Bill Greenblatt
The dome shines brightly on the Missouri State Capitol as the sun begins to set in Jefferson City, Missouri on March 22, 2011.

Mo. Senators pushing legislation to make information available about grants and budget cuts

The legislation would require details about federal grants worth at least $1 million to be posted on the Missouri Accountability Portal, which is an online tool for tracking state expenses.  It also would require the governor to post a daily report on that website listing how much money he has withheld from state agencies and programs to help balance the budget.

The legislation is one of the first three bills on the debate agenda for the Missouri Senate. That means it could come up as soon as this week.

Costello endorses Harriman

Congressman Jerry Costello is supporting a former education official in the election to replace him in Illinois' 12th Congressional District. The Democrat endorsed Brad Harriman of O'Fallon, citing his working-class union family and hard work ethic.

Harriman is a former St. Clair County regional school superintendent. Other Democratic candidates in the March 20 primary include Iraq war veteran Chris Miller.

Costello has held the southern Illinois district seat for more than two decades. He isn't seeking re-election and announced his retirement in October. The 12th District runs along the Missouri border and includes Carbondale, Belleville and Cairo.

Seven candidates - four Republicans and three Democrats – have filed candidacy. The Republicans include former Belleville Mayor Rodger Cook and Jason Plummer, who made an unsuccessful bid for lieutenant governor in 2010.

Hunters took more than 200,000 deer this season

Missouri's Conservation Department says hunters took nearly 239,000 deer during the 2011-2012 firearms hunting season. Conservation officials said the season's total was up about 7,400 from last year, but roughly 13,000 below the 10-year average.

Jason Sumners, a deer biologist with the Conservation Department, says this year's sharp departure from the 10-year average reflects a decline in deer populations in parts of central and northern Missouri. At the same time, Sumners says deer numbers in southern Missouri continue to increase gradually.