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Morning headlines: Thursday, February 23, 2012

Commission approves Pevely demolition

St. Louis University has received approval from the city Planning Commission to demolish the historic Pevely Dairy Complex. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the commission approved the demolition Wednesday night.

The city Preservation Board originally denied the demolition request, prompting the appeal to the commission.

Saint Louis University wants to replace the complex with an outpatient center for its SLUCare physicians practice. But some oppose the demolition because the four-story building that was Pevely's main office building is nearly 100 years old, and the building and others on the eight-acre site are on the National Register of Historic Places.

Missouri again leads in meth lab seizures

An Associated Press survey of the nation's top methamphetamine-producing states shows Missouri again leading the nation in the number of meth lab busts.

The survey confirmed that Missouri regained the top spot for lab seizures in 2011 with a little more than 2,000 busts. It also found that Tennessee came in second with almost 1,700, followed by Indiana, Kentucky and Oklahoma.

Federal data obtained by the AP this week from the Drug Enforcement Administration appeared to show meth lab seizures remained about even during the past two years. But totals from the states surveyed by AP are higher.

Mo. State Sen. wants full chamber to debate Interstate 70 toll measure

The Senate Transportation Committee heard about two hours of public testimony Wednesday on legislation that would allow the state to contract with a private company to fix I-70 in exchange for being allowed to charge tolls.

State transportation officials say the foundation of I-70 is crumbling and it needs to be widened to handle increased traffic. Committee Chairman Senator Bill Stouffer, a Republican from Napton, said more public hearings will be held in coming weeks. Stouffer says he hopes to eventually vote the legislation out of his committee so it can come before the full Senate.