The Capitol Report | September 14th, 2017

Veto Session Comes to a Close

The members of the Missouri House of Representatives came together Wednesday afternoon to discuss the pieces of legislation that were approved by the General Assembly but vetoed by the governor. Of the handful of bills to consider, HCB 3 received all of the discussion. Members debated the merits of overriding the governor’s veto versus working together to find another funding solution to preserve in-home and nursing care for more than 8,000 disabled Missourians.

HCB 3 was approved by the House on the last day of the legislative session in an attempt to preserve nursing and in-home care services for some of Missouri’s most vulnerable citizens. In the days leading up to the conclusion of the session, House and Senate members had worked to find a solution that would keep the vital services intact. The House had passed a version of the bill that would end the renter’s portion of the senior citizens property tax credit in order to generate funds that would be used to protect the existing level of service. The Senate countered by passing a version of the bill that would raise the funds by “sweeping” the unexpended monies from several state funds associated with regulatory boards and commissions.

With the Senate being unwilling to negotiate and no other options on the table, the House then approved the Senate solution and sent it to the governor’s desk. The governor then vetoed the bill calling it a “one-time gimmick” that drained funds from programs to prevent child abuse and neglect, assist injured workers, and to train police officers and firefighters.

Therefore, while all House members agreed action was necessary to prevent the vital services from being cut off for Missourians in need, the majority of members voted against the attempt to override the governor’s veto. The motion failed by a vote of 49-106. Members instead favor finding a more responsible solution that will allow the more than 8,000 disabled Missourians to receive the care they need.

As House members discussed a possible veto override of HCB 3, Senate Leader Ron Richard and House Speaker Todd Richardson announced that their two chambers will work together to develop a funding solution that will preserve in-home and nursing care for more than 8,000 disabled Missourians. Also to be considered is restoring provider rate cuts including cuts to private duty nurses who administer in-home neonatal care. Richard and Richardson have asked Sen. Mike Cunningham and House Budget Chair Scott Fitzpatrick to work together, and to work with their colleagues from both parties, to formulate a fiscally responsible plan that will ensure services are maintained for some of the state’s most vulnerable citizens.

In other news, finding updated information about Missouri’s economy just got a lot easier thanks to State Treasurer Eric Schmitt. Today, Schmitt announced the launch of MissouriDashboard.com where citizens can easily track and monitor Missouri’s economic performance. This is the first economic dashboard in the nation to be launched by a state treasurer’s office. Treasurer Schmitt and his team will utilize the data collected by the dashboard to conduct a comprehensive audit of the state’s economy over the coming months.

You may read in more detail about what is happening at your State Capitol below.

As always, I will work diligently for you as your State Representative.

-Jason

 

Missouri House Convenes for Annual Veto Session

The members of the Missouri House of Representatives came together Wednesday afternoon to discuss the pieces of legislation that were approved by the General Assembly but vetoed by the governor. Of the handful of bills to consider, HCB 3 received all of the discussion. Members debated the merits of overriding the governor’s veto versus working together to find another funding solution to preserve in-home and nursing care for more than 8,000 disabled Missourians.

HCB 3 was approved by the House on the last day of the legislative session in an attempt to preserve nursing and in-home care services for some of Missouri’s most vulnerable citizens. In the days leading up to the conclusion of the session, House and Senate members had worked to find a solution that would keep the vital services intact. The House had passed a version of the bill that would end the renter’s portion of the senior citizens property tax credit in order to generate funds that would be used to protect the existing level of service. The Senate countered by passing a version of the bill that would raise the funds by “sweeping” the unexpended monies from several state funds associated with regulatory boards and commissions.

With the Senate being unwilling to negotiate and no other options on the table, the House then approved the Senate solution and sent it to the governor’s desk. The governor then vetoed the bill calling it a “one-time gimmick” that drained funds from programs to prevent child abuse and neglect, assist injured workers, and to train police officers and firefighters.

While all House members agreed action was necessary to prevent the vital services from being cut off for Missourians in need, the majority of members voted against the attempt to override the governor’s veto. The motion failed by a vote of 49-106. Members instead favor finding a more responsible solution that will allow the more than 8,000 disabled Missourians to receive the care they need.

Missouri Senate and House to Develop Funding Solution for In-Home and Nursing Care for Disabled Missourians

As House members discussed a possible veto override of HCB 3, Senate Leader Ron Richard and House Speaker Todd Richardson announced that their two chambers will work together to develop a funding solution that will preserve in-home and nursing care for more than 8,000 disabled Missourians. Also to be considered is restoring provider rate cuts including cuts to private duty nurses who administer in-home neonatal care. Richard and Richardson have asked Sen. Mike Cunningham and House Budget Chair Scott Fitzpatrick to work together, and to work with their colleagues from both parties, to formulate a fiscally responsible plan that will ensure services are maintained for some of the state’s most vulnerable citizens.

“It’s our job even in tough budget years to protect our most vulnerable citizens,” said Richard, R-Joplin. “Preserving funding for in-home and nursing care is important to both chambers, and together with the House, we can come up with a plan to keep those funds for senior services intact.”

“Finding a viable solution to preserve these critical services for disabled Missourians has been, and continues to be, a top priority for the Missouri House and for the General Assembly,” said Richardson, R-Poplar Bluff. “I’m confident that Rep. Fitzpatrick can work with Sen. Cunningham and with Republicans and Democrats in both chambers to find a fiscally responsible solution.”

Richard and Richardson said they are asking Cunningham and Fitzpatrick to develop a proposal over the course of the next three weeks. They said once they have an acceptable plan, they will discuss available options to put the proposal into effect.

State Treasurer Launches Website to Track State’s Economic Performance

Finding updated information about Missouri’s economy just got a lot easier thanks to State Treasurer Eric Schmitt. Today, Schmitt announced the launch of MissouriDashboard.com where citizens can easily track and monitor Missouri’s economic performance.

The Missouri Economic Dashboard gives the public a snapshot of the state’s economic climate and features key data on unemployment, state and national debt, exports, housing, education and more. County-by-county breakdowns are available for several of the dashboard’s indicators.

“This new tool gives Missourians an easy way to check on our state’s economic status without sifting through spreadsheets and boring government reports,” said Schmitt. “The Missouri Economic Dashboard will dramatically increase transparency in economic data and help keep the public, business leaders and lawmakers up to date with the latest information.”

The dashboard was designed by a team of economists and government accounting experts to prioritize the most important economic indicators found within publicly available datasets. Figures will be updated regularly as new reports are published by government agencies.

MissouriDashboard.com is the first economic dashboard in the nation to be launched by a state treasurer’s office. Treasurer Schmitt and his team will utilize the data collected by the dashboard to conduct a comprehensive audit of the state’s economy over the coming months.

House Members Celebrate Master Key Anniversary at State Capitol

House members and visitors to the State Capitol recently celebrated the 100th anniversary of the Capitol Commission Board’s acceptance of the master key and custody of the Missouri State Capitol building. The Friends of the Missouri State Museum and the Missouri State Capitol Commission sponsored a reception and silent auction to commemorate the anniversary on Wednesday, September 13.

On September 13, 1917, the State Capitol Commission Board received keys to the nearly-complete Missouri State Capitol, which were presented by David Aronberg, a representative of John Gill and Sons Company, the building contractor. transfer ended a stormy relationship between the two parties and enabled the Commission to closely inspect the building and supervise the final construction details before officially declaring the building complete.

Lawmakers and members of the public gathered in the rotunda on the third floor of the Capitol for the event. The silent auction featured 17 special prints of historic Capitol photographs from the Missouri State Museum’s collection. Proceeds from the auction will be used to benefit the conservation of the Museum’s diverse collection of artifacts.

The Missouri State Archives also displayed “Pillars of the State: The Centennial of the Missouri State Capitol.” The collection of photographs and information detail the construction and decoration of the Capitol building.

This special event served as the finale to a series of centennial events commemorating construction of the Capitol building.

I am committed to serve the constituents of the 120th District, so please feel free to contact my office anytime at 573-751-1688. Your District 120 Capitol Office is 201 W Capitol Ave, Rm 415-B, Jefferson City, MO 65101. If you wish to unsubscribe from this report, please email Dylan Bryant at dylan.bryant@house.mo.gov

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The Capitol Report | September 7th, 2017

Legislative Veto Session Approaches

As mandated by the Missouri Constitution, the General Assembly will meet Wednesday, September 13 to consider bills that were passed by the House and Senate but vetoed by the governor. The annual Veto Session gives legislators a final opportunity to enact their ideas into law despite the governor’s objections. In both chambers, a two-thirds vote is required to override a veto. In the House that amounts to 109 votes. Twenty-three votes are needed in the Senate to successfully complete an override motion.

The 2016 Veto Session activity brought the total number of veto overrides in state history up to 119. Prior to the administration of Governor Jay Nixon, the total number of veto overrides in Missouri history stood at 22. In total, the legislature managed to override the governor 97 times during his eight years of service. Heading into this Veto Session it appears unlikely that the legislature will add to the veto override total as the new governor and the current General Assembly have worked together on most of the issues addressed in 2017. The current governor’s veto totals are far lower than those of his predecessor. Of the bills sent to his desk by the legislature, Governor Greitens vetoed only one House Bill, one House Committee Bill, one House Concurrent Resolution, and two Senate Bills. He also issued line item vetoes in three appropriations bills. More will be discussed on these bills after the results of veto session next week.

Also, as promised, below is a brief summary of additional bills the legislature has passed this regular session. These final TAFP’d bills wrap up the bill summaries just in time for Veto Session next Wednesday.

SB 395 (Signed by Governor: 6/23) – Modifies provisions relating to the practice of public accounting including lowering the age that someone can become licensed as an accountant from 21 to 18.

SB 421 (Signed by Governor: 7/5) – Modifies provisions relating to the conveyance of state property including allowing the Governor to not be required to obtain authorization for granting easements to political subdivisions, rural electric cooperatives, railroads, to accommodate utility service provided to state property or facilities, to accommodate ingress and egress on state properties, or to facilitate the use of common elements of condominium property if the state is a unit owner.

SB 486 (Signed by Governor: 7/11) – Authorizes the conveyance of a certain state property located in Cole County to the City of Jefferson

SB 501 (Signed by Governor: 7/14) – Modifies provisions relating to health care including requiring the Department of Health and Senior Services to contract with a third party for the establishment of a health care directives registry for the purpose of providing a place to securely store an advance health care directive online and to give authorized health care providers immediate access to the directive.

SB 503 (Signed by Governor: 7/11) – Modifies provisions relating to emergency services including requiring the Committee for 911 Oversight to designate a state 911 coordinator.

SCR 4 (Signed by Leadership: 5/22) – Applies to Congress for the calling of an Article V convention of states to propose certain amendments to the United States Constitution which place limits on the federal government.

You may read in more detail about what is happening at your State Capitol below.

As always, I will work diligently for you as your State Representative.

-Jason

 

 

 

Legislative Veto Session Approaches

As mandated by the Missouri Constitution, the General Assembly will meet Wednesday, September 13 to consider bills that were passed by the House and Senate but vetoed by the governor. The annual Veto Session gives legislators a final opportunity to enact their ideas into law despite the governor’s objections. In both chambers, a two-thirds vote is required to override a veto. In the House that amounts to 109 votes. Twenty-three votes are needed in the Senate to successfully complete an override motion.

The 2016 Veto Session activity brought the total number of veto overrides in state history up to 119. Prior to the administration of Governor Jay Nixon, the total number of veto overrides in Missouri history stood at 22. In total, the legislature managed to override the governor 97 times during his eight years of service. Heading into this Veto Session it appears unlikely that the legislature will add to the veto override total as the new governor and the current General Assembly have worked together on most of the issues addressed in 2017. The current governor’s veto totals are far lower than those of his predecessor. Of the bills sent to his desk by the legislature, Governor Greitens vetoed only one House Bill, one House Committee Bill, one House Concurrent Resolution, and two Senate Bills. He also issued line item vetoes in three appropriations bills. More will be discussed on these bills after the results of veto session next week.

Truly Agreed To & Finally Passed Bills

Now that the regular and both special legislative sessions have come to an end, the legislature stands at a little over 75 bills that have been Truly Agreed to and Finally Passed (TAFP). These TAFP bills span a variety of topics. Below is a brief summary of additional TAFP bills. These final TAFP’d bills wrap up the bill summaries just in time for Veto Session next Wednesday.

SB 395 (Signed by Governor: 6/23) – Modifies provisions relating to the practice of public accounting

The act modifies several definitions related to the profession of accountancy. The act also lowers the age that someone can become licensed as an accountant from 21 to 18. A certified public accounting firm that does not have an office in the state of Missouri may offer or perform attest or compilation services in Missouri without a permit if it meets certain requirements, as set forth in the act. All firms practicing public accounting in the state of Missouri shall register with the Secretary of State, unless they are exempted as described in the act.

Also, the act repeals a provision stating that a licensee who supervises review services or signs or authorizes someone to sign review reports shall meet competency requirements as determined by the Board. The act also repeals a provision that states that, prior to January 1, 2008, licensees who perform fewer than 3 attest services a year shall be exempt from the requirement to undergo peer review as described in the act.

SB 421 (Signed by Governor: 7/5) – Modifies provisions relating to the conveyance of state property

Currently, the Governor is not required to obtain legislative authorization for the conveyance or transfer of certain properties to certain entities, including easements for rural electric cooperatives, municipal corporations, and public utilities. Instead, under this act, the Governor need not be required to obtain such authorization for granting easements to political subdivisions, rural electric cooperatives, railroads, to accommodate utility service provided to state property or facilities, to accommodate ingress and egress on state properties, or to facilitate the use of common elements of condominium property if the state is a unit owner. The easement shall be used for purposes set forth in this act.

SB 486 (Signed by Governor: 7/11) – Authorizes the conveyance of a certain state property located in Cole County to the City of Jefferson

This act authorizes the conveyance of a certain state property located in Cole County to the City of Jefferson.

SB 501 (Signed by Governor: 7/14) – Modifies provisions relating to health care

This act requires the Department of Health and Senior Services to contract with a third party for the establishment of a health care directives registry for the purpose of providing a place to securely store an advance health care directive online and to give authorized health care providers immediate access to the directive. The third party contractor shall be solely responsible for the administration and maintenance of the registry. All data and information contained in the registry shall remain confidential and shall be exempt from the Sunshine Law. An “advance health care directive” is defined as either a power of attorney for health care or a declaration signed by an adult declarant containing the person’s direction concerning a health care decision.

Among other provisions, this act allows a physician to prescribe epinephrine (EPI) auto-injectors in the name of an authorized entity for use in certain emergency situations. Pharmacists, physicians, and other persons authorized to dispense prescription medications may dispense EPI auto-injectors under a prescription issued in the name of an authorized entity. An “authorized entity” is defined as any entity or organization at or in connection with locations where allergens capable of causing anaphylaxis may be present, including but not limited to restaurants, recreation camps, youth sports leagues, amusement parks, and sports arenas.

SB 503 (Signed by Governor: 7/11) – Modifies provisions relating to emergency services

The act provides that no emergency medical technician shall be liable, if acting in good faith and without gross negligence, for the administration of a patient’s personal medication when deemed necessary. This act also changes the name of the Advisory Committee for 911 Service Oversight to the Missouri 911 Service Board. The number of Board members is reduced from 16 to 15, and the composition of the Board is changed. The Board shall have no authority over certain emergency communications services providers.

No corporation or its affiliate shall have more than one member on the Board, subject to the exception that all members appointed as of August 28, 2017, shall continue to serve the remainder of their terms. Additional new powers and responsibilities of the Board are specified including compliance with federal standards, coordinating services, planning and implementing improvements to technological systems, and collaborating with other bodies of state government. The Board is required to designate a coordinator who shall be responsible for overseeing state 911 operations.

SCR 4 (Signed by Leadership: 5/22) – Applies to Congress for the calling of an Article V convention of states to propose certain amendments to the United States Constitution which place limits on the federal government

This concurrent resolution applies to the United States Congress, under the provisions of Article V of the United States Constitution, for the calling of a convention of the states for the limited purpose of proposing amendments to the U.S. Constitution that impose fiscal restraint on the federal government, limit the power and jurisdiction of the federal government, and limit the terms of office for federal officials and members of Congress. This application shall expire five years after the passage of this resolution.

District Event

Osage Nation DedicationOn Saturday, September 9th, Chief Geoffrey M. Standing Bear and a large delegation (more than 60 members) from the Osage Nation, will be returning to Cuba, MO. On that day, the Osage Nation will place a blessing upon the Osage Monument and the Osage Mural. While there is still landscaping and design work to be done, on both the monument and mural, the Osage Nation has been deeply moved by our efforts. September 9th will be a day to honor the projects and to celebrate the meaningful relationships that have been built.

At 9:30 a.m., the ceremony for the blessing of the Osage Monument will begin on-site at the Cuba, MO, Visitors Center. During this ceremony, Chief Standing Bear will speak with the audience. Additionally, this ceremony will include a smoke blessing and Native Osage Prayers. Beginning at approximately 10:45 a.m., the ceremony for the blessing of the Osage Mural will begin on-site at the Osage Mural. The mural is located on Buchanan Street in the Historic Route 66 Mural District of downtown Cuba, MO. During this ceremony, members of the Osage Delegation will offer a few brief words and members of the Osage Delegation will also perform native song and dance. Immediately following the blessing of the Osage Mural, there will be a light reception held at Recklein Auditorium located on N. Smith Street in Cuba, MO. During this time, members of the public will be able to visit with members of the Osage Nation in honor and celebration of the day. Light refreshments will be served.

The ceremonies and reception are free, open to the public, and all are welcome to attend.

 

I am committed to serve the constituents of the 120th District, so please feel free to contact my office anytime at 573-751-1688. Your District 120 Capitol Office is 201 W Capitol Ave, Rm 415-B, Jefferson City, MO 65101. If you wish to unsubscribe from this report, please email Dylan Bryant at dylan.bryant@house.mo.gov

The Capitol Report | August 31st, 2017

Bills Now Officially Law Across The State

Much of the work done by the Missouri House and Senate from January to May finally became law this week as many of the bills approved during the last legislative session officially took effect on Monday, August 28. During the 2017 legislative session, the House and Senate worked together to send 56 pieces of legislation across the finish line and gave approval to an additional 16 appropriations bills.

Of the bills sent to the governor, 38 originated in the Senate and 18 in the House, with the 16 appropriations bills originally filed in the House as well. The governor went on to sign the bulk of the bills into law, but did veto two bills from the House, as well as two from the Senate. The governor also had line item vetoes in three appropriations bills.

Also, as promised, below is a brief summary of additional bills the legislature has passed this regular session. Next week will conclude the bill summaries just in time for the upcoming Veto Session on September 13th.

SB 248 (Signed by Governor: 6/20) – Repeals the expiration date for tax refund contributions to the Organ Donor Program Fund

SB 279 (Signed by Governor: 6/14) – Adds certain forms to the list of documents sufficient to demonstrate eligibility for a veteran designation on an applicant’s driver’s license or non-driver identification card

SB 283 (Signed by Governor: 7/11) – Specifies that when the members of the tourism commission are appointed by the governing body of a city, the members must be residents of the city, or of the county in which any portion of the city is located.

SB 322 (Signed by Governor: 6/29) – Designates the “USMA Cadet Thomas M. Surdyke Memorial Highway”, the “Sherman Brown Jr. Memorial Highway”, the “Mary Groves Bland Memorial Bridge”, the “Edward F. Dixon The Third Memorial Highway”, the “Lyndon Ebker Memorial Bridge”, and the “Roger “Dusty” Shaw Memorial Bridge”.

SB 329 (Signed by Governor: 7/11) – Allows engine manufacturers who are not motor vehicle manufacturers to provide warranty service to engines that it manufactured, so long as such manufacturer does not control more than 7 facilities in this state, and so long as it provides its franchisees or dealers with access to support for completing repairs substantially equal to the support the manufacturer provides.

SB 376 (Signed by Governor: 6/23) – Designates “Old Drum” as the historical dog of the state of Missouri and “Jim the Wonder Dog” as Missouri’s wonder dog

You may read in more detail about what is happening at your State Capitol below.

As always, I will work diligently for you as your State Representative.

-Jason

 


Bills Now Officially Law

Much of the work done by the Missouri House and Senate from January to May finally became law this week as many of the bills approved during the last legislative session officially took effect on Monday, August 28. During the 2017 legislative session, the House and Senate worked together to send 56 pieces of legislation across the finish line and gave approval to an additional 16 appropriations bills.

Of the bills sent to the governor, 38 originated in the Senate and 18 in the House, with the 16 appropriations bills originally filed in the House as well. The governor went on to sign the bulk of the bills into law, but did veto two bills from the House, as well as two from the Senate. The governor also had line item vetoes in three appropriations bills.

Truly Agreed To & Finally Passed Bills

Now that the regular and both special legislative sessions have come to an end, the legislature stands at a little over 75 bills that have been Truly Agreed to and Finally Passed (TAFP). These TAFP bills span a variety of topics. Below is a brief summary of additional TAFP bills. As promised, more TAFP bill summaries will follow in the weeks to come.

SB 248 (Signed by Governor: 6/20) – Repeals the expiration date for tax refund contributions to the Organ Donor Program Fund

This act repeals the expiration date on the tax refund contribution for the Organ Donor Program Fund.

SB 279 (Signed by Governor: 6/14) – Adds certain forms to the list of documents sufficient to demonstrate eligibility for a veteran designation on an applicant’s driver’s license or non-driver identification card

This act authorizes a person to receive a veteran designation on a driver’s license or identification card upon submission of a United States Department of Veterans Affairs photo identification card, or a discharge document WD AGO 53, WD AGO 55, WD AGO 53-55, NAVPERS 553, NAVMC 78 PD, NAVCG 553, or DD 215 form showing a discharge status of “honorable” or “general under honorable conditions”.

SB 283 (Signed by Governor: 7/11) – Enacts provisions relating to political subdivisions

All members of a tourism commission must currently be residents of the city or county enacting the corresponding sales tax. This act specifies that when the members of the tourism commission are appointed by the governing body of a city, the members must be residents of the city, or of the county in which any portion of the city is located. This act also specifies that if members of a tourism commission are appointed by the governing body of a county, all members shall be residents of such county.

Currently, road overseers and county highway engineers finding obstructed roads are required to notify the landowner obstructing the road. This act, among other provisions, expands the provision to damage of roads and specifies that the overseer or engineer is permitted to notify the landowner to remove the obstruction, or perform or pay for repairs. If the landowner fails to take action as requested, the road overseer or engineer may petition the court to enter the land for the limited purpose of rectifying the violation. If the petition is granted, the judgment shall include an award for the reasonable cost of removal or repair, court costs, and reasonable attorney’s fees. If the petition is denied, the county shall be responsible for the landowner’s court costs and attorney’s fees. The act authorizes any charter county to enact an ordinance to provide for alternative measures to address obstruction of and drainage to public rights-of-way. Road damage or obstruction shall not violate this provision when farming or ranching lands have been improved using soil and water conservation practices or precision level grading practices as provided in the act.

SB 322 (Signed by Governor: 6/29) – Designates certain memorial infrastructure

This act designates the “USMA Cadet Thomas M. Surdyke Memorial Highway”, the “Sherman Brown Jr. Memorial Highway”, the “Mary Groves Bland Memorial Bridge”, the “Edward F. Dixon The Third Memorial Highway”, the “Lyndon Ebker Memorial Bridge”, and the “Roger “Dusty” Shaw Memorial Bridge”.

SB 329 (Signed by Governor: 7/11) – Modifies provisions relating to motor vehicle franchise practices

Currently, it is considered an unlawful practice under merchandising practices provisions of law to authorize a person to perform warranty service repairs unless the person is a franchisee unless the repair is an emergency repair or a repair under a fleet contract. This act allows engine manufacturers who are not motor vehicle manufacturers to provide warranty service to engines that it manufactured, so long as such manufacturer does not control more than 7 facilities in this state, and so long as it provides its franchisees or dealers with access to support for completing repairs substantially equal to the support the manufacturer provides.

SB 376 (Signed by Governor: 6/23) – Designates “Old Drum” as the historical dog of the state of Missouri and “Jim the Wonder Dog” as Missouri’s wonder dog

This act designates “Old Drum” as the historical dog of the state of Missouri and “Jim the Wonder Dog” as Missouri’s wonder dog.

CubaOsageTrail

District Visit

I was honored last Monday to witness the completion of the Osage Trail Legacy Monument Project in Cuba. The final piece of the sculpture was put into place Monday morning, and it was a wonderful moment for Cuba, the Osage, and Missouri!

 

 I am committed to serve the constituents of the 120th District, so please feel free to contact my office anytime at 573-751-1688. Your District 120 Capitol Office is 201 W Capitol Ave, Rm 415-B, Jefferson City, MO 65101. If you wish to unsubscribe from this report, please email Dylan Bryant at dylan.bryant@house.mo.gov

The Capitol Report | August 24th, 2017

Legislative Updates & Senator Chappelle-Nadal

As has been covered in the news recently, Missouri State Senator Maria Chappelle-Nadal made some inflammatory comments on social media last week that has sparked a bipartisan response from many local, state, and federal officials asking Senator Chappelle-Nadal to resign. The senator did issue an apology, but, thus far, has refused to resign. Earlier this week, Lt. Governor Mike Parson issued a press release following Senator Chappelle-Nadal’s removal from her Senate Committees by Minority Leader Gina Walsh. In the press release, Lt. Governor Parson asked for the Senate to expel Senator Chapelle-Nadal during next month’s veto session.

Personally, I hope Sen. Chapelle-Nadal does the right thing and resigns. Respectful disagreement has been a part of what has made this country the greatest in history. The violence seen in recent days does nothing to solve the problems we are facing. Continued calls for violence will only make it worse. While I respect the right of anyone to express their opinions, no matter how reprehensible I find their rhetoric, calling for the death of someone you disagree with is not how anyone, much less an elected official, should solve those disagreements.

While only time will tell exactly how the situation with Senator Chapelle-Nadal will be resolved, according to statements issued by the Governor, Lt. Governor, and other officials, further action, in addition to the removal of her committee assignments, is likely to be considered in the coming months. Whatever the action, the process is required to both begin and end in the Senate.

Also, as promised, below is a brief summary of additional bills the legislature has passed this regular session. More passed bill summaries will follow in the weeks to come.

SB 182 (Signed by Governor: 5/30) – Current law prohibits the state from requiring, or prohibiting, bidders from entering into agreements with labor organizations when entering into contracts for the construction of public projects funded by more than 50% by the state. This act removes the 50% funding threshold and further prohibits requiring, or prohibiting, bidders from entering into agreements with labor organizations when entering into contracts for the construction, repair, remodeling, or demolition of a facility.

SB 222 (Signed by Governor: 6/28) – This act allows agricultural machinery and implements to be operated on state highways between sunset and sunrise so long as such vehicles are equipped with certain lighting.

SB 225 (Signed by Governor: 6/29) – This act allows the assessed valuation of any tractor or trailer owned by a corporation and used in interjurisdictional commerce to be apportioned to Missouri based on the average per vehicle distance chart provided under the International Registration Plan, or any other reasonable source of distance data, when historical distance records are unavailable.

SB 240 (Signed by Governor: 6/29) – This act creates a statewide license for electrical contractors, which shall be issued by the Division of Professional Registration.

You may read in more detail about what is happening at your State Capitol below.

As always, I will work diligently for you as your State Representative.

-Jason

 

Senator Maria Chappelle-Nadal

As has been covered in the news recently, Missouri State Senator Maria Chappelle-Nadal made some inflammatory comments on social media last week that has sparked a bipartisan response from many local, state, and federal officials asking Senator Chappelle-Nadal to resign. The senator did issue an apology, but, thus far, has refused to resign.

Earlier this week, Lt. Governor Mike Parson issued a press release following Senator Chappelle-Nadal’s removal from her Senate Committees by Minority Leader Gina Walsh. In the press release, Lt. Governor Parson asked for the Senate to expel Senator Chapelle-Nadal during next month’s veto session.

Personally, I hope Sen. Chapelle-Nadal does the right thing and resigns. Respectful disagreement has been a part of what has made this country the greatest in history. The violence seen in recent days does nothing to solve the problems we are facing. Continued calls for violence will only make it worse. While I respect the right of anyone to express their opinions, no matter how reprehensible I find their rhetoric, calling for the death of someone you disagree with is not how anyone, much less an elected official, should solve those disagreements.

While only time will tell exactly how the situation with Senator Chapelle-Nadal will be resolved, according to statements issued by the Governor, Lt. Governor, and other officials, further action, in addition to the removal of her committee assignments, is likely to be considered in the coming months. Whatever the action, the process is required to both begin and end in the Senate.

Governor Announces Appointments to Boards & Commissions

Governor Greitens announced appointments to several boards and commissions yesterday, including three new members of the Coordinating Board of Higher Education.

The new members of the coordinating board announced Wednesday are Carl Bolm, the founder and owner of Investa Management; Bobby Robertson, CEO of Omnigo Software and chairman of the board of HEALTHCAREFirst, a healthware software technology company; and Shawn Saale, a lawyer with Saale & Bailey who specializes in estate law, business-succession planning and charitable giving.

The governor also appointed Claudia Onate Greim and Doug Russell to the State Board of Education. Onate Greim is a compliance counsel for Lockton Cos. Russell is president of Durham Co.

Greitens appointed Daniel Finney III, the principal attorney at Daniel Finney III law firm, to the Missouri Gaming Commission.

Truly Agreed To & Finally Passed Bills

Now that the regular and both special legislative sessions have come to an end, the legislature stands at a little over 75 bills that have been Truly Agreed to and Finally Passed (TAFP). These TAFP bills span a variety of topics. Below is a brief summary of additional TAFP bills. As promised, more TAFP bill summaries will follow in the weeks to come.

SB 182 (Signed by Governor: 5/30) – Modifies provisions of law relating to project labor agreements

Current law prohibits the state, or any agency or instrumentality of the state, from requiring, or prohibiting, bidders from entering into agreements with labor organizations when entering into contracts for the construction of public projects funded by more than 50% by the state. This act removes the 50% funding threshold and further prohibits the state, any agency, or political subdivision, or instrumentality of the state from requiring, or prohibiting, bidders from entering into agreements with labor organizations when entering into contracts for the construction, repair, remodeling, or demolition of a facility. Discrimination against such bidders is also prohibited. Moreover, the state, any agency, political subdivision, or instrumentality of the state, shall not encourage or give preferential treatment to bidders who enter or refuse to enter into agreements with a labor organization.

SB 222 (Signed by Governor: 6/28) – Modifies provisions relating to motorized vehicles

This act allows agricultural machinery and implements to be operated on state highways between sunset and sunrise so long as such vehicles are equipped with certain lighting. This act modifies the definition of “autocycle” to include partially or completely enclosed vehicles with a non-straddle type seating area. This act also removes statutory requirements for certain safety features, and instead requires that the vehicle meet applicable National Highway Traffic Safety Administration requirements or federal motorcycle safety standards. Also, this act provides that lamps, lights, and other pieces of vehicle lighting equipment that consist of multiple light-emitting diodes shall be deemed to be operating properly so long as at least 75% of the light-emitting diodes are operating properly.

SB 225 (Signed by Governor: 6/29) – Modifies provisions relating to transportation

This act allows the assessed valuation of any tractor or trailer owned by a corporation and used in interjurisdictional commerce to be apportioned to Missouri based on the average per vehicle distance chart provided under the International Registration Plan, or any other reasonable source of distance data, when historical distance records are unavailable. This act also provides that 2-year colleges shall qualify for substantially the same road signs as traditional 4-year colleges, irrespective of differences in student housing or types of degrees offered.

Moreover, current law allows repeat DUI offenders required to have an ignition interlock device installed on his or her vehicle to apply for an exemption to allow him or her to operate a vehicle owned by his or her employer. Such variances shall not be granted where the offender is self-employed or owns the business entity that owns the vehicle.

SB 240 (Signed by Governor: 6/29) – Creates a statewide license for electrical contractors

This act creates a statewide license for electrical contractors, which shall be issued by the Division of Professional Registration. Any person who is operating as an electrical contractor in a political subdivision that does not require the contractor to hold a local license is not required to possess a statewide license. However, each corporation, firm, institution, organization, company, or representative thereof who engages in electrical contracting must have a least one statewide licensed electrical contractor employed at a supervisory level. Electrical contractors who hold a license that was issued by an authority in the State of Missouri prior to January 1, 2018, and that required the passing of a nationally accredited written examination based upon the National Electrical Code and completion of twelve thousand hours of practical experience shall be issued a statewide license.

 I am committed to serve the constituents of the 120th District, so please feel free to contact my office anytime at 573-751-1688. Your District 120 Capitol Office is 201 W Capitol Ave, Rm 415-B, Jefferson City, MO 65101. If you wish to unsubscribe from this report, please email Dylan Bryant at dylan.bryant@house.mo.gov

The Capitol Report | August 17th, 2017

Cutting Bureaucratic Red Tape

The executive branch recently initiated an effort to remove some of the burdensome regulations and rules that too often stifle business growth and innovation. The governor’s office launched the NoMORedTape website recently to give Missourians an opportunity to submit recommendations for action to cut government red tape.

In announcing the new initiative, the governor noted that Missouri has more than 113,000 regulatory requirements and that Missouri’s regulations have more than 7.5 million words, which equates to 40 dictionaries worth of red tape. In total, Missouri’s current amount of regulations would require 400 hours of reading to review.

Now, the governor is asking Missourians to make their voices heard on the issue and share suggestions that can cut even more of Missouri’s bureaucratic red tape. Anyone interested in making a suggestion should visit http://www.NoMORedTape.com where they can easily submit their recommendations to help make government even smaller and more efficient.

Hundreds of thousands of tourists will make their way to Missouri next week to participate in what will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience for many of them. It is on August 21 that the moon will obstruct the light of the sun to create a total solar eclipse. The Missouri Division of Tourism estimates the state could have as many as 1.3 million visitors for the day because Missouri is one of ten states in the direct line of the eclipse.

Anyone interested in viewing the eclipse should keep in mind that the only safe way to look directly at the uneclipsed or partially eclipsed sun is through special-purpose solar filters, such as “eclipse glasses” or hand-held solar viewers. Homemade filters or ordinary sunglasses, even very dark ones, are not safe for looking at the sun as they transmit thousands of times too much sunlight.

Also, as promised, below is a brief summary of more bills the legislature has passed this regular session. More passed bill summaries will follow in the weeks to come.

SB 139 (Signed by Governor: 6/30) – Allows a physician to prescribe epinephrine (EPI) auto-injectors in the name of an authorized entity for use in certain emergency situations.

SB 160 (Signed by Governor: 6/22) – Establishes and enumerates the Foster Care Bill of Rights. The Children’s Division shall provide every school-aged foster child and his or her foster parent with an age-appropriate orientation and explanation of the bill of rights, as well as make them readily available and easily accessible online.

SB 161 (Signed by Governor: 6/20) – Creates the “Ozark Exploration Bicentennial Fund” to hold any state or federal appropriations, gifts, or other moneys for use by the Commission. The duties of the Commission include organizing and coordinating efforts relating to the bicentennial celebration of the exploration of the Ozarks in 1819 as well as promoting public awareness of the significance of his exploration.

You may read in more detail about what is happening at your State Capitol below.

As always, I will work diligently for you as your State Representative.

-Jason

 

Governor Launches Initiative to Cut Bureaucratic Red Tape

The executive branch recently initiated an effort to remove some of the burdensome regulations and rules that too often stifle business growth and innovation. The governor’s office launched the NoMORedTape website recently to give Missourians an opportunity to submit recommendations for action to cut government red tape.

In announcing the new initiative, the governor noted that Missouri has more than 113,000 regulatory requirements and that Missouri’s regulations have more than 7.5 million words, which equates to 40 dictionaries’ worth of red tape. In total, Missouri’s current amount of regulations would require 400 hours of reading to review.

Greitens noted that a small business owner from Bolivar pointed out a Missouri regulation that required his business to have a landline phone, which cost him $1,500 a year. The governor responded by directing the Department of Revenue to remove the requirement the next day.

Now, the governor is asking Missourians to make their voices heard on the issue and share suggestions that can cut even more of Missouri’s bureaucratic red tape. Anyone interested in making a suggestion should visit http://www.NoMORedTape.com where they can easily submit their recommendations to help make government even smaller and more efficient.

Final Preparation for Total Solar Eclipse

Hundreds of thousands of tourists will make their way to Missouri next week to participate in what will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience for many of them. It is on August 21 that the moon will obstruct the light of the sun to create a total solar eclipse. The Missouri Division of Tourism estimates the state could have as many as 1.3 million visitors for the day because Missouri is one of ten states in the direct line of the eclipse.

The last total solar eclipse that was visible in the continental United States took place in 1979, and the last eclipse that was visible in Missouri occurred in 1869. The center of the 2017 eclipse will travel directly from St. Joseph to Perryville, and the moon will cast a seventy-mile-wide shadow over many cities and counties in Missouri. The eclipse will happen at 11:40 a.m. on August 21 on the western border of Missouri and at 11:51 a.m. on the eastern border of the state. Please note these times will vary on your viewing location. During the eclipse, day turns to night, stars can be seen in the sky, insects chirp, the temperature cools, the sun produces a halo effect around the black orb of the moon, and the sky on the horizon in every direction is the color of a sunset.

Anyone interested in viewing the eclipse should keep in mind that the only safe way to look directly at the uneclipsed or partially eclipsed sun is through special-purpose solar filters, such as “eclipse glasses” or hand-held solar viewers. Homemade filters or ordinary sunglasses, even very dark ones, are not safe for looking at the sun as they transmitted thousands of times too much sunlight.

Because of the huge influx of visitors, the Missouri Department of Transportation is expecting heavy traffic congestion in cities and areas along the path of the eclipse. Individuals who plan to travel on August 21 should be aware of the following safe driving tips recommended by the state transportation department:

  • Don’t stop along interstates or roads and don’t park on the shoulder.
  • Exit the road and find a safe place to stop and watch or photograph the eclipse.
  • Pay attention. Distracted driving is very dangerous, particularly during this time of increased traffic on the roadways.
  • Never take photographs while driving.
  • See and be seen. Turn your headlights on and do not rely on your vehicle’s auto headlight setting.
  • Watch out for extra pedestrians and cyclists along smaller roads before, during and after the event. People may park randomly and walk along roads, particularly in the hour before the eclipse to get the best viewing.
  • Prepare for congestion especially on the interstates in the path of totality the day before, day of and day after the eclipse.
  • Don’t wear “eclipse glasses” while you’re driving.
  • Avoid travel during the eclipse or in the area of the main path if you can.
  • In the event of a non-injury traffic crash, move your vehicles off the roadway to a safe location.
  • Check traffic conditions statewide on theMissouri Department of Transportation’s online Traveler Information Map. It’s also available as a free app: forAndroids

Truly Agreed To & Finally Passed Bills

Now that the regular and both special legislative sessions have come to an end, the legislature stands at a little over 75 bills that have been Truly Agreed to and Finally Passed (TAFP). These bills now await the Governor’s approval or veto. These TAFP bills span a variety of topics. Below is a brief summary of a few more TAFP bills. As promised, more TAFP bill summaries will follow in the weeks to come.

SB 139 (Signed by Governor: 6/30) Modifies provisions relating to health care

This act allows a physician to prescribe epinephrine (EPI) auto-injectors in the name of an authorized entity for use in certain emergency situations. Pharmacists, physicians, and other persons authorized to dispense prescription medications may dispense EPI auto-injectors under a prescription issued in the name of an authorized entity. An “authorized entity” is defined as any entity or organization at or in connection with locations where allergens capable of causing anaphylaxis may be present, including but not limited to restaurants, recreation camps, youth sports leagues, amusement parks, and sports arenas.

This act also creates, among other provisions, the Rx Cares for Missouri Program to be administered by the Board of Pharmacy in consultation with the Department of Health and Senior Services. The goals of the program are to promote medication safety and prevent prescription drug abuse. The Board may expend funds appropriated to the Board to private and public entities for the development of programs and education in order to meet these goals. Funds shall not be used for any state prescription drug monitoring program.

SB 160 (Signed by Governor: 6/22) – Modifies provisions relating to child protection

This act establishes and enumerates the Foster Care Bill of Rights. The Children’s Division shall provide every school-aged foster child and his or her foster parent with an age-appropriate orientation and explanation of the bill of rights, as well as make them readily available and easily accessible online. Additionally, every Children’s Division office, residential care facility, child placing agency, or other agency involved in the care and placement of foster children shall post the bill of rights in the office, facility, or agency.
This act also modifies foster child placement statutes to expand the definition of “relative” to include a person who is not related to the child, but has a close relationship with the child or child’s family, as well as modifies the order or preference for placement to include those relatives unrelated by blood or affinity within the third degree.

SB 161 (Signed by Governor: 6/20) – Establishes the Ozark Exploration Bicentennial Commission

This act creates the Ozark Exploration Bicentennial Commission, with membership as outlined in the act. The act creates the “Ozark Exploration Bicentennial Fund” to hold any state or federal appropriations, gifts, or other moneys for use by the Commission. The duties of the Commission include organizing and coordinating efforts relating to the bicentennial celebration of the exploration of the Ozarks in 1819 as well as promoting public awareness of the significance of his exploration. The Commission shall be dissolved on June 30, 2019.

I am committed to serve the constituents of the 120th District, so please feel free to contact my office anytime at 573-751-1688. Your District 120 Capitol Office is 201 W Capitol Ave, Rm 415-B, Jefferson City, MO 65101. If you wish to unsubscribe from this report, please email Dylan Bryant at dylan.bryant@house.mo.gov

 

 

The Capitol Report | August 10th, 2017

Process Begins For Adult High Schools

As mentioned in my report a few weeks ago, the Governor signed HB 93 into law last month, which will give approximately 500,000 Missourians without a high school diploma a second chance to obtain an education that will allow them to secure good-paying, family-supporting jobs. The bill will establish four adult high schools located in Southeast Missouri, St. Louis City, Mid-Missouri, and Southwest Missouri for individuals age 21 and up who do not have a high school diploma.

A high school diploma is a key component to giving Missourians an opportunity to obtain gainful employment. Many proponents point to Census Bureau statistics that indicate a high school diploma can increase a person’s lifetime earnings by as much as $400,000. Moreover, a high school diploma is critical to empower people to move off of government assistance and toward self-sufficiency.

The schools will help these individuals complete their high school education and obtain a diploma. They will also offer skills certifications based on regional demand through partnerships with community colleges and other programs. Additionally, they will offer a child care center to remove a significant barrier for many adults who would like to participate.

Most recently, the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) began implementing the new law by issuing a “Request for Information” to allow the opportunity for qualified vendors to provide DESE with ideas, suggestions, and other information related to developing adult high schools. For more information, visit: https://missouribuys.mo.gov/bidboard.html

196stateofmoOn August 10, 1821, 196 years ago, Missouri joined the union. Happy birthday to the great Show-Me State!

Also, as promised, below is a brief summary of more bills the legislature has passed this regular session. More passed bill summaries will follow in the weeks to come.

SB 108 (Signed by Governor: 6/14) – Grants reemployment rights to members of the military

SB 111 (Signed by Governor: 7/11) – Modifies various provisions regarding bonds issued by a political subdivision, qualifications for candidates of public office, limited liability companies who own property in certain cities, public administrators, and guardianships

SB 112 (Signed by Governor: 7/11) – Modifies provisions relating to political subdivisions

SB 128 (Vetoed by Governor: 7/14) – Modifies various provisions regarding criminal offenses, the Attorney General, the Department of Revenue, child support and custody, trusts and estates, guardianships, judges, court surcharges, court reporter fees, and victims of crime

You may read in more detail about what is happening at your State Capitol below.

As always, I will work diligently for you as your State Representative.

-Jason

 

 

DESE Begins Implementation of Adult High Schools

As mentioned in my report a few weeks ago, the Governor signed HB 93 into law last month, which will give approximately 500,000 Missourians without a high school diploma a second chance to obtain an education that will allow them to secure good-paying, family-supporting jobs. The bill will establish four adult high schools located in Southeast Missouri, St. Louis City, Mid-Missouri, and Southwest Missouri for individuals age 21 and up who do not have a high school diploma.

A high school diploma is a key component to giving Missourians an opportunity to obtain gainful employment. Many proponents point to Census Bureau statistics that indicate a high school diploma can increase a person’s lifetime earnings by as much as $400,000. Moreover, a high school diploma is critical to empower people to move off of government assistance and toward self-sufficiency.

The schools will help these individuals complete their high school education and obtain a diploma. They will also offer skills certifications based on regional demand through partnerships with community colleges and other programs. Additionally, they will offer a child care center to remove a significant barrier for many adults who would like to participate.

Most recently, the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) began implementing the new law by issuing a “Request for Information” to allow the opportunity for qualified vendors to provide DESE with ideas, suggestions, and other information related to developing adult high schools. For more information, visit: https://missouribuys.mo.gov/bidboard.html

Rare Solar Eclipse

solar-eclipse-151211_960_720On Monday, August, 21, 2017, the Great American Total Solar Eclipse will sweep across the United States along a stretch of land only 70 miles wide. For the first time in 148 years (Aug. 7, 1869) asolar eclipsecome to Missouri. The 1869 eclipse only clipped the northeast corner of our state. The upcoming eclipse promises to be even better as the center of the eclipse’s path will follow a diagonal line crossing Missouri from Buchanan County in the northwest to Perry County in the southeast. Be sure not to miss this historic event which is expected to draw spectators from around the world. Depending upon where you are in the state,eclipse will begin between 11:30 a.m. and noon, and will continue until between 2:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. For more info, visit: https://www.mo.gov/eclipse/

Truly Agreed To & Finally Passed Bills

Now that the regular and both special legislative sessions have come to an end, the legislature stands at a little over 75 bills that have been Truly Agreed to and Finally Passed (TAFP). These bills now await the Governor’s approval or veto. These TAFP bills span a variety of topics. Below is a brief summary of a few more TAFP bills. As promised, more TAFP bill summaries will follow in the weeks to come.

SB 108 (Signed by Governor: 6/14) – Grants reemployment rights to members of the military

This act provides that a Missouri employee who is a member of the National Guard of another state called on active state duty by the governor of that state or who is a member of any reserve component of the Armed Forces called to active duty shall be entitled to reemployment rights upon his or her return to Missouri as granted under federal law.

SB 111 (Signed by Governor: 7/11) – Modifies various provisions regarding bonds issued by a political subdivision, qualifications for candidates of public office, limited liability companies who own property in certain cities, public administrators, and guardianships

This act requires political subdivisions with an unenhanced bond rating of AA+ or higher to issue such debts through a competitive process unless such political subdivision employs the services of a municipal advisor, as defined in the act. Such political subdivisions may use a negotiated or competitive process. This requirement shall not apply when the bonds are sold to a government entity, when the principal amount of the bonds issued does not exceed $12,500,000, or to bonds issued for refinance. Any person who is engaged as a municipal advisor by a political corporation or subdivision with respect to a particular issue of securities shall be independent, as defined in the act, of the underwriter of that issue of securities. The State Treasurer shall make relevant information regarding debt issuance and bidding practices available to political subdivisions.

Currently, property tax exemptions for property located in an enhanced enterprise zone may not be granted for a period longer than twenty-five years from the date on which the enhanced enterprise zone was created. This act removes the language that limits the exemption to the date on which the zone is created. This act also requires that no exemption be granted during the final ten years of an enhanced enterprise zone for a period longer than ten years. Moreover, this act, among other provisions, states that a guardian may execute a preneed contract for a ward’s funeral services. If a next-of-kin does not exercise his or her right of sepulcher within ten days of the ward’s death, then the guardian may consent for the disposition of the body.

SB 112 (Signed by Governor: 7/11) – Modifies provisions relating to political subdivisions

This act authorizes a county commission to combine two or more road districts within the county upon petition request by a majority of the commissioners in each of the road districts seeking to be combined. The county commission shall hold a public hearing after publishing notice for a period of 4 weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the county. The county may issue an order to consolidate the districts if it finds, after the public hearing, that the consolidation is in the public good. The act also designates the procedure for appointing commissioners to the new consolidated district and transferring of assets, liabilities, and tax levies. The provisions for consolidation do not apply to road districts located in two counties.

Among other provisions, This act requires candidates for the office of public administrator provide the election authority a copy of a signed affidavit from one surety company indicating that the candidate meets the bonding requirements. After being elected to office, a public administrator shall enter into bond to the state in a sum not less than $10,000 with one or more securities, rather than two or more securities.

SB 128 (Vetoed by Governor: 7/14) – Modifies various provisions regarding criminal offenses, the Attorney General, the Department of Revenue, child support and custody, trusts and estates, guardianships, judges, court surcharges, court reporter fees, and victims of crime

This act would have authorized the state auditor or his or her authorized representatives to audit all or part of any government entity, upon request by a prosecuting attorney or law enforcement agency. Violating provisions relating to conflict of interest and lobbying is a Class E felony if the offense involves more than seven hundred and fifty dollars in value, or if the offender has previously been found guilty of official misconduct. A court may enter a judgment of restitution against an offender and may order the offender to pay restitution against the victim, a government entity, or a third-party payer. The act provides for the determination and enforcement of this restitution.

Among other provisions, this bill also creates the “Supporting and Strengthening Families Act”. It provides that during a child protective investigation if the child is at risk for possible removal, the Children’s Division shall provide information to the parent about community service programs that provide support services for families in crisis. Additionally, a parent or legal custodian of a child may delegate to an attorney-in-fact, without compensation, any powers regarding the care and custody of a child for a period not to exceed one year, unless an exception applies as specified in the act. A parent who intentionally uses a power of attorney to permanently avoid legal responsibility for the care of the child is guilty of violating current law on transferring child custody without a court order. A child subject to the power of attorney shall not be considered placed in foster care and the parties shall not be subject to any licensing regulations for foster care or community care for children. The Governor’s veto letter states he vetoed the bill due to its expansive number of topics and contradiction with the Missouri Constitution.

I am committed to serve the constituents of the 120th District, so please feel free to contact my office anytime at 573-751-1688. Your District 120 Capitol Office is 201 W Capitol Ave, Rm 415-B, Jefferson City, MO 65101. If you wish to unsubscribe from this report, please email Dylan Bryant at dylan.bryant@house.mo.gov

The Capitol Report | August 3rd, 2017

Driving Checkpoints & Foster Care

The state budget that went into effect on July 1st could lead to fewer impaired driving checkpoints but more periods of increased law enforcement presence on Missouri roads. Under language put into the budget by the House, no money controlled by the budget can be used on checkpoints., $20-million available for grants that law enforcement agencies have used to fund various efforts now cannot be used for checkpoints.

Instead of checkpoints, law enforcement may now focus on saturation efforts. Data from the Department of Transportation show that periods of having more officers on the roads, often called “saturation efforts,” get more results for the money invested. The House Budget Committee Chairman said the new language was about making the most effective use of Missouri budget dollars and taking the most effective action toward making roads safer.

Governor Greitens recently announced that he is undoing a 1.5 percent cut to funding for foster care families. The cuts were unintentionally made as part of an overall reduction in Medicaid spending. If the cuts had gone into effect, foster families could have lost between one and six dollars per week in assistance. In undoing the cuts, Greitens said, “Missouri should not take money from them and their families, not even in these tough budget times.” The total amount of funds in question amount to $629,244. The reduction will end within the next month as the administration moves money out of other foster programs that have seen savings in recent months. Foster parents are unlikely to see any change in their reimbursements.

Remember, this weekend is a school sales tax holiday. For more information, visit: http://dor.mo.gov/business/sales/taxholiday/school/

Also, as promised, below is a brief summary of more bills the legislature has passed this regular session. More passed bill summaries will follow in the weeks to come.

SB 52 (Signed by Governor: 7/7) – Creates several provisions relating to suicide awareness and prevention

SB 64 (Signed by Governor: 7/11) – Gives designation to certain infrastructure

SB 65 (Vetoed by Governor: 7/14) – Exempts vessels propelled by outboard jet motors and vessels not originally manufactured with adequate guards or railing from the provisions prohibiting passengers from riding in certain areas of a boat

SB 66 (Signed by Governor: 7/5) – Modifies provisions of law relating to workers’ compensation

SB 88 (Signed by Governor: 6/30) – Establishes a two year statute of limitation for claims of malpractice or negligence against veterinarians

SB 95 (Signed by Governor: 7/7) – Extends the expiration dates on certain provisions relating to public funds

You may read in more detail about what is happening at your State Capitol below.

As always, I will work diligently for you as your State Representative.

-Jason

 

Changes in State Budget Places Emphasis on Saturation Patrols

The state budget that went into effect on July 1st could lead to fewer impaired driving checkpoints but more periods of increased law enforcement presence on Missouri roads. Under language put into the budget by the House, no money controlled by the budget can be used on checkpoints., $20-million available for grants that law enforcement agencies have used to fund various efforts now cannot be used for checkpoints.

Instead of checkpoints, law enforcement may now focus on saturation efforts. Data from the Department of Transportation show that periods of having more officers on the roads, often called “saturation efforts,” get more results for the money invested. MoDOT reported that in the year that ended July 1, 2016, saturation efforts resulted in 3,055 arrests at a cost of $704 per arrest, compared to 1,201 arrests at checkpoints at a cost of $1,047 per arrest. Over the three years through July 1, 2016, saturation periods yielded 9,288 arrests at $704 apiece compared to 4,152 arrests at checkpoints costing $919 each.

A comparison by House staff of states in which checkpoints are legal with states in which they are not found that the latter had a slightly lower number of drunken driving fatalities per capita. The House Budget Committee Chairman said the new language was about making the most effective use of Missouri budget dollars and taking the most effective action toward making roads safer.

Supporters say the change is a better use of tax dollars as it gets more drunk drivers off the road at a lower cost. They say it is more effective for law enforcement officials to actively seek out impaired drivers rather than have numerous officers wait at a checkpoint hoping to catch someone driving under the influence.

Opponents say it’s misleading to say saturation patrols yield more arrests. They say saturation efforts and checkpoints work together. When a checkpoint is announced the saturation patrols can then catch those on the perimeters who try to avoid the checkpoint.

From now through June 30, 2018, Missouri law enforcement agencies can still conduct checkpoints, but would have to pay for them through means other than grants authorized under the state budget.

Governor Reverses Unintended Cuts to Foster Care

Governor Greitens recently announced that he is undoing a 1.5 percent cut to funding for foster care families. The cuts were unintentionally made as part of an overall reduction in Medicaid spending.

If the cuts had gone into effect, foster families could have lost between one and six dollars per week in assistance. Because Missouri already has a very low rate of foster reimbursements at just about one-third of what it costs to take in a child, these additional cuts would have been very difficult on foster families.

In undoing the cuts, Greitens wrote a letter to foster families letting them know it was “never our intention” to cut aid to families who care for foster children. He said, “Missouri should not take money from them and their families, not even in these tough budget times.”

The total amount of funds in question amount to $629,244. Of that, $371,254 is state money, and the rest is federal matching money. The reduction will end within the next month as the administration moves money out of other foster programs that have seen savings in recent months. Foster parents are unlikely to see any change in their reimbursements.

Back-to-School Sales Tax Holiday

As the summer comes to a close, families now turn their attention to the annual tradition of getting their kids ready to go back to school. For parents, this means buying new school supplies, electronic devices, and clothes to get their children ready for the classroom. To help with this process, Missouri has a three-day back-to-school tax holiday that exempts everything from school supplies to computers from sales tax.

Approved by the legislature in 2003, the three-day period allows parents to buy school-related items such as clothing, school supplies and computers without having to pay the state sales tax of 4.225 percent. In some cases, local municipalities have also chosen to honor the holiday, which means parents in these areas will be able to forego local sales tax as well. For a complete list of the cities and counties that have chosen not to participate, please use the following link: http://dor.mo.gov/business/sales/taxholiday/school/

This is a great way for Missourians to stretch their dollars by making the cost of going back to school a little more affordable. Parents are encouraged to take advantage of the holiday that begins Friday, Aug. 4 at 12:01 a.m. and runs through Sunday, Aug. 6. It’s important to note that the school supply tax exemption has a limit of $50 per purchase, while the clothing exemption has a $100 limit and the personal computer tax exemption has a limit of $1,500. For more information, please visit: http://dor.mo.gov/business/sales/taxholiday/school/consumers.php

Truly Agreed To & Finally Passed Bills

Now that both the regular and first special legislative sessions have come to an end, the legislature stands at a little over 75 bills that have been Truly Agreed to and Finally Passed (TAFP). These bills now await the Governor’s approval or veto. These TAFP bills span a variety of topics. Below is a brief summary of a few more TAFP bills. As promised, more TAFP bill summaries will follow in the weeks to come.

SB 52 (Signed by Governor: 7/7) – Creates several provisions relating to suicide awareness and prevention

This act requires each public institution of higher education to develop and implement a policy to advise students and staff on suicide prevention programs available on and off campus that includes, but is not limited to crisis intervention access, mental health program access, multimedia application access, student communication plans, and post intervention plans. Such policy shall also advise students, faculty, and staff of the proper procedures for identifying and addressing the needs of students exhibiting suicidal tendencies or behavior, and shall require training where appropriate.

SB 64 (Signed by Governor: 7/11) – Gives designation to certain infrastructure

This act designates memorial highways and bridges in Missouri.

SB 65 (Vetoed by Governor: 7/14) – Exempts vessels propelled by outboard jet motors and vessels not originally manufactured with adequate guards or railing from the provisions prohibiting passengers from riding in certain areas of a boat

This act exempts vessels propelled by outboard jet motors and vessels not originally manufactured with adequate guards or railing from the provisions prohibiting passengers from riding in certain areas of a boat.

SB 66 (Signed by Governor: 7/5) – Modifies provisions of law relating to workers’ compensation

This act authorizes, beginning January 1, 2018, a shareholder of an S corporation with at least 40% or more interest in the S corporation to individually elect to reject coverage under the workers’ compensation laws by providing a written notice of the rejection to the S corporation and its insurer. Failure to provide notice to the S corporation shall not be grounds for any shareholder to claim that the rejection is not legally effective. The shareholder may rescind the rejection in writing to the S corporation and its insurer. The rescission shall entitle the shareholder only to the benefits which accrue on or after the date of the notice of rescission is received by the insurance company.

Moreover, this act states if an employee voluntarily separates from employment at a time when the employer made work available for the employee which was in compliance with any medical restriction imposed upon the employee as a result of an injury that is the subject of a claim for benefits under workers’ compensation, neither temporary total disability nor temporary partial disability benefits shall be payable to the employee. Among other provisions, SB 66 also, changes laws regarding discharge and discrimination. Under current law, no employer or agent shall discharge or in any way discriminate against any employee for exercising any of his or her rights under workers’ compensation statutes. This act modifies that provision so that no employer or agent shall discharge or discriminate against any employee when the exercising of such rights is the motivating factor in the discharge or discrimination.

SB 88 (Signed by Governor: 6/30) – Establishes a two year statute of limitation for claims of malpractice or negligence against veterinarians

This act provides that malpractice actions against veterinarians or entities providing veterinary services for damages shall be brought within two years from the date of the occurrence of the act.

SB 95 (Signed by Governor: 7/7) – Extends the expiration dates on certain provisions relating to public funds

Under current law, a provision allowing counties to decrease their annual budgets expired on July 1, 2016. This act extends the expiration date to July 1, 2027. Also, under current law, provisions allowing the Secretary of State to collect an additional $5 fee credited to the State’s technology trust fund for filings relating to business organizations, commercial transactions, and trademarks, names, and private emblems are set to expire on December 31, 2017. This act extends these expiration dates to December 31, 2021.

 

I am committed to serve the constituents of the 120th District, so please feel free to contact my office anytime at 573-751-1688. Your District 120 Capitol Office is 201 W Capitol Ave, Rm 415-B, Jefferson City, MO 65101. If you wish to unsubscribe from this report, please email
Dylan Bryant at
dylan.bryant@house.mo.gov