Author Archives: Representative Jason Chipman

About Representative Jason Chipman

Rep. Jason Chipman, a Republican, represents parts of Crawford and Phelps Counties (District 120) in the Missouri House of Representatives. He was elected to his first two-year term in November 2014. Prior to his legislative duties, Rep. Chipman served in the U.S. Navy from 1995 to 2000. Upon being honorably discharged, he has been working at Brewer Science in Rolla and was the Inventory Manager prior to being elected. Rep. Chipman is a 1995 graduate from Steelville High School. He received an associate’s degree from East Central College in 2007 and his bachelor’s degree in Organizational Leadership from Drury University in 2010. Rep. Chipman and his family attend Greentree Christian Church in Rolla. Born in St. Charles, Missouri, Rep. Chipman currently resides in St. James, Missouri with his wife, Elane. They have four children: Alexander, Konnor, Xavier and Chloe.

The Capitol Report | June 22nd, 2017

Second Special Session Continues

The members of the Missouri House came together Tuesday to amend and strengthen a piece of legislation sent over from the Senate that is intended to better ensure the health and safety of women by putting common sense safety requirements in place for abortion clinics. House members strengthened the version of the bill that was sent over from the Senate by adding several provisions that were originally called for by Governor Greitens but stripped out by the Senate during floor debate.

One of the provisions added back into the bill by the House would prevent abortion clinic staff from requiring emergency responders to alter their normal response procedure by turning off lights or sirens. Another provision would allow the attorney general to prosecute violations of state abortion laws with no obligation to first inform local prosecutors. The Senate version had required notification of local prosecutors. The House also strengthened penalties for abortion clinics that do not comply with the requirements for submitting fetal tissue after an abortion.

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.

HB 292—Among other provisions, this bill modifies provisions relating to banks, trust companies, and other financial institutions. Specifically, the bill modifies the powers of banks and trust companies by allowing a bank or trust company to acquire or convey real property for the purpose of leasing the property to a public entity, including government buildings, municipal buildings, schools, and public hospitals. The bank or trust company must lease the property only to a public entity that has sufficient resources to satisfy all rental payments as they become due. The lease agreement must provide that the public entity will become the owner of the real property and any building or facility upon the expiration of the lease. The purchase of the real estate for this purpose cannot exceed the bank’s or trust company’s lending limit.

HB 336—Currently, life insurance companies can exclude coverage for suicide for one year after the issuance of a policy. This bill adds the exclusion to any additional riders, endorsements, or amendments added.

HB 339—This bill provides that a time-limited demand to settle any claim for personal injury, bodily injury, or wrongful death must be in writing and sent by certified mail to the tortfeasor’s liability insurer, and it must include various material terms specified in the bill. Additional information, as provided in the bill, must accompany the demand including authorizations to allow the party to obtain records from all employers and medical care providers.

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

 

House Strengthens Pro-Life Legislation (SB 5)

The members of the Missouri House came together Tuesday to amend and strengthen a piece of legislation sent over from the Senate that is intended to better ensure the health and safety of women by putting common sense safety requirements in place for abortion clinics. House members strengthened the version of the bill that was sent over from the Senate by adding several provisions that were originally called for by Governor Greitens but stripped out by the Senate during floor debate.

One of the provisions added back into the bill by the House would prevent abortion clinic staff from requiring emergency responders to alter their normal response procedure by turning off lights or sirens. Another provision would allow the attorney general to prosecute violations of state abortion laws with no obligation to first inform local prosecutors. The Senate version had required notification of local prosecutors. The House also strengthened penalties for abortion clinics that do not comply with the requirements for submitting fetal tissue after an abortion.

Some of the main provisions of the bill would:

  • Allow the Department of Health and Senior Services to adopt rules governing complication plans to ensure patients undergoing abortions induced by drugs or chemicals have access to safe and reliable care;
  • Require an abortion facility to provide affirmative evidence that each person authorized to perform abortions is a physician currently licensed to practice in Missouri;
  • Allow the health department to adopt separate rules to apply to ambulatory surgical centers and to apply to abortion facilities, and ensure any abortion facility requirement is equal to any physical requirement of an ambulatory surgical center;
  • Permit the health department to make an unannounced on-site inspection of any abortion facility at least annually; and
  • Require that all tissue removed at the time of abortion be sent to a pathologist within seventy-two hours for examination.

The governor called the legislature in to enact the stronger safety regulations because of a court ruling that struck down Missouri’s previous law that required abortion providers to abide by the same regulations imposed on ambulatory surgical centers. The court also did away with a law that required a doctor providing an abortion to have privileges at a nearby hospital.

Supporters say the regulations were necessary to ensure the safety and health of women using the facilities. They note that the Planned Parenthood facility in St. Louis has had to call an ambulance 58 times in the last seven years with 23 of the calls made to respond to hemorrhages as a complication of abortion. They also point out that the St. Louis facility was cited by the Department of Health and Senior Services more than 100 times from 2009 to 2016 for failure to provide a safe and sanitary environment.

Another provision of the bill addresses a city ordinance the governor says has turned St. Louis into an abortion sanctuary city. The St. Louis ordinance was put in place by the city to prevent employers and landlords from discriminating against women who have had an abortion, use birth control, or are pregnant. The governor has said the ordinance makes it so organizations like pregnancy care centers can’t work the way they’re supposed to. As the governor said, local politicians have tried to make it illegal for pro-life organizations to say that they just want to hire pro-life Missourians.

The bill passed by the House acknowledges and protects the right of an “alternatives to abortion” agency to operate freely and engage in speech without governmental interference, and the right of a person not to be compelled by the government to participate in abortion contrary to his or her religious beliefs or moral convictions. In effect, the bill would pre-empt the St. Louis ordinance.

The legislation now moves back to the Senate where the other chamber will have the opportunity to pass the bill and send it to the governor’s desk. If the Senate refuses to take the House changes, the two bodies will likely send the bill to a conference committee where selected negotiators from both sides will come together to work toward a compromise.

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 three TAFP’d bills. As promised, more TAFP’d bill summaries will follow in the weeks to come.

HB 292 – Changes the laws regarding powers of banks

Among other provisions, this bill modifies provisions relating to banks, trust companies, and other financial institutions. Specifically, the bill modifies the powers of banks and trust companies by allowing a bank or trust company to acquire or convey real property for the purpose of leasing the property to a public entity, including government buildings, municipal buildings, schools, and public hospitals.

The bank or trust company must lease the property only to a public entity that has sufficient resources to satisfy all rental payments as they become due. The lease agreement must provide that the public entity will become the owner of the real property and any building or facility upon the expiration of the lease. The purchase of the real estate for this purpose cannot exceed the bank’s or trust company’s lending limit.

HB 336 – Provides that riders, endorsements, and amendments to life insurance policies may contain suicide exclusions or limitations

Currently, life insurance companies can exclude coverage for suicide for one year after the issuance of a policy. This bill adds the exclusion to any additional riders, endorsements, or amendments added.

HB 339 – Modifies provisions relating to tort claims

This bill provides that a time-limited demand to settle any claim for personal injury, bodily injury, or wrongful death must be in writing and sent by certified mail to the tortfeasor’s liability insurer, and it must include various material terms specified in the bill. Additional information, as provided in the bill, must accompany the demand including authorizations to allow the party to obtain records from all employers and medical care providers.

Upon receipt of a time-limited demand, a recipient may ask for clarification of the terms without it being considered a counteroffer or rejection of the demand. After acceptance of the time-limited demand, the defendant may provide payment to the claimant in the form of cash, money order, wire transfer, cashier’s check, draft or bank check, or electronic funds transfer. A claimant may require payment within a specified period of time, but cannot be less than 10 days after written acceptance of the time-limited demand. This bill does not apply to offers made within 90 days of the trial.

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 | June 15th, 2017

Second Special Session Begins

The legislature answered the governor’s call to address issues related to women’s health and the lives of the unborn. The governor called for the extra session so lawmakers can focus on “protecting pregnancy resource centers and proposals for common-sense health and safety standards in abortion clinics.”

The House Children and Families Committee met for a hearing Wednesday to discuss four different legislative proposals all called for by Governor Greitens. The measures address various issues meant to promote a culture of life in Missouri. While the committee met to discuss and approve the various bills and provisions, the current plan is for the House to wait for the Senate to send over its versions of the bill. The House then plans to act on the Senate bills with the goal of sending them to the governor to be signed into law. House members will wait to see how the bills change as they are debated on the Senate floor. House members then anticipate acting next week on legislation sent over from the Senate.

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.

HB 93—The bill, among other provisions, establishes four adult high schools to be operated by a Missouri nonprofit organization. This bill also allows the department to provide assistance through the Missouri Works Job Development Fund to a consortium of companies if a majority of the consortium are qualified companies.

HB 115—Among other provisions, the law provides exemptions for ignition interlock device requirements shall not be granted to individuals who are self-employed or who wholly or partially own or control an entity that owns an employer-owned vehicle.

HB 130—The bill provides that Transportation Network Companies, TNCs, and TNC drivers are not common carriers, contract carriers, motor carriers, taxicab services or associations, or for-hire vehicle services.

HB 153—This bill specifies that a witness who is qualified as an expert may testify in the form of an opinion or otherwise if the expert’s specialized knowledge will help the trier of fact to understand the evidence or to determine a fact in issue, the testimony is based on sufficient facts or data, the testimony is the product of reliable principles and methods, and the expert has reliably applied the principles and methods to the facts of the case.

In other news, to help Missouri meet its goal of preparing all high school graduates for success, the State Board of Education approved requirements this week for a new career and technical education (CTE) certificate that students can earn in addition to a high school diploma. The requirements were developed in consultation with the state’s CTE advisory council. Students must meet all of the requirements in order to earn the certificate. More info can be found at: http://www.goo.gl/3UcYTS

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

 

Extraordinary Session Begins (HB 3, HB 6, HB 7, and HB 9)

The legislature answered the governor’s call to address issues related to women’s health and the lives of the unborn. The governor called for the extra session so lawmakers can focus on “protecting pregnancy resource centers and proposals for common-sense health and safety standards in abortion clinics.”

The House Children and Families Committee met for a hearing Wednesday to discuss four different legislative proposals all called for by Governor Greitens. The measures address various issues meant to promote a culture of life in Missouri.

Some of the key components of the bills heard in the House this week would:

  • Allow the Department of Health and Senior Services to adopt rules governing complication plans to ensure patients undergoing abortions induced by drugs or chemicals have access to safe and reliable care;
  • Require an abortion facility to provide affirmative evidence that each person authorized to perform abortions is a physician currently licensed to practice in Missouri;
  • Allow the health department to adopt separate rules to apply to ambulatory surgical centers and to apply to abortion facilities. Any rule that applies to an abortion facility shall, at minimum, be equal to any physical requirement of an ambulatory surgical center;
  • Permit the health department to make an unannounced on-site inspection of any abortion facility at least annually;
  • Create the offense of interference with medical assistance if an employee of an abortion facility knowingly orders or requests medical personnel to deviate from any applicable standard of care or ordinary practice;
  • Provide the Missouri Attorney General with concurrent original jurisdiction throughout the state for actions for a violation of any state abortion law; state law regarding the use of public funds for an abortion; or state law which regulates an abortion facility or a person who performs an abortion;
  • Require that all organs and tissue removed at the time of an abortion be submitted to a pathologist for examination. The pathologist would file a copy of a report on the sample with the Department of Health and Senior Services and each sample would then receive a unique identification number for tracking;
  • Acknowledge and protect the right of an “alternatives to abortion” agency to operate freely and engage in speech without governmental interference and the right of a person not to be compelled by the government to participate in abortion contrary to his or her religious beliefs or moral convictions.

Governor Greitens called the extraordinary session to address safety requirements for abortion facilities that were struck down by a federal judge, and to correct a city ordinance he says has made St. Louis an “abortion sanctuary city.” The court’s decision threw out a provision that requires abortion providers to abide by the same regulations imposed on ambulatory surgical centers. The court also did away with a law that required a doctor providing an abortion to have privileges at a nearby hospital. Both provisions were originally put into place by lawmakers to ensure the health and safety of women who utilize services provided by organizations like Planned Parenthood.

The St. Louis ordinance was put in place by the city to prevent employers and landlords from discriminating against women who have had abortions, or plan to have one. The governor has said the ordinance is making it so organizations like pregnancy care centers can’t work the way they’re supposed to. As the governor said, local politicians have tried to make it illegal for pro-life organizations to say that they just want to hire pro-life Missourians.

While the Children and Families Committee met to discuss and approve the various bills and provisions this week, the current plan for the extraordinary session is for the House to wait for the Senate to send over its versions of the bill. The House then plans to act on the Senate bills with the goal of sending them to the governor to be signed into law. A Senate committee met Tuesday to consider and approve similar proposals. During the course of committee activity, some of the provisions called for by the governor were stripped out by the committee. The bills that advanced did not include the provision that would create an offense of interference with medical assistance or the requirement that clinics submit plans for dealing with health complications that arise. House members will now wait to see how the bills change as they are debated on the Senate floor. House members anticipate acting next week on legislation sent over from the Senate.

REAL ID Legislation Signed into Law (HB 151)

Missourians will now have the option to obtain an ID that is compliant with the federal REAL ID Act thanks to legislation signed into law this week by the governor. A bill approved by the General Assembly during the 2017 regular session will make it possible for Missourians to get compliant identification so that they can board an airplane, or enter a military base or federal facility. While the new law officially takes effect August 28, it will take up to two years for the new IDs to be available. However, because the state has acted to comply, supporters say Missouri will now qualify for a waiver from the federal government that will allow Missourians to continue using their current IDs until the new ones are available. The bill’s sponsor said he is confident the state will be successful in receiving an extension from the Department of Homeland Security to avoid the Jan. 22 deadline for Missourians to have compliant IDs.

Under the new law, Missourians will have the option to obtain a federally compliant driver’s license. The bill will also allow individuals with a non-compliant driver’s license to obtain a compliant version at no additional cost. For Missourians who do not want to comply with the REAL ID requirements because of privacy concerns, the legislation will allow them to request the existing style of Missouri identification that is not compliant with the federal act. For those who want or need the federally compliant driver’s license, the bill will establish safeguards so that any additional data gathered is used only for purposes of issuing the identification. One provision would ensure the source documents to obtain an ID are stored on a server that is not connected to the Internet in order to prevent hacking of the database. The bill also includes criminal penalties for misuse or unlawful access of personal data.

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 three TAFP’d bills. As promised, more TAFP’d bill summaries will follow in the weeks to come.

HB 93 Changes the laws regarding job training.

The bill, among other provisions, establishes four adult high schools to be operated by a Missouri nonprofit organization. An “adult high school” is defined as a school for an individual who is at least 21 years old without a high school diploma, offers industry certification programs that include a high school diploma and provides on-site child care for students. This bill requires the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) to grant a license to a Missouri-based nonprofit organization before January 1, 2018, to establish and operate four adult high schools with locations as specified in the bill. This bill also allows the department to provide assistance through the Missouri Works Job Development Fund to a consortium of companies if a majority of the consortium are qualified companies. Currently, Missouri Works Training projects are funded by redirecting withholding taxes remitted by a qualified company for new or retained jobs created by the company. Subject to appropriation, the bill allows the department to provide up-front funding from appropriations from the General Revenue Fund. For projects that utilize such funding, the amount of withholding taxes redirected for the project shall be reduced by the amount of funds received through the general revenue appropriation.

HB 115 Modifies provisions relating to the sale of intoxicating liquor in airports.

This bill regulates intoxicating liquor. Its main provisions include: Exemptions for ignition interlock device requirements shall not be granted to individuals who are self-employed or who wholly or partially own or control an entity that owns an employer-owned vehicle;  Allows distillers under Section 331.070 to offer for the promotion of tourism liquor drink sales from 6:00 a.m. to 1:30 a.m. Monday to Saturday and 9:00 a.m. to midnight on Sundays; Creates an exception to current law requiring liquor sold by the drink to be purchased from licensed wholesalers. The exception is for retailers near recreational resorts. Retail establishment employees may hold specified financial interests in a distillery near a resort. Sales from those licensed as resort distilleries to wholesalers are also allowed so long as the resort license holder has no financial interest in the wholesaler (Section 311.075); among other provisions.

HB 130 (Signed by Governor 4/24/17)Enacts provisions relating to transportation network companies.

The bill provides that Transportation Network Companies, TNCs, and TNC drivers are not common carriers, contract carriers, motor carriers, taxicab services or associations, or for-hire vehicle services. TNC drivers need not register their vehicles as commercial or for-hire. This bill further provides that, beginning April 28, 2018, a TNC must apply for an annual license from the Department of Revenue to do business within the State of Missouri, and maintain the insurance coverage requirements. The bill allows TNCs to charge fares, but the TNC must disclose the fare or fare structure on its website or digital network. If the fare is based on actual time and distance traveled, the TNC on its website shall also provide riders the applicable rates being charged and the option to receive an estimated fare before the rider enters the vehicle. This bill authorizes Kansas City and the Saint Louis Regional Taxicab Commission to audit a TNC, no more than twice a year, to ensure compliance with the provisions of this bill.

HB 153 (Signed by Governor 3/28/17)  – Modifies provisions relating to expert witnesses

This bill specifies that a witness who is qualified as an expert may testify in the form of an opinion or otherwise if the expert’s specialized knowledge will help the trier of fact to understand the evidence or to determine a fact in issue, the testimony is based on sufficient facts or data, the testimony is the product of reliable principles and methods, and the expert has reliably applied the principles and methods to the facts of the case. An expert may base an opinion on facts or data in the case that the expert has been made aware of or personally observed. If experts in the particular field would reasonably rely on those kinds of facts or data in forming an opinion on the subject, such facts or data need not be admissible for the opinion to be admitted. However, if the facts or data would otherwise be inadmissible, the proponent of the opinion may disclose them to the jury only if their probative value in helping the jury evaluate the opinion substantially outweighs their prejudicial effect. An expert opinion is not objectionable just because it embraces an ultimate issue. In a criminal case, an expert witness must not state an opinion about whether the defendant did or did not have a mental state or condition that constitutes an element of the crime charged or of a defense.

Career and Tech Ed Certificate for Students

To help Missouri meet its goal of preparing all high school graduates for success, the State Board of Education approved requirements this week for a new career and technical education (CTE) certificate that students can earn in addition to a high school diploma. The requirements were developed in consultation with the state’s CTE advisory council. Students must meet all of the requirements in order to earn the certificate.

“The CTE certificate helps recognize the skills our students are gaining in CTE courses that will help them succeed in life,” said Commissioner of Education Margie Vandeven. “Students earning this certificate can show Missouri employers that they are prepared for the workplace.”

Students entering high school in 2017-18 or thereafter will be eligible to earn a CTE certificate by meeting the following criteria:

  • Meet all graduation requirements
  • Qualify as a CTE concentrator
  • Maintain a 3.0 grade-point average in the CTE area of concentration
  • Pass an approved Technical Skills Assessment and/or earn an approved Industry Recognized CredentialCertificate
  • Complete at least 50 hours of work-based learning aligned with the CTE area of concentration
  • Maintain at least a 95 percent attendance record overall for grades 9-12
  • Demonstrate soft skills/business skills
  • Achieve a score at or above the state standard on any DESE-approved measure of college and career readiness

Schools can assist students by helping them develop a personal plan of study that includes a focus on CTE courses such as agriculture, health sciences or business. The schools would monitor the plan of study to ensure student success.

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 | June 8th, 2017

Governor Calls New Special Session

Lawmakers will once again return to Jefferson City to convene for an extraordinary session. Governor Greitens issued the call Wednesday for multiple pro-life issues he said the legislature needs to work to address immediately. The two chambers will now look for legislative solutions to a city ordinance the governor says has turned St. Louis into an abortion sanctuary city, while also working to implement new standards that will better ensure the health and safety of women who visit an abortion clinic. The St. Louis city ordinance was put in place by the city as an anti-discrimination measure for individuals making reproductive health decisions.

Critics of the ordinance say it has the potential to force charitable organizations and community groups that work with pregnant women and new moms to violate their own deeply-held religious beliefs. They say the ordinance could prevent them from refusing to hire individuals who are pro-choice advocates. They say it could also force pro-life organizations to pay for abortions through the health insurance they provide their employees. Organizations like the maternity home Our Lady’s Inn and Archdiocesan Elementary Schools have already filed a federal lawsuit against the ordinance. The governor and many lawmakers agree the situation in St. Louis amounts to an emergency that requires the immediate attention of the legislature. Lawmakers will now work to provide protections for the free speech rights and religious liberties of individuals and organizations in St. Louis.

Legislators will also work to implement new measures that will improve the safety standards at abortion clinics. The new standards are meant to address a court ruling that struck down laws that regulate abortion clinics. The court’s decision threw out a provision that requires abortion providers to abide by the same regulations imposed on ambulatory surgical centers. The court also did away with a law that required a doctor providing an abortion to have privileges at a nearby hospital. Both provisions were originally put into place by lawmakers to ensure the health and safety of women who utilize services provided by organizations like Planned Parenthood.

The extraordinary session is set to begin Monday, June 12. The House and Senate plan to operate as efficiently possible in order to keep the cost to taxpayers to a minimum. Both chambers were able to complete the first extraordinary session, which was called by the governor to bring jobs to Missouri, in an efficient manner that kept costs down. In other news, the Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft and I will be holding a local town hall meeting at the Steelville Community Center on Monday, June 12th at 5:30 PM to discuss the new photo voter ID law going into effect this year. This will be an opportunity to learn more about the new law and ensure all eligible Missourians have the opportunity to exercise their right to vote. If you are able, I encourage you to attend! 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 Calls New Special Session

Lawmakers will once again return to Jefferson City to convene for an extraordinary session. This time the governor has called the House and Senate back to address several issues meant to “protect the lives of the innocent unborn and protect women’s health.” Governor Greitens issued the call Wednesday for multiple pro-life issues he said the legislature needs to work to address immediately. The two chambers will now look for legislative solutions to a city ordinance the governor says has turned St. Louis into an abortion sanctuary city, while also working to implement new standards that will better ensure the health and safety of women who visit an abortion clinic. The St. Louis city ordinance was put in place by the city as an anti-discrimination measure for individuals making reproductive health decisions.

Critics of the ordinance say it has the potential to force charitable organizations and community groups that work with pregnant women and new moms to violate their own deeply-held religious beliefs. They say the ordinance could prevent them from refusing to hire individuals who are pro-choice advocates. They say it could also force pro-life organizations to pay for abortions through the health insurance they provide their employees. Organizations like the maternity home Our Lady’s Inn and Archdiocesan Elementary Schools have already filed a federal lawsuit against the ordinance. The governor and many lawmakers agree the situation in St. Louis amounts to an emergency that requires the immediate attention of the legislature. Lawmakers will now work to provide protections for the free speech rights and religious liberties of individuals and organizations in St. Louis. Legislators will also work to implement new measures that will improve the safety standards at abortion clinics. The new standards are meant to address a court ruling that struck down laws that regulate abortion clinics. The court’s decision threw out a provision that requires abortion providers to abide by the same regulations imposed on ambulatory surgical centers.

The court also did away with a law that required a doctor providing an abortion to have privileges at a nearby hospital. Both provisions were originally put into place by lawmakers to ensure the health and safety of women who utilize services provided by organizations like Planned Parenthood. The governor has asked lawmakers to implement “basic, common-sense standards to keep Missourians safe.” Specifically, he has asked the legislature to look at requiring abortion clinics to have an annual safety inspection. He also has asked lawmakers to consider a provision that would require abortion providers to have a plan in place in the event health complications arise. The governor also wants a legislative fix that will prevent abortion clinics from interfering with emergency responders. The extraordinary session is set to begin Monday, June 12. The House and Senate plan to operate as efficiently possible in order to keep the cost to taxpayers to a minimum. Both chambers were able to complete the first extraordinary session, which was called by the governor to bring jobs to Missouri, in an efficient manner that kept costs down.

Missouri’s Voter ID Requirements Now Law

It was in November of 2016 that Missouri voters overwhelmingly supported a system of photo Voter ID meant to protect the integrity of the elections process. The legislation approved by the General Assembly, which serves as a companion piece to the voter-approved constitutional change, officially went into effect June 1. Now, the Missouri Secretary of State’s Office is traveling the state to educate voters so they are prepared for the new law and its impact. As part of the ShowIt2Vote educational campaign, the Secretary of State’s Office is holding a series of informational meetings around the state to ensure that all eligible voters know the various ways they will be legally allowed to cast a ballot.Ashcroft has said the meetings are also meant to reassure Missourians that “if you’re registered to vote, you can vote.”

Under the new law, if a voter does not have a government-issued photo ID, such as a Missouri driver license, non-driver license, U.S. Passport, or U.S. Military ID, the voter can provide other documents, such as a Voter Registration Card, and sign a statement that affirms his or her identity. If the voter has no documents available, he or she may cast a provisional ballot. That ballot counts if the voter brings an acceptable photo ID back to the polling place that day, or if the signature matches the signature on file with local election officials. The new photo voter ID law also requires the state to assist voters who do not have a photo ID with obtaining a free Missouri non-driver for the purpose of voting. Individuals who need a photo ID to vote and don’t have one, can complete an online form to get started. The form is located at https://s1.sos.mo.gov/voteridhelp. The Secretary of State’s office will receive your information and help in obtaining any necessary documents.

For more information about the new Voter ID law, interested parties can access ShowIt2Vote.com or call the ShowIt2Vote hotline at 866-868-3245.

Truly Agreed To & Finally Passed Bills

Currently, before the next special session, and 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 three TAFP’d bills. As promised, more TAFP’d bill summaries will follow in the weeks to come. Finally, before Veto Session in September, the governor’s actions on all bills will be reviewed.

HB 93 Changes the laws regarding job training.

The bill, among other provisions, establishes four adult high schools to be operated by a Missouri nonprofit organization. An “adult high school” is defined as a school for an individual who is at least 21 years old without a high school diploma, offers industry certification programs that include a high school diploma and provides on-site child care for students. This bill requires the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) to grant a license to a Missouri-based nonprofit organization before January 1, 2018, to establish and operate four adult high schools with locations as specified in the bill.

This bill also modifies the definition of “new capital investment” by allowing costs incurred by a qualified company at the project facility prior to acceptance of the proposal for benefits to be considered new capital investment. The bill allows the Department of Economic Development to contract with other entities for the purpose of advertising, marketing, and promoting the Missouri Works Training program. Such marketing shall not exceed $50,000 annually.

This bill also allows the department to provide assistance through the Missouri Works Job Development Fund to a consortium of companies if a majority of the consortium are qualified companies. Currently, Missouri Works Training projects are funded by redirecting withholding taxes remitted by a qualified company for new or retained jobs created by the company. Subject to appropriation, the bill allows the department to provide up-front funding from appropriations from the General Revenue Fund. For projects that utilize such funding, the amount of withholding taxes redirected for the project shall be reduced by the amount of funds received through the general revenue appropriation.

HB 115 Modifies provisions relating to the sale of intoxicating liquor in airports.

This bill regulates intoxicating liquor. Its main provisions include:

(1) Exemptions for ignition interlock device requirements shall not be granted to individuals who are self-employed or who wholly or partially own or control an entity that owns an employer-owned vehicle;

(2) Allows distillers under Section 331.070 to offer for the promotion of tourism liquor drink sales from 6:00 a.m. to 1:30 a.m. Monday to Saturday and 9:00 a.m. to midnight on Sundays;

(3) Creates an exception to current law requiring liquor sold by the drink to be purchased from licensed wholesalers. The exception is for retailers near recreational resorts. Retail establishment employees may hold specified financial interests in a distillery near a resort. Sales from those licensed as resort distilleries to wholesalers are also allowed so long as the resort license holder has no financial interest in the wholesaler (Section 311.075);

(4) Enables retail establishments selling liquor by the drink within the St. Louis Lambert International Airport or the Kansas City International Airport to apply for a permit which allows patrons to leave the licensed establishment with an alcoholic beverage and carry it into other designated areas within the airport. All such retail establishments in the airport are required to serve their alcoholic beverages in containers displaying the retailer’s name or logo;

(5) Provides a five-day time limit for the Supervisor of Liquor Control inspections involving intoxicating liquor, as specified in the bill. Exceptions to inspection are allowed in certain cases where certificates are provided from federal agencies to the Supervisor of Liquor Control’s office. The supervisor is granted sole authority over certain products

HB 130Enacts provisions relating to transportation network companies.

The bill provides that Transportation Network Companies, TNCs, and TNC drivers are not common carriers, contract carriers, motor carriers, taxicab services or associations, or for-hire vehicle services. TNC drivers need not register their vehicles as commercial or for-hire. This bill further provides that, beginning April 28, 2018, a TNC must apply for an annual license from the Department of Revenue to do business within the State of Missouri, and maintain the insurance coverage requirements. The bill allows TNCs to charge fares, but the TNC must disclose the fare or fare structure on its website or digital network. If the fare is based on actual time and distance traveled, the TNC on its website shall also provide riders the applicable rates being charged and the option to receive an estimated fare before the rider enters the vehicle.

TNCs are required to notify drivers they may have a contractual obligation to include the TNC as a loss payee on their insurance policy, and drivers are required to take any steps necessary to satisfy the requirements of their insurance contracts. This bill prescribes driver eligibility requirements, including background checks and registration with the TNC. Vehicles used by TNC drivers must meet Missouri’s motor vehicle safety inspection requirements. TNC drivers, taxicab drivers, and persons performing food delivery services shall not be required to obtain a class of Missouri driver’s license other than class F. TNCs shall remove drivers from their platform if they are determined to have committed certain crimes or if their insurance policy is no longer in effect. TNC drivers shall not solicit or accept street hails. TNCs shall adopt nondiscrimination policies with respect to riders, shall notify drivers of such policy, and may not discriminate against TNC drivers in a way prohibited by the Missouri or United States Constitutions.

This bill authorizes Kansas City and the Saint Louis Regional Taxicab Commission to audit a TNC, no more than twice a year, to ensure compliance with the provisions of this bill. Each licensed TNC may be charged for the costs of the audit, not to exceed $5,000 per year. If any violations are discovered, the TNC can be fined up to $500 per violation by the appropriate entity. If a TNC learns that a TNC driver has been convicted of an offense that would preclude the driver from being eligible as a TNC driver under this bill, the TNC shall immediately revoke the driver’s ability to accept trip requests and notify the Department of Revenue. A TNC shall also report to the department any TNC driver involved in a traffic accident or incident that resulted in serious bodily injury or fatality. The department shall implement a process to provide such information to all other TNCs in this state.

New Voter ID Law Town Hall Meeting

In other news, the Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft and I will be holding a local town hall meeting at the Steelville Community Center on Monday, June 12th at 5:30 PM to discuss the new photo voter ID law going into effect this year. This will be an opportunity to learn more about the new law and ensure all eligible Missourians have the opportunity to exercise their right to vote. If you are able, I encourage you 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 | June 1st, 2017

Special Session Comes To An End 

The legislature concluded its business in an efficient manner last week as the House and Senate worked to get a jobs bill across the legislative finish line in a matter of days. Called back for a special session by the governor to pass legislation that could bring 500 good-paying jobs to Southeast Missouri, legislators began their work on a Monday and secured approval for the bill from both chambers by that Friday.

The legislation approved by the General Assembly would let the Missouri Public Service Commission consider lower utility rates for two companies that are exploring options in Southeast Missouri. One company hopes to reopen the Noranda aluminum smelter near Marston, which closed last year and caused the loss of 900 jobs in the area. The other company has plans to build a new steel mill in New Madrid. If Missouri can entice the two interested companies to move forward with their projects, they would create as many as 400 new jobs at the reopened smelter, and at least 95 and as many as 200 jobs at the steel mill. The jobs at the smelter are expected to pay an average annual salary of $95,000.

The bill includes consumer protections to ensure the PSC keeps the cost to other ratepayers in mind with any special rate it approves. It is likely that other customers of Ameren have no need to worry about increased utility rates because of the bill. The PSC has indicated ratepayers wouldn’t see an increase in their bill if the new steel mill opens. If the aluminum smelter reopens, the commission has indicated consumers could see a maximum increase of $54 per year after 10 years if energy-cost inflation would rise by 10 percent annually. However, supporters say that isn’t likely to happen. The bill now moves to the governor’s desk to be signed into law. Indications are that the governor will sign the bill during the week of June 5. With his signature, the bill will take effect as law immediately.

Now that both the regular and 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 including labor reform, tort reform, and economic development measures, as well as several other topics. Below is a brief summary of three TAFP bills. More TAFP bill summaries will follow in the weeks to come.

HB 34This bill updates Articles 1 and 7 of Missouri’s Commercial Code to match the current version of the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC). Missouri has become the latest state to enact important provisions of the UCC, designed to ease commercial transactions between various states.  UCC Articles 1 and 7 have now been enacted in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

SCS HCS HB 50 – This bill specifies that Division 12 of the 16th Judicial Circuit shall sit in the City of Independence rather than in Kansas City.

HB 51This bill authorizes county commissions who are trustees for a cemetery trust fund to utilize investment managers to invest, reinvest, and manage fund assets. Responsibilities and requirements for investment managers are detailed in the bill.

In other news, the Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft and I will be holding a local town hall meeting at the Steelville Community Center on Monday, June 12th at 5:30 PM to discuss the new photo voter ID law going into effect this year. This will be an opportunity to learn more about the new law and ensure all eligible Missourians have the opportunity to exercise their right to vote. If you are able, I encourage you to attend! 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

Lawmakers Move Quickly to Give Final Approval to Jobs Bill (HB 1)

The legislature concluded its business in an efficient manner last week as the House and Senate worked to get a jobs bill across the legislative finish line in a matter of days. Called back for a special session by the governor to pass legislation that could bring 500 good-paying jobs to Southeast Missouri, legislators began their work on a Monday and secured approval for the bill from both chambers by that Friday.

The legislation approved by the General Assembly would let the Missouri Public Service Commission consider lower utility rates for two companies that are exploring options in Southeast Missouri. One company hopes to reopen the Noranda aluminum smelter near Marston, which closed last year and caused the loss of 900 jobs in the area. The other company has plans to build a new steel mill in New Madrid. If Missouri can entice the two interested companies to move forward with their projects, they would create as many as 400 new jobs at the reopened smelter, and at least 95 and as many as 200 jobs at the steel mill. The jobs at the smelter are expected to pay an average annual salary of $95,000.

Under the bill, the PSC would be able to approve a special, lower rate for a longer contract of service for companies like the smelter and steel mill that use tremendous amounts of electricity. The final bill could be used not only to lure the two proposed projects, but also any new facility that would use more than 50 megawatts of electricity per month and that can show a true need for the special rate. The bill also includes consumer protections to ensure the PSC keeps the cost to other ratepayers in mind with any special rate it approves. With this provision, lawmakers hope to keep costs from being shifted to other customers.

It is also likely that other customers of Ameren have no need to worry about increased utility rates because of the bill. The PSC has indicated ratepayers wouldn’t see an increase in their bill if the new steel mill opens. If the aluminum smelter reopens, the commission has indicated consumers could see a maximum increase of $54 per year after 10 years if energy-cost inflation would rise by 10 percent annually. However, supporters say that isn’t likely to happen.

The bill now moves to the governor’s desk to be signed into law. Indications are that the governor will sign the bill during the week of June 5. With his signature, the bill will take effect as law immediately.

Truly Agreed To & Finally Passed Bills

Now that both the regular and 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 including labor reform, tort reform, and economic development measures, as well as several other topics. The following is a brief summary of three TAFP bills. More TAFP bill summaries will follow in the weeks to come.

HB 34 – Changes the laws regarding the Uniform Commercial Code to adopt the current version of Articles 1 and 7.

This bill updates Articles 1 and 7 of Missouri’s Commercial Code to match the current version of the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC). Missouri has become the latest state to enact important provisions of the UCC, designed to ease commercial transactions between various states. UCC Articles 1 and 7 have now been enacted in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The UCC is a comprehensive set of laws governing all commercial transactions between U.S. states and territories. The UCC is organized into nine articles, each article governing a separate area of the law. UCC Article 1 provides definitions and general provisions that apply to transactions covered by other articles of the UCC. UCC Article 7 deals with documents of title. Documents of title – either bills of lading or warehouse receipts – are commonly used in the shipment and storage of goods. Article 7 provides a framework for the further development of electronic documents of title and updates the article for modern usage.

SCS HCS HB 50 – Changes division designations for circuit and associate courts in the Sixteenth Judicial Circuit. This bill specifies that Division 12 of the 16th Judicial Circuit shall sit in the City of Independence rather than in Kansas City.

HB 51 – Authorizes county commissions that oversee cemetery funds to utilize investment managers. This bill authorizes county commissions who are trustees for a cemetery trust fund to utilize investment managers to invest, reinvest, and manage fund assets. Responsibilities and requirements for investment managers are detailed in the bill.

New Voter ID Law Town Hall Meeting

In other news, the Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft and I will be holding a local town hall meeting at the Steelville Community Center on Monday, June 12th at 5:30 PM to discuss the new photo voter ID law going into effect this year. This will be an opportunity to learn more about the new law and ensure all eligible Missourians have the opportunity to exercise their right to vote. If you are able, I encourage you to attend!

Unclaimed Property

The Missouri State Treasurer Eric Schmitt has notified my office that Missouri is now approaching $1 billion dollars in unclaimed property across more than 5 million accounts. Some of those funds belong to individuals, businesses, or local governments in the 120th District.

HD_120Therefore, I encourage you to search for and claim your property free of charge. Banks, businesses, and insurance companies turn over unclaimed property to the state treasurer after accounts have been inactive and owners cannot be successfully contacted for a statutorily defined period of time, generally five years. The treasurer holds these funds until the owner or their proper heirs are located and claim it.

Account owners can file a claim online or request a paper claim be mailed to them at any time by visiting http://www.ShowMeMoney.com.

Claims frequently reach hundreds of dollars or more.

Free Veteran Dental Care

Thousands of veterans will receive free dental care on Saturday, June 24th, when doctors and their teams from nearly 450 Aspen Dental-branded practices in 35 states open their doors for Aspen Dental’s National Day of Service – an event that is expected to be the largest single-day oral health initiative for veterans in 2017. Interested veterans should call 1-844-AspenHMM (1-844-277-3646) to find a participating practice in their community and schedule an appointment in advance – space is limited and appointments are filling up fast.

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 | May 25th, 2017

Special Session & Unclaimed Property

The members of the Missouri House of Representatives came together Wednesday to approve a piece of legislation meant to bring hundreds of good-paying jobs to the state. As part of an extraordinary session called by Governor Greitens, lawmakers met to discuss the merits of a bill that would allow two companies interested in setting up operation in Missouri to negotiate a lower electricity rate. The legislation is necessary to bring one company with plans to open a steel mill in Southeast Missouri, and a second company that wants to reopen an aluminum smelter formerly operated by Noranda.

When the smelter closed last year it caused the area to lose 900 jobs. If Missouri can entice the two interested companies to move forward with their projects, they would create as many as 400 new jobs at the re-opened smelter, and at least 95 jobs at the steel mill. The legislation would authorize the Missouri Public Service Commission to approve a special, lower rate for a longer contract of service for companies like the smelter and steel mill that use tremendous amounts of electricity. The PSC already has the authority to negotiate special rates for companies currently operating in Missouri, but supporters say the legislative change is necessary to grant the commission the authority to negotiate rates for new companies interested in operating in the state. The bill would include not only the two proposed projects, but also any new facility that would use more than 50 megawatts of electricity per month and that can show a true need for the special rate.

The final bill also includes consumer protections to ensure the PSC keeps the cost to other ratepayers in mind with any special rate it approves. With this provision, lawmakers hope to keep costs from being shifted to other customers. The special utility rate is important for Missouri to be able to compete with other states that can offer cheaper rates to attract businesses that consume large amounts of electricity. The lower rates are vital for a smelting operation like the one under consideration. The now-closed Noranda smelter consumed as much electricity as the city of Springfield. The new smelter would use as much as 190 megawatts each month, while the proposed steel mill would use between 50 and 60 megawatts of electricity per month.

The legislation includes an emergency clause that would allow it to go into effect as soon as it is approved by both chambers and signed into law by the governor. Time is of the essence because the company that wants to build the steel mill hopes to decide on a location in June. Supporters of the bill say it will position Missouri as the company’s top option. The bill now moves to the Senate for consideration. If the Senate approves the bill as it was passed by the House, it will then go to the governor. If the Senate makes changes to the legislation, the House will then have to accept those changes, or head to a conference committee where negotiators can work toward a compromise.

In other news, The Missouri State Treasurer Eric Schmitt has notified my office that Missouri is now approaching $1 billion dollars in unclaimed property across more than 5 million accounts. Some of those funds belong to individuals, businesses, or local governments in the 120th District.

Therefore, I encourage you to search for and claim your property free of charge at: http://www.ShowMeMoney.com

Reminder: 120th District Survey: As your voice in state government, I can be more effective when I know your views on the many issues facing our state. Please take moment to respond to this survey. If you would prefer a paper survey, please contact my office and a copy will be mailed to you.

http://jasonchipman.polldaddy.com/s/2017-legislative-survey

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

 

House Sends Jobs Bill to Senate (HB 1)

The members of the Missouri House of Representatives came together Wednesday to approve a piece of legislation meant to bring hundreds of good-paying jobs to the state. As part of an extraordinary session called by Governor Greitens, lawmakers met to discuss the merits of a bill that would allow two companies interested in setting up operation in Missouri to negotiate a lower electricity rate. The legislation is necessary to bring one company with plans to open a steel mill in Southeast Missouri, and a second company that wants to reopen an aluminum smelter formerly operated by Noranda. When the smelter closed last year it caused the area to lose 900 jobs. If Missouri can entice the two interested companies to move forward with their projects, they would create as many as 400 new jobs at the re-opened smelter, and at least 95 jobs at the steel mill.

The legislation approved by the House would authorize the Missouri Public Service Commission to approve a special, lower rate for a longer contract of service for companies like the smelter and steel mill that use tremendous amounts of electricity. The PSC already has the authority to negotiate special rates for companies currently operating in Missouri, but supporters say the legislative change is necessary to grant the commission the authority to negotiate rates for new companies interested in operating in the state. The bill approved by the House would include not only the two proposed projects, but also any new facility that would use more than 50 megawatts of electricity per month and that can show a true need for the special rate. The final bill also includes consumer protections to ensure the PSC keeps the cost to other ratepayers in mind with any special rate it approves. With this provision, lawmakers hope to keep costs from being shifted to other customers. The special utility rate is important for Missouri to be able to compete with other states that can offer cheaper rates to attract businesses that consume large amounts of electricity. The lower rates are vital for a smelting operation like the one under consideration. The now-closed Noranda smelter consumed as much electricity as the city of Springfield. The new smelter would use as much as 190 megawatts each month, while the proposed steel mill would use between 50 and 60 megawatts of electricity per month.

The legislation approved by the House includes an emergency clause that would allow it to go into effect as soon as it is approved by both chambers and signed into law by the governor. Time is of the essence because the company that wants to build the steel mill hopes to decide on a location in June. Supporters of the bill say it will position Missouri as the company’s top option. The bill now moves to the Senate for consideration. If the Senate approves the bill as it was passed by the House, it will then go to the governor. If the Senate makes changes to the legislation, the House will then have to accept those changes, or head to a conference committee where negotiators can work toward a compromise.

Remembering and Honoring America’s Heroes

America is a land of prosperity, a land of opportunity, and a land of freedom, but it is all of these things only because of the heroic men and women who have fought, and in many cases given their lives, to make the United States the greatest nation in the world. It is on Memorial Day that the nation pauses to honor and remember the heroes who so selflessly gave all so that Americans could live in peace and safety.

In the wake of the terrorist attack in England that killed 22 people, the job done by America’s heroes to keep the nation safe takes on added significance. The attack is a reminder that there are those in this world who wish to do harm to the innocent, and to bring chaos and destruction to peace-loving nations. The threats are a reminder that the United States must remain ever vigilant, and that its heroes must continue to risk their own safety in order to preserve the American way of life. Memorial Day is a reminder of the sacrifices that have been made, and the lives that have been lost to make America what it is today. It was intended to be a somber day of remembrance that would see Americans place flags and flowers on the graves of fallen heroes. However, for many it is now little more than a three-day weekend with little thought given to the real significance of the day and the more than 1.8 million lives given in service to America since its creation.

This Memorial Day it is important for all Missourians, and all Americans, to spend time in remembrance and reverence of those who have given all. As one of the greatest Missourians, President Harry Truman, once said, “Our debt to the heroic men and valiant women in the service of our country can never be repaid. They have earned our undying gratitude. America will never forget their sacrifices.” On Memorial Day, and on every day of the year, his words should continue to ring loudly, and it is the duty of all Americans to ensure they do.

Unclaimed Property

The Missouri State Treasurer Eric Schmitt has notified my office that Missouri is now approaching $1 billion dollars in unclaimed property across more than 5 million accounts. Some of those funds belong to individuals, businesses, or local governments in the 120th District.

HD_120Therefore, I encourage you to search for and claim your property free of charge. Banks, businesses, and insurance companies turn over unclaimed property to the state treasurer after accounts have been inactive and owners cannot be successfully contacted for a statutorily defined period of time, generally five years. The treasurer holds these funds until the owner or their proper heirs are located and claim it. Account owners can file a claim online or request a paper claim be mailed to them at any time by visiting http://www.ShowMeMoney.com. Claims frequently reach hundreds of dollars or more.

District Visit

Commencement 2017 photos (147)
I was honored to be the keynote speaker at East Central College’s (ECC) Adult Education and Literacy (AEL) graduation program ceremony last Saturday in Union. Because a traditional educational environment does not work for everyone, ECC has developed the AEL program to help students achieve the knowledge and skills necessary to achieve a high school equivalency diploma. Great job to all of the graduates!

Free Veteran Dental Care

Thousands of veterans will receive free dental care on Saturday, June 24th, when doctors and their teams from nearly 450 Aspen Dental-branded practices in 35 states open their doors for Aspen Dental’s National Day of Service – an event that is expected to be the largest single-day oral health initiative for veterans in 2017. Interested veterans should call 1-844-AspenHMM (1-844-277-3646) to find a participating practice in their community and schedule an appointment in advance – space is limited and appointments are filling up fast.

Legislative Survey

Earlier this year my office released a 2017 legislative survey that may be taken by any 120th District constituent. As your voice in state government, I can be more effective when I know your views on the many issues facing our state. Please take moment to respond to this survey (link below). Since I can talk with only a small portion of you personally, it is one of the best ways for me to learn your stance on potential legislation. You can also contact me by calling, emailing, or stopping by my office. As always, your interests, concerns, and wishes are the reason I am here. http://jasonchipman.polldaddy.com/s/2017-legislative-survey

If you would prefer a paper survey, please contact my office and a copy will be mailed to you.

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 | May 18th, 2017

Legislature Set to Reconvene for Special Session

Last Friday, the General Assembly adjourned for the legislative year. In the last legislative session, the House and Senate truly agreed to roughly 140 bills, while this session, approximately 75 bills made it across the finish line. The total number of bills passed was lower this year, but many important issues were still addressed such as substantive labor reform, tort reform, and economic development measures that will make Missouri a more attractive location for job creators in the months and years to come.

Most recently, the Governor has decided to reconvene the General Assembly for a special session to consider one topic—allowing the state to consider granting lower utility rates in order to attract a smelter that is ready to open up the old Noranda facility in southeast Missouri later this year. When the facility closed, 900 jobs were lost, if reopened by the new smelter, an estimated 500 jobs would be restored. The topic was brought up by Rep. Don Rone during the regular session, and the legislation was attached to several bills, but ultimately failed to pass before session ended due to opposition in the Senate.

The Governor is now giving Rep. Rone’s legislation another shot by calling for the special session, which will begin next Monday, May 22nd. Historically, special or extraordinary sessions have been called multiple times by multiple governors. Traditionally, the General Assembly convenes at the State Capitol annually on the first Wednesday after the first Monday of January. It adjourns on May 30, with no consideration of bills after 6:00 p.m. on the first Friday following the second Monday in May.

However, after regular session has concluded, the Governor may convene the General Assembly in special session for a maximum of 60 calendar days at any time. Only subjects recommended by the Governor in his call or a special message may be considered. The President Pro Tem and the Speaker may also convene a special session, but only for 30 days and upon petition of three-fourths of the members of each chamber.

In other news, thousands of veterans will receive free dental care on Saturday, June 24th, when doctors and their teams from nearly 450 Aspen Dental-branded practices in 35 states open their doors for Aspen Dental’s National Day of Service – an event that is expected to be the largest single-day oral health initiative for veterans in 2017. Interested veterans should call 1-844-AspenHMM (1-844-277-3646) to find a participating practice in their community and schedule an appointment in advance – space is limited and appointments are filling up fast.

Reminder: 120th District Survey: As your voice in state government, I can be more effective when I know your views on the many issues facing our state. Please take moment to respond to this survey. If you would prefer a paper survey, please contact my office and a copy will be mailed to you.

http://jasonchipman.polldaddy.com/s/2017-legislative-survey

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

 

Legislature Approves Senior Services Protection Fund (HCB 3)

With just seconds to spare in the 2017 legislative session, House members approved a bill that will create the Senior Services Protection Fund to preserve several services for the elderly and disabled. The move represents a last-ditch effort by the House to preserve nursing home 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. The House initially rejected the Senate’s plan and sought a conference where lead negotiators could work on a compromise. The House Budget Chairman was concerned that the Senate solution involved one-time dollars and would not represent a long-term funding source. He also raised concerns about the constitutionality of the Senate’s language. However, with the Senate being unwilling to negotiate and the need to preserve the services vital, the House opted to take the Senate plan as time ran out.

This piece of legislation is necessary because the budget approved by the General Assembly this year relies on the Senior Services Protection Fund to restore a cut proposed by the governor to in-home care and nursing home services. The governor had recommended increasing the eligibility requirements (21 points to 27 points)for these services, which would have resulted in approximately 20,000 seniors and disabled Missourians no longer qualifying for the state-funded care. The House then moved to fully restore them to their original levels so that no one would be cut off from care. The final version of the budget represents a compromise that increases requirements slightly (24 points), but also includes a provision that would completely restore the governor’s proposed cut if the Senior Services Protection Fund bill becomes law.

The bill would also restore funding for brain injury services provided by the Department of Health that have been withheld in previous budget cycles; restore a portion of a cut proposed by the governor to reimbursement rates for Medicaid providers; and provide additional funding for the state’s Area Agencies on Aging for use in the Meals on Wheels program that provides meal assistance to seniors.

Helping to Prevent Overdose Deaths (SB 501)

The General Assembly gave final approval this session to legislation meant to prevent overdose deaths. The bill will give immunity from charges for minor possession of drugs or paraphernalia or being under the influence to a person who calls for emergency medical attention for someone who is overdosing on drugs or alcohol, and will give immunity to the person in need of medical attention. The legislation has been referred to as “Bailey and Cody’s law” in memoriam of two overdose victims whose parents believe that having such a law in place could have saved their children’s lives. Supporters say the bill will help reduce the number of drug and alcohol related overdoses by eliminating the fear some would have of being prosecuted if they call for help for themselves or others. Similar legislation has been enacted in other states and local areas and has proven to save lives, particularly when working in conjunction with bills that allow first responders or friends and loved ones to have and administer naloxone – a drug that counteracts overdoses to opioids, including heroin. Missouri in 2014 and 2016 enacted such laws.

Improving Transparency in the State Legal Expense Fund (SB 128)

The General Assembly gave final approval this session to legislation that will increase transparency when lawsuits against state agencies are settled.The legislation was prompted by the revelation that millions of tax dollars were paid out over several years in settling harassment and discrimination cases against the Department of Corrections.

The cases against Corrections came to light late last year when an article on Pitch.com detailed several of them, and outlined how employees who complained about being harassed or discriminated against were victims of retaliation by fellow staff members. House members said after the article came out that they were unaware of the settlements because those have been paid out of a line in the budget that has no spending limit on it.meant departments never had to come to the legislature and justify how much their settlement agreements were costing the state. The legislation will require the attorney general to report every month to the legislature and others about how the state’s legal expense fund – the fund from which money for settlements is taken – has been used. Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley announced in March he would begin monthly reporting on the activity of the legal expense fund.Legislators praised his decision but said the bill passed this year is still needed to ensure future attorneys general will follow suit.

Protecting Police Officers (SB 34)

The Missouri General Assembly took action this session to deter crimes against law enforcement officials. House and Senate members approved legislation that will create enhanced penalties for individuals who assault officers of the law. The legislation will increase by one degree the penalty for first and second degree involuntary manslaughter; first and second degree property damage; first and second degree stalking; and first-degree trespassing; when those crimes are committed against a law enforcement officer, or a family member of the officer. As an example, first degree involuntary manslaughter is a class C felony under current statute, but will increase to a class B felony if SB 34 becomes law.

Supporters of the bill said the enhanced penalties are necessary because crimes against law enforcement officers have increased in recent years. They said the enhanced penalties will be a deterrent for anyone who may consider engaging in a crime against law enforcement. They also said the bill will reinforce the legislature’s commitment to law enforcement.

Ensuring Consistency with the State’s Minimum Wage (HB 1194)

In response to a Missouri Supreme Court decision that invalidated part of Missouri’s minimum wage law, lawmakers moved to implement a fix that will provide a consistent wage in municipalities throughout the state. The House and Senate approved legislation this session that will reaffirm that the state’s minimum wage is applied throughout Missouri, and keep the decision to raise wages in the hands of the employer and employee. While the state currently has a minimum wage that increases based on the Consumer Price Index, and is currently higher than the federal minimum wage, some municipalities have considered their own increases. St. Louis passed an ordinance to raise its minimum wage to $10 an hour this year and $11 an hour by 2018. The legislation approved by the House will preempt and nullify the minimum wage enacted by St. Louis, and provide that other municipalities cannot enact a minimum wage that exceeds the one established by state law.

The bill will ensure it is not illegal for an employer to hire someone in accordance with the state minimum wage. The legislation approved by the General Assembly will protect job creators from being turned into criminals. Also, a mandated increase in payroll would force businesses to either raise prices or cut costs by reducing the size of their workforce. In addition, it’s important to have a consistent minimum wage across the state rather than an inconsistent patchwork of wages that vary from municipality to municipality. The $10 minimum wage took effect in St. Louis in recent weeks. If Governor Greitens signs HB 1194 into law, the wage will revert back to the state standard on August 28.

Organ Donor Program Fund (SB 248)

In the final moments of the 2017 legislative session, lawmakers moved to support organ donation in Missouri by giving approval to a bill that would continue the organ donor program fund tax checkoff on state income tax returns. The checkoff is set to expire on December 31, 2017. The bill approved by the General Assembly would remove the sunset entirely and allow the checkoff to continue indefinitely. Supporters say the checkoff has been very successful, along with the driver’s license donations, Employee Charitable Campaign, and direct donations in funding the Organ and Tissue Donor Program.

Free Veteran Dental Care

Thousands of veterans will receive free dental care on Saturday, June 24th, when doctors and their teams from nearly 450 Aspen Dental-branded practices in 35 states open their doors for Aspen Dental’s National Day of Service – an event that is expected to be the largest single-day oral health initiative for veterans in 2017. Interested veterans should call 1-844-AspenHMM (1-844-277-3646) to find a participating practice in their community and schedule an appointment in advance – space is limited and appointments are filling up fast.

On-the-Job Training

Missouri Job Centers offer “On-the-Job Training” (OJT) to help businesses across Missouri save on hiring and training costs for new hires. 50% reimbursement of the wages of workers hired through the program for up to 1040 hours of On-the-Job Training can equate to tremendous savings for business owners and employers. For more information visit: https://jobs.mo.gov/employer/incentives/on-the-job-training

Legislative Survey

Earlier this year my office released a 2017 legislative survey that may be taken by any 120th District constituent. As your voice in state government, I can be more effective when I know your views on the many issues facing our state. Please take moment to respond to this survey (link below). Since I can talk with only a small portion of you personally, it is one of the best ways for me to learn your stance on potential legislation. You can also contact me by calling, emailing, or stopping by my office. As always, your interests, concerns, and wishes are the reason I am here.

http://jasonchipman.polldaddy.com/s/2017-legislative-survey

If you would prefer a paper survey, please contact my office and a copy will be mailed to you.

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 | May 12th, 2017

2017 Legislative Session Comes To An End

The 2017 legislative session will go down as one of the most productive for the GOP. In last November’s election, Missourians made it clear that the status quo was no longer working. As a result, House Republicans made it their top priority to roll back government regulations, enact meaningful reforms, and bring Missouri’s economy into the 21st century. Following through on their promises, our legislators have pushed the state in a direction that will foster economic growth and create better-paying jobs for Missourians.

This year the state faced a large shortfall in the budget. Despite this difficult budget year, the House GOP managed to create a budget that managed to cut wasteful government spending, protect our state’s most vulnerable, and fully fund the K-12 foundation formula for the first time. By making those three things a priority, the House Republicans were able to craft the best budget for all Missourians.

Following through on their promises, the House GOP passed the first ever ban on lobbyist gifts at the state and local level. In doing so, our legislators have confirmed that they are committed to working for their constituents and not for special interests. For too long Missourians have felt that their elected officials were working for special interest groups and not those that elected them. A lobbyist gift ban is essential to rebuilding the trust between voters and their elected officials.

Last month, Governor Greitens signed House Bill 130 into law. This legislation creates a statewide framework for transportation network companies like Uber and Lyft. By welcoming innovative businesses instead of punishing them, Missouri is bringing its economy into the 21st Century. With the passage of HB 130, the Show-Me-State can expect up to 10,000 new jobs and tens of millions of dollars in revenue for our local economies.

In our state, it has become all too common for trial attorneys to exploit our state’s judicial system. For too long, St. Louis City has been the preferred venue for aggressive trial attorneys throughout the country. House Republicans are confronting this “Judicial Hellhole” reputation head-on with common-sense tort reforms. By ensuring that frivolous lawsuits stay out of our courtrooms, the GOP is protecting taxpayer money while also making the state more attractive to businesses.

This session has also seen the passage of major labor reforms, helping Missouri become a great place to do business. This year Missouri became the 28th state to adopt right to work legislation. With the implementation of this measure promoting worker freedom, the House GOP has given employees the right to choose whether or not they want to join a union. Additionally, House Republicans were able to pass other labor reforms such as paycheck protection, prevailing wage, and the elimination of project labor agreements. By giving workers more freedom, we are making Missouri a better place to do business and pointing our state in the right direction. Additionally, today the General Assembly passed HBs 1194 & 1193 which prohibits political subdivisions from requiring a minimum wage that exceeds the requirements of state law.

Reminder: 120th District Survey: As your voice in state government, I can be more effective when I know your views on the many issues facing our state. Please take moment to respond to this survey. If you would prefer a paper survey, please contact my office and a copy will be mailed to you. http://jasonchipman.polldaddy.com/s/2017-legislative-survey

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

 

Legislators Wrap Up Productive 2017 Session

The Missouri House of Representatives wrapped up an extremely efficient and productive legislative session Friday evening. While lawmakers sent a lower number of bills than normal to the governor, those that did make it include many of the policy priorities that were laid out by the House Speaker during his Opening Day Address. Last legislative session saw the House and Senate truly agree to roughly 140 bills. This session, while approximately 75 bills made it across the legislative finish line, the lower number includes important issues such as substantive labor reform, tort reform, and economic development measures that will make Missouri a more attractive location for job creators.

One of the biggest highlights of the 2017 session is a fiscally responsible state spending plan that makes a record level of investment in K-12 education by fully funding the Foundation Formula for the first time. The legislature was also able to get a Right-to-Work bill to the governor that will protect the rights of workers and encourage job creators to set up shop in the state. The tort reform bills that made it through the legislative process will help put an end to frivolous lawsuits by putting new expert witness standards in place, and strengthening Missouri’s workplace discrimination standards. Another major accomplishment for the legislature this year is the passage of legislation that will establish a regulatory framework for ridesharing companies like Uber and Lyft so they can expand and create jobs throughout Missouri.

Some of the legislative priorities that received approval in the final week of session include:

Legislation Finalized to Allow Missourians to Obtain REAL ID-Compliant Photo Identification (HB 151)

Missourians will soon have the option to obtain a driver’s license that is compliant with the federal REAL ID Act. The legislation that is now on its way to the governor will require the state revenue department to issue REAL ID-compliant driver’s licenses and identification cards to those who want them. Compliant licenses will be needed to do things like board airplanes and enter military bases and federal buildings.

Passed by the U.S. Congress in 2005, The REAL ID Act was designed to enhance security procedures by establishing new minimum standards for driver’s licenses. Missouri responded to the requirements by passing a state law in 2009 to protect the private information of Missouri citizens by prohibiting the Missouri Department of Revenue from complying with the federal act.

Because of this law, current Missouri driver’s licenses are not compliant with the federal standards and were set to no longer be valid at airports and federal facilities beginning in 2018.

With the legislation approved this week, Missourians will now have the option to obtain a federally compliant driver’s license. The bill will also allow individuals with a non-compliant driver’s license to obtain a compliant version at no additional cost. However, even with the change, it will take the Department of Revenue as long as two years to make the new REAL ID-compliant licenses available. In order to allow people to travel and access federal facilities, the state will seek a waiver from the federal government to allow existing identification to continue to work until the new IDs are attainable.

For Missourians who do not want to comply with the REAL ID requirements because of privacy concerns, the legislation will allow them to request the existing style of Missouri identification that is not compliant with the federal act.For those who want or need the federally compliant driver’s license, the bill will establish safeguards so that any additional data gathered is used only for purposes of issuing the identification. One provision would ensure the source documents to obtain an ID are stored on a server that is not connected to the Internet in order to prevent hacking of the database. The bill also includes criminal penalties for misuse or unlawful access of personal data.

Other changes made in the bill will require the legislature to revisit the issue in the event the federal government changes the REAL ID Act, and will repeal the section entirely if the federal government ends the program.

Supporters say the bill is designed to provide a reasonable solution that will ensure Missourians aren’t burdened with having to get alternative identifications to access federal facilities or to visit family members on military bases. They say the bill is about giving Missourians the freedom to decide whether to obtain identification that is compliant with REAL ID.

House Gives Final Approval to Bill to Limit Frivolous Lawsuits in Worker Discrimination Cases (SB 43)

House members gave final approval this week to legislation that is meant to reform Missouri’s employment discrimination standards. Supporters say the bill will limit frivolous lawsuits against employers in an attempt to create a more business-friendly environment that will help retain existing employers and attract new job creators to Missouri.

The legislation would raise the standard to determine if an employer is liable for a discrimination charge under the Missouri Human Rights Act (MHRA). Specifically, it would move Missouri from a “contributing factor” standard to a “motivating factor” standard for proving discrimination in workplace cases. In effect, it would require workers who file a wrongful termination lawsuit to prove age, race, gender, disability, or ethnicity was the motivating factor rather than simply a contributing factor in the employer’s action. The plaintiff would also have to prove that the action was the direct immediate cause of the claimed damages.

In addition, the bill would limit the damage amounts that can be awarded for employment cases under the MHRA. It would also exempt supervisors and managers who are not employers from liability. Additionally, it would create whistleblower protections so that employers would not be able to fire someone for reporting an unlawful act of the employer or refusing to carry out an illegal act for that employer.

Supporters say the provisions of the bill will help ensure balance between employers and employees in discrimination cases by allowing plaintiffs the right to a jury trial but also protecting business owners from frivolous lawsuits. The provisions modifying the burden of proof mirror the federal standard in discrimination cases. They say passage of the bill will end Missouri’s reputation for being one of the easiest states in the nation in which to file frivolous discrimination lawsuits.

House Approves Collateral Source Reform Legislation (SB 31)

Legislation is now on its way to the governor’s desk that is part of the legislature’s efforts to improve the state’s legal climate. As part of its tort reform package, the House and Senate gave final approval to legislation commonly referred to as collateral source reform.

The bill is meant to clarify that an injured person involved in a lawsuit can recover only the actual cost incurred for medical treatment. Specifically, the legislation would modify Missouri’s collateral source rule that currently prevents evidence from being admitted to show when a plaintiff’s losses have been compensated from other sources such as insurance or workers’ compensation.

Those who believe the collateral source rule needs to be reformed say the current system allows plaintiffs to make money by filing lawsuits for injuries that have already been covered by other sources. They say it allows individuals to recover damages or costs that were never incurred, while the intent of the law should be to make the plaintiff whole. Supporters also say the change would help Missouri shed its reputation as “judicial hellhole” and create a more business-friendly environment.

The change approved by the legislature clarifies that an injured person can recover the actual cost incurred for medical treatment rather than the inflated value of the treatment billed by a health care provider. Specifically, it allows evidence to be admitted in court showing the actual cost, rather than the value, of the medical care or treatment to the plaintiff.

The legislature approved similar legislation last year only to see the bill vetoed by the previous governor. The current governor has indicated he will sign the bill into law.

House and Senate Agree to Create Blue Alert System to Protect Peace Officers (SB 34)

In an effort to ensure law enforcement officials quickly receive the information they need to apprehend individuals who injure or kill peace officers, the Missouri House and Senate have approved legislation to create a Blue Alert System. The bill is one of the priorities of Governor Eric Greitens, who called for the creation of the Blue Alert System when the legislative session began.

Similar to the Amber and Silver Alert systems, the Blue Alert system would send out identifying information such as a physical description of the suspect and the suspect’s vehicle. Twenty-seven states already have a similar system in place. Specifically, the bill would establish the Blue Alert System to aid in the identification, location, and apprehension of any individual or individuals suspected of killing or seriously injuring a local, state, or federal law enforcement officer. The bill would require the Department of Public Safety to coordinate with local law enforcement agencies and public commercial television and radio broadcasters to effectively implement the system.

Supporters say Missouri will benefit from its own system so that it can better protect the brave men and women who protect communities across the state.

Expanding Missouri’s Job Training Efforts (HB 93)

The House and Senate have given final approval to legislation meant to provide a boost to the state’s small businesses, including many in rural areas. The bill would expand the Missouri Works program so that more of the state’s small businesses would be eligible for workforce training benefits.

In many areas of the state there are small businesses that do not qualify to obtain the benefits provided through Missouri Works, which is the state’s number one incentive tool for business expansion and retention. These businesses fall short of the program’s qualification criteria such as number of workers employed, or health insurance benefits provided. The bill would allow these businesses to pool together with businesses that do meet all of the program’s criteria in order to receive benefits. Specifically, the bill would allow a group of businesses to qualify as long as the majority of them meet the program’s criteria.

Legislation Approved to Establish Adult High Schools (HB 93)

The members of the Missouri House hope to give the 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. To accomplish this goal, legislation approved during the final week of session will establish four adult high schools in Missouri.

The legislation is modeled after a program in Indiana that was put in place to address the needs of adults without high school diplomas, and employers seeking a qualified workforce. The program has seen tremendous success as it has grown from four schools to 11. After the 2014 school year, 88 percent of students were employed or in college six months after graduation. Supporters hope to see a similar level of success in Missouri.

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

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

Legislative Survey

Earlier this year my office released a 2017 legislative survey that may be taken by any 120th District constituent. As your voice in state government, I can be more effective when I know your views on the many issues facing our state. Please take moment to respond to this survey. Since I can talk with only a small portion of you personally, it is one of the best ways for me to learn your stance on potential legislation. You can also contact me by calling, emailing, or stopping by my office. As always, your interests, concerns, and wishes are the reason I am here.

http://jasonchipman.polldaddy.com/s/2017-legislative-survey

If you would prefer a paper survey, please contact my office and a copy will be mailed to you.

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