Marshall Griffin

Statehouse Reporter

St. Louis Public Radio State House Reporter Marshall Griffin is a proud alumnus of the University of Mississippi (a.k.a., Ole Miss), and has been in radio for over 20 years, starting out as a deejay. His big break in news came when the first President Bush ordered the invasion of Panama in 1989. Marshall was working the graveyard shift at a rock station, and began ripping news bulletins off the old AP teletype and reading updates between songs. From there on, his radio career turned toward news reporting and anchoring. In 1999, he became the capital bureau chief for Florida's Radio Networks, and in 2003 he became News Director at WFSU-FM/Florida Public Radio. During his time in Tallahassee he covered seven legislative sessions, Governor Jeb Bush's administration, four hurricanes, the Terri Schiavo saga, and the 2000 presidential recount. Before coming to Missouri, he enjoyed a brief stint in the Blue Ridge Mountains, reporting and anchoring for WWNC-AM in Asheville, North Carolina. Marshall lives in Jefferson City with his wife, Julie, their dogs, Max and Mason, and their cat, Honey.

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Politics
9:21 am
Mon April 1, 2013

Mo. House Speaker Comments On Gay Marriage, Anti-Discrimination Bill

Tim Bommel, Mo. House Communications

Originally published on Fri March 29, 2013 5:48 pm

Missouri House Speaker Tim Jones (R, Eureka)  says the decision over gay marriage should be left to the states, and not to the federal government.

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Politics
6:05 pm
Fri March 29, 2013

Nixon signs tax incentive bill

Credit File photo / KBIA

 Gov. Jay Nixon signed a bill today that authorizes tax incentives for large sporting events and for some charitable donations. 

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NPR Story
8:50 am
Fri March 29, 2013

Mo. House Passes State Budget, Mo. Senate Threatens To Delay DOR Budget

UPI/Bill Greenblatt

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 7:51 pm

Missouri’s budget for the next fiscal year has been passed by the State House.


While Medicaid expansion has dominated most of the debate, spending hikes were approved in other areas.  There’s an extra $65 million for K-12 schools, although the increase still falls short of fully funding the state’s public school formula.  Republican Mike Lair of Livingston County chairs the Appropriations committee on Education.

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Politics
5:50 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

Labor unions rally for collective bargaining rights

A bill requiring voter ID at the polls caused heated debate at the Missouri House of Representatives Monday.
File Photo KBIA

Labor union members from across Missouri descended on the State Capitol today, hoping to convince lawmakers to defeat bills they say are anti-worker.

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Politics
8:17 am
Tue March 26, 2013

Mo. House Republicans propose alternative to Medicaid

Credit File / KBIA

Supporters and opponents spent several hours Monday testifying on an alternate Medicaid proposal being floated by House Republicans.

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Politics
8:07 am
Tue March 26, 2013

State budget scheduled for debate today in Mo. House

Credit File / KBIA

The Missouri House will begin debate Tuesday on the 13 bills that make up next year’s state budget.

The three bills that encompass the state’s Medicaid program don’t include Governor Jay Nixon’s (D) proposed expansion, although House Democrats may try to offer amendments to change that.  Budget chairman Rick Stream (R, Kirkwood) says the state should have more of a say in how Medicaid dollars are handled.

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Politics
8:24 am
Mon March 18, 2013

Missouri Lawmakers Discuss 2nd-Half Priorities As Legislative Spring Break Arrives

Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio

Originally published on Fri March 15, 2013 4:56 pm

Spring break has arrived for Missouri lawmakers, as they take a week off before returning to Jefferson City on March 25th.


They’ll have plenty of items on their plate when they get back -- among the House’s priorities is debating and voting on the state budget, which still does not include Medicaid expansion. Speaker Tim Jones (R, Eureka) says the federal health care law does not require states to add more people to the Medicaid rolls.

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Politics
4:44 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

Proposed fund could help National Guard members who lost tuition from sequestration

(via Flickr/The National Guard/M. Queiser/Missouri National Guard)

Originally published on Thu March 14, 2013 5:22 pm

Members of the Missouri House Budget Committee are proposing a new fund to provide tuition assistance for National Guard members who are also enrolled in college.


The move comes because the federal government has suspended federal tuition assistance for National Guard soldiers due to sequestration cuts.  House Budget Chair Rick Stream (R, Kirkwood) says they’ve reallocated $1.5 million in next year’s state budget to make up the difference.

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Politics
8:25 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Mo. Gen. Assembly Sends Benevolent Tax Credits Bill To Gov. Nixon

(Tim Lloyd for St. Louis Public Radio)

Originally published on Thu March 14, 2013 12:01 pm

Two sets of tax credits were passed by Missouri lawmakers Wednesday and sent to Governor Jay Nixon (D).

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Politics
5:52 pm
Wed March 13, 2013

Tax Breaks For Amateur Sporting Events In Mo. Is First Bill Sent To Gov. Nixon

Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio

Originally published on Wed March 13, 2013 4:19 pm

Legislation that would provide tax breaks for amateur sporting events held in Missouri has become the first one sent to Governor Jay Nixon (D) during the 2013 regular session.

The incentives would equal about $5 per ticket sold, and they would be capped at $3 million a year.  It was sponsored by State Senator Eric Schmitt (R, Glendale).

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Politics
5:52 pm
Wed March 13, 2013

Mo. GOP Senator Blasts Dept. Of Revenue Over Scanned Documents

Mo. Senate

Originally published on Wed March 13, 2013 5:25 pm

One of the leading Republicans in the Missouri Senate blasted the Department of Revenue over its scanning of documents for driver’s licenses and conceal-carry applicants.


Kurt Schaefer of Columbia accused the state agency of lying to lawmakers when its leaders said this week they’re not collecting data for the federal government.

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Politics
5:37 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

$8 Billion transportation proposal questioned by some Mo. senators

Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 5:04 pm

Some concerns have been raised in the Missouri Senate over a proposed constitutional amendment that would create a temporary one-cent sales tax to fund transportation needs.


The one-penny sales tax is expected to raise nearly $8 billion over ten years.  All money raised would go directly to the Missouri Dept. of Transportation (MoDOT), and that provision is not sitting well with some Senators.  Republican Kurt Schaefer of Columbia says lawmakers should have at least some say into how that money would be spent.

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Politics
9:33 am
Tue March 12, 2013

Mo. Senate Gives First Approval To Scaled-Back 'Paycheck Protection Bill'

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 2:09 pm

The Missouri Senate has given first round approval to a scaled-backed version of the so-called Paycheck Protection bill.

The original bill would have barred unions from automatically withholding dues from the paychecks of public employees, but Senate Democrats spent nearly ten hours Monday night and Tuesday morning blocking the bill. The filibuster ended when the bill was changed to allow annual consent for withholding union dues from paychecks.

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Politics
9:33 am
Tue March 12, 2013

Mo. Dept. Of Revenue: 'We're Not Sending Copies Of Citizens' Documents To DC'

Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 10:48 am

The head of the Missouri Department of Revenue says his agency is not forwarding electronic copies of documents from Missouri citizens to the federal government.

Director Brian Long told the House Committee on Government Oversight and Accountability that once he heard the allegations, he questioned other officials and employees within the Department of Revenue about it.

“I was repeatedly and independently assured that these scanned source documents, as part of the license process, are not, nor is there any plans, to share them, again, with the federal government or any third-party vendor," Long said.

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Politics
9:33 am
Tue March 12, 2013

'Medical Conscience' Bill Receives 1st-Round Approval From Mo. House

UPI/Bill Greenblatt

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 9:55 pm

Updated 12:02 p.m. Edited formatting 12:44 p.m.

Health care workers could refuse to participate in procedures or research that violates their religious, moral or ethical principles under a measure passed by the Missouri House.

The House sent the measure to the Senate Tuesday with a 116-41 vote.

Earlier story:

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Politics
5:44 pm
Mon March 11, 2013

Dept. of Revenue promises it is not sending citizens personal documents to the federal government

State Department of Revenue leaders told a Missouri House committee today that they are NOT sending copies of documents from Missouri citizens to the federal government. 

Director Brian Long and Deputy Director John Mollenkamp say they now require documents from state residents, including conceal-carry endorsements, to be scanned into a computer system as part of an effort to cut down on fraud.  Republican House Member Todd Richardson says, though, he’s still skeptical about the agency’s intentions

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NPR Story
4:46 pm
Fri March 8, 2013

Home Brewers Could Take Part In Beer Festivals Under Bill Passed By Mo. Senate

Veronique LaCapra/St. Louis Public Radio

Originally published on Sat March 9, 2013 11:36 am

Legislation that would allow home brewers to bring home-made beer to festivals has passed the Missouri Senate.

Under Senate Bill 114, home-brewers could give away free samples to guests at beer festivals and tastings, but would not be allowed to sell them.  The sponsor, State Senator Eric Schmitt (R, Glendale), says an emergency clause was added so that home brewers can take part in this year’s Brewer’s Heritage Festival in St. Louis.

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Politics
6:13 pm
Thu March 7, 2013

Competing drug monitoring programs designed either to pass General Assembly or fail ballot vote

Sen. Rob Schaaf
Jacob Fenston KBIA

Two bills that would create a prescription drug monitoring program in Missouri received a hearing today before a State Senate committee.

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Politics
7:54 am
Thu March 7, 2013

Mo. Senate Endorses Tax Cut Legislation

In Jefferson City, Mo., Senate Republicans have scuttled Gov. Jay Nixon's nominee to direct the Missouri Department of Economic Development.
File KBIA

The Missouri Senate has given first-round approval to a phased-in tax overhaul designed to help the Show-Me State compete with neighboring Kansas, which recently slashed its tax rates.

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Politics
8:45 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Lawsuit Filed Over Digital Copying Of Conceal Carry Application

Mo. Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder (R) speaks in support of a lawsuit filed against the state, in which a man seeking a conceal carry permit says he was told his application and documents had to be digitally scanned and stored by the state.
Marshall Griffin St. Louis Public Radio

A lawsuit has been filed in the Missouri Bootheel accusing the state of wrongfully requiring digital copies of vital records.

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Politics
8:29 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Locations Accepting EBT Cards Would Be Strictly Limited Under Mo. Senate Bill

Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 2:02 pm

Legislation is moving through the Missouri Senate that would strictly limit where Electronic Benefits Transfer, or EBT cards, can be used in the state.

State Senator Will Kraus (R, Lee’s Summit) is sponsoring Senate Bill 251.  He says a new federal law that just took effect will ban EBT card use in casinos, liquor stores and adult entertainment venues.

“We’re taking that federal law (and) putting (it) into state statute," Kraus said.  "But we’re also adding a few places that we think these cards shouldn’t be used at:  amusement parks, entertainment events, athletic events, (or) to purchase alcohol, tobacco (or) lottery tickets.”

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NPR Story
8:29 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Dempsey Denies Mo. Senate Republicans Are Reversing Opposition To Medicaid Expansion

Mo. Senate

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 6:59 am

The leader of the Missouri Senate is denying reports from some conservative bloggers that top Republicans are planning an about-face on Medicaid expansion.

In particular, Red State published a report Monday that President Pro-tem Tom Dempsey (R, St. Charles) and Senator Mike Parson (R, Bolivar) were backing a so-called “shell bill” that would be used to add Medicaid expansion to next year’s state budget.  Dempsey denies that report.

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Politics
5:50 pm
Fri March 1, 2013

Mo. State Rep. Wants To 'Eliminate' Daylight Saving Time By Adopting It Permanently

(via Flickr/the Italian voice)

Originally published on Fri March 1, 2013 5:15 pm

Legislation in the Missouri House would permanently adopt Daylight Saving Time as the new Standard Time, but only if 20 other states also agree to do so.


House Bill 340 would create a pact with other states to “eliminate” Daylight Saving Time by renaming it the new “Standard Time.”  And once 20 or more states join the pact, they’ll spring forward one hour and permanently remain there.  It’s sponsored by State Representative Delus Johnson (R, St. Joseph).

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Politics
4:43 pm
Thu February 28, 2013

Mo. House Votes To Redefine Workplace Discrimination

UPI/Bill Greenblatt

Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 4:03 pm

Legislation that would redefine workplace discrimination in Missouri has been passed by the State House

House Bill 320 would require that discrimination be a motivating factor in any wrongful action taken against an employee, instead of a contributing factor as it is now.  State Representative Brandon Ellington (D, Kansas City) says Missouri’s standard for discrimination should not be lowered.

“We know the potential for discrimination, and to be able to prove that it was a motivational factor is almost impossible," Ellington said.  "Discrimination can happen to anybody in this body – it may not be racial, but it definitely could be age discrimination; it may not be age, but it could definitely be sexual discrimination.”

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Politics
8:21 am
Thu February 28, 2013

'Paycheck Protection' bill remains stalled in Mo. Senate

Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio

Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 2:11 pm

The Missouri Senate spent a few hours Wednesday debating legislation that would bar labor unions for public workers from withholding money from public employees’ paychecks.

The so-called "Paycheck Protection" bill would also require consent from public employees before labor unions can use fees and dues for political purposes.  State Senator Paul LeVota (D, Independence) says the bill should be called “paycheck deception."

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Politics
8:21 am
Thu February 28, 2013

Angel Investment Tax Credit Measure Being Considered By Mo. Senate Committee

Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio

Originally published on Wed February 27, 2013 10:19 pm

Supporters of creating a so-called “Angel Investment” tax credit in Missouri testified in favor of legislation Wednesday before a State Senate committee.


Senate Bill 91 would provide incentives to wealthy investors, dubbed “Angels,” who are looking for start-up opportunities, preferably in high-tech and Internet-based businesses.  Kansas City Mayor Sly James was one of several witnesses hoping to persuade committee members to approve the bill.

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Politics
9:47 am
Wed February 27, 2013

Missouri Republicans Outline 'Commonsense Conservative' Medicaid Alternative

stopnlook FLICKR

A long-promised Republican alternative to Medicaid expansion was filed today in the Missouri House.

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Politics
9:19 am
Wed February 27, 2013

Mo. Senate Endorses Wide-Ranging Tax Credit Bill

Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio

Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 7:16 pm

The Missouri Senate spent several hours last night working on a wide-ranging tax credit bill, which they gave first-round approval to at around 3:30 this morning.


Senate Bill 120 would drastically cut incentives for Historic Preservation and low income housing.  Historic Preservation tax credits would be capped at $50 million a year, instead of the current $140 million, and low income Housing incentives would be capped at $55 million a year.  Senator Jamilah Nasheed (D, St. Louis) criticized the move.

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Politics
6:06 pm
Mon February 25, 2013

Two separate Mo. House committees reject Medicaid expansion efforts

Nearly 100 people crowded into a room at the Mo. Capitol to attend a hearing on HB627, which would have expanded Medicaid to 300,000 Missourians. The bill was voted down 2-5.
Marshall Griffin St Louis Public Radio

Medicaid expansion is dead for now in the Missouri House.  Two separate House committees voted down efforts Monday to expand Medicaid to 259,000 Missourians next year and 41,000 more in later years.

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Agriculture
5:54 pm
Fri February 22, 2013

Winter storm could provide some short-term drought relief in Missouri

Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio

Originally published on Fri February 22, 2013 4:57 pm

The winter storm that dumped several inches of snow and ice across much of Missouri may bring some short-term relief to the state’s drought conditions.


Kelly Smith is Director of Marketing and Commodities for the Missouri Farm Bureau.  He says the winter storm arrived on the heels of recent rain events, helping saturate the soil.


“This snow is gonna slowly melt into the ground," Smith said.  "We will get some runoff from it in some areas because they got a 10 to 13-inch snow…we had areas in our state as high as 13, maybe even 15, inches up in north of (the) Kansas City area.”

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