Special Sessions Cost Missouri Taxpayers Nearly $158,000

Sep 12, 2017

Two special sessions held by the Missouri General Assembly over the summer have cost taxpayers nearly $158,000, according to House and Senate officials.

Lt. Gov. Mike Parson urged lawmakers last week to hold a third session in conjunction with Wednesday’s scheduled veto session, according to previous Missourian reporting.

If three-quarters of both the House and the Senate agree to meet, they would likely discuss in-home health care funding for seniors and veterans, as well as potential disciplinary action for Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal, D-University City and Rep. Warren Love, R-Osceola. Both legislators made incendiary comments on Facebook, with Chappelle-Nadal saying she hoped the president would be assassinated, and Love suggesting that the vandal of a Confederate monument should be hanged.

Gov. Eric Greitens called the first special session in May to allow the Public Service Commission to set specific utility rates for large industrial customers in the Bootheel to attract jobs, according to previous Missourian reporting.

In the second special session, also called by Greitens, the legislature passed tighter abortion regulations.

The expenses associated with a special session include staffing costs, mileage reimbursement and a per diem payment of $113.60 per day for each lawmaker, according to House and Senate officials.

If the legislature approves a third special session to take place during Wednesday’s regularly scheduled veto session, taxpayers would not have to reimburse legislators for transportation costs since they will already be in Jefferson City, said Anne Marie Moy, Senate communications director.

However, taxpayers would pick up the tab for any additional per diem and staffing expenses.

Supervising editor is Mark Horvithorvitm@missouri.edu.