Gov. Eric Greitens

Disaster specialists are assessing flood and storm damage across Missouri in the wake of storms and severe flooding.

Gov. Eric Greitens said Wednesday that local, state and federal disaster specialists are working to determine the size and scope of the damage as part of the state's application seeking a federal disaster declaration.

File Photo / KBIA

Missouri tax revenues grew about 3.1 percent since last fiscal year, which is not enough to fund this year's budget. State Budget Director Dan Haug announced that net general revenues increased from 7.4 billion dollars last year to 7.6 billion dollars this year. Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens and his predecessor, Jay Nixon, have made a combined 350 million dollars of spending cuts to offset lower-than-expected revenues. Haug also says the state has repaid 500 million dollars borrowed from a state reserve fund before the May 15th deadline.

Missouri Capitol
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

Missouri Republican Gov. Eric Greitens has agreed to pay a penalty to the state Ethics Commission for failing to report that his gubernatorial campaign got a donor list from a charity he founded.

Greitens' campaign adviser Austin Chambers said Saturday that the violation was a "simple campaign finance matter — not a major ethics matter."

The Ethics Commission imposed a $1,000 fee, most of which would be waived if Greitens pays $100 and commits no other violations in the next two years.

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens says two people have died in the weekend flooding across his state.

Greitens said Sunday that additional flooding is expected in the days ahead as rivers crest at historic levels.

So Greitens says he has activated the National Guard, so troops can help cities fill sandbags and prepare for the flooding.

First responders performed 111 evacuations and 135 rescues across Missouri over the weekend.

Flood warnings remain in place for much of Missouri with the heaviest flooding expected in the southern third of the state.

Progress Stalls on Paid Parental Leave in the Missouri Legislature

Apr 26, 2017

When Gov. Eric Greitens signed an executive order providing paid parental leave for the executive branch earlier this year, he encouraged lawmakers to extend those policies.

But with time running out in the legislative session, it's unlikely Missourians will see expansion of those policies in the public or private sector.

Jacob Fenston / KBIA

A Missouri senator says he's moving out of a room he rents from a lobbyist following questions from a co-worker.

St. Joseph Republican Sen. Rob Schaaf said he's staying at a hotel Monday as he searches for a new place to stay.

Columbia Republican Sen. Caleb Rowden questioned him days earlier about renting from a lobbyist and sponsoring a bill the lobbyist is pushing.

Schaaf says that contributed to the appearance of a culture of corruption in Jefferson City, then called to strengthen ethics laws and ripped into Republican Gov. Eric Greitens' ethics.

ALEX HEUER / St. Louis Public Radio

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens during his first 100 days in office made good on a top campaign promise to sign right to work legislation.

Greitens passed the 100-day mark on Wednesday. He achieved a major campaign promise months before, when he signed a law in February banning mandatory union fees.

But Greitens has had less success in strengthening state ethics laws, another top pledge.

ALEX HEUER / St. Louis Public Radio

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens is creating a new task force to find ways to reduce government boards and commissions, although a similar panel already exists.

Greitens signed an executive order Tuesday creating a 12-person task force to study the state's more than 200 boards and commissions.

Greitens in a statement said the new state task force will shrink government.

A legislative panel with similar responsibilities already exists. The Missouri House Subcommittee on Boards and Commissions is also tasked with reducing bureaucratic groups.

MoDOT Follows Gov. Greitens' Parental Leave Policy

Mar 20, 2017

The Missouri Department of Transportation announced it would follow Gov. Eric Greitens' parental leave policy Thursday morning.

The policy calls for six weeks of paid leave for Missouri state employees who are primary caregivers. Secondary caregivers can receive three weeks. Parents paid leave starts after birth or an adoption. The policy only pertains to state executive branch agencies.

MoDOT Outreach Coordinator Robert Brendel said this was the best decision for employees.

Missouri Capitol
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens is giving paid parental leave to state executive branch workers.

The Republican announced an executive order Monday to grant up to six weeks paid leave for primary caregivers and three weeks for secondary caregivers to spend time with newborn or adopted children.

The change doesn't apply to employees who work for the Legislature, judiciary or other statewide elected officials.

State policy allows for up to 12 weeks unpaid leave. That could be split if both parents work for the state.

St. Louis Arch
paparutzi / Flickr

Vice President Mike Pence is visiting a suburban St. Louis Jewish cemetery where more than 150 headstones were damaged earlier in the week. He says there is "no place in America for hatred or acts of prejudice or violence or anti-Semitism."

Pence says at the cemetery in University City that the people of Missouri are inspiring the nation with their "love and care for this place." He is thanking them for "showing the world what America's really all about."

Pence was joined by Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens.

Katy Mersmann / Columbia Faith & Values

Rabbi Yossi Feintuch of Congregation Beth Shalom in Columbia said he received several phone calls from concerned synagogue members after hearing that a Jewish cemetery in a St. Louis suburb was vandalized over the weekend. They were worried that the Jewish section of the Columbia cemetery would also be attacked, Feintuch said.

 

A member of the congregation board contacted the Columbia cemetery and found out that nothing was out of the ordinary in the Jewish section, Feintuch said.

 

Gage Skidmore / flickr

Vice President Mike Pence talked about job growth while visiting an equipment and engine dealership in Missouri today.

Missouri Govenor Eric Greitens joined Pence on at the Fabick Cat headquarters in Fenton, Missouri, outside of St. Louis at 1:30 p.m. Pence met with workers, received a tour of the facility, and gave a speech.

The vice president's remarks aligned with a push for labor reforms in the Republican-led Missouri legislature. Bills include proposed changes to the way minimum-wage requirements are calculated for public works projects.

Vice President Mike Pence plans to talk about job growth while visiting an equipment and engine dealer in Missouri.

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens will join Pence on Wednesday at the Fabick Cat headquarters in Fenton, Missouri, outside of St. Louis. Pence will meet with workers, get a tour of the facility, and give a speech at 1:30 p.m.

David Shane / Flickr

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens has started complaining about the coverage his administration receives, but the Republican has granted few interviews during his first six weeks in office.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Greitens' approach of using social media sites to appeal directly to voters isn't that unusual, but he hasn't given reporters many chances to ask him questions.

MU Board of Curators
KBIA

Republican Gov. Eric Greitens is appointing three people to the University of Missouri System governing board.

Greitens announced today that he picked former University of Missouri linebacker Darryl Chatman, a Democrat from Foristell. He's an attorney and the former deputy director of the Missouri's Agriculture Department.

The governor also appointed his former campaign finance chairman, Jeffrey Layman. Layman is a Springfield Republican and senior vice president with Morgan Stanley. He donated about $10,000 to Greitens' campaign for governor.

David Shane / Flickr

  Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens has appointed a Tennessee official to lead the state agency that monitors financial industries and businesses to protect consumers and encourage job growth.

The governor announced Tuesday that Chlora Lindley-Myers is his choice to run the Missouri Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions and Professional Registration.

Lindley-Myers currently is deputy commissioner at the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance.

Disability Services Organizations Brace for Cuts

Feb 14, 2017
Missouri Capitol
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

Organizations that provide services to people with disabilities are bracing themselves for funding cuts under Gov. Eric Greiten’s proposed state budget.

A spokesman for Gov. Greitens recently said the budget would save $52 million by raising eligibility requirements for seniors and disabled people in in-home or nursing home care programs.

Cathy Brown is the director of Public Policy and Advocacy at ParaQuad, a non-profit agency that helps people with disabilities live independently through the Medicaid-funded Consumer Directed Services program.

File / KBIA

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens has appointed two new heads of the state's emergency management and fire safety divisions.

Greitens appointed Ernie Rhodes to be the director of the State Emergency Management Agency and Tim Bean as the state Fire Marshal in an announcement Wednesday at the St. Louis Fire Academy.

Rhodes currently serves as the fire chief for the West County EMS and Fire Protection District. He previously served as the director of Emergency Management in St. Charles, Missouri.

David Shane / Flickr

Missouri will become a right-to-work state this summer. Governor Eric Greitens has signed the legislation today at three ceremonies around the state that bars unions and employers from forcing all employees in a bargaining unit, including non-union members, to pay union dues and fees. The first ceremony today (Monday) was briefly disrupted by about 10 pro-union demonstrators in Springfield:

Greitens ignored the protesters, who were escorted out. He also held a signing ceremony in Poplar Bluff, and has one more scheduled this afternoon at the Missouri Capitol.

Eric Greitens
Dave Ingraham / Flickr

Republican Gov. Eric Greitens is about to make Missouri the 28th state to ban mandatory union fees

Greitens plans to sign the right-to-work bill into law Monday then travel around the state announcing his support for the measure.

The governor had pledged to sign right to work while on the campaign trail. He and other supporters say it will bring business and jobs to the state. Opponents say it aims to weaken unions and could lead to lower wages.

ALEX HEUER / St. Louis Public Radio

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens is laying out his plans for the state budget amid financial strain and lagging revenue.

Greitens is to announce his proposed budget Thursday at a Nixa public school. He broke from tradition by not outlining his budget during his January State of the State address.

Greitens' budget proposal will come during what's shaping up to be a challenging time for state finances. Revenues so far this fiscal year have been lower than expected, and hundreds of millions of dollars have been cut to balance this year's budget.

KBIA

Ozarks Technical Community College officials in Springfield, Missouri say they're dramatically increasing tuition should the state face budget cuts.

Chancellor Hal Higdon tells the Springfield News-Leader that the school didn't raise tuition this year because the state's Legislature promised they would quote "get us that money." But if the budget cut for next year is equal to the one this year, Higdon says he will have no choice but to propose a tuition increase.

File / KBIA

Missouri's No. 2 Republican state senator is proposing a $10 limit on lobbyist gifts to elected officials.

The legislation Majority Leader Mike Kehoe pitched to a Senate panel Tuesday wouldn't completely ban gifts, as Republican Gov. Eric Greitens has called on lawmakers to do.

Instead it would limit lobbyists to spending at most $10 per day on each elected official.

A proposal passed by the House would ban most lobbyist gifts to individual elected officials. Exceptions would include flowers, honorary plaques and catering meals at some events.

Missouri Capitol
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens is lashing out against two Republican senators who didn't vote against a pay raise for themselves and other elected officials.

Greitens in a Tuesday Facebook post accused Sens. Denny Hoskins and Paul Wieland of betraying their constituents.

At issue was a proposed pay increase for legislators and statewide elected officials. Senators voted 25-2 against it Monday. Only Hoskins and Wieland cast votes to allow the raise to take effect, but six other senators recused themselves and didn't vote.

j.stephenconn / flickr

Missouri Governor Eric Greitens says he met with Vice President Mike Pence at the White House.

Greitens announced on his Facebook page that he and the vice president met on Saturday.

He said he and Pence discussed how the Trump administration can help take Missouri "in a new direction with more jobs and higher pay." Greitens also mentioned safer streets and better schools for the state.

The governor says the two men also discussed the negative financial impact of Obamacare and said Pence promised relief for the state's budget is coming.

ALEX HEUER / St. Louis Public Radio

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens is empaneling a committee to study and recommend how to reform the state's tax rates and credits.

The state's Republican chief executive signed an executive order Wednesday creating the 10-person "Governor's Committee for Simple, Fair, and Low Taxes." He says the current system is "broken," hurting Missouri's budget and job creation.

Greitens says the unpaid panel's tasks will compare Missouri's tax credit programs and tax rates to "peer" states and assess the economic impact of state tax credits.

Missouri Capitol
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

Missouri's Republican-led Senate is advancing a right-to-work bill to ban mandatory union fees.

Senators voted 21-12 to give the bill initial approval Wednesday. It needs another vote to move to the House, which has already passed an almost-identical bill.

Three Republicans joined Democrats in voting against the proposal.

Right to work has new momentum with Republican Gov. Eric Greitens' support. He says he'll sign it if the GOP-led Legislature sends it to his desk.

David Shane / Flickr

Lawmakers are anticipating tuition hikes in Missouri after recently announced budget cuts.

Gov. Eric Greitens announced nearly $68 million in core funding for public universities and community colleges last week. The Columbia Daily Tribune reports that Republican Rep. Lyle Rowland, of Cedarcreek, says he sees little chance of providing more than static spending in the coming year. Rowland is the chairman of the House committee that will take the first look at education spending for the coming year after Greitens submits his budget

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