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.
Originally published on Wed January 30, 2013 9:31 am
Republicans in the Missouri House are making another attempt to pass legislation that would require voters to show photo identification at the polls.
No one testified in favor of the proposal at a House hearing today -- everyone who testified either opposed requiring photo ID’s for voting or were neutral and speaking for informational purposes only. In addition to mandating photo identification, House Bill 48 would allow anyone who does not have a photo ID to vote with a provisional ballot, which would not be counted until the voter’s identity is verified. John Scott with the Secretary of State’s office told the House Committee on Elections that Missouri voters would still be disenfranchised.
Missouri lawmakers have convened their 2013 session with Republican supermajorities controlling both the House and Senate.
Republicans have made tax cuts one of their top priorities for the 97th General Assembly, which runs until May 17.
They also plan to pursue business-friendly changes to the state's legal system, a bonding proposal for colleges, job-protection changes for public teachers and potentially a new transportation funding plan.
Legal wrangling from last November's election has not prevented a southeastern Missouri Republican lawmaker from being sworn in to office.
Kent Hampton narrowly defeated Democrat Tom Todd in the 150th House District. Todd is challenging the election's outcome in court because some voters who live in a neighboring district were given the wrong ballots and vice versa.
Hampton, of Malden, participated when the newly elected legislators were sworn-in Wednesday for the start of the 2013 legislative session.