Some Republican lawmakers are vowing to try to override Gov. Jay Nixon's veto of a bill that reduced income taxes. Shortly after the Democratic governor rejected the bill today, the leading sponsors of the legislation said they would attempt to get the two-thirds vote needed to override his veto when the Legislature convenes in September.
Republicans hold enough seats in the House in Senate to override Nixon’s veto without any Democratic support. They would have to hold all of the GOP members together in the House and could afford to have only one Republican defect in the Senate.
Legislation that could ease the caseload of Missouri public defenders is being considered by Gov. Jay Nixon.
The measure would allow the public defender system to ask the presiding judge of a judicial circuit for a conference to discuss caseload issues. The judge could decide whether to grant relief in a particular case.
Missouri state lawmakers launched an interim committee Thursday to examine the issue of Medicaid reform. Governor Jay Nixon pushed heavily for the legislature to expand Medicaid this session, and accept hundreds of millions of federal dollars to do so. But Republican legislators were worried about the long-term costs of the move, and no measure was passed. Missouri House Speaker Tim Jones, a Republican member who started the committee, says accepting the federal money wouldn’t fix the problems that are inherent to the Medicaid system.
A Missouri lawmaker who threatened to resign unless one or both of his key bills survived the last day of the 2013 legislative session is staying put, even though both bills failed to make it out by Friday's deadline.
Missouri lawmakers have approved legislation that would require education officials to seek grants and donations to help children with special needs such as autism.
Financial resources could be devoted to scholarships or clinical trials for behavioral interventions. Scholarships could be used to help students attend a public school outside the student's home district or a private school.
Missouri senators have given up their attempt to pass an overhaul of the some of the state's tax credit programs for businesses and developers.
Supporters of the bill set it aside Friday after Republican Sen. Brad Lager, of Savannah, spoke against it for an hour in a filibuster that could have otherwise continued until the session's mandatory end at 6 p.m. The legislation would have created tax incentives for international air cargo exports, computer data centers and investors in startup technology companies.
Missouri lawmakers have passed legislation that could patch a hole in the state budget for early childhood programs and health care for the blind.
A bill given final approval Friday would transfer $55 million from general revenues into a new fund to finance the programs. The move was necessary because the 2014 budget passed last week by lawmakers called for funding the programs with savings from the repeal of a tax break for low-income seniors and disabled residents who live in rental housing.
Missouri lawmakers have voted for a third time to reinstate local taxes on cars, trucks and boats bought from out-of-state dealers or in private transactions.
The state Supreme Court struck down such taxes in 2012 but said a local "use tax" could be levied on such purchases if local voters approved. Legislators approved proposals to reverse the ruling's effect last year and again this year. But Gov. Jay Nixon vetoed both, including the most recent one last month.
The top lawmaker in the Missouri Senate says there will be no vote this year on a revision of the state's criminal laws or a $1.2 billion bonding program. Both measures already passed the House. But Senate President Pro Tem Tom Dempsey says they are too complex to bring up with just a few days remaining before Friday's mandatory adjournment for the 2013 session.
The Missouri House has passed yet another bill that expands the rights of gun owners, less than 24 hours after passing legislation aimed at blocking the federal government from enforcing federal gun laws in the Show-Me State.
In his proposed budget, President Barack Obama wants to delay cuts to federal payments to hospitals, keeping the payments intact for an extra year. That could affect the debate over expanding Medicaid in Missouri.
Through what’s called the disproportionate share hospital payments or DSH payments, the federal government gives money to hospitals that provide a lot of free care to patients who are uninsured and can’t afford services. The Affordable Care Act, though, includes significant cuts to DSH payments.
In November we told you about the debate in the Missouri legislature over including sexual orientation and gender identity in the Human Rights act. It would offer protection to make sure LGBT aren’t discriminated for housing and employment discrimination. There are two groups trying to achieve the same goal in two different ways. One organization is trying to get the state legislature to change policy, while another wants to leave the decision to voters on the ballot in 2014.
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.
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.
Missouri power companies would track costs for operations and maintenance for their next rate case under proposed state legislation.
The new tracker would be used to compare the difference between the costs factored into electric rates and the expenses actually incurred. The differences would be included in the calculation for electric rates when the utility files its next case with the Public Service Commission.
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).
The Missouri House has given first-round approval to a measure that supporters say will help protect farmers. The proposed state constitutional amendment would prohibit laws that limit what it calls modern farming and ranching practices unless they're passed by the Legislature. The measure would add that the right to engage in modern farming and ranching practices are "forever guaranteed."
House members endorsed the measure Wednesday. It needs another vote before moving to the state Senate. If it passes the Legislature, the amendment would go to a statewide vote.
Missouri lawmakers are looking for ways to collect taxes from some online and out-of-state retailers. State budget officials estimate that Missouri could gain about $10 million annually in tax revenues if legislation filed in both the House and Senate were to pass.
The bills address two areas that traditional retail stores contend put them at a disadvantage. One provision would require Missouri taxes to be collected on out-of-state retailers that personally deliver products like furniture and appliances to Missouri homes.