missouri legislature

File Photo / KBIA

  Missouri lawmakers have given final approval to legislation that could make it harder for people to collect unemployment benefits after being fired for repeated absences or other alleged misconduct.

The House passed the bill Tuesday by a 107-45 vote. Because it already had cleared the Senate, the measure now goes to Gov. Jay Nixon.

Flickr User Smabs Sputzer

  Missouri lawmakers have given final approval to a bill that would let retailers sell beer by the bottle.

Stores currently must sell beer in packages containing at least three bottles. The newly passed legislation would allow sales of single bottles, cans or pouches of beer.

The change would take effect in 2015.

The state Senate approved the bill on a vote of 31-1 last month. The House passed it Tuesday on a vote of 143-1, sending it to Gov. Jay Nixon.

missouri house floor
File Photo / KBIA News

  Missouri House members have endorsed a proposal for funding a new facility on the Fulton State Hospital campus.

The hospital is Missouri's only maximum-security psychiatric facility and the oldest public mental health facility west of the Mississippi River. Patients include those committed by the courts for evaluation and treatment, and people found not guilty or unable to stand trial because of mental disease.

It'll be a busy week for Missouri lawmakers as they enter the homestretch of the 2014 regular session.

First, the Missouri Senate is scheduled this evening to begin debates on the 13 bills making up the state budget, and they may actually try to pass them all tonight, according to Appropriations chair Kurt Schaefer, R-Columbia.

school buses
KBIA

A coalition of education organizations representing teachers, administrators and school board members objects to student transfer legislation because it could lead to students attending private schools at taxpayers' expense.

Jacob Fenston / KBIA

  Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon is raising new concerns that an income tax cut passed by the Legislature could have "cataclysmic" consequences for state revenues.

The Democratic governor said Tuesday that the bill could eliminate taxes on all income over $9,000, punching a $4.8 billion hole in the state budget.

Republican legislative leaders called Nixon's assertion "ridiculous," ''absurd" and "laughable."

Nixon did not veto the bill Tuesday but has indicated he will do so.

children in head start classroom
Photo provided by Missouri Association for Community Action

Missouri House members this past week passed legislation that would allow public schools to begin counting some children attending early childhood education programs toward the basic state funding they receive. 

missouri capitol
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

The Missouri House and Senate have each passed bills that would prevent people younger than 18 from purchasing electronic cigarettes.

KBIA

  Missouri House members have endorsed legislation that could offer additional financial assistance to persuade more top students to stay in the state after graduation day.

House endorses transportation tax vote

Apr 8, 2014
missouri house floor
File Photo / KBIA News

  The Missouri House has given first-round approval to a proposed constitutional amendment that would create a temporary one-cent sales tax to fund transportation needs.  The tax hike would require voter approval and would expire after 10 years unless renewed by voters again.  Before the vote, an amendment was offered that would have raised the state’s fuel tax from 17 to 20 cents per gallon.  It was sponsored by Democrat Jon Carpenter of Clay County.   “The Missouri gas tax has not increased in many years, and it hasn’t kept pace with inflation, and the amount of money we get to be able to

Budget writers in the Missouri Senate have begun their review of the state's spending plan for Fiscal Year 2015.

missouri house floor
File photo / KBIA

  The Missouri Senate has finally passed a tax cut bill, after different versions were blocked by Republicans who opposed a compromise between the fellow GOP sponsor and Democratic Governor Jay Nixon.  The bill now on its way to the Missouri House would cut the individual income tax rate from 6 percent to 5-and-a-half percent and phase in a 25 percent deduction on business income.  The changes would not take effect until 2017.  The measure is sponsored by Republican Senator Will Kraus of Lee’s Summit. 

gun
Drab Mayko / FLICKR

  The Missouri House has already endorsed legislation that would nullify some federal gun control laws the state considers to be infringements on gun rights.

But today, the Republican-led chamber voted to remove a portion of the bill that could have sent law enforcement officers to jail for knowingly enforcing such laws.

Under previous versions of the measure, federal agents could have faced up to a year in jail and a $1,000 fine. The House bill would only allow people to sue law enforcement for enforcing certain federal laws.

missouri house floor
File photo / KBIA

The Missouri House has passed a $26.6 billion state budget that ties the amount of an increase in funding for public schools to increases in state revenue.

missouri capitol
Ryan Famuliner / KBIA

The Missouri Senate has endorsed legislation that would require local elections authorities to phase out the use of some electronic voting machines. Under the bill, voters could only use electronic machines that produce a paper trail of marked votes. All other types of electronic voting machines currently in use for elections could still be used, but could not be replaced once they malfunction.

The legislation given first-round approval Monday also declares the paper ballot as the official ballot of Missouri elections. It needs one more Senate vote before moving to the House.

Justin Paprocki / KBIA News

Since the early 1800s in Missouri, there have been laws against selling certain items on Sundays. These laws are called Blue Laws, and they were originally designed to give citizens and businesses a day of rest. But a motorcycle dealer in Kansas City is pushing to knock down one of the state's last remaining blue laws. KBIA's Justin Paprocki reported on how Sunday motorcycle sales could soon be allowed, with producing by Matthew Zuzolo.

File photo / KBIA

    Across the nation, “right to work” bills have received a lot of attention. Twenty four states have adopted this legislation, most recently Indiana and Michigan. “Right to work” prohibits labor contracts from requiring all workers to pay union fees, regardless of whether they are union members.

Six of the eight states bordering Missouri have already passed “right to work,” one of which is Oklahoma. Bill Lant, representative from Pineville, sees a big difference between these two states.

cigarette
Sudipto_Sarkar / flickr

Missouri had expected to receive about $130 million this April under an annual settlement payment from tobacco companies.

Missouri Capitol
Kristofor Husted / KBIA

Missouri's Capitol will be quieter this week as state lawmakers take a weeklong spring break.

The first half of Missouri's 2014 legislative session is over, and lawmakers have left Jefferson City for their annual spring break.

File / KBIA

  A Missouri Senate committee has slashed the amount of money that’s to be used to keep Normandy schools open the rest of the school year.   

Missouri Capitol
Kristofor Husted / KBIA

 This week on Talking Politics, there are three candidates running for the First Ward Columbia City Council seat. Bill Easley, Ginny Chadwick and Tyree Byndom will be on the April 8 ballot.

Also on the show, a freshman state representative from St. Louis County wants to make the high five the official greeting of Missouri.

Massoud Hossaini / AP Images

  Missouri residents and government agencies could not use drones to conduct surveillance without a warrant under legislation advanced by the state House.

The measure would also prevent journalists and other organizations from using drones to observe private property without an owner's consent. State universities could still use unmanned aircraft to conduct educational research.

Missouri Capitol
Kristofor Husted / KBIA

The Missouri House has passed legislation to create tax incentives to lure wealthy high-tech investors to the Show-Me State.

cellphone tower
gvgoebel / flickr

Missouri lawmakers have given final approval to a bill limiting the ability of Missouri cities and counties to restrict cellphone towers.

Without one word of debate, the Missouri Senate Thursday passed legislation to nullify federal gun-control laws in Missouri.

missouri capitol
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

  Last week, it was hard to miss the huge news coming out of Columbia.

Former University of Missouri defensive lineman Michael Sam came out to ESPN last week. He could be the first openly gay NFL player after the draft in May.

"I'm not afraid to tell the world who I am. I'm Michael Sam: I'm a college graduate. I'm African American, and I'm gay," Sam said. "I'm comfortable in my skin."

File / KBIA

  Missouri senators have given first-round approval to legislation that would reward the state's four-year institutions for good performance with more funding.

Under the measure endorsed Tuesday, public universities would establish performance criteria. The criteria would be used to determine how much extra money the institutions get during years the state can afford to increase college funding.

cindyt7070 / Flickr

Missouri lawmakers appear to agree with Gov. Jay Nixon that public colleges and universities should get more money next year.

But some lawmakers want to put part of that money toward building improvements, instead of devoting it to operations as proposed by Nixon.

House Budget Committee Chairman Rick Stream says he wants to make use of a 2012 law that authorizes state money for college building projects that generate a 50 percent match through private donations.

Republican leaders in the Missouri House have scrapped the budget being proposed by Gov. Jay Nixon, a Democrat. Instead they will use last year's budget bills as a starting point for crafting their fiscal year 2015 spending plan.

House Budget Chair Rick Stream, R-Kirkwood, says their budget bills contain none of the governor's spending proposals for the fiscal year (FY2015) that begins July 1.

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