The Missouri Senate passed a bill Thursday that would impose tougher penalties on drivers who run stop signs, if they cause crashes resulting in injury or death.
The legislation would increase fines and require the suspension of driver's licenses in certain cases of failing to yield the right of way. The bill would set a minimum fine of $500 and raise the maximum to $1,000 instead of the current $200 for violations resulting in injuries. For serious injuries, there would be a new minimum fine of $1,000, and the maximum would rise to $3,000 from the current $500.
A proposed tax cut is once again moving forward in the Missouri Senate after it was rewritten yet again. The bill had stalled after its sponsor, Republican Will Kraus of Lee’s Summit, offered a substitute that conformed to conditions that Democratic Governor Jay Nixon said were necessary for him to sign it.
Missouri senators have endorsed an income tax cut that could eventually waive an estimated $464 million a year in state revenues.
The legislation given initial approval Wednesday would cut taxes by half of the amount originally proposed by a Republican-led committee. It could gradually cut the state's top individual income tax rate to 5 and a half percent from the current 6 percent.
It also could phase in a 25 percent deduction for business income reported on individual income tax returns, and add a $500 tax deduction for lower-income individuals.
A Missouri Senate panel has endorsed legislation that seeks to recoup money from a settlement with tobacco companies.
Under the settlement, Missouri expected to get $130 million this year. But it will likely get less than half because of an arbitrator's ruling that state officials failed to diligently enforce the settlement a decade ago.
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.
Several Republican state senators are making it clear that there will be no expansion of Medicaid eligibility this year in Missouri.
Five GOP senators took to the Senate floor Monday as the Legislature returned from spring break to say they will block any attempt to expand Medicaid eligibility during the session that ends in mid-May.
Students from the four universities in the UM System presented their research to legislators and spectators earlier Tuesday at the State Capitol as part of Undergraduate Research Day. The symposium featured posters of 46 students from MU, UMSL, UMKC, and Missouri S&T. Of the students presenting, 20 were MU sophomores, juniors or seniors.