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Wednesday, 12 February 2014 01:00

MO Senate endorses gun nullification bill

   JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - The Missouri Senate has endorsed legislation that seeks to send federal agents to jail for enforcing gun control laws.
   The Republican-led Senate gave first-round approval to the measure late Tuesday. It would declare federal gun controls laws that infringe on gun rights to be null and void. Federal agents enforcing those laws could be prosecuted and punished by up to one year in jail.
   However, the measure would likely face a court challenge if approved. And courts have consistently ruled that states cannot nullify federal laws.
   Republican Sen. Brian Nieves is sponsoring the bill. He says it protects liberties, but opponents say it would lead to more violence.
   The bill, which needs one more vote before moving to the House, would also allow designated school personnel to carry concealed weapons in schools.
 
Published in Local News
Friday, 07 February 2014 03:33

Cell tower bills pass MO Senate

   Legislation that would limit the ability of cities and counties to restrict cellphone towers is a step close to being law in Missouri...again.  
   State senators approved a series of bill Thursday that would reinstate many of the provisions of a 2013 law that were struck down in court for violating the single-subject requirement of the state constitution.  Lawmakers split the measures into five separate bills this time around.  
   The legislation is aimed at creating uniform standards for communications companies expanding cellphone and Internet services.  
   Many cities oppose the rules over conflicts with their own zoning and land-use regulations.
 
Published in Local News
Thursday, 06 February 2014 04:18

GOP led MO Senate kills Medicaid expansion

   JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - The Missouri Senate has defeated an attempt to expand Medicaid eligibility to several hundred thousand lower-income adults.
   The 23-9 vote Wednesday followed party lines, with majority Republicans voting against the expansion and minority party Democrats supporting it.
   The vote marked the first official rejection of Medicaid expansion this year since Democratic Governor Jay Nixon renewed his call for it during his State of the State address. Republicans repeatedly rejected similar proposals last year.
   About half of the states have expanded Medicaid under the terms of President Barack Obama's health care law. States that do so can receive enhanced federal payments.
   But Missouri's Republican lawmakers continue to express concerns about the potential long-term costs.
 
Published in Local News
Monday, 27 January 2014 06:22

Debate begins in Missouri Legislature

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - After two weeks of committee hearings, Missouri lawmakers are poised to begin debating legislation on the House and Senate floor.
Senate President Pro Tem Tom Dempsey says the chamber this week will take up a bill barring temporary leaders of state agencies from remaining in office for more than 120 days.
Dempsey says the Senate could also consider legislation that would implement performance-based funding for Missouri's four-year public universities. The funding scheme would only apply in years when higher education receives a budget increase from state government.
In the House, the first bill on the debate calendar would allow people with disabilities or on active military duty to appoint someone to represent them when they file for elective office.
   
Published in Local News
   JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - It's opening day at the Missouri Capitol, where lawmakers are gathering for the start of their annual session.
   The session that begins at noon Wednesday will officially be known as the Second Regular Session of the 97th General Assembly. It will run through May 16.
   The agenda will be topped by an effort for the second straight year to cut income taxes, and proposals to revamp a Missouri law allowing students in unaccredited districts to transfer to other nearby schools.
   For the first time in a while, lawmakers also will be operating under different revenue projections than Gov. Jay Nixon. Those financial differences could be magnified when the Democratic governor outlines his budget proposals Jan. 21.
   Republicans outnumber Democrats 108-52 in the House and 24-9 in the Senate.
 
Published in Local News
Wednesday, 04 December 2013 03:00

Boeing incentive bill moves to full Senate

   The Missouri Senate will take up debate Wednesday on a tax incentive bill aimed at luring Boeing's commercial airplane plant to St. Louis.  That after a Senate committee approved legislation Tuesday night that will offer up to $1.7 billion of incentives over two decades tor Boeing.  

   St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay and County Executive Charlie Dooley led a delegation of officials testifying Tuesday evening before the Senate committee. They touted the thousands of jobs a new Boeing plant would bring to the area.

   Earlier Tuesday, Governor Jay Nixon released an economic analysis showing Missouri would take in more additional tax revenues than it would waive in incentives.  

   St. Louis area governments also would offer incentives. But local economic development officials said they weren't ready Tuesday to put a price tag on those incentives.

   Missouri is one of several states competing to assemble the Boeing 777X airplane.

 

 

Published in Local News

   A fundraiser for a state senator from the St. Louis area is drawing fire.  

   State Senator Brian Nieves (R) plans to give raffle off an AR-15 assault rifle at a fundraiser in Pacific next month.  Raffle tickets will go to supporters who give $1,000 or more at the October 12th event.  

   Critics accuse Nieves of stunting to draw support for an override of Nixon's veto of a controversial gun rights bill -- a bill that criminalizes the enforcement of federal gun laws in Missouri, and which Nieves sponsored.  

   But the Senator says this isn't the first time he's given away a gun at a fundraiser, its just the first AR-15.  

   Missouri lawmakers will gather in Jefferson City Wednesday and attempt to override a number of Nixon vetoes, including House Bill 436.

   Nieves represents Franklin and western St. Louis Counties.

Published in Local News

   Call it the tale of two hearings.  

   Missouri Senate and House committees each held hearings Wednesday on the state's Medicaid program.  Each focused on different perspectives.  

   At the House hearing in St. Louis, most testified in favor of expanding Medicaid under the federal Affordable Care Act.  But at the Senate hearing in Jefferson City, the stress was on the need to overhaul the system first -- by finding ways to reduce costs and improve care.  

   The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Missouri's 8.5-billion dollar Medicaid program currently serves 875-thousand low-income seniors, people with disabilities, and families with children.  Expansion would add about 260-thousand low-income, working people.

Published in Local News

   JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri Senate Democrats blocked a vote on legislation that would change which projects fall under the state's wage requirement for public construction projects.

   Under current law, "maintenance" work is not subject to the state's prevailing wage rules. But a 2011 Missouri Supreme Court decision expanded the definition of "construction," causing more projects to be subject to the wage requirement.

   The bill that stalled Monday would define maintenance as routine, recurring and usual work that cannot exceed $75,000. Any work that does not meet those requirements would be subject to the prevailing wage. Democrats argue the measure would allow government entities to do construction projects without paying the wage requirement.

   Prevailing wage is the rate paid for a give trade on public construction projects.

 
Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - The Missouri Senate has passed additional funding for Capitol repairs, design plans for a new facility at the state mental hospital and for the state parks system.

The measure was approved by a 29-4 vote on Wednesday. It would allow the state to spend $50 million on new Capitol windows and structural repairs, $38 million on a new state office building, $20 million for parks and $13 million to fund design plans at Fulton State Hospital.

Lawmakers moved forward with the additional funding last week after Gov. Jay Nixon's administration released an April financial report showing state revenue had increased by more than 11 percent from last year.

The spending plan now heads back to the House.

Published in Local News
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