JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - The Missouri General Assembly has officially come to a close.
House and Senate leaders gaveled the annual session to an end Thursday in compliance with the adjournment date set in the Missouri Constitution.
The actual work ended two weeks ago. The constitution prohibited lawmakers from passing any legislation after May 17, but allowed additional time for bills to be printed and prepared for delivery to the governor.
On Thursday, the House speaker and Senate president pro tem signed bills as a verification that they had passed.
Gov. Jay Nixon now has until mid-July to decide whether to sign those bills into law or veto them.
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon says an income-tax cut bill passed by the Legislature also could levy taxes on prescription drugs.
Nixon released a written statement Thursday saying the legislation would repeal an existing sales tax exemption on prescriptions, which could cost consumers $200 million annually.
The Democratic governor has previously indicated that he is likely to veto the bill. His previous statements pointed to the eventual loss of hundreds of millions of dollars for state services as a result of the income tax cut.
The legislation was handled by Republican Sen. Will Kraus, of Lee's Summit. Kraus said Thursday that he did not intend to tax prescription drugs. If that's the case, he says Nixon should sign the bill and call a special session so lawmakers can fix it.
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Some Missouri lawmakers want to change the state’s motorcycle helmet laws to promote tourism, and in turn economic development.
These lawmakers are in favor of suspending Missouri’s helmet requirement for the month of August each year to coincide with the annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in South Dakota, which draws hundreds of thousands of bikers. These bikers often skip passing through Missouri because of the helmet law. Lawmakers say the state is missing out on a lot of money as a result.
Not only is the money important, but also the freedom of choice.
It’s these same lawmakers who also are pushing for another measure which would lift the helmet requirement for all riders 21 years and older at all times. However, there are lawmakers and outside groups who oppose changing the helmet requirements even in the slightest.
The medical association argues the rate of head injuries will skyrocket.
The legislature passed a bill in 2009 repealing Missouri’s helmet law, but Governor Jay Nixon vetoed it citing concerns about increased health care costs and safety issues.