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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon is warning of employee layoffs and cuts to services if legislators pass a budget that reduces funding for the states' motor vehicle division.
Nixon said Wednesday that lawmakers were acting irresponsibly to put forward a budget that would fund the division for only the first two-thirds of the fiscal year that starts July 1.
Republican lawmakers said Tuesday that the partial funding was intended as an incentive for Nixon's administration to stop making electronic copies of personal documents of people applying for driver's licenses. They said lawmakers could provide the rest of the money when they return to the Capitol next January.
But Nixon called the partial-year funding unprecedented. The Democratic governor said he would treat it as an annual appropriation and cut accordingly.
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.
MoDOT's entire phone system is down today.
Officials say crews are working to repair the technical failure, but there is no estimate for when service will be restored. This outage affect all MoDOT offices in the state.
Motorists with emergencies should call 911.
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - A union-backed alternative for fixing the Illinois pension crisis gets a test vote Wednesday afternoon in Springfield.
A Senate committee is holding a hearing on the measure giving workers and retirees a choice of benefit packages. Senate President John Cullerton says it saves money and would survive a legal challenge.
Critics say it won't save enough money.