Missouri lawmakers have quit working this week without agreeing on the details of a bill overhauling Missouri's tax credits and business incentives that had been touted as the marquee issue of a special session that began Sept. 6. There seems to be little chance of resolving the stalemate, but the two chambers did agree to keep the special session going in case a compromise can be reached later.
At least one bill has made it out of the special legislative session.
Today the Missouri House overwhelmingly passed the so-called “Facebook Fix,” which would remove confusing language from a new law regarding teacher-student messaging via social media. That law was placed on hold last month by a Cole County judge, who ruled that barring teachers from websites that allow private messaging with students would have a, quote, “chilling effect” on free speech rights.
A state commission charged with drawing new Missouri House districts cannot agree on a new map and is wrapping up its work.
The 18-member commission on Friday voted to conclude its business and authorized its chairman and vice chairwoman to sign the paperwork needed to discharge the commission. That will mean responsibility for drawing new House districts will fall to a panel of appeals court judges.
A newly created House committee will examine whether a special legislative session is needed to assist in the recovery from a deadly tornado in Joplin and flooding in southeastern Missouri.
The House Interim Committee on Disaster Recovery was to make its recommendation by the end of July. The committee also was tasked with examining long-term recovery strategies and ways for Missouri to be better prepared for future natural disasters.
A report with those findings was to be submitted by the end of the year.
Now that the dust has settled on a rather contentious 2011 legislative session, Missouri Governor Jay Nixon is denying reports that he’s about to call a special session to deal with unresolved issues.
The two most glaring are the Aerotropolis proposal and a major overhaul of the state’s tax credit system, and those bills were just a few examples of the contentious issues that lawmakers had to wrestle with this year.
A key lawmaker involved in negotiating an overhaul of Missouri's tax incentives says its prospects for passage appear "dismal" on the final day of the legislative session.
Republican House member John Diehl, of Town and Country, has been at the center of compromise attempts involving a bill that would curtail some of Missouri's existing tax credits. The bill also creates new credits intended to attract international trade, amateur sporting events and science and technology companies to Missouri.
The Missouri House has given final passage to legislation that would require some Missourians on public assistance to undergo drug testing.
Under the bill, work-eligible recipients of the state’s Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) program would lose that assistance for three years if they test positive for drug use or refuse to take a drug test.
The last week of the 2011 Missouri legislative session has arrived. Some major issues have already been resolved. Lawmakers have passed the state budget, forced changes to dog breeding regulations in Proposition B and overridden the governor’s veto of the state’s congressional redistricting map - but there are still plenty of issues waiting for action.