Jason Rosenbaum is out this week, so we have St. Louis Public Radio's Marshall Griffin filling in. Marshall joins Jo Mannies of the St. Louis Beacon and Chris McDaniel of St. Louis Public Radio to discuss the week in politics.
On this week's show: the special elections bill that's speeding through the statehouse, the early morning voter ID committee and the $6 million plane.
Editor's note: after the recording, the voter ID committee was pushed back to 8 a.m.
One of the major holdups in the expansion of the Keystone Pipeline was Nebraska Governor Dave Heineman’s apprehension. But after Nebraska state officials approved a revised route this week, both of Missouri’s U.S. Senators are calling on the president to sign off on the expansion.
The Keystone Pipeline already runs through Missouri. What the Keystone Pipeline XL would do is expand the pipeline – adding routes from Alberta to Kansas and Oklahoma to Texas.
It would also enlarge the size of the pipes’ diameter by 6 inches.
The centerpiece would be a new one-cent sales tax. It would expire after 10 years, and would need approval from both lawmakers and Missouri voters. Transportation Commission Chairman Rudy Farber says the tax would not be collected on medicine, groceries or gasoline purchases.
If today's press conference at Oak Brook Elementary in the Parkway School District is any indication, Gov. Jay Nixon hopes to make investment in education a focal point as he starts his second term.
Details - including exact dollar amounts - will have to wait for Monday's State of the State address. But the Democrat Nixon says the new money will span from early childhood to college. His initiatives include:
Missouri House members are proposing a statewide bond issue they say could launch a building boom across the Show-Me State.
House Speaker Tim Jones (R, Eureka) has created a special committee to examine several bonding proposals that could fund new buildings, repairs and upgrades on state property and college campuses. The effort is bipartisan, as the Republican speaker has appointed Democrat Chris Kelly of Columbia to chair the committee. Kelly says the proposal can be done without raising taxes, unless transportation needs are included.
St. Louis Mayoral candidate Lewis Reed is accusing Mayor Francis Slay of campaigning at the expense of taxpayers.
Reed, President of the Board of Aldermen, alleges Slay is holding meetings with city employees to campaign for votes while they are on the clock. Glenn Burleigh, Reed’s campaign manager, claims it’s a coordinated effort aimed at multiple departments.
“Telling folks on taxpayer dime: that’s what’s important here," Burleigh said. "These are trash collectors, that instead of picking up trash, were listening to the mayor.”