Politics & Issues

Education
4:18 pm
Wed May 18, 2011

Mo. board rejects school transportation hardship

(via Flickr/Alex Grant (alextakesphotos))

The state Board of Education has denied a school district transfer for a southwest Missouri family in a case that some officials claimed could have encouraged parents statewide to try to switch districts.

State Education Commissioner Chris Nicastro had said a kindergarten pupil should be shifted from the Blue Eye to the Shell Knob district because of a transportation hardship. Nicastro said Table Rock Lake posed a natural barrier resulting in a long bus ride that was a hardship.

MO Statehouse
5:56 pm
Tue May 17, 2011

Teacher sexual misconduct bill waits for governor’s action

(via Flickr/comedy_nose)

Among the more than 150 bills sent to Governor Jay Nixon this year is one designed to keep teachers who engage in sexual misconduct with students from jumping to another school district.

The sponsor, GOP Senator Jane Cunningham of Chesterfield, says the practice is called “passing the trash:”

“Teachers and educators and principals and superintendents are moving from one district to another because districts are signing confidentiality agreements with them, and oftentimes even giving them a severance package to keep everybody quiet,” Cunningham said.

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Missouri Congressional race
5:46 pm
Tue May 17, 2011

Cunningham still mum on political future

Mo. Senator Jane Cunningham (R, Chesterfield)
(Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio)

With Missouri Congressman Todd Akin (R) tossing his hat in the ring for next year’s U.S. Senate race, one of his potential successors is keeping mum about whether she’ll join the growing field vying to replace him.

Jane Cunningham (R, Chesterfield) currently represents part of St. Louis County in the Missouri Senate, and has made no secret of her interest in running for Congress.

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MO Statehouse
4:36 pm
Mon May 16, 2011

Political aspirations fueled redistricting animosity, says UMSL professor

(l-r) State Senator Scott Rupp (R, Wentzville) and State Rep. John Diehl (R, Town and Country) during a redistricting meeting last month. None of the House or Senate redistricting committee members have so far announced any plans to run for Congress.
(Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio)

One political expert is blaming some of the animosity between Missouri’s Republican legislative leaders during the just-ended 2011 session on political aspirations.

The battle over which redistricting map would be adopted got downright ugly at times between House and Senate negotiators.

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2011Missouri Legislative Session
9:39 am
Mon May 16, 2011

Wrapping up Missouri's 2011 legislative session

Missouri Governor Jay Nixon briefs reporters on various subjects after the end of the 96th General Assembly at the State Capitol in Jefferson City on May 13, 2011.
(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

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.

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End of session
7:00 pm
Fri May 13, 2011

Local control, Aerotropolis fail in final legislative hours

Missouri House members toss copies of bills in the air the moment the gavel came down on the 2011 legislative session. The final day paper toss is a tradition in the Missouri House.
(Tim Bommel/Mo. House Communications)

Legislation that would have returned oversight of the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department back to City Hall has failed in Jefferson City.

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Concealed Gun Legislation
5:39 pm
Fri May 13, 2011

Mo. lawmakers pass bill lowering concealed gun age

Legislation lowering the minimum age for getting concealed gun permits in Missouri heads to the governor's desk.

Lawmakers gave final approval Friday to the bill reducing the minimum age to 21 from the current 23.

Missouri enacted its concealed-carry law in 2003 after legislators overrode a veto by then-Gov. Bob Holden.

The National Rifle Association says no other state with a concealed-carry law sets the minimum age at 23.

Workers' Compensation
4:20 pm
Fri May 13, 2011

Mo. Senate passes legislation limiting workers' compensation lawsuits

(via Flickr/KellyB.)

The Missouri Senate has passed legislation to limit workers’ compensation lawsuits. Lawmakers made changes to worker’s compensation rules in 2005, which the courts later determined gave employees the right to sue each other over workplace injuries. 

Republican Senator Jack Goodman of Lawrence County says his bill would eliminate that option.

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Missouri Rx
3:44 pm
Fri May 13, 2011

Missouri RX prescription program to get 3-year extension

(via Flickr/Magineart.com)

Missouri lawmakers have passed legislation to renew the state’s prescription drug program for senior citizens and the disabled. 

Missouri RX covers half the co-pays and deductibles for individuals earning up to $21,600 per year and married couples making just over $29,000 per year.  The program’s renewal was added onto a separate bill sponsored by GOP House Member Jason Smith of Dent County.

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Election 2012
12:46 pm
Fri May 13, 2011

Mo. House passes March presidential primary bill

(via Flickr/ Daniel Morrison)

Missouri lawmakers have passed legislation to move the state's 2012 presidential primary to March 6 instead of Feb. 7 as currently scheduled.

The House gave the bill final approval in a 137-11 vote Friday. The measure now goes to Gov. Jay Nixon. The Senate had already passed the measure.

The legislation would put Missouri in compliance with rules set by the national Democratic and Republican parties.

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