A central Missouri lawmaker has filed legislation that would allow Interstate 70 to be turned into a toll road.
The measure would allow the state Department of Transportation to contract with a private company to fix I-70 in exchange for being allowed to charge tolls. Sponsoring Sen. Mike Kehoe, a Republican from Jefferson City, says that is the only way the state can afford the improvements the highway needs to accommodate increasing traffic.
House leaders had intended to hold a first-round vote on the measure Monday, but it was delayed because of the large number of Democrats who spoke against the bill. Joe Aull (D, Marshall) used former Missouri Congressman Ike Skelton (D) as an example of how he says some elderly citizens could be disenfranchised by the bill. Aull says Skelton attempted to get a photo ID for himself after the 2006 voter ID law was passed, but he was turned down.
The congressional redistricting map passed last year by Missouri lawmakers has been upheld by a Cole County judge.
Following a three-day court battle, Circuit Judge Daniel Green ruled late Friday that the districts in the so-called Grand Compromise Map do comply with the state constitution’s requirement that congressional districts be “as compact as may be.” Gerry Greiman, one of the plaintiff’s attorneys, disagrees.
A Missouri judge could rule in mid-February on a lawsuit challenging new boundaries for state House districts.
The case was scheduled for a Friday hearing before Cole County Circuit Judge Pat Joyce. Instead, the judge gave attorneys on both sides a Feb. 10 deadline for submitting written arguments. Joyce could rule the following week. Candidates currently can start filing Feb. 28 for this year's elections.