Hall resigns as Mo. Dept. of Economic Development as confirmation deadline expires | St. Louis Public Radio

Hall resigns as Mo. Dept. of Economic Development as confirmation deadline expires

Feb 2, 2012

Updated 1:49 p.m. with additional information from the Associated Press on other failed appointments.

Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon announced this morning that Jason Hall, Nixon's nominee to be the new director of the Missouri Department of Economic Development, has resigned.

Hall's resignation comes after the Senate Gubernatorial Appointments Committee refused to vote Wednesday on confirming Jason Hall to head the department. The constitutional deadline to confirm Hall then expired.

"With his strong professional background and extensive experience in helping Missouri businesses create jobs, Jason Hall is exactly the type of strong leader Missourians need at our Department of Economic Development," Nixon said in a statement Thursday. "This inaction by the Senate will not dissuade me from continuing to work relentlessly with business and community leaders to create jobs and keep our economy moving forward."

Hall will continue to work with Nixon on economic and business matters as "a senior member" of Nixon's administration, according to Nixon's statement.

Replacing Hall as acting director of the DED, effective immediately, is Chris Pieper. Pieper is currently deputy counsel to Nixon and has previously served as general counsel for the DED from June 2010 to Jan. 2012. Prior to  joining state government, Nixon's office says Pieper was with Thompson Coburn LLP in the firm's environmental, toxic tort and railroad litigation practice areas.

The Senate refused to confirm several other appointments Thursday, including to the University of Missouri system governing board, Public Service Commission, Highways and Transportation Commission and a state health insurance board.

Nominations made by Gov. Jay Nixon and not confirmed in the Senate this week cannot be appointed to the same position again. To avoid that ban, Nixon withdrew some appointments, such as to the Public Service Commission and transportation commission. Senators did not reach a vote for appointees to the university board and to the Missouri Consolidated Health Care Plan board.