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02 December 2010

Rupp: Bringing Confidence To Riders: Therapeutic Horsemanship

As a founder of the Missouri Commission on Autism Spectrum Disorders, one of my top priorities is making sure children with disabilities receive the learning opportunities they deserve. That being said, I am proud to acknowledge Therapeutic Horsemanship of Wentzville for their dedication to helping people of all ages find confidence through horseback riding. With a mission to "provide equine-assisted therapy programs for individuals with disabilities in order to develop their maximum physical and psychological potential," this dutiful group of therapists and volunteers are making a positive impact on their community.

Founded in 1975 with a borrowed barn and horses, Therapeutic Horsemanship has brought happiness and self confidence to more than 3,000 people in St. Louis and in five neighboring counties. Therapeutic Horsemanship clients, whose ages span from toddlers to adults in their nineties, have experienced many benefits that can come from working and bonding with horses.

For clients needing physical therapy, horseback riding is therapeutic because the horse's rhythmical pace transfers to the client the pelvic movements of a human walking. These continuous motions help clients improve their balance, coordination, strength, and muscle tone. One of the best physical therapy programs Therapeutic Horsemanship offers is hippotherapy, which can be translated to "treatment with the help of the horse." Taught by occupational, physical, and speech therapists, hippotherapy is not intended to teach a client to ride a horse, but is based on neuromotor function and sensory processing.

Although many of Therapeutic Horsemanship programs provide physical treatment, they also give clients a great deal of personal satisfaction. By participating, clients gain a sense of accomplishment and control as they handle a horse. Clients' social and communicative skills often improve as well, because they need to vocalize their thoughts to their therapists and to their horse during sessions.

Another very beneficial program that has been offered in recent years has been Horses for Heroes, which was created in 2007 by the North American Riding for the Handicapped Association (NARHA). With thousands of soldiers returning from combat with injuries such as amputations and spinal chord damage, as well as traumatic stress, this program gives these honorable men and women a chance to receive physical and emotional therapy.

Clients with disabilities require a New Rider Evaluation and a physicians notice granting approval to participate in Therapeutic Horsemanship programs. The non-profit program relies on volunteers for help and support. I applaud Therapeutic Horsemanship for their outstanding efforts to assist those with disabilities, allowing them to feel proud of their accomplishments. To find out more about Therapeutic Horsemanship, please visit and for NARHA information, visit

If you have any questions regarding this matter or any other issues within state government, please visit my website at You can also e-mail me or call my office toll-free at (866) 271-2844.

Davis: What is Life Worth?

Last week one of my faithful subscribers invited me to join him and others outside an abortion clinic in Columbia.  We were there to pray and to serve as a visual statement that some people care.  We may not be able to gauge the value of our time and efforts this side of eternity, but I know it was important for us to be there.

I was told that this clinic was shut down for 13 weeks because they could not find an abortionist interested in administering this practice.  Regardless of the reasons, wouldn't it be great if they shut down because there was no demand for their services?

Instead of waiting for a legislative remedy, these people are doing something right now to make a statement that we care about life and death situations.  I applaud all of them for taking the time to show human compassion and alternative solutions beyond destroying our dignity.

I especially applaud the four priests who attended.  There is something very refreshing about seeing spiritual leaders who are willing to stand with their parishioners for a just cause.  I have been told that members of the clergy were largely responsible for our victory in the War for Independence.  You can read such stories using the following links: Clergymen Who Preached Independence and Clergy and Our Constitutional Foundation

Without a vision the people perish, but without leaders, the vision perishes.  Many pastors today are unengaged and even dismissive of political involvement.  It's no wonder our country is going down the tubes.  As we try to analyze what is wrong with our legislators, it is apparent that the legislators are a fairly accurate reflection of the voters.  Many voters make bad decisions because most churches fail to teach principles of good government to their congregations.  We desperately need men of God to stand up and model Biblical principles to their people.  This happened last week.

Your Thoughts are important to me, so let me know what your pastor is doing to lead your church to find solutions to the moral decay that is bankrupting our governments. You can send me your opinion by clicking here: Cynthia Davis

The Y.O.U.N.G. Conservatives of America Video

Last week's Capitol Report was about the award conferred upon the most constitutional legislator.  Hint to my fellow legislators:  If you vote in accordance with constitutional principles, you may win this award next year and our state's financial problems will be solved!  If you want to see the video of part of the event, you can click here:  Most Constitutional Legislator Award

A Little Bit of Humor: The Ten Commandments

The real reason that we can't have the Ten Commandments in a Courthouse: You cannot post "Thou Shalt Not Steal," "Thou Shalt Not Commit Adultery," and "Thou Shalt Not Lie" in a building full of lawyers, judges and politicians! It creates a hostile work environment!

01 December 2010

Keaveny: Fraud Prevention Taskforce, Focus on St. Louis' Children's Hospital, Libraries, and Language Immerson Schools

The Fraud Prevention Taskforce

In an era when technology runs much of our lives, Missourians have to worry about issues that were not a problem before. A prime example is when a person's identity is stolen. Last year, nearly 10 million Americans had their identities stolen, and up to $40 billion was lost due to fraudulent telemarketing.

These statistics are staggering, and it's a priority to protect Missouri citizens from these deceitful crimes. The Fraud Prevention Taskforce, a branch of the Circuit Attorney of St. Louis, offers some tips on how to stay safe and keep your identity protected:
  • Join the Fraud E-Mail Alerts: When there is suspicious activity or a possible business scam occurring in St. Louis, a warning e-mail will be sent out to all registered members. Please e-mail Dan Rechtien to register for e-mail alerts.
  • Call the Fraud Assistance Line with questions: This 24-hour line, at (314) 612-1412, is provided to citizens of St. Louis who have questions or concerns regarding any wary behavior they have noticed.
  • Attend Fraud Prevention Seminars: These seminars are free to anyone living or working in St. Louis. All who attend will receive a booklet of information, and can learn about a variety of topics, including prevention of senior fraud, identity theft, mail and Internet fraud, home-improvement fraud, employment fraud, and investment fraud.
Knowledge is the best way to protect yourself from identity theft and fraud, so please use these services to become as prepared and informed as possible.

Visit a Local Library

Books provide us with more than just information to learn or a story to read — literature shapes who we are and opens our minds to new ideas. That being said, I encourage all St. Louis citizens to visit one of the outstanding branches of our St. Louis Public Library.

These libraries offer a variety of services, from book and DVD rentals, to providing Internet access. In the 4th Senatorial District, there are nine branches of the St. Louis Public Library:
  • Buder - 4401 Hampton Avenue
  • Cabanne - 1106 Union Boulevard
  • Carpenter - 3309 South Grand Boulevard
  • Charing Cross - 356 North Skinker Boulevard
  • Julia Davis - 4415 Natural Bridge Avenue
  • Kingshighway - 2260 South Vandeventer Avenue
  • Machacek - 6424 Scanlan Avenue
  • Marketplace - 6548 Manchester Avenue
  • Walnut Park - 5760 West Florissant Avenue
These libraries have events year-round that pertain to a wide range of age groups, including ladies' events, story time for children, and online classes for adults wanting to earn a GED.

In this digital age, many turn to electronics to get their information or entertainment, but reading provides many benefits that electronics may not. Studies show that it takes more energy for the brain to read a book than to watch a movie, which gives your mind a healthy workout. It's also proven that reading helps people improve their memorization, concentration, and vocabulary skills.

I encourage all people to use the services that public libraries offer. Visiting a library and owning a library card is a great way to explore new ventures and ideas. Please visit the branches of the St. Louis Public Library at, or call
(314) 241-2288. Click on the following links to find out how to apply for library cards and to view employment opportunities.

St. Louis Children's Hospital

At right: During my tour of St. Louis Children's Hospital, Karlene Bessler, RN, let me have a glimpse of the newborn intensive care unit.

Serving as senator, I have the privilege of touring facilities that serve the district. St. Louis Children's Hospital has been serving the needs of children — from newborns all the way up to adolescents — since 1879.

It is remarkable to have such a prestigious health care facility in our district that also serves as the pediatric teaching hospital for Washington University School of Medicine and offers nationally recognized programs for physician training and research.

The hospital has also been ranked the fifth Best Children's Hospital in the country by Parents magazine (2009), named on the U.S. News & World Report's Honor Roll of America's Best Children's Hospitals (2010), and recognized as a Magnet hospital by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Magnet Recognition Program (2010) — only two percent of hospitals nationally have achieved this recognition.

The hard working and dedicated staff of St. Louis Children's Hospital continues to make this health care facility a shining example of the wonderful organizations found within the 4th Senatorial District.

To learn more about the St. Louis Children's Hospital, visit or call (314) 454-6000.

Online Tool to Prevent Foreclosure

A major issue in this difficult recession has been the real estate collapse. According to an article published by Time magazine, the nation's home-ownership rate is the lowest it's been in more than a decade, at 66.9 percent. Stress on Missouri homeowners has only intensified in realizing that the banks that provide home loans may have falsified the documents needed to start foreclosure proceedings.

Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster received more than 100 complaints from foreclosed homeowners in October and has added a page to his website that will help homeowners understand their rights regarding foreclosure. The website has answers to questions most often asked, a list of documents that are needed to receive loan services, and explains the definitions of real estate terms.

The information on the website is not intended to provide legal counsel, but is a handy tool for homeowners facing difficult times and decisions. To view this website, visit or call (314) 340-7544.

Pierre Laclede Elementary School

I had the recent privilege to visit Pierre Laclede Elementary School located in the St. Louis Public School district. It makes me very happy to see our St. Louis Public Schools succeed in giving our students a proper education, and I would like to share some of that success with you.

Pierre Laclede Elementary School has achieved the following:
  • A high attendance rate, with an average of 94 percent
  • A 2002 "Gold Star School Award"
  • A 2003 "Blue Ribbon School Award"
  • Home to the 2002-2003 Missouri State Teacher of the Year
  • The 2004 "Salute to Excellence Stella Award"
  • Was recognized as a model "School of Excellence" by former President Bush
For more information about Pierre Laclede Elementary School, call (314) 385-0546.

Learning New Languages and Cultures at St. Louis Language Immersion Schools

For our children, learning a second language can be a valuable tool to succeed in the workplace and in life. St. Louis Language Immersion Schools, or SLLIS, provides K-12 students with an education in English, and either Spanish or French. By the time the student is finished with his or her studies, that student will have the capability to be fluent in two languages.

The school has a strong belief that learning a new language early in life has many beneficial factors for students, including increased brain function, improved memory skills, clearer pronunciation, and a better appreciation for culture.

Students at SLLIS learn a broad curriculum by studying literature, math and science, and participating in writing workshops. Throughout the curriculum, both English and a second language of the student's choice are instructed:
  • K-2: English is only spoken during before- and after-school programs, and lessons are taught entirely in French or Spanish.
  • Grades 3-5: French or Spanish are spoken and taught throughout 80 percent of the day, with formal English classes incorporated throughout the day. Latin studies are also offered.
  • Grades 6-8: French or Spanish are taught and spoken 50 percent of the day, with both English, and Spanish or French literature classes taught.
  • Grades 9-12: English is taught 80 percent of the day, with the option of taking French or Spanish electives. French or Spanish literature classes are still offered.
To learn more about SLLIS, please visit or call (314) 533-0975.

Operation Brightside

Not long ago, I had the pleasure of attending a ground-breaking ceremony at Hilltop Child Development Center for Operation Brightside, a non-profit organization that works dutifully to keep St. Louis clean and "green."

The oldest cleaning program in St. Louis, Operation Brightside engages in many projects to keep neighborhoods spotless and sparkling:
  • Project Bliss, which takes place April and May, supports volunteers to remove litter and clean downtown neighborhoods.
  • Graffiti Eradication, where volunteers remove graffiti from vandalized St. Louis buildings. In the past 18 years, volunteers have removed graffiti from more than 115,000 defaced buildings.
  • Litter Bugs Me! Stop it! Don't Drop It!, a program that promotes the reduction of litter.
  • Lend Me a Hand Tool, which lends tools and trash bags to aid volunteers' cleanup endeavors.
Operation Brightside, with the help of more than 20,000 annual volunteers, has helped improve more than 600 neighborhoods in St. Louis, and partners with the Missouri Department of Conservation, Missouri Botanical Garden, Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District, the City of St. Louis, and St. Louis Master Gardeners.

To learn more about Operation Brightside, visit or call (314) 772-4646.

Holiday Season with the St. Louis Symphony

One of the most comforting sounds of the season is the classical music provided by the St. Louis Symphony. During the holidays, thousands of people arrive at Powell Symphony Hall bundled in coats, and once inside, they enter a warm world of crystal chandeliers and luxurious marble floors. When guests walk in to the concert hall, they are awed by the ornate architecture that surrounds the stage.

For 120 years, the St. Louis Symphony has provided the gift of music to the public, enchanting listeners with traditional and contemporary music. The symphony has traveled as far as Europe to perform, and has received six Grammy Awards for recordings they have produced.

This holiday season, I encourage you to attend a St. Louis Symphony concert and witness the talent and artistry demonstrated by Missouri's fine musicians and conductors. Some concerts that will be performed this December:
  • Brahms 1 - Dec. 3 and 4
  • Gospel Christmas - Dec. 16
  • Holiday Celebration - Dec. 17-19
  • Bach Society - Dec. 21
  • City Lights - Dec. 29 and 30
For more information about the St. Louis Symphony, please visit or call (314) 533-2500.

Volunteer this Holiday Season

This holiday season, please volunteer some of your time to a local organization. Just a few hours of your time can make a difference in someone's life.

Here are two great organizations in St. Louis to visit and volunteer:

Ronald McDonald House Charities of Metro St. Louis

Many families with seriously ill and injured children cannot afford a place to stay while their children are receiving treatment in the hospital. Ronald McDonald House provides a "home-away-from-home" atmosphere for families with a child in the hospital. There is little or no charge for the visiting families, and they are able to find encouragement and support from other families and volunteers.

As a volunteer, you can provide a variety of services, including:
  • Transporting families to the hospital
  • Preparing meals
  • Providing maintenance repairs to facilities
  • Completing service projects
The Ronald McDonald House provides holiday opportunities for volunteers as well, including the Sponsor-A-Family program. Please visit or call (314) 773-1100 for more information about volunteer opportunities.

The St. Louis Area Foodbank

For the past 35 years, the St. Louis Area Foodbank has been serving thousands of hungry St. Louis citizens. Many people suffer from hunger and lack nutritious foods in their diets. The St. Louis Area Foodbank is the largest non-profit food distributor in the bi-state region, and in 2009, provided more than 22 million pounds of food throughout the year to thousands of people — an estimated 57,100 people every week.

There are many volunteer opportunities at the St. Louis Area Foodbank, including spending time at the Packaging Center and hosting your own food drive (1.6 million pounds of food were collected last year in food drives alone). Please call
(314) 292-5760 or visit www.stlfoodbank.orgto inquire about volunteering in the Packaging Center, or call (314) 292-5761 for more information about hosting food drives.

Be Thankful this Holiday Season

Remember this holiday season: It's not about the gifts you may receive or how much money you spend — it's about the joy and memories you make with loved ones.

Think about how much of a difference you can make to someone by sending a simple holiday card, making a kind phone call, or simply smiling. Volunteer some of your time this season to help others — just a few hours can make a huge difference in our community.

I wish you and your family a very merry holiday season!

Nance: Report on Tax Credits Released, Spartan Spectacular

"People who work together will win, whether it be against complex football defenses, or the problems of modern society." –Vince Lombardi

At the Capitol

I am honored to be appointed Chairman of the House Insurance Policy Committee.

The Committee on Insurance Policy may consider and report upon bills and matters referred to it relating to insurance, insurance companies and the Department of Insurance.  Among other issues to be addressed, I would like us to strengthen our uninsured motorist laws with a data system for officers to access for instant verification. On Thursday, I will be in Jefferson City to meet with other committee chairpersons and House leadership.

Report on Tax Credits Released:

A report released yesterday from the Missouri Tax Credit Review Commission recommended eliminating nearly half of Missouri's tax credit programs and changes to many others. The changes proposed could reduce tax credits $220 million and give a greater return to taxpayers for their investment.

The report also recommends placing a two-year sunset provision on banking and insurance tax credits, a four-year sunset on tax credits for economic development, distressed communities, agriculture and environmental tax credits and a six-year sunset on historic preservation and low income housing tax credits.

To review the report, go to: and click on the report on the right.

In the District


I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving. The Richmond Spartans carried their Thanksgiving into the weekend with an unbelievable comeback against a powerful foe. We traveled to the Edward Jones Dome for the Class 3 championship on Friday. The first half was dominated by the John Burroughs Bombers with their spread passing formations, but the inspired Spartans completely dominated the second half. I look forward to their visit to the Capitol next spring.

November 7th was a great day for Justin Persell and Spencer Dane Roberson as they achieved their Eagle Scout designation.

I presented a resolution from the House of Representatives to the Orrick Lion's Club on Saturday the 5th of November. It was their 60th Anniversary of serving the community.

On the 11th of November, I attended the Excelsior Springs Museum's annual dinner. Congratulations to Denise Siegel on receiving the "Volunteer of the Year Award".

The Excelsior Springs Optimist Club held a 50th Anniversary party at the Elm's Hotel November 13th. A Resolution was presented by me to the Optimist recognizing the half century of service.

On the 15th of November, I was a guest at Richmond's Dear Elementary to read to students. On the 17th I traveled with many Excelsior Springs School Board members for a Legislative dinner with the Cooperating School Districts of Greater Kansas City.

The Elm's Hotel was the location of the Fellowship of Christian Athlete kick-off dinner for this area on November 18th.  Joey Branson has been tapped to lead a new Fellowship of Christian Athletes chapter that will encompass not just Excelsior Springs, but other communities on or near the 92/10 corridor, including Platte City, Smithville, Kearney, Richmond, Lexington, Cameron and smaller communities nearby.

I attended the Richmond and Excelsior Springs communities' Christmas kick-off celebrations with various activities in their downtown areas.

The Excelsior Springs Quarterback Club is sponsoring the 45th Mineral Water Bowl between Concordia University and Pittsburg State University December 4th at noon at Tiger Stadium. For more information, visit the website at

30 November 2010

Goodman Announces Donation Box Locations for "Season of Hope"

Mt. Vernon, MO – Senator Jack Goodman announced today the addition of over 40 new donation box locations for the Season of Hope Food Drive.  Donations made at these locations will be picked up and grouped to form Christmas dinners for families in need.

In order to provide as many Christmas dinners as possible, Season of Hope has targeted the following groceries for collection: turkeys, hams, chickens, boxed stuffing, boxed mashed potatoes, canned sweet potatoes, canned cranberry sauce, canned green beans, cans or mixes of gravy, and boxed macaroni and cheese.  Of course, all donations are greatly appreciated and will be used for a great cause.

Persons interested in donating a ham, turkey, or other perishable item, should contact Senator Goodman's office at 417.466.3731 so staff can help arrange for its storage.

Non-perishable items can be donated at any of the donation box locations listed below:

Donation-Box Locations

Barry County

First State Bank
106 E. Cleveland, Monett
(417) 235-6100

First State Bank Monett Wal-Mart Branch
885 Highway 60, Monett
(417) 236-2710

First State Bank
Highway C & Kay Avenue, Purdy
(417) 442-3247

First State Bank
98 Main Street, Cassville
(417) 847-6623

Ramey Supermarket
91 Main Street, Cassville
(417) 847-4155

Cassville Chamber of Commerce
504 Main Street, Cassville
(417) 847-2814

Barry County Electric Cooperative
4015 Main Street, Cassville
(417) 847-2131

Barry County Courthouse
700 Main Street, Cassville

Country Fresh Market
24988 Missouri 39, Shell Knob
(417) 858-6647

Shell Knob Chamber of Commerce
Missouri 39 & State Highway YY, Shell Knob
(417) 858-3300

20935 Farm Rd 1252, Shell Knob
(417) 858-2887

Lawrence County

Senator Jack Goodman
212 S. Hickory St., Mount Vernon
(417) 466-3731

Missouri Rehabilitation Center
600 N. Main Street, Mount Vernon
(417) 461-5467

Mt. Vernon Methodist Church
621 W. Sloan, Mount Vernon
(417) 466-2459

First State Bank
100 North Elm Street, Pierce City
(417) 476-2615

Flummerfelt's Town & Country
110 N Elm St., Pierce City
(417) 476-2233

Summer Fresh Supermarkets – Mt. Vernon
615 E Mt. Vernon Blvd, Mount Vernon
(417) 461-1717

Alps Supermarket
534 E Mount Vernon Blvd, Mount Vernon
(417) 466-0032

Lawrence County Courthouse
1 East Courthouse Square, Mt. Vernon
(417) 466-3666

Price Cutter Supermarket – Aurora
708 S. Elliott, Aurora
(417) 678-3800

Aurora Chamber of Commerce
121 E Olive St., Aurora
(417) 678-4150

McDonald County

S & S Market
207 S. Roy Hall Blvd., Goodman
(417) 364-7910

Crosslines – McDonald County
925 N. Hwy 71, Anderson
(417) 845-1800

Dollar General
920 N 71 Business Hwy, Anderson
(417) 845-7372

Town & Country Supermarket
704 S Highway 59, Anderson
(417) 845-6387

McDonald County Courthouse
602 Main St., Pineville
(417) 223-7512

McDonald County Chamber of Commerce
302 Harmon St., Pineville
(417) 223-8888

342 Commercial Dr., Pineville
(417) 226-5800

Harp's Supermarket
204 Main Street, Noel
(417) 475-3434

David's Supermarket & Clothing
104 S Main St, South West City
(417) 762-3215

Ozark County

Town & Country Supermarket
102 South Main Street, Gainesville
(417) 679-4584

Dollar General
Hwy 5 N & Hwy 160, Gainesville
(417) 679-2733

Ozark County Food Pantry
304 West 3rd Street, Gainesville
(417) 679-3334

Ozark County Times
P.O. Box 188, Gainesville
(417) 679-4641

Ozark County Courthouse
Courthouse Square, Gainesville
(417) 679-4096

Stone County

Christian Associates of Table Rock Lake
13192 Missouri 13, Kimberling City
(417) 739-3200

Christian Associates of Table Rock Lake – North
106 Edgewood, Crane
(417) 723-0370

Dollar General
211 Cortney Lane, Crane
(417) 723-0024

City Hall
110 Silver Lady Lane, Reeds Spring
(417) 272-3313

Porter's Supermarket
209 Cortney Lane, Crane
(417) 723-5700

Country Mart Supermarket
18128 Business 13, Reeds Spring
(417) 272-8248

Table Rock Lake Area Chamber of Commerce
14226 State Hwy 13, Kimberling City
(417) 739-2564

Te Spazio Café
1348 W State Highway 248, Galena
(417) 357-0133

Stone County Courthouse
108 East 4th Street, Galena
(417) 357-6141

Taney County

City Hall
110 W. Maddux, Branson
(417) 334-3345

Dewey Short Visitor Center
4600 State Highway 165, Branson
(417) 334-4101

Branson Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce
269 State Highway 248, Branson
(417) 334-4084

607 State Highway 165, Branson
(417) 332-2462

Hollister City Hall
312 Esplanade Street, Hollister
(417) 334-3262

Tim Jones: Wrap-Up of "Historic" Election Season, Proper Role of Government

As the calendar prepares to turn to the final month of the year, the changing landscape and the chill northwesterly wind share in reminding us of the turn of the seasons and the arrival of yet another promising, joy filled holiday season.  As the election season fades into the recesses of our memories, thoughts now turn to celebrating the Christmas season and the approach of the New Year even as we prepare for the coming challenges and opportunities of the next Legislative Session which begins at high noon, January 5, 2011…

“A wise and frugal Government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement.”— Thomas Jefferson

Election Season Wrap Up-2010

As I am sure you are fully aware, the mid term elections of November 2010 were historic on many different levels.  Here, in Missouri, they were no less momentous. Every Republican seat in the Missouri House of Representatives and the Missouri Senate was retained, the Missouri House picked up seventeen incumbent and/or open formerly Democratic seats and the Missouri Senate picked up three incumbent and/or open formerly Democratic seats.  We take this mandate by the people of Missouri as a very serious message and challenge to continue to deliver upon the promises that we have made over the past several years: delivering a balanced State budget, prioritizing the proper role of Government, continuing to limit the size, scope and spending of government, continuing to protect our most sacred and cherished freedoms and liberties and continuing to work hard to make Missouri a great place in which to live, work and raise a family.  As the incoming Majority Leader of the Missouri House, I thank each and every one of you for your support and your prayers and I want you to know that I share in this promise and I welcome the challenges and opportunities that the coming Session will bring.

The Proper Role of Government

For much of last year, many Americans have taken to the streets, to town hall meetings and finally to the voting booth to protest the federal government's irresponsible agenda over the past two years that has included a reckless national healthcare program (which is being exposed more and more each day for the truly bad legislation that it is) and the jobs killing cap and trade plan which would devastate jobs and the economy here in the Heartland and cause our utility rates to soar.  Washington politicians did not listen when they rammed through Congress their reckless health care bill.  When given our own vote on Proposition C in August, Missouri voters sent a clear message:  more than 71% of Missouri voters, including Republicans, Democrats and Independents, supported Proposition C and the effort to protect an individual's right to make his or her own health insurance choices.  Missourians sent Washington a clear message:  stay out of our health care decisions.  Contrary to the Washington approach, there are market based solutions to the problems of health care.  This year, the General Assembly passed and the Governor signed House Bill 1498 that requires health insurance providers to promptly pay claims put forth by doctors, hospitals and other health care providers for services provided to patients.  This is a common sense, "Missouri Way", reform that will improve healthcare in Missouri that will reduce costs and inefficiency and will not grow the size of government.

As we deal with the continuing budget problems facing Missouri next year, all Missourians need to recognize the primary purpose and role of our state government.  Providing for public education, public safety and health are THE core roles of our state government.  Our government exists to defend our liberties and life itself.  I believe that state government has a role in economic development.  We need to make our state attractive to job creators.  We, as a state, need to be very careful in expanding our state government's involvement beyond these traditional roles.

The reason that we, as a nation, find ourselves in this ballooning of our federal government (not to mention our federal debt, trade deficit and disastrous monetary policy known fancily as "QE2") is that there are lots of people who have a pet project such as lawn mowing in the Lower Ninth Ward of New Orleans or "Social Justice" film festivals in Warrensburg, Missouri and the rest of us taxpaying citizens do not stand up against such wasteful use of taxpayer's money.  If we do not continue to take a stand, government will continue to grow and our debt will continue to skyrocket.  Once we recognize the problem, the solution becomes obvious.  The American people spoke loudly and clearly this past November on Election Day.  We here in Missouri continue to hear and heed the voices and beliefs of our citizens, let us hope that the politicians in DC have finally heard the voice of the people as it resounds across our great Nation.

During this Holy Holiday Season, We Must Step Up to Help

From my family to yours, I hope that you had a safe and Happy Thanksgiving and are happily preparing yourselves for a joyous Christmas, Hanukah and New Year holiday season.  As we go about our busy holiday chores and parties, let us not forget that millions of Americans continue to be affected by many and various tragedies including the oil spill in the Gulf, floods and tornadoes throughout our Heartland, and the loss of jobs and homes due to the economy, just to name a few. I encourage all of you to step up and do what you can to help those who need us the most, especially during this holiday season.  There are many, many excellent charitable organizations that step up to the challenge during these winter months and I would encourage to do what you can to participate.  Starting right at home with your local churches and civic organizations is a great place to begin or you can visit the following websites:
And if you are not able to give financially, please do continue to keep the families of all those who will be challenged this season in your prayers.

Visiting the Capitol

If you ever find yourself in or around Jefferson City at any time during the year, please feel free to visit us!  Stop by Room 114A and, even during the interim session, Jody will be happy to meet and greet you!

Personal News & Notes

Being "out of Session" has definitely not resulted in life slowing down much at all, especially during what was a VERY busy election year season.  Working daily at the law firm, keeping up with constituent services and attending different events in and around the District have kept me more than occupied during the Interim Session.  I want to thank my wife, Suzanne, and all of my colleagues at my law firm of Doster Ullom for their constant and continuing patience and understanding and for continuing to support me as I work to serve my constituents and towards my vision and goal of making Missouri a better place to live, work and raise a family.  My two daughters, Katie and Abby are a constant reminder of why I have chosen public service as part of my career and that there are future generations and a "greater good" that we are all striving for when we "set to the task" each year in Jefferson City.  Please do not hesitate to contact our office if we can ever be of any assistance and I hope you continue to have a safe and joyous holiday season!

Until our next update, I am, and remain, in your service.