On Thursday the senate gave final approval to Senate Bill 113&95. This bill passed the senate by a vote of 20 yes and 14 no. This Senate bill will now move to the house for approval. House Bill 131 is also on the House calendar for debate it also makes many changes to prop b. I appreciate all the calls, emails and visits to the capitol to show your support for making changes to Prop B.
DRIVERS TEST IN ENGLISH ONLY
Even though economic development and job creation are on the top of many Missourians minds’ there are several other issues we are working in the state capitol. This week the Missouri House passed a measure [HB167] that would make sure anyone who received a Missouri driver's license would have to pass the driver's test in English.
This may seem like an odd requirement, but currently an individual in Missouri has the option to take the test 11 different languages. However, in 2008 Missourians made English the state’s official language for all formal proceedings with a vote of 89%. We believe extending this into a requirement for a driver’s license makes sense.
While diversity is a proud part of our heritage and should continue to be in our future, we also believe that public safety is important as well. For instance, someone who cannot communicate in English during a routine traffic stop or during an emergency situation on a major roadway could potentially cause serious harm to other motorists.
In addition, a great deal of access is allotted to individuals when through the use of a driver’s license. Some individuals will use a driver’s licenses to get all kinds of government services that they could not otherwise. As an example an individual could obtain a forged birth certificate or social security card and then receive state health provided services.
Additionally, the Missouri Department of Revenue currently will provide an interpreter for any of the existing 11 approved languages – adding even more bureaucracy and cost. The point is, adding this English requirement not only simplifies the standard process of getting a driver’s license, but we believe also improves public safety for our citizens.
In the state of Missouri in 2008 there were over 900 fatalities from car accidents. [Source: http://www.census.gov/compendia/statab/2011/tables/11s1103.xls] We hope to greatly decrease this number and while many of these fatalities were unfortunate accidents if we can prevent any of them we should try.
We want to keep our families as safe as possible and a simple requirement like passing a driver's license test in English can help do that.
Survey: Deadline is march 15, 2011
I have set March 15th as the Deadline for the survey as I feel we will be voting on many of the issues such as: Teacher Tenure, Open Enrollment, Right to work, and Fair Tax that the Survey deals with soon after that date. Please click on the link below and take a few minutes to complete the Survey.