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15 September 2011

Neth: No Action In Veto Session, MOSIRA

Veto Session has come and gone and there was no action on any attempts to override any of the Governor's vetoes. There was only one bill that had a chance to be overridden and that was HB 430, the omnibus transportation bill. The Governor vetoed the entire bill because of one part having to do with billboards and how they are regulated in the state. His reasoning was that it took away local control of billboard regulation. There is some justification of this, but along with vetoing that, it potentially takes away millions of federal road funds as well as many other provisions that would have been good for the state. The frustrating part of this whole process is that there was very little or no opposition to the initial bill until after it was passed and there was no warning from the Governor that he might veto it. So we are left to start all over on this the next Regular Session.

Concurrent to Veto Session, we are still in Special Session. As previously mentioned, the House sent several bills to the Senate to be taken up. The Senate has passed out an Economic Development bill, a revision of the "Facebook" bill and a bill containing MOSIRA as a stand alone. It looks like we will have committee meetings on Monday in preparation to convene the whole House on Wednesday to take these things up. I will have to be in Jefferson City for the Education Committee when it is called as the Facebook issue will go through it. I am very hopeful that will be Monday.

For now we are out for the week and hope we can finish up next week.

MOSIRA and Job Creation

I am a big proponent of the legislation known as MOSIRA. The latest version of this is now known as SB 7. MOSIRA would take taxes from additional jobs created in certain industries and reinvest in a fund that would be used to attract and promote additional job creation in those industries. The biggest issue in this bill is the so called "life language" or lack of it as stated by several pro-life groups in Missouri. The language requested is the following: "Public funds shall not be expended, paid, or granted to or on behalf of an existing or proposed research project that involves abortion services, human cloning, or prohibited human research as defined in section 196.1127". These groups argue that the language in the bill is not specific enough to ensure that public funds will not be used for abortion services, human cloning or prohibited human research as defined in MoRsv Section 196.1127. The bill would require reporting of any such funding.

As many know, the Majority party is very much pro-life in its positions and consistently acts in such a way. So the fact that many of the pro-life groups make it out to sound like we are betraying the pro-life position is very troubling to many of us. In addition, the previously mentioned statute already prohibits such funding so to put it in the bill would be a redundancy. In addition, given that the legislature has appropriations power, funding of anything rests in that. On the other hand the groups who are in favor of MOSIRA are a little narrow in their views to not allow the more restrictive language as it would affect so small of a portion of companies in Missouri (less than ½ of one percent) that to hold out for such is to ignore the great benefit to the remainder of the industries. In addition, they also contend there would be Constitutional issues if we put in the pro-life language. I am not convinced of that as the Constitutional language only allows certain research to take place but does not require that we fund such.

Needless to say, this is a very complex issue.I am constantly getting information and learning the intricacies of language both in statute and the constitution as well as the realities of governance over such issues.

If passed, MOSIRA would assist the Liberty area greatly as it is on target with its new Science and Technology Park and the funds would assist in attracting such companies to the area. So for that I am very supportive. On the other hand, I wish we could just put the pro-life language in place and be done with it as I can understand the argument for it. At this point I am taking a wait and see attitude to see what the actual bill looks like when it comes out of committee.

Mark Your Calendars

Town Hall Meeting December 5

I will be hosting a Town Hall meeting on December 5 at the Liberty Community Center at 7PM. The purpose of the meeting will be to give an update on the Special Session, some upcoming legislative priorities for me and the district, and to get feedback on past and future actions from constituents.

Come watch some Softball

This Saturday I will be playing in a charity softball game to benefit Immacolata Manor sponsored by the Clay County Young Republicans. I and other local elected officials will be playing against the Cass County Young Republicans and some of their elected officials. The game is at 5:00 this Saturday, September 17 at Liberty City Park (970 S. 291 Hwy, Liberty, MO 64068). Come out and support a good cause and have some fun cheering us on (especially us older folks!)

Upcoming Local Events

Corbin Theatre- That Darn Plot!
September 29, 30

Liberty Fall Festival
September 23-25

Liberty Public Schools Events (Click link for more info.) LHS Orchestra Pancake Breakfast and Basket Auction, Down Syndrome Walk, Trike-a-Thon, LNHS Charity Volleyball match, LNHS Orchestra 1st Gold and Bluegrass Festival

William Jewell College Homecoming October 7-9

Liberty Farmers Market Every Saturday through October

Check out your local High School sports schedules. Great Friday night football and other sports.
Liberty Public Schools, North Kansas City Schools

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