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13 January 2012

Lichtenegger: 2012 Regular Session Underway

Given the recent passing of Weldon H. Macke, I want to say a few words in his honor before I begin to comment on this year’s General Assembly and the work ahead.

Weldon was not just a great man, father and husband to Bonnie, but he was a dear personal friend of 35+ years. I have such fond memories of the many hours we spent working on political campaigns; we were both charter members of the Cape Girardeau Pachyderm Club; and then there were the parades, Jackson Homecomers events and the SEMO Dist fair . . . actually there are just too many wonderful memories to list them all! He will be a forever cherished friend.

My guess is that my memories are multiplied a hundred-fold in the lives of many of you.

I have co-sponsored a few important bills this year. Two of which change the pensions for those of us serving in the House and Senate. One states no years and the other says after 16 years of service. For many years I have said publicly that I don't believe in pensions for politicians. I agree with Senator Jason Crowell that all elected State officials should forgo pensions. I serve at the will of the people, and I feel that the people should not have to pay my retirement. Once the fiscal note is published on these bills, we’ll know approximately how much money this will save Missouri taxpayers. I'm also working on a Bill for equal pay to Physical Therapist. This has to do with insurance payments. If interested in the details you may contact me. As always I would like your feedback; you can call me any time at 573-979-1084.

On a serious fiscal note: The state has many, very tough decisions to make in the near future since the Missouri Constitution requires a balanced budget, and since the estimated revenue shortfall is between five and seven hundred million dollars, everyone is going to have to sacrifice to make up the difference!

Don’t forget you can influence these or any other bills filed during this legislative session using the following steps:
  • Link here to the House of Representatives website.
  • Use the Bill Tracking / Search or Subject Index on the House page to find the House Bill that concerns you.
  • As you can see from the HB 1099 example there are several options to choose to get additional information.
  • You’ll want to link on the Actions tab wherein you can view not only all House actions on the bill any time during the session, but you will want to note whether the bill was assigned to a committee. If so link to the committee information page wherein you can note who is the committee chair and call her or his office and request that the chairman schedule a public hearing (if one is not scheduled).
  • If a bill has yet to be assigned to a committee you are welcome to call the Speaker of the House, Representative Steven Tilley, office and request that he assign the bill to a committee.
And don’t forget you are welcome to call, email, or fax my Capitol office and let me know which House bills you support or oppose. Call 573-751-6662; email donna{dot}lichtenegger{at}house{dot}mo{dot}gov fax: 573-522-0557.

My office staff will record your comments whether or not you are a registered voter. I will always have access to any and all feedback and therefore have a general idea of what are the greatest legislative concerns of my constituents.

Constituent Corner

My Capitol office recently moved to Room 403B. Don’t forget if you visit the Capitol to drop in and say “hello”. If I’m in Chambers my assistant will contact me so I don’t miss meeting you!

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