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30 January 2012

Tim Jones: Majority Minute: Alinging State Law With Federal Civil Rights Standards

A warm breath of Spring returned with us to the Capitol as we began our legislative tasks this week. HB 1135 and HCS HB 1140 are on their way to the Senate. Here in the House, more legislative priorities are moving through the challenging legislative process.

Glimpse at the Week Ahead

A pivotal centerpiece of the Speaker’s “Blueprint for Missouri” agenda has been placed on the House Calendar for Perfection:

HB 1219, sponsored by Rep. Kevin Elmer (R-141), will protect Missouri jobs and Missouri employers by returning Missouri law to a position that is consistent with the federal Civil Rights Law. The bill removes provisions which currently make a manager liable for the actions of an employee and establishes a graduated scale for damages based on the number of employees which provides a level of uniformity in awarding damages. Court cases need to be handled more quickly and efficiently, businesses need to be free to appropriately handle problematic, harmful employees to keep the workplace safe and this bill reinstates the original summary judgment standards, that have existed in our nation and state for many decades, to help courts accomplish this objective. Businesses need certainty if we want employers to expand, grow and re-invest. With the current system set up to punish employers, businesses are having difficulty dealing with our current litigious environment. HB 1219 restores certainty and fairness and treats employers and employees equally.

Bills Passed out of the House Rules Committee

There were several bills passed out of the House Rules Committee this afternoon. These include HB 1036, Political Party Emblems on Ballots, sponsored by Rep. Tony Dugger (R-144); HB 1039, Local Government Employee Retirement, sponsored by Rep. Mike Leara (R-95); and HB 11, Vietnam Veterans Day, sponsored by Rep. Paul Fitzwater (R-27). These bills will now move to the House Calendar for consideration.

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

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