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19 January 2012

Tim Jones: State Of The State Address, Family Enrichment Resource Program

As we journeyed to the Capitol this week with a blast of arctic air at our backs, we can only be thankful that there has been very little snow and ice to affect our commute to and from the Capitol. As the elected officials reconvene underneath the Dome, bills begin to offer themselves for presentment on the Floor after their successful passage through committee. The Capitol is abuzz with activity with murmurings of commentary following the State of the State Address given by Governor Nixon, the GOP Response presented by Senator Kurt Schaeffer and yours truly and the State of the Judiciary presented by Chief Justice Richard Teitelman.

“If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.” –Martin Luther King Jr.

Governor Nixon’s State of the State Address

On Tuesday evening, January 17th, Governor Nixon, the Missouri State Supreme Court Judges, statewide elected officials, the Missouri Senate and Missouri House welcomed the Governor for his annual State of the State Address. The theme of the address was “Missouri Moving Forward.” Governor Nixon addressed the promise of not increasing taxes, more cuts to government spending by reducing the payroll, and adding jobs to Missouri. Unfortunately these promises will lead to shortfalls elsewhere. The Governor targeted higher education, proposing cuts in their budget of nearly 13%. There is major concern that these cuts could lead to universities raising their tuitions significantly. Nixon encouraged the universities to “cut overhead and administrative costs and to run smarter, more efficient operations.” Senator Kurt Schaefer and I were given the opportunity to deliver the Republican response to the State of the State which you can view at the following link:

The Judiciary Address

Chief Justice Richard Teitelman was welcomed into the Chamber for the 39th State of the Judiciary Address on Wednesday, January 18. He urged lawmakers to pass measures to reduce the number of people in prison for parole and probation violations. These changes could save the state $16.6 million over five years and reduce the state prison population by two percent. The legislature has been studiously reviewing such proposals relating to non-violent offenders only, since late last year.

Bill Progress

HCS HJR 43, the Taxpayer Protection Act, sponsored by Rep. Eric Burlison (R-136), places wise limits on state appropriations. I am proud of the fact that this extremely responsible measure was the first substantive bill considered and passed by the Missouri House this year. This bill prohibits appropriations in any fiscal year from exceeding the total state general revenue appropriations for the current fiscal year that exceeds the level for Fiscal Year 2008. The appropriations growth limit is the percentage that is greater than zero for the sum of the annual rate of inflation and the annual percentage change in Missouri’s population. This bill will limit the growth of government spending, provide long-term fiscal planning and rainy day funds, help balance the economic highs and lows, protect programs and funding, reduce income tax rates, and create a stronger business environment. Unlike Colorado’s TABOR, adjustments have been made in the bill to prevent the “ratchet-back” effort. This bill was perfected and third read in the House today with an overwhelming, bipartisan majority, and now moves to the Senate for consideration.

PSA: Family Enrichment Resource Program Upcoming Event

The Family Enrichment Resource Program, an organization that seeks to reduce child abuse and educate parents in all areas related to raising their children, is hosting their Second Annual Children’s Art Auction on Saturday, February 11th from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at the Fox Run Carriage House in Eureka. All proceeds raised support families in and around the Eureka region. For more information, please visit or call (314) 603-5767.

PSA: Seminar Available for Administering Trusts

Your law firm may use some of the most sophisticated tools available to establish strong estate plans for your clients, but the true test of that strategy comes with its implementation. In order to bring all your carefully laid plans to fruition, you need to be up to speed on the issues you may face when called on to administer an existing trust. For more information please visit:

Traveler Information Map App

The Missouri Department of Transportation has made available free apps from the Android Market and the Apple App store. For those of you who travel across this great state and own a smart phone or an iPad, MoDOT has an app available on the Android Market and the Apple App Store. These free apps have the ability to show the road conditions as well as road closings due to traffic accidents or construction.

Upcoming Workshops

The St. Louis Arc Family Workshops are designed to provide in-depth information on topics related to supporting family members with developmental disabilities. The workshops are free and take place at the St. Louis Arc Family Center at 1177 N. Warson Rd., St. Louis, MO 63123. For more information, please visit or contact Ann Mangelsdorf at amangelsdorf{at}slarc{dot}org or at 314-817-2275. You must be registered to attend. For a complete list of the workshops and support groups available through the St. Louis Arc, visit

Fine Arts Grant Available

The Missouri Arts Council Annual Grant Applications can now be accessed online at under the “Get Funding” tab. This is a one-year grant for dance, established institutions, fold arts, mid-sized arts organizations, minority arts, visual arts and theater. There are separate applications available for art education as well as community arts.

Visiting the Capitol

This week we received many, many visitors at our office including my good friends Mark Schwieder, Dennis Broadbooks, Todd Hamby and Bob Bechtold. I always enjoy when constituents visit the Capitol and want to thank all who make the journey. If you ever find yourself in or around Jefferson City at any time during the year, please feel free to visit us! Stop by the Majority Leader’s Office in Room 302 and we will be happy to meet and greet you! If you know anyone who would be interested in receiving this Capitol Report, they can click the “Capitol Report Signup” button on my member home page at and enter the appropriate information to receive the Capitol Report.

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