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Missouri Government News for Week of Sept. 9, 1996

House sustains governor's abortion veto

The Missouri House sustained Gov. Mel Carnahan's veto of an abortion-regulation bill passed last spring.

The vote, 90-66, fell 19 votes of the two-thirds needed for an override.

The override effort was pushed by Republicans. The bill's sponsor, a Democrat, had declined to make the override motion saying before the session that the votes were not there.

For more information, see:

Veto session begins Wednesday

For yet another year, abortion dominates the attention of lawmakers heading their annual veto session.

The session, expected to last no more than two days, can only consider bills vetoed by the governor in the spring.

Last session's abortion measure would have imposed additional requirements on abortion clinics.

While it cleared by the legislature by an over-whemling vote, it would take a two-thirds vote of the Democratic-controlled legislature to override the Democratic governor's veto.

A few days earlier, the bill's sponsor said he was not sure he even would make an override motion.

No decision on Blue-Cross court decision appeal

Missouri's Insurance Department continues to consider an appeal of the Blue-Cross court decision.

Earlier, the Cole County circuit court rejected an Insurance Department order that the firm make a substantial contribution to charity in order to transfer some of the organization's operations to a profit-making subsidiary.

For more information, see:

GOP treasurer candidate accuses incumbent with "fraud"

The GOP candidate for state treasurer accused incumbent Bob Holden of fraud.

Carl Bearden based his charge on two points:

  1. That Holden had not taken a public stand on revenue collections when the legislature was considering the education tax increase a few years ago.
  2. That Holden issued a check for court-ordered school desegregation in Kansas City when the state had just one a U.S. Supreme Court decision on the issue.
See our radio story for more information.

Blue Cross Wins Profit-Making Lawsuit.

A Cole County Circuit Court has rejected state efforts to force a charitable contribution from Blue Cross as a requirement for converting some of its operations to for-profit.

The state has argued that because of the lower taxes Blue Cross enjoyed as a non-profit company, conversion to profiting making should require some sort of payment.

But the circuit judge found that the state Insurance Department already had given approval for the conversion and that the department could not go back on that approval.

Earlier this year, the legislature debated - but failed to pass - a proposal that would have required compensation from Blue Cross for converting to a profit-making enterprise.

See our newspaper story for more details on that legislative proposal.

Minimum Wage Increase on Ballot

Missouri's secretary of state announced the petitition campaign to increase the state minimum wage got enough signatures to appear on the November ballot.

Two proposals relating to Congressional term limits, however, failed to have enough valid signatures for the ballot.

The secretary of state said her office was conducting an internal investigation into potential fraud with the term-limits signatures.

Those two proposals, if approved by the voters, would have identified on the election ballot the posititon of legislative candidates on Congressional term limits. One proposal covered Congressional candidates, the other state legislative candidates.

For more information, see: