Missouri Government News for Week of March 6, 2000
|.||Senate amendment significantly increases parent liability for child crime (03/02/00)|
|.||Senate approves amendment creating DNA bank for genetic profiling of criminals (03/02/00)|
|.||Ashcroft speech at Bob Jones University draws ire of Democrats (03/02/00)|
Ashcroft's office did not return a telephone call requesting comment and a copy of the speech delivered during the commencement ceremony. No one from Bob Jones University would comment. Texas Gov. George W. Bush, a candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, has also been under attack for failing to repudiate the school's policies during a February campaign stop.
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|.||Record turnout predicted for Super Tuesday presidential primary (03/02/00)|
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|.||Carnahan approves legislative pay raise (03/02/00)|
Much like the legislation itself, which was quietly approved by the General Assembly, Carnahan's action was without fanfare.
|.||"Relocation Bill" passes House committee (03/01/00)|
However, an amendment was added to the bill limiting the move to within 30 miles of the child's current residence.
|.||Senators debate stricter Open Meetings Law (03/01/00)|
Sen. Joe Maxwell, D-Mexico, has proposed a bill that would strengthen the current Sunshine Law. The fines would be increased and a court would decide how much to charge based upon the severity, whether the agency is a repeat offender and the size of the jurisdiction.
"No one who gives people records pays a penalty," Maxwell said. "Only when they deny access are they penalized." His bill reached the Senate floor on Wednesday, but opponents came prepared to dampen his idea.
|.||House Bill Brings Technology To Missouri's Disabled (02/29/00)|
Representative Bill Boucher sponsored the legislation to make expanding technology more accessible to the disabled.
|.||Private Prisons on the Spot in Front of House Committee (02/29/00)|
Right now, the state has no controlling authority over such businesses who run the prison.
That fact astonished many at the committee hearing who testified in favor of the bill.
|.||Legislator says pay raise plan treats workers unequally (02/29/00)|
The increase was part of a supplemental appropriations bill to provide extra funds to various government programs for the remaining four months of this fiscal year. The Senate made not one change to the bill as it was approved earlier this month by the House.
Under his line-item veto powers, the governor can reduce or eliminate the legislative pay boost while signing the rest of the bill. If approved by the governor, the bill would raise legislators' annual salary $1,500 to $30,580. The salary increase is retroactive through 1999 if the governor signs the bill. Per diem payments would also be reimbursed.
The bill was approved by the Senate Monday and is awaiting approval by Governor Mel Carnahan.
|.||Racial profiling debate in Senate under the .08 bill (02/29/00)|
The Senate has yet to vote on the proposal to lower the blood-alcohol content required to be considered legally drunk to .08.
|.||No new specialized license plates to be created according to Senate committee chairman. (02/29/00)|
The decision comes after he killed his own license plate bill to prevent the creation of a "Respect Life" license plate that sparked a heated abortion debate in the Senate.
|.||Record Number of Candidates File for August Primary (02/29/00)|
Among the offices up for grabs is the governorship, a U.S. Senate seat and the entire Missouri House.
|.||Lacy Clay Filed to run for the Seat in Congress his Father has Occupied for 32 Years (02/29/00)|
The younger Clay has been serving in the Missouri government for the past 16 years.
|.||Missouri's Senate nears debate on raising the fines for those who violate public records laws. (02/28/00)|
|.||A Senate Bill would make the Conservation Department Responsible for Damages Caused by Wild Elk (02/28/00)|
|.||Lawmakers want to require insurance companies to provide contraceptive coverage (02/28/00)|
Two bills proposed by Democratic lawmakers would require insurance plans to cover the costs of contraceptives at the same level as they cover other prescription drugs. The proposals were heard Monday night by the House Critical Issues Committee.
"It's hypocritical that insurance plans don't cover this," said Rep. May Scheve, D-St.Louis County, sponsor of one of the bills. "It's treating your recipients unfairly."
|.||Agencies reach compromise on mentally retarded, death penalty (02/28/00)|
The compromise centered around a bill by Rep. Mike Schilling, D-Springfield. His proposal would provide life in prison without the possibility of parole for mentally retarded people guilty of first-degree murder. The bill says whether a person is mentally retarded "shall be heard and determined by the trial court out of hearing of the jury prior to the commencement of the trial."
|.||Dry Cleaners might be pressed to raise prices (02/28/00)|
Sen. Joe Maxwell, D-Mexico, said he wants the legislature to establish a $2 million fund to clean up solvents at old drycleaning sites. Individual cleaners would be required to contribute between $500 and $1500 to the fund each year. Failure to pay would result in fines of up to $500.
Maxwell said the drycleaning industry supports the bill and is willing to pay extra to restore abandoned property. However, he conceded that collecting more funds from the industry might press cleaners to raise their prices.