JEFFERSON CITY- After months of controversy and confusion, the Senate Gubernatorial Appointments Committee affirmed two new members to Missouri's apportionment committees.
Norman B. Harty was named to the House Apportionment Committee while Allison London Smith joined the Senate committee. They filled vacancies left by Rep. Mark Richardson, appointed to both committees by Gov. Bob Holden.
Richardson, R-Poplar Bluff, resigned his appointment April 2, after learning that he was in violation of emolument of office. As a state representative, he can not receive more than one paycheck from the state.
Committee members are allotted $15 per day compensation.
"This has been a difficult situation and I think that we are all looking forward to putting it behind us," said Peter Kinder, president pro tem of the senate.
For weeks after Richardson's resignation, lawmakers engaged in a partisan battle of wills. Republicans accused the governor of stalling when appointing a replacement, while Holden claimed that the problem arose from the list submitted by top Republicans.
Harty is the owner of First Community Bank of Gideon and has been friends with committee chair Kinder for over 20 years.
"He is active in the community and he is willing to commit his time for fair redistricting," said Sen. Bill Foster, R-Poplar Bluff.
Smith has been on the Board of Regents at Southwest Missouri State University for six years.
"I am impressed with her integrity and her ability to think," said Sen. Doyle Childers, R-Reeds Spring.
The appointees still face a final confirmation from the Senate.