Almost a month ago, the Chamber reported on the Special Session called by Governor Mike Parson to address “violent crime” had taken yet another turn when the Missouri House of Representatives divided his six proposals into six separate bills. See our previous update for a detailed explanation of said six proposals.
Although this process seemingly worked as intended, a few pieces of legislation ultimately made it to the Governor’s desk. As of Wednesday, September 16th, the legislature ended the Special Session and they did so only having successfully passed two proposals: 1) legislation allowing St. Louis area law enforcement to live outside the city limits and 2) the creation of a new witness protection fund. I must note that this new bipartisan witness protection fund came without any appropriation of funds to implement the program.
While Special Session was wrapping up, the annual Veto Session occurred simultaneously, albeit briefly. The House only took one action, voting to override Governor Parson’s veto of a proposal that would have reimbursed businesses $140,000 for overcollection and use of sales taxes. Unfortunately for the House, the Senate did not feel the same and did not override the Governor’s veto.
Towards the end of what was the last day of Special Session and Veto Session concurrently, several lawmakers, including Governor Mike Parson himself, discussed the possibility of another Special Session to address business liability regarding COVID-19.
As always, the Chamber will continue to advocate for our members and the business community-at-large by working with the Governor’s Office and legislative leadership to address a range of issues, including COVID-19 business liability. Over the next couple of months, the Chamber Government Affairs Committee will be developing the 2021 Legislative Agenda. This will guide the Chamber’s policy priorities for the coming year. Any Chamber member who would like to participate in the development of the agenda may do so by attending a Government Affairs Committee meeting held on the first Thursday of every month at 4:00 PM. For more information, please contact the Chamber.