I wrote an item in the St. Louis Beacon yesterday about a downtown St. Louis press conference held by House Democrats. The presser involved the lawmakers decrying their Republican counterparts for not passing most of the agenda set forth in the special session.
The above video features comments from Reps. Jake Hummel, D-St. Louis City, and Tishaura Jones, D-St. Louis City. Click on the video to see more.
The second video features Tilley talking about why he included changes to the Land Assemblage Tax Credit, a program utilized by developer Paul McKee in hopes of rehabbing parts of the north St. Louis.
The next three video feature House Speaker Steve Tilley, R-Perryville, talking to the press after the Missouri House passed their version of economic development legislation. The first video touches on including a cut to the state’s corporate income tax.
A lawsuit was filed yesterday against a redistricted map passed over Gov. Jay Nixon’s objection. You can read more in this story from the St. Louis Beacon.
Click on the above video to see Nixon’s reaction.
Gov. Jay Nixon wants the legislature to alter statutes pertaining to electronic communication between teachers and students.
The provision was included in a bill known as the “Amy Hestir Student Protection Act,” which was aimed at curtailing sexual misconduct against students. The provision in question garnered controversy after questions arose how it would affect teachers’ ability to use social networking to communicate with students.
That aspect of the law prompted lawsuits, including one that today resulted in an injunction. Now, Nixon is adding changes to the communication provisions to a September special session.
“First and foremost, our top concern and priority is and always will be protecting children across Missouri, and making sure students receive the quality education they need and deserve,” Nixon said in a statement. “In a digital world, we must recognize that social media can be an important tool for teaching and learning. At the same time, we must be vigilant about threats posed to students through the Internet and other means. Because of confusion and concern among educators, students and families over this specific provision of Senate Bill 54, I will ask the General Assembly to repeal that particular section, while preserving other vital protections included in the bill. In addition, I will be asking for input on this issue from teachers, parents and other stakeholders.”
Nixon added: “Although this legislation included a number of vital provisions, it’s clear this one particular section is causing substantial confusion and concern among teachers, students and families. For that reason, it’s important that we repeal this specific language during the upcoming special session, while we continue to work together to ensure the safety and protection of Missouri’s children.”
Backers of the legislation had expressed a desire to tackle the issue at next month’s special session.
Now that Missouri General Assembly’s session is over, there’s still some questions about whether Gov. Jay Nixon will be lawmakers back for more legislative fun.
Nixon was specifically asked last Friday whether he would call lawmakers back for a wide-ranging economic development bill. Included in that legislation was roughly $360 million worth of incentives to bring a “China hub” to St. Louis-Lambert International Airport.
Click on the video to see Nixon’s response.
Do the Missouri House and the Missouri Senate have an acrimonious relationship? That was one of the questions explored in an article for the St. Louis Beacon:
The two chambers also dueled over a proposal to help finance a new nuclear plant and over a bill to stiffen the state’s requirements for initiative-petition drives. The Senate killed both.
The notable exceptions, where the chambers did work together, were social issues like guns and abortion. The House and Senate seemed to try to outdo each other in expanding the rights to carry guns — even in the state Capitol — while imposing further restrictions on women seeking abortions.
Otherwise, tensions between chambers were high, even though both are controlled by Repubicans. At one point during the final day, House Majority Leader Tim Jones, R-Eureka, angrily Tweeted that his chamber “continues to pass good government bills,” while the Missouri Senate’s “legislative terrorists continue to kill them.”
I asked House Speaker Steve Tilley, R-Perryville, about the relationship with the two chambers. Tilley also answered a question about whether the House would have passed a nuclear site permit bill had it made it through the Missouri Senate. Click on the video to hear more.
Here’s the first video of House Speaker Steve Tilley, R-Perryville, taking stock of this year’s legislative session. While lawmakers failed to pass a wide-ranging tax credit bill and local control of the St. Louis Police Department, they did manage to pass a host of other items.
Will local control and Aerotropolis make it?
With only a few short hour left in the 2011 legislative session, those two notable issues still hang in the balance. Jo Mannies and I have more in our article for the St. Louis Beacon:
State Sen. Eric Schmitt, R-Glendale, said late Thursday that progress has been made — but work still remains — to forge a House-Senate agreement on state tax credit revisions that include $360 million in breaks aimed at boosting the St. Louis region’s effort to persuade China to locate a cargo hub at Lambert St. Louis International Airport.
The deal also has been linked by Senate leaders to any approval by that chamber of a separate bill granting St. Louis city officials local control over the city’s police department, which has been under state supervision for 150 years.
Schmitt (right) — the Senate’s leader of the China hub effort, dubbed “Aerotropolis” — cautioned that House negotiators’ tax-break proposals may not be acceptable to the full Senate. The deal is dead if it is not approved by both chambers by 6 p.m. today, when this legislative session ends.
Lack of an agreement on tax credits likely also will doom St. Louis’ quest for local control.