Capitol Report: Parson calls for a special session to focus on extending Federal Reimbursement Allowance Program

Tim Taylor
Missouri 48th District Representative Tim Taylor

This report marks the end of this year’s legislation sent to Governor Parson. Governor Parson has called for a special session to focus on extending Federal Reimbursement Allowance (FRA) program and certain allowances, taxes, and assessments that fund the MO HealthNet program. The Senate will begin the special session today, June 23. The House will on Wednesday, June 30 to consider and approve the bill sent over from the Senate. To review the entire list of 2021 legislation, go to house.mo.gov and click on Legislation. I encourage you to sign up to receive my full Capitol Report by emailing me at Tim.Taylor@house.mo.gov.

Honoring Military Members and Veterans (SB 120) 

Creates the Missouri Department of the National Guard to administer the militia and programs of the state relating to military forces, except for the Missouri Veterans Commission.  Designates November as Military Family Month to recognize the daily sacrifices of military families.  Grants an interview for any Missouri National Guard members applying for state jobs, and adds veteran questions to state forms to help connect them to services and enacts several other provisions.

Bolstering the Workforce with Skilled Veterans (HB 476)

HB 476 will cut bureaucratic red tape to ensure more skilled veterans are able to work and practice in the state. When the bill becomes law, the state will recognize military occupational specialties for licensure. Specifically, the legislation includes a Military Occupational Specialty as a type of licensure when applying for licensure in Missouri in the same occupation under Missouri’s Reciprocity Laws. The bill will allow military men and women to use the training they received while serving to come home and get skilled jobs, and to continue utilizing the skills they have worked so hard to obtain.

Providing Assistance to Firefighters (SB 45)

SB 45 will ensure firefighters and their families will be taken care of if a firefighter develops cancer because of their job. According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), firefighters face a 9 percent increase in cancer diagnoses, and a 14 percent increase in cancer-related deaths, compared to the general population in the U.S. The bill allows for the creation of a Voluntary Firefighter Cancer Benefits Pool by three or more political subdivisions. Under the act, any political subdivision may make contributions to a Voluntary Firefighter Cancer Benefits Pool. The pool is allowed to make payments to covered individuals based upon the type of cancer with which the covered individual was diagnosed.

Showing Appreciation for Law Enforcement (SB 72)

The bill officially creates Law Enforcement Appreciation Day, which will take place on the first Friday in May each year. On Law Enforcement Appreciation Day, Missourians are encouraged to participate in activities and events that recognize and support the brave men and women who undertake the difficult and sometimes unattainable pledge to protect and serve the public.

Saying No to Court Packing

Senate Concurrent Resolution (SCR) 6 sends a strong message from the Missouri General Assembly that urges the United States Congress to resist any attempt to increase the number of Justices on the United States Supreme Court. The United States Supreme Court has been composed of nine Justices since 1869. The resolution notes that the court is “an essential element of America’s system of checks and balances that protects our constitutional rights” and that “the President of the United States and Congress should be prohibited from undermining the independence of the Supreme Court by changing the number of Justices on the Supreme Court.”

Renouncing the Dred Scott Decision

House Concurrent Resolutions (HCR) 4 & 5 fully and entirely renounces the Missouri Supreme Court Dred Scott decision issued in 1852. Dred and Harriet Scott, individuals with African ancestry, were denied their freedom in Missouri with the decision that was made on March 22, 1852. The resolution refers to the decision as a “regrettable legacy for this state and antithetical to the nation’s founding values, specifically the tenet that all men are created equal.” The resolution also notes “it is time to draw a line between Missouri’s history, which encompassed such inhumane and unfair treatment to our citizens, and the present and future Missouri, which aims to be a place of equal treatment for all.”

Encouraging Kindness (SB 72)

In conjunction with Suicide Prevention Awareness Month in September, HB 72 creates Random Acts of Kindness Day. The day will take place each year on August 31. It is meant to encourage citizens to engage in random acts of kindness toward their fellow citizens. The day is also meant to remind Missourians that one small act of kindness has the power to change the course of a person’s life and the potential to impact countless lives as random acts of kindness are paid forward.

Cracking Down on Copper Theft (HB 69 and HB 271) 

Allows the state to better crack down on copper thieves, as well as those who steal precious metals and catalytic convertors. 

Requires most transactions of scrap metal to be paid for by check or electronic funds transfer, or to include a copy of the seller's photo identification, to ensure all sales can be tracked.

Allows for tracking of copper thefts.

Makes catalytic convertor theft a class E Felony.

Requires buyers of precious metals to wait at least ten days to melt down the item.

Permanently Allowing To-Go Cocktails (SB 126) This will allow bars and restaurants to sell to-go alcohol. The bill allows restaurants to furnish one-time-use, tamperproof bags with seals to let patrons take specified alcoholic beverages with them. The tamperproof bags are meant to help prevent drinking while driving. The alcoholic beverage would have to be purchased with a meal.

My family and I feel blessed to live in such a wonderful community that is the 48th District. I am dedicated to represent the good people of the district, and the people of the state of Missouri, with integrity. If you have questions, concerns, or input, please feel free to contact me at (573) 751-0169 or you can reach my Legislator Assistant, June, at June.Cardwell@house.mo.gov