Missouri Statehouse
3:51 pm
Wed January 9, 2013

Legislative Session Begins In Missouri

Missouri’s 2013 legislative session is underway. Legislative leaders kicked things off by laying out more details on what they want to pass this year.

During his opening remarks to the Missouri House, Speaker Tim Jones said he wants to restore caps on medical malpractice damage awards, which were stripped away last year by the State Supreme Court.

“Unless we take action, we will see millions and millions of dollars in the health care industry diverted away from care, diverted away from health care jobs, and instead those precious dollars will be needed for legal defense costs," says Jones.

Senate President Pro-tem Tom Dempsey told his chamber he wants to lower the state’s income tax and create a more business-friendly tax code.  Senate Republicans are focused on placing all workplace illness and injury claims within the workers’ comp system, lowering the state’s income tax and making the tax code more business-friendly.

Democrats in both chambers, including Minority Leader Jolie Justus, will push for Medicaid expansion.

"Expansion of Medicaid is not only necessary, but it’s also going to be good for the state," says Justus. "It is gonna be a job creator that is unprecedented, and so it’s something that we’re looking forward to continuing (to) have the conversation with our Republican colleagues.”