Liberty Hospital will layoff more than a 100 workers. Kansas City Mayor Sly James appoints an advisory group on the airport, including critics of a one-terminal proposal. The Kansas Senate gives initial approval to bonds for NBAF.
The final week of Missouri's regular legislative session has arrived. The Republican-led General Assembly and Democratic Governor Jay Nixon are pushing to get several things accomplished before Friday. St. Louis Public Radio's Marshall Griffin tells us that the session, so far, has been one highlighted by partisanship and controversy.
It appears that Democrats in the Missouri Senate have successfully stopped legislation that would have redefined what constitutes a maintenance project and exempted those being done on public property from the state's prevailing wage requirement.
While he complimented lawmakers for increasing funding for K-12 schools and higher education, he also criticized them for passing legislation that would cut state income tax rates for individuals and corporations. He told reporters that the bill would gut state revenues by more than $800 million.
Kansas Governor Sam Brownback is set to sign a proclamation Monday to raise awareness of the need for foster care homes in the state. There's also an event planned on the Statehouse grounds where the Department for Children and Families will provide more information about how Kansas families can get involved in foster care. Gina Meier-Hummel, with the department, says there is a shortage of foster homes.
The House Appropriations Committee has approved an amended version of Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback’s proposal to issue more bonds for a federal lab in Manhattan. They delayed a decision Wednesday on the governor's proposal to help fund the National Bio- and Agro-Defense Facility, but after a briefing from Brownback's chief of staff, the committee approved the plan for $200 million in bonds.
Missouri Governor Jay Nixon is threatening to lay off state workers unless Republican lawmakers fully fund the Missouri Department of Revenue's Motor Vehicles Division for a full fiscal year.
The warning comes one day after House and Senate budget negotiators agreed to only fund the state division for eight months, as a means of pressuring state Revenue officials to stop scanning and storing source documents of driver's license applicants. Nixon, a Democrat, says he'll treat the 8-month appropriation as a full year's funding if GOP leaders don’t reverse themselves.
Lawmakers just returned to the Statehouse after a break, but already it looks like a disagreement on taxes could push the session past the 80 day deadline. To meet the 80 day mark they'd have to be done early next week, but House and Senate Republicans disagree on whether to extend a temporary sales tax increase. It's set to expire later this year, and House leaders want to let it end as planned.
A story about Code for America working in Kansas City, Kansas and Kansas City, Missouri.
Across the country, software geeks are building multi-platform applications to do all sorts of things. Among them, apps to encourage civic engagement and help cities run more efficiently.
Code for America, a non-profit out of San Francisco, is out front in this effort. The organization has fellows working in nine cities nationwide. They're focusing on ways to make government work better for everyone.
Missouri House and Senate budget negotiators have crafted a final version of next year's state budget.
The nearly $25 billion spending plan includes a $66 million increase for K-12 schools, and a $25 million hike for state universities and community colleges. It still does not include the Medicaid expansion proposed by Democratic Governor Jay Nixon, which disappointed committee member and State Senator Kiki Curls, also a Democrat, from Kansas City.
Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback wants lawmakers to extend a temporary sales tax hike as a way to fund the state's universities.
The governor says cuts to higher education would be a momentum-killer at a time when he thinks a lot of positive things are happening in Kansas. Lawmakers are hesitant to extend the sales tax hike, which was approved in 2010 on the condition that it would expire July 1 of this year.
Following a tour of the University of Kansas School of Medicine in Salina, Brownback called the facility a great place to invest.
Republican House Speaker Tim Jones has formed a committee he says will thoroughly investigate the Department of Revenue's scanning of source documents for driver's license and conceal carry applicants, and the release of the state's conceal carry weapons (CCW) holder list to the federal government.
Jones says the committee is necessary because the Nixon administration has not fully cooperated with lawmakers' efforts to get answers to everything that's happened and why.
The Missouri House has passed legislation that would allow motorcyclists to ride without wearing helmets.
House Bill 555 would lift the mandatory helmet requirement for motorcycle drivers and passenger who are at least 21 years of age or older. It would remain in effect for those under 21. The sponsor is Republican Rep. Eric Burlison from Springfield, he says the data he’s seen indicates that most motorcycle deaths are from torso injuries, not head trauma.
U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder contacted Gov. Sam Brownback earlier this week saying that a Kansas gun law barring federal regulation on Kansas-manufactured firearms is unconstitutional.
The Second Amendment Protection Act criminalizes the enforcement of federal laws on any guns that are made in Kansas and stay there. But, in a letter to the governor, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said that this is in direct conflict with federal law.
The federal investigator who requested Missouri’s list of conceal carry weapons holders testified under oath Wednesday before a State Senate committee.
Keith Schilb of the Social Security Administration's Inspector General's office told the Senate Appropriations Committee that part of his job is to seek and develop projects that could indicate whether there is enough evidence of fraud to warrant an investigation. He says that’s how the inquiry into Missouri’s conceal carry database began.
Legislation has stalled in the Missouri Senate that would allow investor-owned electric companies to charge consumers for infrastructure improvements.
Opponents argued that Ameren Missouri, Empire District and Kansas City Power and Light (KCP&L) make enough money to pay for improvements without levying an Infrastructure System Replacement Surcharge (ISRS) on their customers. Several Senators are blocking the measure, including Republican Rob Schaaf of St. Joseph.