Governor Nixon vetoed a near record number of bills from this session, and several are being considered for veto override by the legislature (which requires a two-thirds vote in both the House and the Senate). This report will concentrate on priority bills vetoed that will likely be considered for an override during the September veto session. This does not include some of the priority bills vetoed earlier this year such as the transfer fix or some of the clarification bills we passed to save Missourians from being overtaxed. Next week we will take one final look at the amendments on the August 5th ballot.
The Final Days of Veto
Benevolent Tax Credits -- HB 1132 increases the amount of tax credits that are available for donations to various organizations that assist Missourians in need. The bill increases the amount of credits that may be claimed by those who contribute to a local food pantry from $1.25 million to $1.75, and the cumulative amount of tax credits that can be claimed by individuals who contribute to maternity homes from $2 million to $2.5 million annually. Credits available to pregnancy resource centers will increase to $2.5 million if overridden.
72-Hour Abortion Waiting Period - HB 1307 requires a woman to take additional time to consider her decision before obtaining an abortion. Currently, Missouri requires a 24-hour waiting period between the time a woman seeks her first consultation and exam from a physician and the time she returns to undergo an abortion procedure. The bill, if overridden, will lengthen the waiting period to 72 hours.
Regulating the Use of E-Cigarettes -- SB 841 makes it illegal for Missourians under the age of 18 to purchase electronic cigarettes. Currently, the battery-powered devices that do contain nicotine can be purchased by anyone in the state. If overridden, Missouri will join 30 other states that have moved to keep these products out of the hands of minors.
Strengthening Gun Rights -- SB 656 lowers the age requirement for a concealed carry permit and makes several other changes to strengthen the gun rights of Missouri citizens. If overridden, the bill allows Missouri school districts to designate teachers or administrators as school protection officers that would be responsible for promoting safety in the school environment, putting immediate response to a dangerous situation within school buildings.
Dairy Revitalization Act -- HB 1326 and SB 506 creates the Missouri Dairy Revitalization Act of 2014 to help support the state's dairy industry that has seen hundreds of dairy farms close in recent years. The bills are designed to take a multi-pronged approach to supporting the dairy industry by creating a dairy producer margin insurance premium assistance program and creating the Missouri Dairy Scholars Program to encourage young people to pursue careers in agriculture.
It is an honor to serve the 51st District in the Missouri House of Representatives. Each week I will issue a capitol report to keep you informed of activities in Jefferson City and Missouri. Any concerns or issues you might have are of great interest to me. I look forward to your input and thoughts, so please feel free to contact me at any time if you have questions, concerns, or ideas to improve our state government and the quality of life for all Missourians. My telephone number is 573-751-2204 or you may contact me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for working with me to make Missouri a great place to live.