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The 21st Senatorial District Is ChangingPosted Wednesday, November 21, 2012, at 2:09 PM
Many changes are underway in the Missouri General Assembly as we gear up for the next legislative session. As you are well aware by now, the effects of the 2010 Census and redistricting will be complete, starting in January. In addition, many lawmakers have reached their maximum number of years in which they can serve in the Legislature. This can mean different things to different people.
Let us start with term limits. I am one of the Missouri senators who was unable to run for another term this year. On Nov. 3, 1992, Missouri voters approved an amendment to the state's constitution (Article III, Section 8) limiting the years a legislator may serve in the General Assembly. Prior to this provision, Missouri had no legislative term limits.
As originally adopted, the amendment limited the service of individuals elected to the General Assembly to a maximum of eight years in the Missouri House of Representatives and eight years in the Missouri Senate. I have served my eight years. Starting next year, you will have a new state senator.
If you live in Lafayette, Saline, Howard, Carroll or Ray counties, you will join with Johnson, Caldwell and Livingston counties to form the new 21st Senatorial District, which will be represented by Sen. David Pearce. He is the current chair of the Senate Education Committee and sponsored a number of bills addressing not only education, but veterans' issues this year.
Macon and Chariton counties will become a part of Sen. Brian Munzlinger's 18th District. He chairs the Senate Agriculture, Food Production and Outdoor Resources Committee and also sponsored a number of bills relating to veterans during the legislative session.
Eastern Clay County will go into the 12th Senatorial District, represented by Sen. Brad Lager, who chairs the Senate Commerce, Consumer Protection, Energy and the Environment Committee. A lot of the legislation he typically sponsors deals with rural issues.
The 19th District will inherit Cooper County, which is represented by Sen. Kurt Schaefer, who is chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee. Needless to say, this is probably the most important panel in the Missouri Senate, as it depicts how the state will disperse its General Revenue to fund some of our state's valuable services, including education and transportation.
I would also like to point out that we have moved out of our office in the Capitol and are currently using temporary space as folks start to change offices and move in for next year's session. You can still access us by phone or e-mail, since we remain your voice in Jefferson City through the end of the year.
It may be hard to believe, but the holidays are already here. My wife and I want to wish you a Happy Thanksgiving and a blessed Christmas. It is always nice to reach the end of the year, reflect on what has happened during the course of the last 12 months and also look ahead to what is to come in a new year. I look forward to seeing a lot of folks in the remaining weeks of 2012.
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Sen. Bill Stouffer, R-Napton, represented the 21st district in the Missouri Senate until January 2013, when he left after reaching established term limits. He is a life-long resident of Saline County, a farmer and small business owner. He and his wife, Sue Ellen, live on their family farm in Napton. He was the chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee and Joint Committee on Transportation Oversight. He served on a number of other committees, including Agriculture, Food Production and Outdoor Resources; Commerce, Consumer Protection, Energy & the Environment; Financial & Governmental Organizations & Elections; Joint Interim Committee on School Accreditation; Missouri Alternative Fuels Commission; Missouri Civil Air Patrol; Missouri Military Preparedness and Enhancement Commission; Missouri Senior RX Commission; Alzheimer's State Plan Task Force; Coordinating Council on Special Transportation; and Midwestern Interstate passage Rail Compact Commission.
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