Legislative Issues

Check back here for items of interest in the Missouri legislature.

Recent News

April 24, 2015Missouri Senate: Don't Shut Down Police Video

April 24, 2015

TO:  Missouri Press Association members

FROM:  Doug Crews, Executive Director

RE:  HCS HB 762

Please contact your State Senator(s) in Jefferson City!  

With three weeks until the legislative session ends May 15, MPA anticipates a full-court press by law enforcement to pass HCS HB 762, a bill to restrict police video from public access.  

Changes are needed to this bill.  For instance, police videos should be considered "investigation records" not "closed records."

Contact your State Senator(s)!  You can be sure local police chiefs, county sheriffs, their staff, and others in favor of shutting down police video are contacting their State Senator(s).

Below are some talking points newspapers may use when you contact your State Senator(s).  

Please report any feedback from Senators to  dcrews@socket.net .  Thank you.
Missouri Senate:  Don't Shut Down Police Video

Attention will now focus on the Missouri Senate in Jefferson City as it considers House Committee Substitute for House Bill 762 (HCS HB 762), legislation that would for the most part close all video recorded with police ... continued

April 3, 2015MPA Legislative Update from Doug Crews, MPA - April 3, 2015

MPA Legislative Update from Doug Crews, MPA

Police body camera and dashboard camera video access
House Bill 762 was approved, 10-0, by the House Select State and Local Governments Committee on April 2, in Jefferson City.

HCS HB 762 includes language to allow police body camera and dash board camera video to be available to the public upon court order, and those persons or entities requesting such records can only be responsible for costs associated with their own attorney fees and not those fee of the public body.

HCS HB 762 is an improvement over the original bill's version, but the prospect of going to court every time to obtain a police video will present a challenge to the news media and other citizens.

The original bill, filed by Rep. Galen Higdon (R-St. Joseph), would have closed police video to the public.

While the substitute bill is better, Missouri Press Association prefers the version in Senate Committee Substitute for Senate Bill 331. SCS SB 331 would make police video "investigative records." SCS SB 331 has stalled out in the Senate after receiving some floor debate on March 25.

There are six weeks ... continued

February 5, 2015Missouri Press Legislative Update, Feb. 5

Missouri Press Legislative Update, Feb. 5

Missouri Press staff has been reading and reviewing the nearly 1,300 bills that have been filed in the General Assembly. So far, 864 bills have been filed in the House and 416 bills in the Senate.

One bill of concern, HB 537, has been filed by Rep. Dean Dohrman, R-LaMonte (Pettis County). The bill would virtually shut down public information in the county assessor's office. The bill has been assigned to the House Emerging Issues Committee.

Themes of note for this year's bills: Requiring police to wear video cameras; ethics reforms that affect legislators and lobbyists; proposed expungements of criminal records; setting campaign contribution limits; eliminating non-judicial property foreclosures and replacing them with judicial foreclosures, deleting public foreclosure notices in newspapers.

A Shield Law bill for news reporters has been filed this week by Rep. Joe Don McGaugh: HB 858.

Missouri Press representatives have been meeting with the Missouri Police Chiefs Association executive director in an effort to draft language on the topic of access to police body cameras video.

The Missouri General Assembly convened in Jefferson City on January 7. The 2015 session is scheduled to end at ... continued

September 11, 20142014 MPA Roundup

2014 MPA Legislative Roundup
May 22, 2014  (updated Sept. 11, 2014)

The Missouri General Assembly's veto session in Jefferson City was held Sept. 10, ending in the early hours of Sept. 11.

Two bills of interest to Missouri Press Association will become law in 30 days after Senate and House members voted to override Governor Jay Nixon's vetoes.  The bills are Senate Bill 593, a bill that will allow "non-election elections" in cities, towns and villages of fewer than 1,000 population, and Senate Bill 656, a bill allowing school protection officers to carry firearms in schools.

Here is information about those two bills, followed by a roundup of MPA legislative information from the 2014 regular session.

Senate Bill 593, sponsored by Sen. David Sater (R-Cassville). Senate Bill 593 modifies provisions relating to nonpartisan elections.  The bill states that in a nonpartisan election in cities, towns and villages of fewer than 1,000 inhabitants, no election will take place if the number of seats available equals the number of candidates who filed for the office.  The bill may be implemented by an ordinance, which allows the jurisdiction to except from holding these elections for six years from the ... continued


Online Store Feature

2015 MPA BOUND Newspaper Directory

An alphabetical resource guide to all of the newspapers in the state of Missouri. $45.00



Monday April 27th

Don't forget to mark your calendar for the 2015 Annual Convention, scheduled for Sept. 10-12, 2015 at the Holiday Inn Executive Center in Columbia, Mo. Link

Monday April 27th

Have you heard about our new 11-part series created in partnership with the Missouri Division of Tourism? Missouri Road Trip 2015: Every Hero Has a Story is available now for publication between May 1 and Aug. 31, 2015. Link

Friday April 24th

With three weeks until the legislative session ends May 15, MPA anticipates a full-court press by law enforcement to pass HCS HB 762, a bill to restrict police video from public access. We ask you to please contact your State Senator(s) in Jefferson City! Link