2023 Legislative Update — Missouri Legislature Returns for Veto Session

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Missouri Legislature Returns for Annual Veto Session this Week in Jefferson City

The House and Senate convened at noon on Wednesday to consider the 201 line-items eligible for consideration for Veto override. Procedurally, any motions to override a veto must begin in the originating chamber. Traditionally, the sponsor of the bill makes any motions to override a veto. As it pertains to the 13 budget bills, those originate in the House, but any member may make an override motion.

As expected, members did make motions to override certain line-items, the objection of the Governor notwithstanding. The following are the line-items which were approved by the House:

  • Sections 8.090, 8.095, 8.100, 8.105, 8.125, 8.130, 8.140, 8.215 and 8.220 which funds a 20% pay plan and fringe benefit increase for the Missouri State Highway Patrol
  • Section 8.085 which funds an increase in the Capitol Police pay plan
  • Section 8.270 which increased funds for expenses incurred by Missouri Task Force 1
  • Section 8.501 which funds military reenlistment incentives
  • Section 19.303 for the planning, design, land acquisition, utility relocation and construction of capacity improvements on I-44
  • Section 19.504 for the planning, design and construction of a police center in St. Louis City

The following line-items that failed to be overridden by the House:

  • Section 7.046 for walkability improvements in Grandview
  • Section 8.545 for an increase in funding for the Office of Search and Rescue
  • Section 10.830 for the long-term care ombudsman program
  • Section 10.110 for funding the Youth at Risk of Mental Health Crises
  • Section 11.115 for funding a year-round youth jobs program in the city of St. Louis
  • Section 19.243 for the Riverview Gardens School District in St. Louis County for roof maintenance, repairs, improvements, upgrades and a lead assessment
  • Section 19.503 for the planning, design, maintenance and construction of a training facility for law enforcement in O’Fallon

The overrides were sent to the Senate for their consideration. The Senate refused to take up any overrides, leaving Governor Mike Parson’s budget cuts in place.

JONATHAN PATTERSON, ELECTED AS NEXT HOUSE SPEAKER
The next Speaker of the Missouri House of Representatives was selected during a closed-door Republican caucus on Sept. 12 in Jefferson City: Jonathan Patterson (R), the current Majority Floor Leader in the House.

Rep. Patterson would become Speaker in 2025, as he continues as Floor Leader in 2024, the final year for Speaker Dean Plocher (R-Des Peres).

Rep. Patterson would be the first person of color to serve as Speaker in Missouri. He was adopted by his parents from a South Korean orphanage, arriving in Kansas City in 1986 at age six.

Rep. Patterson represents District 30, which includes parts of Lee’s Summit. He was elected to his first two-year term in November 2018. He is a 1998 graduate of Blue Springs High School. He then attended the University of Missouri, Columbia, where he earned both his bachelors and medical degree. After medical school, Dr. Patterson completed his surgical residency at Truman Medical Center in downtown Kansas City. Dr. Patterson practiced general surgery in eastern Jackson County from 2011-2022.

Rep. Patterson lives in Lee’s Summit with his wife, Jennifer. They have two children, Leah and Andrew. He has completed surgical mission trips around the world, including to the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, and Jordan.

LEGALIZED SPORTS BETTING INITIATIVE PETITIONS FILED
On September 8, 2023, the Missouri Secretary of State accepted four initiative petition filings relating to sports wagering. As reported by the Associated Press, these initiatives were filed on behalf of Missouri’s professional sports teams, and it appears the St. Louis Cardinals baseball club has taken the lead on the effort. Teams included in the coalition also include the Kansas City Royals, Kansas City Chiefs, Kansas City Current, St. Louis Blues and St. Louis City soccer teams. Upon approval for circulation, the proponents will need to garner the necessary signatures (approximately 180,000) to place the question on the 2024 ballot.

The initiative petition as filed would allow for Missouri casinos and sports teams to offer sports betting onsite and through an online platform. The tax rate would be set at 10% of the adjusted gross revenue and is estimated to generate approximately $30 million annually, with $25 million going to public education and the remainder to a compulsive gambler prevention fund.

The Missouri General Assembly has continued to discuss this issue over the past few years and a similar proposal easily passed the Missouri House of Representatives in 2023 by a vote of 118-35. The issue has been stalled in the Missouri Senate as a handful of Senators have blocked the measure from passage in their past efforts to include the legalization of video lottery terminals (slot machines) in retail establishments such as gas stations, truck stops, bars, and restaurants. The Missouri Senate has debated and voted on these proposals in the past and the proponents of video lottery terminals have been unable to secure the necessary votes. It is uncertain if these issues will surface in the legislature next January, however, the filing of these initiative petitions signal that Missouri sports teams are leaning toward placing the final decision in the voters’ hands rather than the Missouri Legislature.

BRONIEC ANNOUNCED FOR MISSOURI SURPEME COURT
On Tuesday, Governor Mike Parson announced he had selected the Honorable Kelly Broniec to be a Judge on the Missouri Supreme Court. She will fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge George W. Draper III. Judge Broniec was one of three nominees who were submitted to Governor Parson by the Appellate Judicial Commission for consideration. Judge Broniec’s swearing-in date has not yet been set; however, Missouri law requires her to be sworn in within 30 days of her appointment.

APPLICATIONS BEING ACCEPTED TO REPLACE JUDGE BRECKENRIDGE
The Appellate Judicial Commission is accepting applications for judge of the Supreme Court of Missouri to fill the vacancy to be created by the upcoming Oct. 13 retirement of Judge Patricia Breckenridge after more than four decades of judicial service.

A native of Nevada, MO, Judge Breckenridge earned her bachelor of science, with honors, in agricultural economics and her law degree, both from the University of Missouri, Columbia. She then entered the private practice of law in Nevada, becoming an assistant municipal judge for the city in 1979. Three years later, she was elected as associate circuit judge in Vernon County, where she served for eight years. In 1990, she was appointed to the Missouri Court of Appeals, Western District, for which she served as chief judge from July 1998 through June 2000. In 2007, she was elevated to the Supreme Court of Missouri and, from July 2015 through June 2017, served as the state’s fourth female chief justice. Breckenridge currently is the longest-serving judge on the appellate bench in Missouri, with more than 41 years as a trial and appellate judge. Her retirement is mandated by article V, section 26 of the Missouri Constitution.

Citizens are encouraged to nominate well-qualified candidates for the commission’s consideration. New applications as well as letters of interest from applicants who were interested in succeeding Judge George W. Draper III will be accepted until noon Friday, Oct. 6.

The commission has reserved Monday, Oct. 23 and Tuesday, Oct. 24, at the Supreme Court Building in Jefferson City to interview applicants for this vacancy and select a panel of three nominees for the governor’s consideration. The commission will conduct full interviews of any new applicants and abbreviated interviews of any prior applicants. The interviews will be open to the public. The names of applicants to be interviewed as well as information relating to the number and characteristics of all applicants will be released publicly prior to the interviews.

UPCOMING DATES OF INTEREST
Veto Session – Sept. 13, 2023
Pre-Filing of Bills – Dec. 1, 2023Start of 2024 Legislative Session – Jan. 3, 2024
Legislative Spring Break – Mar. 18-22, 2024
End of 2024 Legislative Session – May 17, 2024

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