February 14, 2016

“Serious breach of public trust” alleged (AUDIO)

The leader of the state senate accuses the revenue department of a “serious breach of public trust” andhas told the department to stop collecting and keeping personal information on Missourians. But the letter might not do much good.

Senate leader Tom Dempsey of St. Charles says the agency has been breaking the law since January by scanning and keeping personal identification documents when people seek new driver’s licenses or other forms of State ID, icnluding concealed weapon permits. He maintains the department should have issued a new rule changing its licensing procedure–although he is not sure the legislature would have approved it. But he says the department needs to do things the right way–and it hasn’t been.

From a practical standpoint, though, does his letter carry any authority? Senate floor leader Ron Richard of Joplin was asked if there is anything the legislature can do to make the department change its tune. “Probably not,” he responds.

The Senate appropriations chairman says the department is going to have to start following the law before funding is restored for its motor vehicle licensing division.

AUDIO: Dempsey news conference 13:11

Audio: Schaefer interview 4:36