December 20, 2014

The end is near (AUDIO)

The record for 2013 made by the people we have elected to make our laws will be written this week. 

The session that started in cold, gray January ends in the green warmth of May at 6 o-clock Friday evening.  The clock increasingly becomes a friend or an enemy in these last days, depending on which side senators and representatives take on major issues still outstanding—and several are pending.

The comprehensive tax credit reform measure that Governor Nixon wants before he acts on the elimination of tax credits for low-income renters is one of the issues.  Important jobs and healthcare issues are on the table. Leaders hope some weekend discussions will resolve some problems and free bills to move without time-consuming floor fights.  

Senate Leader Tom Dempsey says signs of building pressure began to appear in the Senate last week, where floor leader Ron Richard gave Senators Wednesday evening off after contentious debate that had lasted into the early minutes of the day. 

Two major long-term money issues appear to face differing outlooks–a one-percent transportation sales tax, which Dempsey thinks might make it, and the 1.2-billion dollar capital improvements bond issue, which Dempsey thinks might need another year.  Both could wind up on the 2014 ballots.

AUDIO: Dempsey press conference 19:12