It appears Governor Blunt is ready to call the legislature back into special session to consider a compromise economic development bill and a change needed to finance an aggressive bridge-replacement program.
Calling it large and excessive, Governor Blunt vetoed the $200 million dollar economic development bill, HB327, approved this past session. The Senate sponsor of that bill, John Griesheimer (R-Washington), says a compromise has been reached to meet Blunt’s objections, a compromise he calls the "son of 327".
It’s a compromise that not only takes into consideration the objections raised by the governor, but other objections raised by key Republican senators. Griesheimer says Blunt’s Chief of Staff, Ed Martin, met with those senators and worked out language they could agree with. Several sources have told the Missourinet that the governor is ready to call the legislature back into special session on Monday, August 20 th .
The cost of the bill has been trimmed to $70 million. The main provision remains an expansion of the Quality Jobs Program; moving its cap from $12 million a year to $40 million. Griesheimer says it appears all the objections have been met and the legislature is poised to pass the bill.
The special session also apparently will include a bill to change state law so the Transportation Commission can move forward with its program to repair and replace 800 of the state’s worst bridges.