Three of Governor Nixon’s top-level appointments are running into trouble in the state Senate.
Senator Jason Crowell of Cape Girardeau has thrown up a roadblock to Senate confirmations of two of them and promises the third will not be confirmed.
Crowell objects to the appointment of former State Representative Phil Smith of Louisiana to the state administrative hearing commission. Crowell, who served with Smith in the House, says Smith was too political. He says Smith is a former legislator who thinks he’s entitled to a lucrative state job when a governor his party is elected.
Crowell is a Republican. Smith is a Democrat. He says Smith was too partisan when he was in the House. Crowell also threatens to block former Representative Bill Ransdall’s appointment to the state tax commission because Ransdall voted to support recommended reevaluation of Missouri farmland. The Tax Commission has voted to increase the productivity value on about 35% of Missouri’s farmland while lowering the value of about 65%. Crowell says he wants to hold Governor Nixon to his promise not to increase any taxes and since Ransdall voted to support the Tax Commission recommendation, he voted to support a tax increase.
Crowell says Nixon’s appointment of former state Democratic Party chief JohnTemporiti to the Missouri Development Finance Commission is not going to make it. He says the original choice for the appointment was former House Speaker Jim Kreider but Kreider’s state senator refused to sponsor him for confirmation.
Senate leader Charlie Shields of St. Joseph says the appointments of Smith and Ransdall are now down the drain. But he says they’re in the curved pipe under the sink. A spokesman for Governor Nixon is confident the appointments will be confirmed.