He won re-election in November, but wasn’t sworn in to office until this week.
Rep. Leonard “Jonas” Hughes IV, a Democrat from Kansas City, had a slight problem to work on before being sworn in. He owed $19,090 to the Missouri Ethics Commission for fines and late fees dating back to 2006. State law prohibits legislators from taking their seats until all is right with the Ethics Commission.
The amount had to be paid in full; a lump sum. Hughes came to Jefferson City with the money and thought he had settled his debt, but fell $259.77 short. He said it was simply a miscalculation. Once he gathered together the remaining amount, the Ethics Commission cleared him and House Speaker Steven Tilley swore him into office.
“Well, I’m just glad I’m able to get down her and get to work,” Hughes said. “I’ve always enjoyed doing this. My constituents felt that I was a good legislator enough to send me back. I just wanted to get back and get to work for them.”
Hughes is in his fourth and final term as state representative. He declared last year that he would run for Kansas City mayor, but he failed to gather the signatures necessary to be placed on the ballot.