Senate leaders faced with hours of acrimonious debate on the big economic development bill have decided not to try to push it through the senate this week. Debate has been scheduled for next Tuesday, putting off a possible major confrontation about the China trade hub at Lambert-St. Louis airport, the so called “aerotropolis.”  The aerotropolis development proposes using $360-milion in tax credits to turn Lambert-St. Louis airport into a major portal for trade with China. Senators just got a 288-page bill this morning that is a revision of the original proposal.  President pro Tem Rob Mayer wants them to have time to read it. And he also wants them to get more information. The economic development department is working up an economic model showing what the state’s return on investment will be if the aerotropolis is created.

Senators will get a briefing early next week from the economic development department. .

The most outspoken opponent of the China trade hub development proposal has been Cape Girardeau Senator Jason Crowell.  He doesn’t know if the new version of the proposal will help bring passionate supporters and passionate opponents together, though. But he says he sees no problems with “continuing to move forward…to take the deep breath and learn the information and knowledge that we’ve not had access to to this point,” he has told fellow senators.  

The bill is scheduled for debate next Tuesday.

   Listen to today’s senate discussions. 24:35 mp3