Thousands of Missourians injured on the job could be within months of getting payments from the state’s Second Injury Fund at last.
The pro-business legislature put the Second Injury Fund on its path to bankruptcy several years ago when it limited the taxes businesses pay to support the fund. The Attorney General quit reviewing cases when the fund dropped so low payments could not be made to people with pre-existing injuries who suffer a second work-related injury.
Lawmakers this year finally approved a surcharge to raise enough money to finance the payments, starting January first. Governor Nixon has signed the bill. Senator Scott Rupp of Wentzville, the sponsor of the bill, says it will take years to work through 30,000 pending cases.
It has taken four or five years to get the bill passed. Rupp says lawmakers finally got it done by taking control of the process and shutting interest groups out of the process.