A Cole County judge has dismissed lawsuits challenging two issues on the August ballot, saying the deadline has passed for a court change to the ballot language of those issues as plaintiffs had hoped.

The rulings deal with Constitutional Amendment 5, which supporters say would strengthen the rights of Missourians to keep and bear arms, and Constitutional Amendment 7, which would raise the state sales tax three-quarters of one percent to fund state transportation needs and projects.

Judge Jon Beetem also found that the summary statements of both measures and the fiscal note of the transportation tax issue were fair and sufficient.

Both issues were the result of resolutions passed by the state legislature and attorneys in both cases had argued the ballot language offered by the general assembly didn’t adequately explain the issues.

Opponents of the transportation tax say the financial summary has too low an estimate of what the tax would generate and leaves out that it would also raise the “use tax.” Opponents of the firearms amendment say it leaves out that it would remove restrictions on concealed guns and would require greater scrutiny of gun laws.

See our earlier story

Attorney Khristine A. Heisinger represents the plaintiffs in the case against the ballot language of Constitutional Amendment 5.  She has filed an appeal to the judge’s ruling arguing that he was in error in determining that the language was fair and sufficient and that the matter was moot.

An attorney representing the plaintiffs on the transportation tax issue was not available for comment.