As the final week of the legislative session begins, some significant bills are still on the table. One of those is a transportation bill. Governor Jay Nixon has urged the Legislature to pass a transportation funding plan, but lawmakers disagree on whether the increase of 3.5 cents per gallon on diesel and 1.5 cents per gallon on all other fuels needs to be voted on by the people.
Nixon says it doesn’t. “I clearly know that the amounts we are talking about here are underneath that Hancock limit.”
The Governor said he thinks a transportation bill can be voted on by the end of Friday. “It’s a process we are moving forward on. We have a whole week. I do think we share priorities that we are making sure we are investing in our infrastructure. We also have seen the challenges if we don’t. One of which is not being able to match federal dollars.”
Other items expected to get attention this week are the so-called “Right-to-Work” bill and legislation that would require a photo identification to vote.
Right to work, which outlaws fees from being collected from non-union members at businesses where the union has a security agreement was passed by the House earlier this session. It’s the Senate’s turn to take up the issue.
The House has also approved a voter ID measure that would require a photo identification from voters at the polls. Democrats have challenged the issue, saying it disenfranchises traditionally Democratic-leaning demographics.