Thursday February 25, 2016

New Candidate Filings

Keeping track of the candidate filings, here’s who filed yesterday:

In House 20, Christopher Dale filed to run as a Republican.  That creates a primary for Rep. Bill Kidd.

In House 59, Randy Dinwiddie filed to run as a Republican, creating a primary for Rep. Mike Bernskoetter.

In House 65, Kenny Biermann filed to run as a Democrat.  Biermann is a former rep.  This is Rep. Anne Zerr’s seat; she’s running for state senate.  There’s a hot primary to succeed her between Adam Schnelting and Tom Hannegan.  Biermann is the only Democrat to file so far.

In House 77, Brian Elsesser joined three other Democrats in the race to succeed Rep. Kimberly Gardner.  She’s running for St. Louis Circuit Attorney.

In House 108, Ed Shew filed to run a Democrat against incumbent Republican Rep. Justin Hill.


2016 Watch

With the start of filing, it’s the start of the 2016 Watch bits….

In House 73, filing day gave some pretty good news to incumbent Rep. Courtney Curtis.  Although the ideal scenario is being uncontested, if you’re going to have a race, a four-way is probably the best you can get as your opposition splits the “anti” vote.  Among the three challenging Curtis is former Rep. Eileen McGeoghegan who lost a redistricting duel with Rep. Mark Nichols in 2012.

In House 95, Democrat Glenn Koenen kicked off with an email highlighting his issues: education and transportation.  (Incumbent Rep. Marsha Haefner hasn’t filed yet.)

From Koenen’s email: A few months back I attended a Mehlville School District board meeting where a modest levy increase was approved for the ballot.  Even after charging many families for bus service, leaving necessary positions unfilled and rounds of belt-tightening, the district lacked the money to do its job.  Before the board put the measure on the ballot, the district finance guy explained that Mehlville has lost ‘Five million dollars a year’ due to state budget cuts.  I’m sure he low-balled that figure.  I’m also sure that most in the room that night didn’t connect a significant portion of Mehlville’s financial plight to deliberate actions in Jefferson City to starve education by refusing to fund the lowered, revised Foundation Formula by almost a half a billion dollars a year.

The only two major north/south surface streets in District 95 are Telegraph Road (state Route 231) and Lemay Ferry Road (route 267).  Both state roads connect to I-255 and both are lined with grocery stores, pharmacies, hardware stores, gas stations, restaurants, banks, churches, schools, doctor offices and the host of other things every community needs.  The district depends on these arteries, yet, the Missouri Department of Transportation tells any who will listen (though most don’t) that they do not have the money to properly maintain and enhance these critical pavements.


 Follow-Up on Utilities Work Session

Ameren and Noranda put out a joint letter to the General Assembly acknowledging that their private war was the cause for the gridlock of the past several years.  “We would be remiss if our two companies didn’t take some ownership of this prolonged stalemate...”  But they said now was the time to move forward and affirmed their support for the draft framework of a new regulatory scheme.


And the little tussle between Sens. Will Kraus and Jason Holman about the inclusion or lack of inclusion of renewables in the bill was much ado about nothing says one source.  It’s likely that some provision about that issue will find its way into the bill, and Kraus will likely have no problem with the language.


Follow-Up on Senate Ethics Debate

Lobbyist 1: You’re wrong when you say they don’t “get it.”  They get it, and they don’t want to do it.

Lobbyist 2:  That debate was the perfect example of what happens when lobbyists aren’t involved and legislators have to do it themselves, and write their own amendments.  What a train-wreck!


Committee Changes

Rep. Lyndall Fraker was added to the Committee on Banking.

Rep. Rob Vescovo was removed from the Committee on Government Efficiency and added to the Workforce Standards and Development Committee.


$5K+ Contributions

Greitens for Missouri - $5,001 from Beth and Phil Berra.

Hawley for Missouri - $100,000 from Ronald Cameron.

Progress KC PAC - $25,000 from KC Biz PAC, the PAC of Greater KC Chamber of Commerce.

House Republican Campaign Committee Inc - $15,000 from Graves for Congress.



Happy birthdays to former Sen. Rob Mayer.