Tuesday, April5, 2016

Today’s Ballots

On the ballot today…. In the two big cities it’s the renewal of the earning tax.  The expectation is that renewal occurs handily, but these are low turn-out elections and Rex Sinquefield funded the opposition with $2 million, so it’s something to watch.


Former Speaker Tim Jones sent out this last minute appeal… The City of St. Louis has been bleeding population, jobs and businesses for over forty years.  Excessive taxation, out of control spending and a bloated bureaucracy have largely been the cause.  Eliminating the earnings tax in the City of St. Louis will go a long way in reversing this trend, encouraging businesses to return to St. Louis, bringing jobs and opportunity with them. The “NO on E-Tax” campaign is in need of poll workers for this vital effort…


Too Small To Govern?

Some tiny municipalities of St. Louis County can’t find folks to run for office… Nobody filed in two of the wards of City of Bella Villa, population 729.  The third alderperson race does have a candidate – albeit unopposed.  The same phenomenon occurs in the City of Country Club Hills – population 1,274; City of Crystal Lake Park – population 470; City of Kinloch – population 299; City of Wellston – population 2,313


Car Sales Tax

All across St. Louis County, voters will face this question (heck of a ballot language summary): Shall the City of ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­_______, Missouri continue applying and collecting the local sales tax on the titling of motor vehicles, trailers, boats, and outboard motors that were purchased from a source other than a licensed Missouri dealer?  Rejection of this measure will result in a reduction of local revenue to provide for vital services and it will place Missouri dealers of motor vehicles, outboard motors, boats, and trailers at a competitive disadvantage to non-Missouri dealers of motor vehicles, outboard motors, boats, and trailers.


The Senate debated and passed HB 2140 yesterday which – as amended – would give municipalities an additional two year reprieve to pass the fix.


Also on the ballot…

Berkeley Mayor Ted Hoskins faces two challengers as he runs for re-election.


In Ferguson a hot race for Ward 2: Annette Jenkins filed a police report and asked for a restraining order from Bob Hudgins (See Post Dispatch article here.)

Also a pair of tax questions in Ferguson… Proposition E: Shall the City of Ferguson, Missouri, impose a sales tax at a rate of one-half of one percent (0.5) for economic development purposes?

Proposition P: Shall the general property tax rate for all subclasses of property be increased by forty cents per one hundred dollars of assessed valuation beginning in the 2016 tax year?


In Kirkwood Scott Stream, brother of former Rep. Rick Stream, is running for mayor of Kirkwood.  He’s opposed by two candidates, one of whom is Gina Jaksetic who ran for state rep last cycle losing to Rep. Deb Lavender.


Former Cole McNary LA Linda Rallo is unopposed in her re-election race for Town and Country alderwoman.


Ladue School District has a huge bond issue up - $85 million.  Probably passes because all the investments guys living in Ladue want a piece of the underwriting….


Aside from the clutches of fire districts and school boards asking for tax increases or bond issues, keep an eye on the City of Foristell where a penny per gallon gas tax is on the ballot to fund their streets.


Cleaver in a Clinton Administration?

Politico has an article about Democrats potentially in line for spots in a hypothetical Hillary Clinton White House.  See it here.

Pull Quote: Rep. Emanuel Cleaver risked political suicide in 2008 by sticking with Clinton when African-American politicians and voters were flocking to Barack Obama's insurgent campaign. The Clinton foot soldiers are among the members of Congress who may be in line for a nice return on their hard work if she wins in November — a job in the new administration, perhaps, increased political clout…  

Cleaver, who campaigned in Missouri for Clinton ahead of the state's mid-March primary, said he’s not looking for anything in return. “I’m a part of the Clinton movement without expecting that I’ll be moving anywhere. I’m not looking for anything. I think they know that as well as anyone,” Cleaver said.

But Cleaver’s support is notable. He remained with Clinton in 2008 and crisscrossed the South this year to rally support among black voters, who powered Clinton to a string of victories that stabilized her campaign.  Cleaver said Clinton has an active network of Democratic backers on the Hill because she understands the value of socializing with lawmakers. After years of feeling largely shunned by Obama, who's eschewed the glad-handing that was a hallmark of Bill Clinton's presidency, elected Democrats are eager to see another Clinton in the White House.

“It does not hurt for the president to have personal relationships with the Senate and the House. It’s not bad for [the president] to be able to pick up the phone and say, ‘Hey, can you come over at 6 p.m. tonight?” he said. “And when you pick up the cellphone, you know there is a relationship there.”


Candidate Withdrawal

Heather Hays withdrew from House 105.  She was a Democrat.  That leaves Brian Stiens as the sole Democrat.  He will face Republican Phil Christofanelli in November.  This is Rep. Mark Parkinson’s seat.



Acting State Budget Director Dan Haug announced that 2016 fiscal year-to-date net general revenue collections increased 4.2 percent compared to 2015, from $5.95 billion last year to $6.20 billion this year.  Net general revenue collections for March 2016 increased by 13.5 percent compared to those for March 2015, from $667.0 million to $757.1 million.


Missouri Farm Bureau Federation State PAC was formed.  Its treasurer is James Koepke.


Among Governor Jay Nixon’s boards and commissions appointments yesterday…  Former Rep. Connie Cierpiot (wife of Floor Leader Mike Cierpiot) to the Missouri State Board of Chiropractic Examiners.  And former Sen. Jim Mathewson to the State Fair Commission. There’s already a center on the fairgrounds named for him.


eMailbag: Business on SJR 39

The reason for limited opposition to SJR 39 was due to the speed of the bill. It was introduced on a Thursday and heard on the following Tuesday. Most Chambers were scrambling to see how their policy positions were impacted and to determine exactly what the legislation did…


Today’s Events

Powered by Mary Scruggs’ indispensable events calendar:

Codes & Coffee w/Mo Coalition of Interior Designers – Capitol 3rd FL rotunda – 3:30PM.


Lobbyists Registrations

Noel Torpey and Fred Dreiling added Happy Bottoms.

Alex Eaton, Greg Porter, Rebecca Lohmann, and Daniel Pfeifer added Advantage Capital Management Corporation.

Brian Bernskoetter and Randy Scherr added Korein Tillery LLC.

Heath Clarkston and Harry Gallagher added Carfax Inc.


$5K+ Contributions

Greitens for Missouri - $5,001 from Frank Baxter.

Koster for Missouri - $25,000 from GCI Remarketing LLC.

Koster for Missouri - $150,000 from CWA Working Voices.

Koster for Missouri - $25,000 from Missouri Drive Fund.

Jackson County Democratic Committee - $5,001 from Holsman for Missouri.



Happy birthday to Bill Phelps.



To Ted Wedel on the death of his sister, Dr. Suzanne WedelSee a Boston Globe obituary here.

Pull Quote: Dr. Wedel, who was 60 when she died of ovarian cancer Thursday in Massachusetts General Hospital, spent more than a quarter century improving critical care transport by air or by land to Boston’s teaching hospitals… “She used to talk all the time about how our goal was to create a health care organization that you would want to care for your mother,” said Maura Hughes, Boston MedFlight’s chief financial officer and now the interim CEO. “She would do anything for anybody, and I really mean that in the truest sense of the word.”