Tuesday, March 7, 2017

 

Galloway Bombshell Audit

BOOM…

The press release: Missouri State Auditor Nicole Galloway released a highly-critical report of the University of Missouri System. The audit reviewed management operations for the Board of Curators and system administration. Auditor Galloway described inappropriate bonus payments to top executives, including incentive payments, luxury vehicle allowances and other compensation not included in published salaries. She also found a former administrator continued receiving his six-figure salary long after resigning from his position, and while providing no measurable services….

Auditor Galloway uncovered $2.3 million in hidden payments and incentives to top administrators. This amount includes $1.2 million in incentives awarded to 18 executives and administrators over the past three years. While true incentive payments are based on specific criteria to drive high performance, the audit found there was not a formalized, clearly defined process or objective metrics, making the payments appear as though they are bonuses, paid out as additional salary….

See the audit here.

 

Greitens Statement

The University System has been broken for too long. We need to fix it. We just appointed three new members of the Board of Curators who are going to be budget hawks. I spoke to the new president of the UM System, Dr. Mun Choi, this morning, and I believe he's committed to greater accountability and producing excellent results…

When I was a Navy SEAL officer, the leaders ate last. Our people ate first. That's what leaders do. They put their people ahead of themselves. That means when budgets are tight, leaders make sacrifices, not students and families. That's what the people expect us to do, and that’s what I’m fighting for.

 

Primary Day

Today is municipal election Primary Day… eyes are on the City of St. Louis where Alderwoman Lyda Krewson is the favorite to succeed four-term Mayor Francis Slay.  And there’s Prop S on the ballot as well which would regulate pay day loan businesses.

Also to watch… lobbyist Sarah Martin seeks to become Alderwoman of Ward 11 in the City’s Carondelet neighborhood.

 

Wagner War-Chest

Adam Aton reports that Congresswoman Ann Wagner’s $2.1 million campaign account “looms.”  It’s larger than any other Missouri federal office-holder including her possible 2018 match-up Senator Claire McCaskillSee it here.

 

Minimum Wage Fight

Mayor Francis Slay traveled to Jefferson City yesterday to push back against the Republican House’s fast-tracking of a bill to gut the city’s efforts to raise their minimum wage.  See the Post-Dispatch article here.

The debate seems to pit the local control argument (trotted out only when convenient) against a feeling among Jeff City Republicans that they understand business and economics better than everyone else….

And – see a letter from Crown Candy owner (and Republican mayoral candidate) Andy Karandzieff. Crown Candy is landmark in the Old North St. Louis neighborhood.

Karandzieff writes: As a result of last week’s State Supreme Court decision, it is now illegal for me to follow state law and hire a teenager at the state minimum wage rate to wash dishes after school. To be clear, I want people to earn higher wages. That is why we pay the majority of our 28 employees above the minimum wage, and it is why our business has kept teens off the street by hiring them at an entry level position to learn basic job skills. However, if the 16 year old dishwasher is now making $11 an hour, my employees earning $12 an hour are going to want a raise. The path to improving our neighborhoods and reducing crime in the City of St. Louis is to provide our small businesses with the tools and authority to hire more employees.

 

HB433 Follow-Up

Also testifying last week in support of HB433 to loosen the restrictions on advertising for alcohol was Mark Sableman of Thompson Coburn in St. Louis.  He’s the attorney for the Missouri Broadcasters Association and other plaintiffs who won the recent favorable ruling from the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals.

Sableman explained that the current maze of alcohol laws and restrictions in Missouri dates to the period when Prohibition was repealed and states were given more authority to regulate alcohol inside their borders.

Sableman noted that Missouri’s advertising restrictions do not reflect the last 40 years of U.S. Supreme Court rulings on free speech, including a landmark 1976 ruling that advertising is protected by the First Amendment…“Specifically, Missouri has regulations that prohibit news media from carrying ads describing price discounts on alcohol – even if those discounts are in fact being offered. That is, these regulations prohibit the media from carrying truthful ads,” Sableman said in his submitted prepared testimony.

 

Brown Win Admirers

Justin Brown, son of Sen. Dan Brown, had a fundraiser in Jeff City last week.  He’s running to replace his pops in Senate 16.  From the talk in the hallways afterwards, the younger Brown is the early favorite in the building.  Right now the lobbying corps would prefer him to Rep. Diane Franklin.

 

Bits

The Missouri Supreme Court vacated the marijuana felonies of Natalie and David DePriest this week and remanded the case back to circuit court. New Approach Board Chairman Dan Viets was the counsel for the DePriests during their initial trial and sentencing.

 

Columbia and Jeff City join the wave of municipalities taking the PDMP on themselves.  See it here.

 

Former Rep. Bill Otto, who ran unsuccessfully against Congresswoman Ann Wagner last year, was named executive director of the St. Charles Democrats.  See it here.

 

Missouri Department of Revenue filed a tax lien against Republican consultant David Barklage.

 

Anne Gassel was named as the new Legislative Director for Missouri Eagle Forum.

 

Today’s Events

From Mary Scruggs’ indispensable events calendar:

MSGC Membership Seminar & Pizza – HR 2 – 5:30PM.

 

Lobbyists Registrations

Jacki Langum added ArchCity Defenders Inc.

Noel Torpey added Bayer Corporation.

Mun Choi added University of Missouri

Clark Packard added National Taxpayers Union.

Norbert Plassmeyer deleted OsageSolutions LLC.

Eapen Thampy deleted Larry Malashock.

Mark Tucker deleted Office of Adminsitration.

 

$5K+ Contributions

Progress KC PAC - $10,000 from Husch Blackwell LLP.

Lyda  Krewson for Mayor - $10,000 from Daniel Ludeman.

Quality School for Kids - $10,000 from Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce.

 

Birthdays

Happy birthdays to Rep. Rory Rowland, Rich AuBuchon, former Sen. Frank Barnitz, and Jeff Layman.