Wednesday, February 17, 2016

LaFaver Won’t Run Again

Rep. Jeremy LaFaver has decided not to run for re-election.  He had two more potential terms before reaching his limit in the House. In his seat, House 25, Greg Razer will be filing.  Razer will get LaFaver’s full endorsement… “Greg grew up in the bootheel, went to Mizzou where he was Truman the mascot, has lived in Kansas City a long, is a Claire McCaskill staffer, and an openly gay man with a track record of fighting for progressive causes.  He’s, honestly, the perfect addition for the Missouri legislature.  Conviction, passion, and a unique brand of pragmatism will make him effective for our side while being generally well-liked by their side…”

LaFaver had $18,772 in his campaign account at the end of last quarter.  Look for a good portion of that to head in Razer’s direction.


FERAF Winding Down?

With Noranda and Ameren smoking the same peace pipe, is Fair Energy Rate Action Fund starting to wind down.  FERAF had been one of Noranda’s main vehicles to work the legislature obstructing Ameren’s agenda in recent years.  Yesterday I reported that several lobbyists delisted their FERAF registration.  Right now, only Noel Torpey is left as a lobbyist for FERAF.


For those who blame Hedger-funders Apollo Management for saddling Noranda will the debt that left them little financial flexibility to navigate the cyclical downturn: yesterday the Wall Street Journal reported that “ADT has agreed to be acquired by private-equity firm Apollo Global Management in a deal that values the home-security company at about $6.93 billion…

The transaction marks one of the biggest leveraged buyouts in recent years...”


Senate Works Through Night

The Senate worked through the night with a filibuster rambling through the night and into the morning to prevent Sen. Ed Emery’s SB 847 tort reform bill from coming to a vote.  Just after 6AM while Sen. Jason Holsman was holding the floor, a compromise was reached.  The Senate then quickly worked through the amendments, and the underlying bill was perfected.


Beef Checkoff Get Grilled

There’s some unhappiness with a proposed increase in the cattle “checkoff” program.  The Columbia Daily Tribune published an op/ed on the subject by Roger Allison (see it here).  Allison is a farmer and the executive director of Missouri Rural Crisis Center.

The Fulton Sun yesterday published a story also quoting farmers upset by the change.

From that story: “The Missouri Rural Crisis Center (MRCC) filed a lawsuit Feb.10 against the Missouri Department of Agriculture (MDA) due to concerns over an upcoming vote on the proposed $1-per-head state beef checkoff tax.  The suit asks the Cole County Circuit Court to issue an injunction to stop the MDA from proceeding with the current referendum to impose a $1-per-head state beef checkoff tax until it complies with the state laws requiring public comment on rules for conducting the referendum… There are 53,000 Missouri cattle producers who in total pay more than $2 million each year into the federal beef checkoff, which allocates 50 cents per each dollar to the state for marketing and research.  The proposed state beef checkoff would in effect double the amount producers would pay, as $1 per head would [go] to the state and $1 per head would still go to the federal government.”


PDMP Gets Second Dose from STL County

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that in the absence of state action on a prescription drug monitoring program, St. Louis County is acting.  See it here.  The prime mover is former Rep. and current Council member Sam Page.

Pull Quote: U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri aligned Tuesday with St. Louis County in taking aim at the only state in the union without a comprehensive database to track the distribution of the physician-prescribed opioids that experts say are the entry point to heroin abuse: Missouri. A news conference in Clayton to introduce legislation that would establish a database to monitor the dispensing of OxyContin and other prescription painkillers at St. Louis County pharmacies was quickly followed by a late-morning roundtable meeting McCaskill convened to address the issue… “That lone exception is our own state of Missouri, where prescription opioid misuse — and the heroin abuse it leads to — have become epidemic. Missouri’s failure to properly monitor such prescriptions has led to our state’s macabre designation as the top tourist destination for pill shoppers from across the nation,” Stenger said.

The bill was presented to the County Council on Tuesday night. Councilman Sam Page, an anesthesiologist who unsuccessfully pushed for similar legislation while serving in the Missouri House, is the sponsor.


Ceselski: STL School Board Breakin the Law

7th Ward Committeewoman Marie Ceselski – a whistleblower in the Recorder of Deeds office – has a blog post up alleging election law violations by the St. Louis City’s Special Administrative Board for an upcoming ballot issue.  See it here. She has posted an endorsement solicitation written to her on Board stationary, and lacking a “paid for” disclosure.


Tweet of the Day

Sen. Ryan Silvey ‏@RyanSilvey: 5am...MO Senate is still in session from the day before. #moleg



Governor Jay Nixon appointed Associate Circuit Judge Patricia A. Riehl, of Fenton, as the new Circuit Judge for the 23rd Judicial Circuit, which covers Jefferson County. She takes the place of Lisa Page who was appointed to the Missouri Court of Appeals, Eastern District.


Rumors have Rep. Don Gosen mulling resigning.  We’ll see….


According to Casenet (SC95511), it appears a suit Phil LeVota has with the Missouri Ethics Commission has now been appealed to the Missouri Supreme Court.


Rep. Jay Barnes says so far this year no sexual harassment complaints have been forwarded to the House Ethic Committee.  See it here.


Help Wanted

House Democratic Caucus seeks Communication Coordinator.  “This position will perform legislative and public contact work for Democratic state representatives. Must be willing to work extremely long hours during the legislative session, January through May. Position is located in Jefferson City and is full time, salaried and eligible for state benefits. Applicants must have strong social media skills and experience in effective messaging through Twitter, Facebook and other platforms. Applicants should have a working knowledge of the legislative process and strong written and verbal communications skills. Applicants must be able meet deadlines and exercise discretion and confidentiality. Professional work experience in journalism is preferred, but not required. Salary range for the position is $45,000 to $50,000 annually…” See the ad here.


eMailbag on Stadium Funding

“If they want to make a point why not cut OA’s budget instead of the bond payments.”


New Committees

Erik Shelquist started a campaign committee to run for House 78 as a Republican. The current incumbent is Rep. Penny Hubbard.  It is a heavily Democratic district.


Today’s Events

From Mary Scruggs’ indispensable events calendar:

MIBA Banking Luncheon & Reception – The Millbottom– Noon lunch & 4 p.m. reception.


Lobbyists Registrations

Phil Schnieders added Statehouse Strategies LLC.


$5K+ Contributions

Central Missouri Senate Republican PAC - $25,000 from Committee to Elect Ron Richard.

Greitens for Missouri - $50,000 from McKinley Financial Partnership.

Koster for Missouri – $10,000 from David Zevan.

Progress KC PAC - $25,000 from Heavy Constructors Association Industry Advancement Fund.

Progress KC PAC - $10,000 from Dickinson Financial Corporation.

Slay for Mayor - $10,000 from Richard Destefane.



Happy birthdays to political consultants Pat Jakopchek, and Jon Ratliff.