Wednesday, January 14, 2015

McCaskill Didn’t Poll

A strong source (in a position to know) insists that Senator Claire McCaskill did not poll the governor’s race before making her decision and announcement not to run for that job.

 

House to Disapprove Pay Raise?

As one of its first acts, the House will likely take up Rep. Jay Barnes’ HCR4 (See the resolution here) which disapproves a recommended pay raise for legislators.

The Missouri Citizens’ Commission on Compensation for Elected Officials recommended an 11% increase for pay for legislators – about a $4,000/year bump – and also an increase in the “per diem” and the mileage reimbursement.

Barnes’ resolution argues that “the state has many other priorities for appropriating money in the budget that are far more important than the salary increases recommended by the Commission.”

 

Scharnhorst Registers

Another recently termed legislator has registered as a lobbyist.  Former Rep. Dwight Scharnhorst is now lobbying. His first client appears to Tracfone Wireless.  See the registration changes at the bottom.

 

Fitzpatrick In Line?

One of the surprises in the committeeman chairmanship announcements was not related to chairmanships.   Rep. Scott Fitzpatrick was named vice-chair of the House Budget Committee.  While it’s by no means a sure thing, it does seem to track Fitzpatrick to ascend to the big chair in two years.

That would be at the beginning of Fitzpatrick’s third term giving him a full four years as budget chair.  That appointment would fall to (presumed then-speaker) Todd Richardson.  And in a similar situation, Rick Stream was sidelined to Fiscal Review for two years before he ascended. But some observes already see the benefits of a longer tenure.  They say that the biggest battles are with the governor, not the Dem legislature, and the ability to build institutional knowledge would be important.  Furthermore, Sen. Ryan Silvey (again this is all projection) would likely be Appropriations Chair on the Senate side for those same four years.  There’d be uncommon stability in the budget arena from the legislature’s point of view.

 

Barnes Mulls A Vast Review

Rep. Jay Barnes, chair of the Government Oversight and Accountability, is considering embarking on a multi-year review of the state government.  As envisioned it would go agency-by-agency, program-by-program, attempting to inject some self-reflection into the state bureaucracy.  Such a review would ask which programs are working well, which not so well, what was the original purpose of the program, has there been mission creep, are more or less resources needed, what are the metrics used to assess the program...

 

Fiscal Note Process Changes

From: Mickey Wilson

Sent: Thursday, January 8, 2015 9:13 AM

To: Adam Crumbliss; Dana Miller

Subject: Fiscal Note Process

 

Welcome to the 1st Regular Session of the 98th General Assembly!... It was decided that in an effort to improve the quality of fiscal notes, as well as agency responses that comprise them, several changes were needed, including:

 

·        Fiscal notes needed to more accurately reflect the impact of the legislation if the complete implementation of the bill is beyond the three-year window of the note.  To accomplish this, Oversight will use a new fiscal note form in such situations that reflects three years of impact for the bill plus an additional column that will reflect the fiscal impact of the bill when the provisions of the bill are fully implemented.  Therefore, these fiscal notes will provide the impact during fiscal years 2016, 2017, 2018, as well as the year the bill will be fully implemented (i.e. FY 2022)….

 

·        In an effort to allow agencies to concentrate their efforts, Oversight will no longer send out every bill requesting information regarding its fiscal impact.  After the start of session, we will only send out bills to agencies if requested to do so by the chairman of the committee that the bill is referred to (or by the ranking minority member of that same committee).  Therefore, it is imperative that we are given notification as early as possible from the committees that a bill may be heard and that a fiscal note will be needed.  Oversight will not start the process sending out the legislation to the impacted agencies until notified to do so by the committee chair or the ranking minority member. 

 

Sincerely,

Mickey Wilson

Director

Joint Committee on Legislative Research

Oversight Division

 

Jones to MCFG

Former speaker Tim Jones joined the board of the Missouri Club for Growth yesterday. (See Club for Growth website here).

It’s a good fit for Jones who espoused their philosophy of less government and lower taxes during his time as a state representative.

The press release notes that “Jones, of Eureka, becomes the sixth member of the MOCFG board. He joins Chairman Bev Randles of Kansas City, Cindy O'Laughlin of Shelbina, Nancy Kraus-Womack of Kansas City, and Larry Schuster and Kat Cunningham of Columbia.”  It does not note the involvement of Rex Sinquefield who was the sole contributor to the Missouri Club for Growth PAC ($2.1 million) last year.

 

Bits

Folks are expecting that House committee assignments will be out today.

 

The Secretary of State’s office approved another initiative petition for circulation for the 2016 ballot.  It that deals with campaign finance reform.  See it here.  It’s the second campaign contribution limit proposal to get approval for circulation.

 

Mayor Francis Slay’s longtime chief of staff is exiting.  Jeff Rainford will start his own consulting firm.  Mary Ellen Ponder has been tapped as his replacement.  See the Post-Dispatch article here.

 

MEDA Day

In Mary Scruggs’ indispensable calendar (below) she notes that it’s MEDA Day at the Capitol from 9am-3pm.  MEDA is Missouri Energy Development Association. Representatives from all of the member investor-owned utilities (representing 4 million customers, and over 11,500 employees) will be in the 3rd Floor Rotunda with educational displays.  Later MEDA is partnering with MAMU, the Missouri Electric Cooperatives, MPC, MTIA, MCTA, and the Site Improvement Association to co-sponsor the Missouri One Call Reception for members of the General Assembly at the Capitol Plaza Hotel from 5-7pm tomorrow evening.

 

New Committees

Tony Pousosa, who lost to Rick Stream in the Republican primary for St. Louis County Executive, started a campaign committee to run for St. Louis County Council, District 6.

 

eMailbag: CEMO Invites Readers

Dave, Competitive Energy for Missouri appreciates your coverage of our legislative efforts…  CEMO's goal is to keep electricity prices low for Show-Me state consumers for the next 30+ years. That requires policy evolution - not the status quo… Status quo is far too heavily weighted toward after-the-fact scrutiny for utility contracting and project management decisions.  Requiring the accountability provided by a transparent RFP process for investor-owned utilities before requiring its customers to foot the bill is a direct application of conservative, free-market principles…  It is being used today in some form, right now, in over half the states in the U.S. The time has come for Missouri and its electricity consumers. We invite your readers to check out our website, which links to a description of RFP processes used in other states at www.competitiveenergymo.org...

Lynne Flowers

Managing Director

Competitive Energy of Missour

 

Today’s Events

From Mary Scruggs’ indispensable events calendar:

MEDA Day at Capitol – 3rd floor Rotunda.

Missouri Realtors Reception – Capitol Plaza, Jefferson City – 5-7 p.m.

Missouri One Call/Association Partners Legislative Reception – Capitol Plaza, Jefferson City - 6-8 p.m.

 

Lobbyists Registration Changes

Joe Maxwell deleted Humane Society Of The United States

David Overfelt and Eddie Giesing added Missouri Tire Dealers And Retreaders Association Inc.

Kandice Sanaie adeed United Healthcare Services Inc.

Dwight Scharnhorst added Missouri Group, and Tracfone Wireless Inc.

Mark Schwartz, Andy Blunt, and Jay Reichard added National Popular Vote

 

$5K+ Contributions

Citizens for Steve Stenger - $15,000 from The Devereux Company.

Emersons Missouri Responsible Government Fund - $7,500 from Emerson Electric Co.

 

Happy Birthday

Happy birthdays to Rep.  Mike Cierpoit (62), and former Rep. Margaret Donnelly (61).