Monday, May 5, 2014

Two weeks left…

Override: Potential Defecting Dems?

With the override votes on the tax cut veto coming this week, most of the speculation has centered on Rep. Jeff Roorda who voted for the bill initially, but has shown a proclivity to back his governor in these circumstances.

The strong consensus of the Roordaologists is that he won’t vote for the override, meaning that the Republicans will fall one vote short, should everyone else hold.

But the question is: will everyone else hold?  Who could Republicans potentially pick off even if Roorda “comes home?”  I don’t think they grab anybody, but here’s a quick scan of ones to watch….

Rep. Penny Hubbard – early in his term, Speaker Tim Jones went to bat for Hubbard.  After Minority Leader Jake Hummel struck her from committees, Jones quickly constructed new “special committees” and reinstated her on them. 

Rep. Ed Schieffer – in a state senate race, this conservative Democrat might be skittish of doubling down on the issue of tax cuts that his opponent could use.

Rep. Linda Black – reportedly voted for an override last summer because she hadn’t heard from the governor’s office on the issue.  Dems might want to circle back and make sure she’s got both feet on board.

Rep. Courtney Curtis – one of the Reps that Dems privately worry about knowing exactly how he’ll vote on any given issue.

Rep. ???? – Is there something so dear to a Dem Rep’s heart that they’d trade the tax cut override to get it out of the House – or keep it off the floor…

Transportation Sales Tax Costs?

If the final week of session lack drama, it might be because a number of issues seem to have fallen off the table already.  As always, nothing is ever dead, but it looks like the passage of the transportation sales tax might have resulted in a shrinkage of possible items.

According to rumor, Senate leadership gave assurances to some senators that their most hated items wouldn’t be brought up in return for them not standing during the transportation debate.

For Sen. John Lamping that would be no Medicaid expansion bill; and for Sen. Rob Schaaf that would be no prescription drug monitoring program.

Chappelle-Nadal Sends $$$$

Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal sent money to Chris Carter Sr., and a ward organization allied with his candidacy over the week.  The checks – $5K each – are listed in the large contribution below.  Carter is challenging incumbent Rep. Josh Peters in a Democratic primary.  Observers generally think that Carter is the favorite because the Carter family name is well-known and well-respected in the district.

It hard not to imagine that Chappelle-Nadal – who raised solid money in the past year, but now finds herself without a primary opponent – isn’t reacting to Peters statement last week when he suggested the rather ridiculous idea that the House should close its debate on the student transfer bill from the public and carry out its business in private.  In that statement he said such measures were necessary because of outside forces – lobbyists, and “even senators pressuring members of the House, in the halls and the very side galleries…

If Peters statement was meant to send a message to Chappelle-Nadal, then this is probably her message back to him…

Dentons Picks Up Lyft?

Look for Dentons lobbyists Rodney Boyd, Kelvin Simmons and Brian Grace to be adding registration of Lyft to their client list.

Lyft is the app-based, ride-sharing service that has sparred with cities across the country – most recently in Kansas City and St. Louis, as they try to bring their business to market against incumbent taxi cab companies.

Dentons is likely to work with Lyft to implement regulations that their client and the governing bodies can agree protect customers’ and the company’s interest of providing safe and efficient transportation.  Even opening the dialogue shifts the current confrontation toward de-escalation and resolution.  

Presley Follow-Up

I noted last week that Annie Presley dropped her registration of Uber – a Lyft-like – service.  One reader corrects me, that she is not an attorney, and that her deleting registration is probably due to that fact that she’s no longer with Bryan Cave, and nothing more significant…

Signatures Turned In

AP has the story on initiative petitions turning in signatures for the 2014 ballot.  Read it here.  “Supporters of eliminating teacher tenure and allowing early voting submitted thousands of signatures Sunday to get the separate constitutional amendments on the November ballot, ahead of this weekend's deadline.”

Spreng Fined

Former Reps. Churie Spreng and Michael Spreng were fined $11,165 by the Missouri Ethics Commission.  See the consent order here.  The violations were a bunch of failures to report contributions, expenses, and file timely reports.

Page Comeback

The press release: “St. Louis County Democrats today selected Dr. Sam Page as the Democratic nominee for the special election for the 2nd District St. Louis.  County Council seat vacated by the passing of Councilwoman Kathleen Kelly Burkett. Dr. Page is a former member of the Creve Coeur City Council and was a state representative from 2003-2009. He has represented much of the St. Louis County area in the 2nd District… Dr. Page is a physician anesthesiologist at Mercy Hospital in Creve Coeur. He has served his community as Cubmaster for Cub Scout Pack 499 in Creve Coeur, and Merit Badge Counselor for Citizenship in the Community for Boy Scout Troop 11. He is a past president of the Missouri Society of Anesthesiologists and the Missouri Society of Interventional Pain Physicians. Dr. Page has also served as Trustee of the Missouri Consolidated Health Care Plan, the health insurance plan for Missouri state employees. Dr. Sam Page lives in Creve Coeur with his wife, Dr. Jennifer Page, and their three children, all who attend the local public schools.”

Page ran for lieutenant governor in 2008, losing to incumbent Peter Kinder, and ran for state senate in 2010.  He lost that expensive primary to Barbara Fraser, who then lost to Sen. John Lamping.

Missouri Revenues Slip

“State Budget Director Linda Luebbering announced that 2014 fiscal year-to-date net general revenue collections increased 0.5 percent compared to 2013, from $6.67 billion last year to $6.70 billion this year.  Net general revenue collections for April 2014 decreased by 5.0 percent compared to those for April 2013, from $1.19 billion to $1.13 billion.”

The bellwether individual income tax collections dropped 13.5% for the month.

St. Louis Regional Chamber Seeks Public Affairs Help

St. Louis Regional Chamber is hiring a Director for Public Affairs & Issues Management “to develop policy positions, build coalitions and management communications related to our public policy priorities… Write policy principles, position papers, research and analysis and related communications; Establish the appropriate coalitions and stakeholders engagement; Liaison with collaborating organizations ; Lobby in Jefferson City, Springfield, and Washington DC; Conduct media interviews, provide testimony and make presentations as needed; Serve as the in-house policy expert helping to develop our public positions on the important policy issues of the day… Requirements may include some evenings and extended hours when the legislature is in session. Work has time constraints and stress…”

See the job posting here.

eMailbag: Imagine If Legislators Had Family Members In Poverty Without Health Insurance

Dem: “Eric Schmitt’s speech was moving, and I’m glad that they are covering it, but it reminds me of the autism bill – done in large part because Scott Rupp and Dwight Scharnhorst had family members with autism.  Someday it would be nice if these guys were empathetic enough to help people with medical problems that their own immediate family doesn’t have… Medicaid expansion?...”

Fundraising Calendar

Powered by Mary Scruggs’ indispensable events calendar

Reps. Michael Frame & Bob Burns Cinco de Mayo Reception – 223 Madison, Jefferson City – 1:30-3:30 p.m.

Rep. Jake Hummel Missouri Wine Alliance Reception – 109B East High, Jefferson City – 5 p.m.

Reps. Lyndall Fraker, Jay Houghton, Tom Hurst Reception – Gumbo Bottoms, Jefferson City – 6:30-8 p.m.

Rep. Dave Muntzel Reception – HRCC Office, 305 Jefferson, Jefferson City – 7-8:30 p.m.

Lobbyist Registrations

From the Gate Way Group website:

Corbin Evans, Alexander Hanson, Rachel Jag, Adam McMikle, James Mendez, Knial Piper II, and Dana Shannon deleted The Associated Students of the University of Missouri.

$5K+ Contributions

Missouri Early Voting Fund - $25,000 from Missouri National Education Association Ballot Issue Crisis Fund.

Committee to Elect Chris Carter Sr. - $5,014 from Citizens for Maria Chappelle-Nadal.

27th Ward Regular Democratic Organization Inc - $5,001 from Citizens for Maria Chappelle-Nadal.

Missourians for Koster - $15,000 from AT&T.


Happy birthdays to former Rep. David Day (51), Barklage’s Michael Hafner, and John Hickey.