Monday, June 17, 2013

Schmitt Probes Departments’ Rules

Sen. Eric Schmitt sent letters to the heads of each state department last week asking for a list of internal rules excluded from the rule promulgation process.

Excerpt

“[Y]ou may or may not be aware, there have been concerned raised recently about agency policies which may fit the definition of a rule pursuant to Chapter 536, RSMo., but have not been promulgated as such by agencies.  Therefore, I am hereby requesting that you provide the Joint Committee with a listing and a brief description of all internal policies or other policies specifically excluded from the rule promulgation process that are relied upon by your agency either currently or within the last two years…”

Schmitt asks for the listing within 90 days, or September 10 – the day before Veto Session is scheduled.

What it Means

This is part of the legislature asserting itself especially in the aftermath of the document scanning scandal of last session.  But part of the motivation of Schmitt’s letter may be due to the fact that the number of rules promulgated by agencies is near historic lows, leading to the suspicion that they may be side-stepping the process – and legislative oversight.

Hastie Article Raises Eyebrows

The Post-Dispatch ran an article over the weekend which chronicled Stacy Hastie’s firm, Environmental Operations, and their ability to land contracts, seemingly squelching their competitors’ bids.  Read it here.

As the side bar notes, Hastie has been an active political donor.  Hastie, or his company or an LLC, have given hundreds of thousands of dollars to politicians.  Just eyeballing the spreadsheet on contributions, it appears that Governor Jay Nixon and County Executive Charlie Dooley are among the top recipients.  He has been relatively inactive this year with less than $10,000 overall, and most of that went to Mayor Francis Slay in his re-election race.  Hastie also gives to Republicans, with the top recipients over the years being Lieutenant Governor Peter Kinder and Steve Tilley.

Moorefield Leaves Polsinelli, Will Join Zweifel

In the lobbyists registrations (below) Michael Moorefield deleted all his registrations.  Word is that he’s leaving the team at Polsinelli, and will join the state treasurer’s office on July 1 as Clint Zweifel’s Director of Policy and Legislative Affairs.

TilleyPAC Controversy

Late last week Pro Tem Tom Dempsey tweeted a rebuke to Steve Tilley for donating to Attorney General Chris Koster, the presumptive Democratic gubernatorial nominee who has pledge to raise $400K for Democratic candidates over the next four years.

A few thoughts:

First, we’re in a bit of uncharted territory here.  However given our state’s framework of both unlimited campaign contributions and term limits, there’s no reason this scenario won’t be repeated.  That is, another top politician may opt out of the political process with a large bank account in the future.  Former state senator Victor Callahan could fit this bill, except most observers think we’ll see him back in the arena someday.  In this way, Tilley is trailblazer and his use of the “TilleyPAC” may ultimately define his legacy as much as his two years as speaker.

Second, Tilley always attempted to play nice across partisan lines.  Republicans had an easier time accepting those gestures – a committee assignment etc – when there’s no money involved.  Once money changes hands, shit gets real. 

Finally, although Tilley’s PAC has over $900K in assets, it’s actually relatively low on firepower as the vast majority of those funds are in what appear to be illiquid assets – a bank stock that’s not publicly traded.  So this may be an academic question in the near-term.

Ann Wagner Profile

Thanks to Axiom’s Morning News for pointing out this morning’s Ann Wagner profile in The HillSee the here.

Pull Quote:  Wagner now holds Akin’s old seat. The freshman representative says she has been actively recruiting female candidates in about 20 House districts that the GOP hopes to pick up to expand its majority.

 

Nevertheless, the GOP does have a messaging problem, a tendency to “be a little stale or talking in charts and graphs and statistics and things,” as Wagner put it. She believes the GOP needs a different approach.

 

“I always say, close your eyes and let’s say it again. But you’re speaking to a 37-year old single mother of two who’s trying to make it to the 15th and the 30th of the month,” Wagner said. “How do we communicate our policies and ideals and hopes for the future   [in a way] that gives her hope and tells her, you know, we’re going to make your life a little easier. And help your children have a shot at the American dream like I had.”

 

In that sense, Wagner says she has taken the approach that there are no “women’s issues” per se, but there are issues that women deeply care about.

MHDC Seeks ED

“Missouri Housing Development Commission (MHDC) is seeking candidates for the position of Executive Director in our Kansas City, Mo office. The Executive Director functions as Chief Executive Officer reporting to a ten-member Board of Commissioners of an organization dedicated to providing quality affordable housing to the citizens of Missouri… The candidate must consistently display personal and professional integrity and show a willingness to conduct business operations in a manner that creates an atmosphere of transparency and trustworthiness…”  See the ad here.

No Peters Baker for AG

From a Dem source: “Jean Peters Baker has told everyone is not running. They have only white males to run statewide therefore they float her name…”

$5K+Contributions

Missourians for Koster - $10,000 from CHIPP Political Account.

Missourians for Koster - $10,000 from Operating Engineers Local 101.

Supporters of Health Research and Treatments - $176,150 from William Danforth.

Go For KC - $14,260 from Kansas Citians for Circo.

Lobbyist Registrations

From the Pelopidas website:

 

Michael Moorefield deleted Polsinelli Shughart and all their clients.

Jack Cardetti added Hawkeye Land Company.

Wayne Feuerborn added HNTB Corporation.

Birthdays

Happy birthday to Rep. Lincoln Hough (31), Sam Licklider (69) and former Rep. Barbara Fraser.