Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Dolan Dings HB 253

The Missouri Healthcare Association – led by former state senator Jon Dolan – has joined the Coalition for Missouri’s Future which is working to sustain the governor’s veto of the tax cut bill.

In their press release, Dolan says, “"As a former legislator and conservative, I rarely met a tax cut I didn’t like, but they had to be well thought out and fair to all. But HB 253 would devastate seniors by reducing services and increasing other taxes.”

Indeed a fair number of the coalition’s members (see them here) are drawn from healthcare providers and education groups.  They tend to be most sensitive to state revenue shortfalls because those are two sectors which often suffer disproportionally when the budget axe falls.

There’s a feeling among these providers that after nearly a half-dozen years of tough budgets the first impulse of the legislature should not be a tax cut.

Contrarian Opinion

Everybody – both supporters and opponents of the legislation – has been predicting a very tight override vote.  And clearly the landscape will shift as the Rex Sinquefield $1.6 million campaign begins to hit the airwaves and mailboxes.

But right now the momentum appears to favor the opponents.  If the vote were held today, you might see a clutch of Republicans not vote to override.  The prescription drug tax increase is a huge deal.  The “good government” Republicans abhor legislating by error and unintended consequences; Republicans in swing districts don’t want to raise taxes on seniors; and any Republican who has concerns that the loss of revenue ill hurt their local school or hospital can use the tax increase as a convenient reason to part ways with leadership.

Finally it’s said that the governor would be willing to negotiate in good faith next session for a “responsible” tax cut package – presumably with his perennial tax reform proposal.  That

It seems inconceivable that after mega-donor Sinquefield drops this kind of cash on the override that the House wouldn’t even vote on it, but it seems entirely conceivable to me that there will be serious reservations voiced during the Republican summer caucus.

We’ll see….

Nixon’s Future

One observer thinks that Governor Jay Nixon’s future is now pegged to President Hillary Clinton.  An actual presidential testing or a US Senate bid are not on Nixon’s radar.  Instead he’s going to focus on governing – and helping the Democratic 2016 nominee – and be in position for a cabinet position…

Mike Sager Again

Former state representative Mike Sager was fined $7,000 for failing to follow campaign finance laws in his unsuccessful 2012 bid to return to Jefferson City.  See order here.  This is not Sager’s first brush with campaign finance law…

“In January 2007, Sager  pleaded guilty to filing a false campaign report. He had been charged with writing $22,500 in checks from his campaign accounts to himself as well as making up a $50,000 personal loan.”  See article here.

Sager lost the Democratic primary, taking 10.2% in a three-way race that Rep. Joe Runions won.

Other MEC Fines

Paul Lambi, mayor of Wentzville, gets fined $1,000 for violating conflict of interests law. See consent order here.

And Matt Robinson and the St. Louis Metropolitan Democrats were fined $4,000 for failure to file timely reports.  See the order here.

Problem for Republicans?

I mean what is ObamaCare actually works?  NYTimes reports that premiums for individuals in New York state set to fall 50%... see it here.

Help Wanted

Legislator Assistant…  See opening here.

Lawyers wanted at St. Louis Parking Commission (see ad here) and Department of Social Services (see ad here).

And work for the Royals… see ad here.

$5K+Contributions

Missouri Senate Campaign Committee - $10,000 from Dempsey For Senate.

Lobbyist Registrations

From the Pelopidas website:

John C. Cozad added Educational Services of America.

Notes

Educational Services of America “is the nation’s leading provider of Pre-K-12 alternative and special education schools and programs for students who are at risk of dropping out and for students with special needs. We partner with more than 260 public school districts in 23 states to serve 12,000 students each year in more than 160 schools and programs.”  See the website here.

Birthdays

Happy birthdays to Richard Callow, Jeff Rainford, Jeffrey Earl (28), and David Klarich.