House Committees Assignments
Despite my best attempts I have been unable to ascertain committee assignments... grrrr…but here are bits that I have confirmed with sources I believe to be reliable. Obviously when the official lists come out there may be some changes, but I think these are pretty solid.
Republicans are said to have engaged in some last minute shuffling after Don Ruzicka who was slated to chair Tourism was appointed away by Nixon.
Here are some of the marquee committees with new chairmen… Doug Funderburk will get Utilities, Steve Cookson will get Education, Eric Burlison will get Professional Registration, and Caleb Jones will chair General Laws. These were all expected/reported here previously as rumors.
But something new is that Dave Schatz will chair Transportation, and Democrat Penny Hubbard will take over Jamilah Nasheed’s spot as chair of Urban Affairs Committee.
Changes in Committees
Jay Barnes will chair Government Oversight, which began last session as a special committee to investigate the Mamtek debacle. It’s now a new standing committee.
Some other committees will disappear. Those vanishing will be: Rural Community Development, Tax Reform, and Transportation Funding and Public Institutions. Their work will be folded into other committees.
In this way, Speaker Tim Jones can point to “streamlining” “downsizing” “cutting administrative cost” etc.
It looks like former state senator Kevin Engler was not given a chairmanship, a real shame given his experience and credibility in the building. Perhaps Jones will carve out a special committee later for his leadership…
Democrats Budget Committee line up looks like this: Jeremy LaFaver (the only freshman), Chris Kelly, Jeanne Kirkton, Karla May (a new addition amid all the returning committee members), Gail McCann Beatty, Kevin McManus, Genise Montecillo, John Rizzo, Stephen Webber.
Other Nice Dem Freshmen Assignments
TJ McKenna and Bob Burns get seats on Transportation,
Kimberly Gardner gets Rules,
Ira Anders and Keith English go onto Utilities,
Randy Dunn, Bonnaye Mims, Bill Otto, Joe Runions will be on Economic Development,
Ira Anders and Michael Butler get Elementary & Secondary Education,
and Jon Carpenter nabs Professional Registration.
Returning Democratic Freshmen
It appears that those members of this class who previously served – Jeff Roorda, Vicki Englund, Mike Frame – all got pretty good committees. Roorda gets Utilities and Rules; Englund gets Education and EcoDevo, and Fram gets Professional Registration.
Lembke to United for Missouri
Jim Lembke announced on Facebook his plans – “I look forward to starting my next chapter in Jefferson City tomorrow. I will be aligned with United for Missouri, but will be working only for the people of Missouri. I will continue to work for constitutional government, limited government and a government that serves the people. If you would like to know more about my work with UFM go to unitedformissouri.org”
Mayor Francis Slay, never one to miss a chance to promote STL or raise campaign money, is doing both. He is the second political heavyweight (President Barack Obama was first) to sign up for Givver (https://givver.com/) a locally-based platform that lets donors tweet dough to their favorite causes, institutions, and campaigns.
With almost 18K Twitter followers, this is a natural avenue for Slay’s fundraising. His first donation - $100 - came from Chris Sommers, owner of Pi and co-developer (with Tom Carnahan) of Givver.
Battles to Ascension
Caroline Battles, Russ Carnahan’s former chief of staff, has joined the advocacy and communications team at Ascension Health. In addition to managing the day-to-day operations of the Communications Department, Battles is responsible for strategic communications, advocacy and community health.
No word on Carnahan’s next gig, by the way….
MO Budget Project issued a report arguing that rural areas have a lot to lose if Medicaid isn’t expanded under the ACA. Read it here.
Columbia Tribune’s Rudi Keller writes about the continued legal wrangling in the Mamtek case. See it here.
Happy birthdays to Rep. Caleb Jones and Steve Murray.