MOScout Daily Update: Meet Stateline Strategies - House Rules to Curb CLEAN? - The Coming Fight Over Testing and more...

Happening This Morning

Governor’s Prayer Breakfast at the Capitol Plaza Hotel… Ben Carson had been slated to be the keynote speaker, but according to news reports had to cancel “because of the shutdown affecting his agency.”  Instead St. Louis Sheriff Vernon Betts will keynote.


Meet Stateline Strategies

Stateline Strategies is a new partnership between Sam Panettiere and Jeremy LaFaver, offering lobbying and communications services in Missouri and Kansas. Sam and Jeremy will continue to work on their individual projects while combining efforts on new projects. Able to effectively engage at the state and local levels in both Kansas and Missouri, Stateline Strategies will be able to help folks in the greater KC region to better manage their government affairs services across state and municipal boundaries.  See the website here.


Opening Speechifying

See Pro Tem Dave Schatz opening speech here.  And Missouri Times reviewed Speaker Elijah Haahr’s speech.  See it here.


Waiting on Committees

The expectation is that we’ll be seeing the committee assignments for both chambers early next week.

The proposed House Rules (see it here) did offer a glimpse of the committee structure.  Speaker Elijah Haahr will be retaining the dual Rules Committees.  The Committee on Government Efficiency is being renamed Downsizing Government.  But all else appears consistent with last year.


Tucked into the House’ proposed rules changes is a section on “records.” Apparently this is a reaction to CLEAN Missouri, though I would assume the language of the state constitution still takes precedence on this topic.  Also interesting that it’s a “shall” not a “may.”

Rule 127.  Members shall keep constituent case files, and records of the caucus of the majority or minority party of the house that contain caucus strategy, confidential.  Constituent case files include any correspondence, written or electronic, between a member and a constituent, or between a member and any other party pertaining to a constituent's grievance, a question of eligibility for any benefit as it relates to a particular constituent, or any issue regarding a constituent's request for assistance.


Another First?

Word circulating yesterday was that Alex Cypert – nee Zumsteg – had broken a gender barrier.  She’s chief of staff for Sen. Caleb Rowden, and that makes her the first female chief of staff to a Senate floor leader in Missouri history.


The Fight Over Testing

After a tough 2017-2018, the State Board of Education is finally functional.  It’s still short one appointee but is otherwise operating like a board again.

The big fight brewing appears to center on “testing.”

Superintendents have an aversion to state tests.  They think they can handle it better at the local level, tailoring it to meet their specific needs.

But it seems that DESE topper Margie Vandeven and others prefer the accountability that comes with testing controlled at the state level.  Their concern is that if Supers determining the testing is a “fox in the hen house” problem.  You need outside accountability.

Why It Matters

Test results determine the public perception about the success or failure of schools and districts, and consequently how hard folks push for changes, and reforms.  Controlling the tests is the first step to controlling the education agenda.


Pearce Chairs Fitz Transition

The press release: Incoming Treasurer Scott Fitzpatrick today announced his Transition Team. This team will provide guidance and expertise on policy priorities and initiatives… Advisors: Sarah Steelman, Former State Treasurer; Clint Zweifel, Former State Treasurer; Wendell Bailey, Former State Treasurer; Sen. Bob Onder, R-St. Charles; Paul Curtman, Former State Representative, Financial Advisor; Sarah Mills, Clay County Public Administrator; Rick Holton Jr., Investor & Founder, Cultivation Capital; Brian Milner, President, Missouri Community College Association; Mark Milton, Tax Attorney; Locke Thompson, Cole County Prosecutor; and Mark C. Thompson, Vice Chairman, Country Club Bank… Chair David Pearce will continue as Senior Policy Coordinator in the Treasurer’s Office, a role he has held since 2017. Prior to his work in the Treasurer’s Office, Pearce worked as a banker at the First Community Bank of Warrensburg and served in the General Assembly for 14 years.


Gubby Appts

Governor Mike Parson appointed Judge Robin Ransom to the Missouri Court of Appeals, Eastern District.

Additionally, James P. Limbaugh, of Cape Girardeau, was appointed to the Southeast Missouri State University Board of Regents; David Cole, of Cassville, was appointed to the Missouri Health Facilities Review Committee; John Russell, of Springfield, was appointed as the Greene County Eastern District Commissioner; Nyle Bowyer, of Brunswick, was appointed as the Chariton County Coroner; Kent Bryant, of Kirksville, was appointed as the Adair County Assessor; Wayne Blades, of Crane, was appointed as the Stone County Northern District Commissioner; Matt Daugherty, of Galena, was appointed as the Stone County Assessor; Stephanie Gooden, of Marshall, was appointed as the Saline County Northern District Commissioner; James Hansen, of Warsaw, was appointed as the Benton County Assessor; Randy Huffman, of Galt, was appointed as the Sullivan County Western District Commissioner; Janice Martin, of Mount Vernon, was appointed as the Lawrence County Public Administrator; Roger Raffety, of Drexel, was appointed as the Cass County Assessor; Mike Robertson, of Christian County, was appointed as the Christian County Eastern District Commissioner; Bob Whetsten, of Buffalo, was appointed as the Dallas County Coroner; and Joy Williams, of Joplin, was appointed as the Newton County Public Administrator.


eMailbag: On The Arnold and CLEAN

In relation to Initiative petition reform and Arnold's comments, Clean Missouri got 62% of the vote.  Fair point.  The same people who are clamoring about listening to the will of the people, are the same ones who advocated for a judge to throw out Voter ID in Missouri.  By the way, Voter ID received 63% of the vote, without having a dime spent on it. 


New Committees

Connie Simmons formed a candidate committee (Simmons For House) to run for House 53 as a Democrat.

Kevin FitzGerald formed a candidate committee (Elect Kevin Fitzgerald) to run for House 89 for a Democrat.

Bill Hardwick formed a candidate committee (Bill Hardwick For Missouri) to run for House 122 as a Republican.

Cindy Slimp formed a candidate committee (Cindy Slimp For The People) to run for House 133 as a Democrat.

Jeff Munzinger formed a candidate (Munzinger For Missouri 136) to run for House 136 as a Democrat.

Noah Snelson formed a candidate committee (Snelson For Springfield) to run for Springfield Council Person.

Vincent Lee formed a candidate committee (Vincent C Lee For Mayor 2019) to run for Mayor of Kansas City.

Bryan Dial formed a candidate committee (Citizens To Elect Bryan Dial) to run for Kansas City Council Person.

Leroy Carter formed a candidate committee (Committee To Elect Leroy Carter) to run for St. Louis City Alderman, Ward 4, as a Democrat.

Emmett Coleman formed a candidate committee (Coleman For Equity) to run for St. Louis City Alderman, Ward 8, as a Democrat.

Bret Narayan formed a candidate committee (Friends Of Bret Narayan) to run for St. Louis City Alderman, Ward 24, as a Democrat.


$5K+ Contributions

Missourians for Responsible Energy - $5,484 from Kansas City Power & Light.


Lobbyists Registrations

Catalyst added Seven Points Cultivation.

John Maslowski deleted Renovate America Inc.



Happy birthdays to Senator Roy Blunt, Trevor Fox, Carmen Schulze, Jaci Winship, and Randy Jotte.