Rep. Hansen Capitol Report

March 18, 2020

March 5, 2020

News From the Capitol

I met with Director Anne Precythe from the Missouri Dept. of Corrections on Wednesday. We discussed the progress that has been made since the termination of the subcommittee I chaired that was created to deal with the issues plaguing prisons in Missouri. She told me that they are in a much better situation now in terms of leadership, both at the individual prison level and agency level as well, and that they have a clear path forward to continue making progress. When I compare where the DOC was before the subcommittee's work and Anne's nomination to now, the progress that has been made is tremendous for everyone involved. That work has been some of the most rewarding since I've been in Jefferson City.

I also met with Jamie Birch from the Public Service Commission to discuss my final bill, HB 2620. This is an intricate subject with many facets that will need to be explored, but with my remaining time, I will try to pursue PSC oversight to ensure ratepayers are treated fairly by municipal utilities.

Finally, I met with the Dental Hygienists' Association. They wanted to discuss a few bills dealing with oral health that are in committee. Overall it was a productive week, and I look forward to continuing the fight for eminent domain reform when the bill (HB 2033) is heard in the Senate.

Special Committee on Disease Prevention and Control Receives Briefing on Coronavirus

A Missouri House panel this week heard from three doctors, including the director of the Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS), about how ready the state is for the coronavirus.

DHSS Director Randall Williams told lawmakers, “I believe we are very well prepared. Our motto is, ‘Hope for the best, prepare for the worst,’ and we think we are prepared for both.”

“If you’re sick, please stay at home. If you’re sick and need to go see a doctor please check in, tell them about your symptoms. Usually you’ll be given a mask if part of your symptoms are fever, cough, and/or shortness of breath, and please put on the mask,” said Whitt. “If you’re sick and do not need to be in the hospital or see a doctor just stay home, call in sick."

The committee will hold additional hearings on an as-needed basis.

Lawmakers Approve Bill to Assist Missourians with Alzheimer’s (HB 1683)

Members of the Missouri House gave approval this week to legislation that seeks to improve the state’s efforts to assist individuals with Alzheimer’s disease.

Supporters of the bill noted that estimates predict that 20,000 more Missourians will be diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in the next 5 years. They say that a study has not been done for the last 10 years to look at the state plan to overcome Alzheimer’s. The bill would establish the "Alzheimer's State Plan Task Force" in the Department of Health and Senior Services.

The bill now moves to the Senate for consideration.

Bills Sent to the Senate

HB 1331 creates the "Change of Venue for Capital Cases Fund", which will consist of money appropriated by the General Assembly. Money in the fund is to be used solely for reimbursement to a county that receives a capital case from another county.

HB 1898 creates the offense of unlawful use of an unmanned aircraft near a correctional center, mental health hospital, or certain open air facilities, including sports stadiums holding 5,000 or more persons, as defined in the bill.

HB 1800 allows for the issuance of two sets of Purple Heart specialty license plates. The first set of plates shall be issued without a fee and only the regular registration fee shall apply to any additional set of plates.

HB 1468 provides that the supervisor of liquor control shall not prohibit a person from participating in the sale of alcohol solely on the basis of being found guilty of a felony offense. The bill also specifies that the Missouri Gaming Commission will not prohibit a person from participating in the sale of lottery tickets solely on the basis of being found guilty of a criminal offense, but the person is not eligible to be a licensed lottery game retailer.

HB 1540 prevents any public school districts and charter schools from prohibiting a parent or guardian from audio recording any meeting held under the Federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) or a Section 504 plan meeting (Federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973). The bill also requires school districts and charter schools to establish a state-approved gifted program if 3 percent or more of the students are determined to be gifted by July 1, 2022.

HB 1698 authorizes the county commission in all non-charter counties to promulgate reasonable regulations concerning the use of county property. Currently, the county commissions in all first, second, and fourth counties are authorized to promulgate the regulations.

HB 2049 provides that any arbitration award shall not be enforceable against insurers, as defined in the bill, unless the insurer has agreed in writing to the arbitration proceeding or agreement.

As always, it is an honor to serve as your state representative, and feel free to contact our office if we can be of service.

Working on your behalf,

Representative Jim Hansen

Proudly Serving the 40th House District

Lincoln, Monroe, Pike, & Ralls Counties

Missouri House of Representatives