Saturday, May 27, 2017

St. Louis Democrat: Meanness prevails during 2017 legislative session

(From Rep. Stacey Newman, D-St. Louis)

END OF 2017 SESSION: MEAN-NESS PREVAILS

We adjourned regular session sine die at 6pm on the dot Friday May 12th, per state constitution, after a contentious week. Before I could barely move my belongings home, say hi to my family and catch my breath, Governor Greitens called for a special session.  

His official message:

“We are fighting to bring more jobs to the people of Missouri. Some career politicians failed to do their jobs and then went home. That’s wrong. We’re canceling their summer vacations and calling a special session to get this done.”

Yes...we termed legislators are "career politicians" and just spent 5 months on the governor's agenda with his party's super majority in the legislature.

The cost to taxpayers?  The Missouri House with 163 members estimates the session to cost $50,000 to $100,000 a week. The Senate with one vacancy estimates it to cost $28,000 a week. These costs reflect our daily per diem, mileage to and from the Capitol and costs of supporting session-only staff.

Sound ok to you?  

UPDATE:  HB1, which would authorize Ameren Missouri to offer discounted electric rates for a company willing to reopen the Noranda Aluminum smelter in New Madrid County and a proposed nearby steel mill - passed the House Wednesday 120-17 and the Senate Friday 24-10.  I voted NO because 1) the proposed company was not revealed 2) promise of "jobs" was speculative and not confirmed3) concern about poverty in the Bootheel is disingenious with the persistant GOP anti-poor agenda and 4) Ameren consumer rates are projected to increase around the state.

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WHAT MADE GOV. GREITENS UNHAPPY THE LAST WEEK OF SESSION?

One of the ugliest bills sent to the Governor reared its head in the last week. SB43, making it more difficult for victims of illegal employee discrimination to hold wrongdoers accountable popped up for final House debate after languishing several weeks on the calendar.

Sen. Gary Romine, the bill sponsor, faces a pending lawsuit for alleged acts of racial dscrimination in violation of the Missouri Human Rights Act, the very law he wants to weaken. In this lawsuit, an African-American accounts manager who had worked at Sen. Romine's company, Show-Me Rent-to-Own, alleged that a white supervisor targeted him with racial slurs, including use of the "n" word.

You should also know this about SB43:

Enterprise-Rent-A-Car fought tooth and nail for discriminatory bills like SB43 since it lost its whistleblower case Dunn v. Enterprise in 2005. Thomas Dunn, an executive at Enterprise, blew the whistle on Enterprise as the company committed actions Dunn believed would violate federal securities laws. Instead of correcting their behavior, Enterprise fired Dunn in retaliation. Dunn sued and won- demonstrating the ability of workers to balance the scales of justice. Since 2005, Enterprise and its lobbyists have fought to silence workers and sweep unethical business practices under the rug. 

Enterprise was the major force behind the MO Chamber of Commerce which successfully and ruthlessly lobbied for SB43 this past session.


Missouri NAACP President Rod Chapel attempted to testify against the House related bill in February but Special Committee on Litigation Reform Chair Bill Lant cut off his testimony and abruptly ended the packed hearing. 


The House brought up SB43 on Monday May 8th unexpectedly for a contentious 6 hour debate that went late into the night. 

Rep. Kevin Engler (R-Farmington) brought up the Missouri Non-Discrimination Act as an amendment - the first time in two decades the legislation had been debated on the House floor. Before the amendment was withdrawn to avoid a GOP embarrassing roll call vote, this was actually said in debate by Rep. Rick Brattin (R-Harrisonville):


 I am not making any of this up.

32 of us Democrats decided in solidarity to refuse to vote on SB43 even though our House rules require a mandatory vote if we are on the House floor.  Read our Constitutional Objection statement in the House Journal.  Check out final State Rep Votes on SB43 HERE which was Truly Agreed and Finally Passed by a vote of 98-30 with 34 absent/not voting.

PLEASE HELP US DEMAND A #HERO-VETO OF SB43 BY GOVERNOR GREITENS.  He has until July 14th to take action. 


In case you missed it previously, see the ST. LOUIS POST DISPATCH OP-ED: "TROUBLING BILL WOULD CRIPPLE MISSOURI HUMAN RIGHTS ACT".

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MEAN-NESS AT IT'S ABSOLUTE WORST

To top it off, the House and Senate pulled the cruelest stunt you can imagine in the last hours of session on Friday May 12th.  First, the Speaker refused to allow ANY DEBATE on a series of bills, slamming us right and left and stoking our fury.

The Senate filibustered for several hours the Minimum Wage Pre-emption Bill which would pre-empt or nullify any local municipalities from setting a minimum wage higher that the statewide wage of $7.70 per hour, HB1194. The rare PQ motion was used, ending Senate debate and HB1194 passed 23-10, sending it back to the House for one final vote.
  • St. Louis City had passed a minimum wage increase  of $10.00 per hour which went into effect on May 5th (it would incrementally rise to $11.00 per hour). Their low wage workers had just seen an increase in their paychecks.   
  • In Kansas City a grassroots effort put a minimum wage increase on the August ballot. It would boost the minimum wage in our city to $10.00 per hour by 9/1/17 and incrementally raise it to $15.00 an hour by 2022.
  • In addition the KC council voted to incrementally increase the minimum wage to $13.00 per hour by 1/1/23. 
The House recessed briefly for the required Fiscal Review Committee to pass out HB1194 before final debate on the floor (again with NO DISCUSSION or even review of the fiscal note allowed).


With less than 30 minutes remaining of session, we Democrats filled every microphone on our side, mad as hell - loud, boisterous and in full fighting mode to protect low wage workers. There is NO state benefit to reduce their wages.  Not ONE Democrat was allowed to speak and HB1194 passed with the clock ticking fast, 109-43.

In further insult, an emergency clause was brought up which would make the law effective immediately instead of the traditional late August 2017 date.  I can think of NO REASON in which it was an emergency to take away wages from miminum wage workers, can you?  

HALLELUJAH - the emergency clause failed by JUST ONE VOTE, with mere minutes left.

The Kansas City Star wrote"The House cut off debate on the measure just a few minutes after it debated a bill naming a state historical dog.  That should shame every member of the General Assembly and outrage everyone in Missouri.  Everyone."

Go ahead.  Call Gov. Greitens and ask for his #Hero-Veto on HB1194 also.  It can't hurt for him to hear your disgust.

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MORE GOOD, BAD, UGLY BILLS SENT TO THE GOVERNOR

BAD/UGLY BILLS WHICH MAKE IT HARD FOR YOU TO ACCESS OUR JUSTICE SYSTEM IF EVER NEEDED

CRIMINAL OFFENSES (SB 34): Makes various changes relating to criminal offenses and establishes a “blue alert” system to inform the public when a suspect alleged to have attacked a police officer is at large. Also creates a crime of attacking law enforcement (many believe it further targets minority communities) and allows Missouri to be involved in immigration offenses (unconstitutional).  Passed 117-27  I WAS ONE OF ONLY 19 DEMS VOTING NO.  

EXPERT WITNESSES (HB 153): Increases the standards for admitting expert witness testimony in state court. I VOTED NO.

TORT CLAIMS (HB 339): Modifies statutory provisions relating to tort claims, making it harder to access the legal system. I VOTED NO.

COLLATERAL SOURCE (SB 31): Modifies the collateral source rule and allows litigants to introduce evidence of the actual cost, rather than the value, of medical care rendered.  I VOTED NO.

PROJECT LABOR AGREEMENTS (SB 182): Prohibits local governments from entering into project labor agreements on public works projects. Under a project labor agreement, a government entity agrees to follow union labor standards on public construction projects. I VOTED NO.

GOOD BILLS (REALLY!) 

REAL ID (HB 151): Attempts to bring Missouri driver’s licenses and non-driver identification into compliance with the federal REAL ID of 2005.  YOU FINALLY GET TO LEGALLY FLY WITH YOUR DRIVERS LICENSE JUST IN TIME. I VOTED YES.

FUND SWEEP (HCB 3, SENATE VERISON): Authorizes excess revenue sitting unused in various special state funds to be redirected for in-home and nursing home care in order to prevent more than 8,000 disabled or elderly Missourians losing their services. NOTE: The enacted Senate version replaced the original “bad” House version that sought to eliminate the modest “circuit breaker” for elderly and disabled Missourians who rent their homes.  I VOTED YES

UMKC CONSERVATORY (HCR 19): Authorizes the sale of $48 million in public revenue bonds for new music and dance conservatory building at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. I VOTED YES.

PENSIONS (SB 62): Allows pensions for state employees to vest after five years of service instead of 10 years, returning the time period for vesting to what it was prior to 2011. I VOTED YES.

LEGAL EXPENSE FUND (SB 128): Requires the attorney general and state commissioner of administration to report all settlements and judgments paid from the State Legal Expense Fund on a monthly basis. I VOTED YES.

BAD BILLS THAT DIDN’T PASS – THANK YOUR LUCKY STARS (including NO abortion or gun bills which is very unusual but, I'll take it - I was a NO on them all):

PREVAILING WAGE (HB 104): Sought to prohibit contractors and subcontractors on public works projects to being required to pay workers the local prevailing wage.

ABORTION (HB 194, SB 194): Sought to impose various new restrictions relating to abortion.

PROTECTION OF FAKE PREGNANCY CENTERS (HB174): Sought unnecessary freedoms of speech for alternatives to abortion centers which have no state regulation and receive millions in state tax credits.

GUNS (HB630):  Sought to expand locations where firearms are legal, including hospitals, childcare, places of worship, casinos, amusement parks, polling locations, police stations, public schools and universities, stadiums and sports arenas and the General Assembly.

PAYCHECK DECEPTION (HB 251): Sought to impose new procedural barriers to the efficient and timely collection of union dues.

UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS (HB 288): Sought to cut the maximum weeks of unemployment benefits from 20 weeks to as low as 13 weeks, depending on the statewide unemployment rate.

PRIVATE SCHOOL VOUCHERS (SB 313): Sought to authorize $25 million a year in tax credits to pay for private school tuition.


21 comments:

Unknown said...

Wrong side of everything!!
Harvey Hutchinson 303-522-6622 voice&text 24/7

Anonymous said...

Harvey,

Yes, you certainly are on the wrong side of everything! That's why you couldn't even get elected to the crooked Joplin City Council!

Anonymous said...

I cannot even think of a way to describe what our state has reverted to over the last few years. Knuckle draggers, stupid hillbilly's, head in the sand thinking the ways of 1600's will return and just plain unconcerned for those less fortunate not to be born with silver spoon in their mouths. Our governor waits 30 days to declare a disaster for the flooding, WHAT, it is now over and assistance cannot be directed to our area in timely manner when other communities need them for problems cropping up. Nixon had FEMA and Natl. Guard on duty within 48 hours helping with Joplin and the area. Too bad there are not more democrats in our legislature to cause some angst to the Republican welfare to corporation legislation. Sad to see so many states following in lock step to ALEC.(look it up if you are unaware of term)

Anonymous said...

I cannot wait to leave this state, counting the months.

Unknown said...

I was not aware the City Council is crooked, anonymous 12:21

Harvey Hutchinson 303-522-6622 voice&text 24/7

Anonymous said...

@Hervey Hutchinson

If you don't recall Woolston resigning to avoid an ethics hearing for his association with Charley Kuehn buying lots in the tornado zone, and then reselling them to the city for a $600k profit, then you are a fool. Turner reported iron this blog, The Loraine Report recommended he stop and an investigation, and the State Auditor made the same claim. But if little Her eye didn't read it on Breitbart News, then it didn't happen. SMDH

Unknown said...

I was referring to the current Council

Harvey Hutchinson 303-522-6622 voice&text

Anonymous said...

AWWWW horrible meanness. It's time for people to stop using emotion and try logic and reason. It's a wonderful thing.

Anonymous said...

Harvey,

At thetime you ran for council, Woolston was there, don't obfuscate. Are you really sure of Siebert's honesty? Lol, get real!

Unknown said...

I am, Nd the other 8 as well.
3 of them are Clergy men, and a couple of others are on Humanitarian boards such as Souls Hatbor.
.
They actually voted Mike Woolston off; and he had since went on to be active in other organizations, and does the right thing, i. e. No point in continuing to harbor grudges and exclude redemption.

Harvey Hutchinson 303-522-6622 voice&text

Anonymous said...

Harvey,

You really need to comprehend what you read on this blog, and have the ability to retain that information in your intellect. Do you recall who Woolston was sitting next to when the State Auditor read his report? Seibert and Shaw, supported Woolston, Rohr, and Wallace-Bajjali. Shaw counseled Rohr, I assume about his domestic violence, but he is not clergy, just an officer at CCC. Woolston resigned, he wasn't voted off.

http://rturner229.blogspot.com/2015/08/auditor-refers-woolstons-actions-to.html

Seibert, Glaze, Ryan Stanley, and Glaze voted to spend $71k of taxpayer money to pay Woolston's attorney fees.

https://rturner229.blogspot.com/2015/11/koam-investigation-seibert-three-other.html

Seibert on July 30, 2015 stated Wallace-Bajjali was doing great things for Joplin, and the citizens just didn't understand, although Turner had been reporting WB was a fraud for several years.

https://rturner229.blogspot.com/2015/01/joplin-mayor-now-im-dissatisfied-with.html

In 2014, the Joplin Progress Committee, the ones that hired WB, gave Seibert and Stanley $5k each for re-election.

https://rturner229.blogspot.com/2014/02/joplin-progress-committee-pours-14000.html

So you see, Harvey, your understanding is flawed, you omit facts and support people with ulterior motives. You are damn right that I exclude redemption for these asshats, that is up to God. I am more of Robert Blake's Baretta opinion, "If you can't do the time, don't do the crime." Don't worry though, Turner is posting the truth, and intelligent people can see the writing on the wall.

Anonymous said...

Hervey posts fake facts on Turner Report! Episode 321 in a continuing series of anonymous posters playing whacka-a-mole with the Faux News fool.

They actually voted Mike Woolston off; and he had since went on to be active in other organizations, and does the right thing, i. e. No point in continuing to harbor grudges and exclude redemption.

FAKE NEWS!!!!


KOAM and other media reported that Mr. Woolston resigned his position.

http://www.koamtv.com/story/30029363/mike-woolston-resigns-from-joplin-city-council

Mike Woolston resigns from Joplin City Council
Updated: Apr 21, 2017 5:07 PM CST

JOPLIN, MISSOURI -

Joplin City Councilman Mike Woolston announced his resignation today from city council. That announcement came just hours before a scheduled hearing was to take place involving Woolston and his alleged ethical violations.


So "Harvey Hutchinson" states a "fact" that (according to the media coverage) is demonstrably NOT TRUE. The fact that the "fact" posted by "Harvey Hutchinson" is the apparent linchpin of his babblings that attempt to disprove the postings by a different anonymous (sorry Hervey, see footnote below*) who posted the following:

If you don't recall Woolston resigning to avoid an ethics hearing for his association with Charley Kuehn buying lots in the tornado zone, and then reselling them to the city for a $600k profit, then you are a fool. Turner reported iron this blog, The Loraine Report recommended he stop and an investigation, and the State Auditor made the same claim. But if little Her eye didn't read it on Breitbart News, then it didn't happen. SMDH

And then this: Harvey,

At thetime you ran for council, Woolston was there, don't obfuscate. Are you really sure of Siebert's honesty? Lol, get real!


Even better than Hervey's fake news about the Joplin City Council: "They actually voted Mike Woolston off", is the real fact that the KOAM story reports an agreement was made, which makes this deal slightly different than a "resignation" in my opinion.)

KOAM again:

The Joplin City Council and Mike Woolston issued a joint statement saying they have agreed to resolve all issues without any further proceedings.

Woolston denied the allegations and objected to city council's planned proceedings.

“There’s going to be no more investigation into the allegations against Mr. Woolston now that he's resigned, really those issues are moot," says Joplin City Attorney Peter Edwards.

The allegations questioned Woolston's involvement in land purchases for development, if he represented personal interests before city agencies or courts, had a significant financial incentive, and shared confidential information. Woolston's lawyers and the city attorney have determined that those claims are false.


Whew!

Almost kinda sorta like Hervey described it.

They even had lined up the votes in advance!

KOAM again: (see how citing your sources works hervey?)

Council members were privately contacted to vote on the resolution and 5 were in favor of issuing the joint statement along with Woolston's resignation. Council members Scearce, Colbert-Kean, and Rosenberg voted to continue with the trial.

So Hhervey apparent states "not corrupt" because They actually voted Mike Woolston off or because church!

P.S.

One question for Hervey: Hervey does that religious not harboring grudges apply to POTUS #44 Barack Obama and the teabaggers and rebiblicans of SW MO?

*(There are at least two of us think Hervey is full of...well... it's a community blog so use your own imagination to find a four letter word begimming with the letter "s".)

Anonymous said...

Harvey,

You really need to comprehend what you read on this blog, and have the ability to retain that information in your intellect. Do you recall who Woolston was sitting next to when the State Auditor read his report? Seibert and Shaw, supported Woolston, Rohr, and Wallace-Bajjali. Shaw counseled Rohr, I assume about his domestic violence, but he is not clergy, just an officer at CCC. Woolston resigned, he wasn't voted off.

http://rturner229.blogspot.com/2015/08/auditor-refers-woolstons-actions-to.html

Seibert, Glaze, Ryan Stanley, and Glaze voted to spend $71k of taxpayer money to pay Woolston's attorney fees.

https://rturner229.blogspot.com/2015/11/koam-investigation-seibert-three-other.html

Seibert on July 30, 2015 stated Wallace-Bajjali was doing great things for Joplin, and the citizens just didn't understand, although Turner had been reporting WB was a fraud for several years.

https://rturner229.blogspot.com/2015/01/joplin-mayor-now-im-dissatisfied-with.html

In 2014, the Joplin Progress Committee, the ones that hired WB, gave Seibert and Stanley $5k each for re-election.

https://rturner229.blogspot.com/2014/02/joplin-progress-committee-pours-14000.html

So you see, Harvey, your understanding is flawed, you omit facts and support people with ulterior motives. You are damn right that I exclude redemption for these asshats, that is up to God. I am more of Robert Blake's Baretta opinion, "If you can't do the time, don't do the crime." Don't worry though, Turner is posting the truth, and intelligent people can see the writing on the wall.

Hugh Janus (Uh, 6060-842) said...

If Harvey isn't entitled to his own facts, then who is?

Unknown said...

Resigned, or knew he would be voted off? A lot of difference?
For the record had I been elected I would not have voted to pay his or Rohr's attorney fees.

Your recall seems to be excellent; I was very much opposed to Wallace Bajjali-- a lot of the reason I lost

Harvey Hutchinson 303-522-6622 voice&text

Unknown said...

I've said before that Randy provides a second media voice for the community ( we probably don't line up ideologically all the time)

Harvey Hutchinson 303-522-6622 voice&text

Unknown said...

I think Gary Shaw is a member of the Clergy; although semi retired, Anne serving as an administrator in his Church

Harvey Hutchinson 303-522-6622 voice&text

Anonymous said...

Harvey,

Yes there is a difference between reigning and being voted off. One is fact, and the other is fiction. And Rohr didn't have attorney fees, members of the council heard testimony that Rohr assaulted his wife on more than one occasion. Thanks to Rosenberg, Scearce, Golden, Raney, and Keene for that. Golden and Raney lost their council seat over it. Shaw thought he could counsel the prick into redemption, although wife beaters deserve no redemption, just criminal justice. Seibert may not be a crook, but the only other explanation for his support of Walllace-Bajjali is incompetence. As far as Shaw, being a member of a religious organization does not necessarily make you a decent human. I know many citizens in Shaw's church, and some that knew him asked for his assistance after the city tried to place liens on their property after the tornado. The city falsely claimed that driveways, slabs, etc... On your property were dangerous, even though they remained intact and in place following an EF5 tornado. Just asked to see the Building Board of Appeals list of homeowners cited after the tornado. My opinion of people is tempered by what I have witnessed, and how they treat others, and not based on what board, charity, or religion they practice. The Golden Rule is all you need, Do unto others, as you would have done to yourself.

Unknown said...

Well said; I stand corrected on resign with the flames on your back vs voted off

To the other blogger; I've never hsrbored a grudge against Obama( didn't vote for him) if my son had been in Benghazi I probably would.

And to the blogger on the PAC; that killed me more than anything that election

Harvey Hutchinson 303-522-6622 voice&text

Anonymous said...

Harvey,

What say you on Rohr? The Loraine Report contained sworn testimony from a city employee who witnessed him assaulting his wife. The Globe released a 911 call from Rohr's stepdaughter to police requesting assistance because he was beating her pregnant mother. Police arrived who are under Rohr's supervision, and chose not to make an arrest. The fact that Rohr was their direct supervisor demanded an independent agency, I.e. The Sheriff's Dept. or Highway Patrol investigate, but it didn't occur. Rohr didn't need praying over by Gary Shaw, he needed to be arrested as any other citizen would have been. Shaw excused his actions, I don't! What say you on Rohr sand Shaw now?

Unknown said...

He's gone; and suprisef everyone about Texas; he made it 2 years instead of1.

He'll find another town to hook up with, and piss everyone off; except the fallacious newspaper editor he hooks up with

Harvey Hutchinson 303-522-6622