Senate reaches halfway point of 2013 session

Posted March 21, 2013 at 11:36 am


It was a busy week as the Legislature headed toward the midway point of the 2013 Session. The week began with a late night on Monday as the Senate debated a bill that would require labor unions to obtain permission from their members before they could deduct money from their paychecks to be used for political purposes. The bill was given final approval by the Senate and now goes to the House of Representatives for its consideration.

The Senate passed a major overhaul to the tax code. Contained in the legislation are the provisions of a bill I introduced this session to try bringing some fairness to merchants on the main streets of our communities. While no one likes new taxes, our local merchants who have went to the trouble and expense of building a physical store find themselves at a disadvantage to internet retailers who are not required to collect and remit sales taxes. On large purchases this can amount to a significant difference in price. These local retailers are the folks who sponsor our youth sports teams, school yearbooks, community events and other activities we many times take for granted. My bill would make more of these internet purchases subject to the same sales tax our local merchants are required to charge. So that it isn’t a total tax increase, it is combined with other provisions that lower some income tax rates.

One bill that did not come up yet is an issue on which we have been receiving a lot of phone calls and correspondence. SB207 would make it easier for investor-owned utility companies to implement surcharges on their customers. I realize there is an ongoing need for utility companies to continue investing in their generation and delivery systems, but it needs to be done in a way that provides adequate consumer protection.

On Friday, March 22, I along with Reps. Sandy Crawford and Diane Franklin and the Lebanon Area Chamber of Commerce will be hosting Business Summit 2013 in Lebanon. This event is free and open to the public. It will be held at the Kenneth E. Cowan Civic Center in Lebanon and will begin at 8:00 am.

Visitors to the office included a group of juniors and seniors from Lebanon High School along with their teacher Joyce Massey; Pettis Co. R-12 4th and 8th grade students along with their teachers, Jane Grindley and Mary Meehan; Vonna Bauer and Roy Harms from Polk County, Ronnie Miller from Cedar County; Colter Cantrell from Fair Play; Ezra Piper from Flemington; Kevin Webb from Sedalia; members of Twin Lakes Hospice; and Eric Kurre from Morrisville. It was especially nice this week having my wife, Teresa and son, Kelly up to visit. Teresa and I were dinner guests of Governor Jay Nixon and his wife, Georganne on Tuesday night.

‘Nothing is Politically Right Which is Morally Wrong’

If you have any questions or comments regarding issues in state government or within the 28th Senatorial District, please feel free to contact my office. Senator Mike Parson, State Capitol Building, Room 420. Phone: 573-751-8793 or 800-752-8256. Email: