I hope everyone had a blessed Easter and was able to spend time with family and friends. Teresa and I had the opportunity to be with our family and enjoy the Easter egg hunt with our grandkids. As we head into warmer weather, it is a reminder that the Missouri Legislature is entering the final weeks of its session. After weeks of taking testimony and waiting for the House of Representatives to craft its version, the Senate Appropriations Committee is ready to begin its work again.
A bill I filed is gaining attention as we enter the final weeks of the budget process. During presentation of department budgets, I was struck by how many state employees we have that make a higher salary than the governor. As I listened to testimony I found myself thinking if the governor is the highest paid elected official, his salary should be the ceiling. To this end, I filed SB457 which would bar any state employee from earning a higher salary than the governor. Currently the governor draws a salary of just under $134,000.
If passed, this bill would affect about eighty-five state employees. Their jobs range from department directors to medical specialists to university coaches. During the committee hearing on the bill, it was pointed out the state might have a difficult time hiring and retaining medical doctors if that was the top salary that could be offered. Due to this and other testimony, I understand there may need to be some exceptions.
The legislation I wrote about last week that would make the right of Missourians to keep and bear arms unalienable was given final Senate approval and sent to the House for its consideration. If passed by both chambers, it would go to a statewide vote of the people. The legislation would also strengthen Missouri’s Conceal and Carry law and add families to the list of what citizens have the right to protect.
Still on my list of what I want to accomplish this session is a constitutional amendment guaranteeing the right of farmers to operate their farms without fear of urban sprawl and out of state interests that would like to end agriculture as we know it. The House has passed this legislation and I will be handling it in the Senate.
Visitors to the office include my wife Teresa who brought with her Alvin and Rosie Meyer, Keith and Beverly Stevens, Shannon and Janieca Hancock, Shirley Allison, Jan Richner, Elizabeth Rohrs and Don Babb. We had Missouri Sheriffs Dean ‘Leon’ Dwerlkotte, Scott A. Keeler, Kay Williams, Mike Rackley and Ray Tipton. Visiting with Extension were Nancy Johnson, Kay Sparks, Megan Webb, Lori Gerke and Nancy Burkhalter. Rounding out the week were Mary Beatty, Diana Ball, Lori McCullough, Anita Hampton, Glen Coleman and the Agape School staff.
‘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: firstname.lastname@example.org.