The Northland Democratic Club held it’s second in person meeting in a space donated to the club by Jay Swearingen, the ACA Club on NW Vivian Road. It proved to be an excellent location and will be the home of the club for the next year.
Wes Rodgers, Missouri House Representative for the 18th District was the guest speaker. He provided an update on the legislative session that just ended. There was good news and bad news in the report.
Funding for Medicaid Expansion was not approved in spite of a Missouri Constitutional Amendment that passed by more than 60% of votes and in spite of the fact that the Federal government would have provided funding for the State share this year. A lawsuit is being filed but that will take time. This will cost Missouri billions of dollars in lost funding and lost care for many thousands of Missouri residents.
The legislature finally passed a Prescription Drug Database; Missouri was the only state that did not have this reference for physicians and pharmacists in place.
They also passed a gas tax that will gradually raise the state’s 17 cent per gallon gas tax to 29.5 cents a gallon over 5 years was passed. It will allow drivers to submit receipts to get a refund of the tax.
The legislature passed the “Wayfair” bill to allow taxation of online sales to Missouri residents. The bill also allowed Missouri to keep the earned income tax credit in the bill.
The legislature also passed a bill that would forbid local police from enforcing federal gun laws, a law that is very likely unconstitutional.
They also passed a school voucher bill that would allow private donors to donate scholarships to private schools and get state tax credits. This sends state tax money to private schools.
The legislature did not pass the voter suppression laws that had been proposed. They are expected to resurface in a special session later this year.
There was also a discussion about redistricting that will take place this year after the 2020 census. Exactly how this will play out is not known at this time.
Club Vice President John DeFoor announced that he had decided to run for Platte County Presiding Commissioner.