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Capitol Perspectives: Dealing with Less

by Phill Brooks

The legislature’s sweeping tax cut bill passed this spring, followed by voter rejection of the transportation sales tax increase, has led me to think about the possible need for state government to slim down. Transportation officials acknowledge they will lack funds to maintain the state highway system within a few years.

Missouri already is more than $600 million below the goal the legislature itself set to assure

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Missouri Farm Bureau Opposes Amendment 3

Citing it as a “flawed” proposal, the Missouri Farm Bureau has officially opposed Amendment 3 and is encouraging its members to vote NO on Election Day. Their opposition continues the trend of other organizations and school boards coming out against Amendment 3.

Here is the full statement from the Missouri Farm Bureau:

“The Missouri Farm Bureau Board of Directors at their most recent board meeting voted to oppose Constitutional Amendment

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November’s Elections Won’t Resolve Much of Anything

by Lee H. Hamilton

Members of Congress are home now, campaigning for the upcoming elections. Their messages are all over the map, and for a good reason: they have very little to brag about.

The Congress that just recessed until after the elections makes the 80th — the one that Harry Truman blasted as “do-nothing” — look like a paragon of productivity. This year’s members did manage to avoid a

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Capital Report: Amendment 3 – Teacher Performance

by State Sen. Brad Lager

In today’s competitive environment, our state and our nation compete on a global playing field for the jobs of tomorrow. One of the key deciders of where a company locates is the quality of the workforce available. Therefore, the future of our state and nation rest directly on our ability to create a workforce that is capable of competing globally.

A 2014 Pearson Education report

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Capitol Perspectives: The Lion of the Lobbyists

by Phill Brooks

This past summer, Missouri lost the undisputed lion of our state’s lobbyists – John Britton.

In his prime, Britton was one of the state’s most powerful figures. But there was much more to Britton. He also was a mentor, teacher, friend and adviser to generations of Missouri public leaders.

His funeral was a demonstration of that depth, bringing together past and present government leaders from across decades.

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Capital Report: Balancing MO’s Budget and Its Branches

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Under Missouri’s Constitution, the legislature crafts the state’s annual budget and the executive branch implements that budget. In my opinion, it is the most important duty we undertake each year. The House and Senate budget committees spend hundreds of hours going through each and every line-item so that we have the highest confidence possible that the budget is balanced and our state’s fiscal stability is

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Local Admin Hopes Amendment 3 is a Losing Proposition

A float during Chautauqua urged voters to “Protect Our Local Schools” and “Vote No on Amendment 3.”

Worried that proposed Constitutional Amendment 3 could shift control away from local school districts has prompted a line up of education groups across the state, including teacher unions, school boards, PTAs and school administrators, to rally against it.

The Gallatin R-5 Board of Education has gone on record as opposing the measure by

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Capital Report: The Need for Tort Reform

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Nearly a decade ago, Missouri lawmakers passed one of the most comprehensive tort reform packages in the nation. With the passage of this legislation, which was signed in to law by Gov Matt Blunt, the legislature had taken an important step towards improving the state’s business climate. One component of that legislative package was the limiting of certain punitive damages to fair and reasonable levels.

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Sport Leaders Put Victory Over Decency

by U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill

Editor’s note: The following op-ed was published in USA Today on Sept. 17. Besides currently serving Missouri in the U.S. Senate, McCaskill is a former sex crimes prosecutor.

This week was a gut-check moment for big-time sports in this country. A giant mirror has been raised for commissioners, coaches and athletic directors across the country. It is their time to take a hard look at

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