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Capitol Report: Fighting to the Finish

by State Sen. Brad Lager

The final weeks of every legislative session are long and demanding as we work to complete our top priorities before the final gavel falls. Throughout this session, we have focused on improving the economic climate in our state thereby increasing the number of economic opportunities for all Missourians.

Last week, we finalized the Senate’s version of the fiscal year 2015 state budget, and the House

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Capitol Report: A Streamlined, Efficient Government

by Congressman Sam Graves

Government overreach continues to be a problem under President Obama. In addition to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) land grab threatening Missouri property owners and livestock producers, there is ongoing duplication of federal programs at the Small Business Administration (SBA).

Last week, the House Small Business Committee I chair exposed the SBA’s experimentation with unproven programs that will detract from their core services intended to serve

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Fixing Missouri’s Broken Tax Credit Program

Capitol Report

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Last week, the legislature sent to the governor a broad-based tax relief bill that, over the next eight years, will allow hard working Missourians to keep more of their own money. Unlike any of the neighboring states which have been cutting taxes, this legislation contains triggers which guarantee certain benchmarks are met, such as increased revenue collections and education funding, before the tax

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Capitol Report: Supreme Court Strikes Blow Against Employers

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Last week, the Missouri Supreme Court continued its attack on job creators as it once again eroded away at Missouri’s employment law. In a 5-2 decision, the court overturned 30 years of case law when dealing with workers compensation claims. This decision opens the door for excessive and frivolous litigation against Missouri employers.

Following the court’s actions, employees no longer have to prove that workers’

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Capitol Report: Tax Day 2014

by State Sen. Brad Lager

April 15th marks the day when the overwhelming majority of taxpaying Americans are required to have their taxes paid. This year, tax freedom day (the day when the nation as a whole has earned enough money to pay its total tax bill) comes three days later than 2013 and will be April 21st. So, every penny earned in this great nation since January 1 through

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No Bull: EPA Aggression Threatens Livestock Producers

by Congressman Sam Graves

Editor’s Note: This article was written on April 10 for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association weekly newsletter. On Saturday, a guest column was published for the St. Joseph News-Press by the Administrator for EPA Region 7, who repeats the egregious claim that the EPA is merely trying to be helpful to farmers.

In North Missouri, many people are farmers, ranchers, and livestock producers. Here, people rely

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Capitol Report: The Need for a New Tax Code

by State Sen. Brad Lager

The strength of a state’s economy hinges on whether or not businesses want to come to that state, create jobs there and grow there. Therefore, a state’s business climate directly impacts the future opportunities its citizens will or will not have. This means that elected officials who truly care about long term economic growth must take the steps necessary to create a business climate that

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Capitol Report: Invest in Future by Supporting Teachers

by Congressman Sam Graves

Growing up as a student who passed through Tarkio schools, of course I didn’t realize it at the time, but educating the young is a passion that called many to go the extra mile for me and my future.

Many different factors play a role in securing a quality education for all of Missouri’s students. To this end, one of the most important contributors is our

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Capitol Report: Funding Higher Education

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Missouri’s post-secondary education system plays a critical role in our state’s economy. The degrees, courses, and programs offered throughout Missouri’s universities, colleges and technical schools enhance our workforce, bolster economic development, and allow us to compete in an ever-changing world. Therefore, as we look to the future, it is imperative that we have a top tier post-secondary education system in Missouri that is affordable and

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