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Capitol Report: The Tax Credit Debate

by State Sen. Brad Lager

“Tax credit” has become a loaded phrase in the State Capitol. Depending on who you ask, they’re either the greatest economic development tool ever created or government give a ways crippling our budget. The truth lies somewhere in the middle. Some tax credits work, some don’t, and some are nothing more than special perks for special interest.

The legislature has spent years researching, studying and

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Capitol Report: Working Toward a Solution

by Congressman Sam Graves

It’s been a long couple weeks in Washington as Congress and the White House seek a solution that would fully end the government shutdown. In the meantime, the House of Representatives has worked in a bipartisan manner to pass legislation that would fund and reopen key priorities and agencies in the interim.

For instance, on Oct. 2 we passed a resolution to fund cancer research at

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Capitol Report: Fighting Fraud in Social Programs

by State Sen. Brad Lager

No matter how carefully we plan, we are all at the mercy of events out of our control. Sometimes, honest, hardworking people are dealt a difficult hand which leaves them no option but to look for help in order to make ends meet. This is why, in 1911, the Missouri Legislature passed the “Mother’s Aid Law.” Nearly 60 years later, that legislation would become Temporary

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Capitol Report: Extremely Unfortunate Shutdown

by Congressman Sam Graves

As I write, our government is mired in the midst of a shutdown for the first time since 1996. Congress’ inability to reach an agreement to keep the government open is extremely unfortunate as it personally affects so many Americans.

Here in the House, we’re working to find agreement to end this shutdown. As we continue to seek such an agreement, we’ve passed a series of

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Capitol Report: The Need for Tort Reform

by State Sen. Brad Lager

In 2005, the Missouri General Assembly passed, and the Governor signed, legislation lowering the cap for “non-economic damages” in medical malpractice awards. This action, which brought Missouri’s caps closer to surrounding states’, was taken to help stabilize the skyrocketing cost for medical malpractice insurance. These costs had become so expensive in Missouri that we were actually seeing healthcare providers leaving our state and opening their

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Capitol Report: Missouri’s Broken Unemployment System

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Would you be surprised to learn that individuals who have fallen asleep on the job, been drunk at work, been caught using drugs while at work, and even individuals who have been caught stealing from their employer have filed for and have been granted unemployment benefits in Missouri? Unfortunately, this is true. Missouri’s Unemployment system is broken and hundreds of millions of dollars are being

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Capitol Report: Reforming Missouri’s Sex Offender Registry

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Missouri’s sex offender registry was created back in the mid-1990s as part of a nationwide movement. The concept is simple: require offenders convicted of specific sexually related crimes to enter their personal information into a public database which citizens could then search to see if there were offenders living in their area.

Unfortunately, with government, nothing is ever simple and managing a responsible sex offender

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Capitol Report: Historic Veto Session

by State Sen. Brad Lager

When the 2013 legislative session came to a close, no one would have ever imagined that the 2013 veto session would be one of historic magnitude. We knew that the number of bills passed and sent to the Governor’s desk was lower than most years and throughout the five months of regular session there had been very little concern raised by the Governor’s office on

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Capitol Report: Honoring Our Veterans

by Congressman Sam Graves

This past week, our nation commemorated the 12th anniversary of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. We must always keep alive the memory of those we lost, and recall the heroic acts of valor that occurred that day, as firefighters and office workers, police officers and tourists, all worked together to save lives and comfort a nation. We must also thank the servicemen and women

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