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FIRE AT CAR WASH!

Fire fighters responded to a pickup on fire at the Superior Auto Wash off South Main Street in Gallatin Thursday afternoon:
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Capitol Report: Common Sense Spending in Our Schools

by State Sen. Brad Lager

There is no single act that guarantees a quality education; and while I do not believe that greater funding automatically translates into a better education, I do believe there is a basic cost associated with securing quality teachers, keeping the buses running, and operating a quality school. In a world

Continue reading Capitol Report: Common Sense Spending in Our Schools

Capitol Report: Mid-Session Review

by State Sen. Brad Lager

This coming week, the Missouri General Assembly will be on spring break thereby signifying the midpoint of the 2014 legislative session. We began this session on a mission to strengthen our state’s financial foundation, improve our business climate for job creation, and address many of the issues hindering our children’s

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Capitol Report: The Importance of Early Childhood Education

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Every year, numerous bills are filed aimed at improving the educational opportunities for Missouri’s school children. This year is no different, however due to the significant issues surrounding unaccredited school districts; the transfer law has been at the forefront of debate in the Missouri Senate. While this issue is currently

Continue reading Capitol Report: The Importance of Early Childhood Education

Capitol Report: Judicial Accountability

by State Sen. Brad Lager

At the cornerstone of our democracy lays the fundamental responsibility of our three branches of government. The legislative branch crafts public policy, the executive branch implements that policy, and the judicial branch ensures the constitutionality of those laws. Unfortunately, throughout the last decade, there has been an unsettling trend as

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Capitol Report: The Importance of a Fair Judicial Branch

by State Sen. Brad Lager In order for our democracy to be strong, we must foster a system in which everyone has an equal and fair opportunity in the court of law. When a citizen goes before a judge, they expect to have a fair opportunity to plead their case. They expect that judge to

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Capitol Report: Reforming Missouri’s Legal Climate

by State Sen. Brad Lager

When a company decides to relocate to a new state, that business will research a variety of factors before making its decision. While an educated workforce, a reliable transportation infrastructure, and robust technology availability are important, the three aspects that most determine a state’s business climate are taxation, regulation, and

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Capitol Report: Restoring Balance to Missouri’s Legal Climate

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Elected officials often talk about creating jobs and growing the economy. Normally, their rhetoric revolves around using the state treasury to “incentivize” a business to do what they want. Those of us in the private sector understand that a real pro-business environment involves limited regulation, low taxation and fair litigation.

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Capitol Report: New Blood Brings New Opportunities

by State Sen. Brad Lager

In the early 1990s, Missouri’s voters approved a ballot measure that established term limits for members of Missouri’s General Assembly. Prior to this initiative, only Missouri’s Governor and Treasurer had limitations on the length of time they could serve. Therefore, it came as no surprise that there were many members

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Capitol Report: Missouri Needs a New Path

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Thomas Jefferson, one of our most famous founding fathers, once said, “My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government.”

Last week, as Governor Jay Nixon delivered the 2014 State of the State Address to the Missouri General Assembly, that statement came to mind

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Capitol Report: Ensuring a Foundation for Better Government

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Although we are in the early weeks of the 2014 legislative session, the main issues for the Missouri Senate are starting to take shape. I am happy to report that one of the Senate’s top priorities will be ethics reform.

During my time in Jefferson City, I have witnessed many

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Capitol Report: The 2014 Legislative Session Opens

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Last week, we convened the Second Regular Session of the 97th General Assembly. This will mark my final year in the State Senate and will bring to a close my 12 years of public service. But, before I go, I am going to try and fix some of the broken

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The Importance of Gubernatorial Appointments

Capitol Report

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Missouri has more than 200 public boards and commissions that act as an interface between citizens and regulators. As regulations are passed down from the federal government or created at the state level, these boards and commissions are responsible for determining how to administer and implement these policies.

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Capitol Report: New Year, New Opportunities

by State Sen. Brad Lager

This week, we will usher in a new year. With this new year, many Missourians will make resolutions aimed at improving their lives as they work to manage current challenges and prepare to embrace future opportunities. Similarly, every legislative session is an opportunity to address Missouri’s current challenges and make

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Capitol Report: Capping the Growth of Government

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Our country was founded upon the cornerstone of less taxation. Our Founding Fathers envisioned a limited government that provided only the most basic and necessary services, while allowing the free market to grow organically as economic necessity dictated. We are far from that vision today.

Through incremental changes over generations,

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Capitol Report: Protect Integrity By ‘Cooling Off’

by State Sen. Brad Lager

There is an inherent trust that should exist between the public and the elected/appointed officials they have chosen to represent them. This trust is at the cornerstone of our democracy and is necessary to make the democratic process possible. Without this trust, our government will weaken and if left unchecked,

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Capitol Report: Who Deserves Tax Relief?

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Earlier this year, the Missouri General Assembly passed the largest tax relief measure in modern history. This proposal was the first step in fixing our broken tax system that has hindered economic opportunities in our state for decades. This legislation would have lowered the tax burden for every citizen and

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Capitol Report: Special Session 2013

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Last week on Black Friday, Gov. Jay Nixon announced his intentions to call the Missouri General Assembly back to Jefferson City for a special legislative session to convene on Dec. 2. The purpose of his call is to modify and expand four tax programs in order for Missouri to submit

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Capitol Report: Thanksgiving

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Before the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, or the Bill of Rights, there was the Mayflower Compact. This document, which was drafted in the autumn of 1620 following 67 days of unimaginable challenges at sea, established a working democracy for the Pilgrims in the New World. Although it may have

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Capitol Report: Protecting MO’s Meals on Wheels Program

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Over the past few years, Missouri’s state budget has come under great scrutiny as we worked to weather the national economic crisis. During this time, we prioritized our expenditures and made government live within its means by digging in to the budget so that we could identify programs that were

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Capitol Report: Honoring Our Veterans

by State Sen. Brad Lager

From the American Revolution to the war in the Middle East, the men and women of America’s military have a proud heritage of defending the ideals and principles that embody this great nation. While this began with colonial farmers leaving their families to take up arms in their fight for

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Capitol Report: Supporting Missouri’s Veterans

by State Sen. Brad Lager

As public servants, we all take an oath to defend our constitutions. For most of us, this amounts to fighting for or against certain public policy changes that we believe will impact the civil liberties of the citizens we represent. For the men and women of our military, this means

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Capitol Report: Defending Freedoms Through State’s Rights

by State Sen. Brad Lager

Our founding fathers established this great nation against unimaginable odds. Many gave their lives and others gave everything they owned to live in a country with a limited federal government, and therefore many freedoms. Unfortunately, over the last decade we have witnessed a federal government that wants to spend more,

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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

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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

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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

Continue reading Capitol Report: The Need for Tort Reform