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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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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: 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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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 of limited resources, we must look for every opportunity to spend our educational dollars wisely.

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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 education.

To create a dynamic and robust marketplace, we must create a climate in which

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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 the greatest in the urban areas of Missouri, this debate has started a broader conversation

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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 the decisions handed down by our state courts are rewriting Missouri’s public policy.

While our

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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 make a ruling based on the merits of the law and not personal relationships, friendships

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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 litigation.

As public servants, we have a responsibility to create a business climate that will

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