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Legislative updates
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Work at the Capitol is rapidly picking up in the 2024 legislative session. In this report, we’ll focus on the upcoming state budget, ongoing work to reduce taxes, the fentanyl crisis, and supporting after-school programs.  more
The Missouri Association of Prosecuting Attorneys (MAPA) recently recognized 154th District Rep. David Evans, West Plains, chair of the Missouri House Judiciary Committee, as MAPA’s 2023 Legislative Champion. more
I hope you all have had a wonderful week and that you are enjoying the rise in temperature. This past week, we heard from the governor in his State of the State Address and looked back over the great work that has been accomplished for Missourians.   more
I hope you have all stayed warm and safe as those frigid temperatures blew through the state. The snow can be so beautiful but so treacherous as well. Here in the capitol, I’ve been busy at work for you. It’s only the fourth week of session so most of our time is spent in committee, hearing bills and debating policy.  more
State Rep. Travis Smith, Twin Bridges and formerly of West Plains, announced his candidacy for the State Senate on Thursday. He is running for the 33rd District seat currently held by Karla Eslinger, Wasola, who will not seek reelection at the conclusion of her term. more
We have just begun this year’s Missouri legislative session. Budget hearings began last year and will continue throughout this session.   more
It is wonderful to be back in Jefferson City to complete my final year in the Missouri Senate. As I mentioned in my last column, I will not be running for reelection. I made a promise to the people of the 33rd Senatorial District to complete a four-year term and I plan to come to work every day this session with the same passion and energy that I carried with me into the Senate for my first day in 2021. more
On my desk for the past 40 years have sat two things. First, a small bluebird figurine that a student gave me in my first classroom in 1982. It has traveled with me as I have worked with parents, teachers and leaders to ensure that children are receiving the best education possible. During our travel, the bluebird’s tail feathers have chipped, and one wing is not as pretty as the other, but the beautiful face remains. This face is my symbol of hope; as a public servant and educator, I will always have an unrelenting hope I can make a difference. more
In a letter recently addressed to Gov. Michael Parson, Rep. Chris Dinkins, Lesterville, emphasized her belief in a need for a proactive approach to safeguard the well-being and security of Missouri citizens in light of continuing conflict in the Middle East. more
While I know the calendar days are ticking by and that a new year and the flurry of activity that comes with the legislative session are just around the corner, it only makes me appreciate the Thanksgiving holiday more. Gathering with family and enjoying the turkey, dressing, potatoes, vegetables and, possibly most of all, the desserts, is the perfect way to put a time out on busy lives and hectic schedules. more
It’s been a flurry of activity since the 2023 legislative session ended on May 12. I hope you had an enjoyable summer and have stayed cool with these record temperatures. more
After two years in a row of more than 1,000 fatalities on Missouri’s roadways, Gov. Mike Parson signed the Siddens Bening Hands-Free Law, prohibiting all drivers from using a handheld electronic communication device while driving, effective Monday. more
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