State Senator-Elect Rusty Black was elected for the 12th District in the November General Election. He previously served six years in the Missouri House of Representatives.
Black says he has gone through the preliminary matters of picking an office, getting his picture taken, and starting to work on letterhead. His office will be Room 331 at the State Capitol.
Black filed a bill related to this year’s election for the United States Senate, which involves foreign ownership of Missouri farmland.
The three counties are Putnam, Sullivan, and Mercer and Black says the legislation was passed in 2013.
Black has also pre-filed legislation on teacher pensions and is working on emergency services matters.
He can be contacted at [email protected]. His official webpage with more information is to be up on January 4th. That is also the day he will be sworn into office.
Amendment 3 was passed in Missouri in the November General Election. The constitutional amendment allows recreational sales and use of marijuana in the state, and Black says that he voted no on Amendment 3.
The six percent sales tax is at the state level. Black noted local entities can have around three percent sales tax if they so choose.
He said the state will spend money whether funds are generated or not.
Black believes the passage of the amendment will cause increased work for law enforcement and prosecutors. He has also read, heard, and researched that marijuana produced and used today is stronger than it used to be, and he is concerned that will cause more individuals to have problems with addiction.
Black acknowledged that it is not often that an initiative petition to have a measure placed on the ballot is approved by the state.
The legislation was passed two years ago regarding property rights and eminent domain, and the legislation has become law.
He says it did not have an impact on the Grain Belt Express, as far as the legislation itself was concerned.
Discussion continues on sports betting, but it is a contentious topic, and he says he thought the state legislature would get legislation on it done by the end of the year, however, the issue got blocked at the end because someone wanted something someone else did not want.
Black thinks there will be a push to get legislation on sports betting done this year.
Black is also reporting the State of Missouri has more than $5 billion in savings. he said that is a lot of money compared to the budget.
Black believes the economy will not be as good someday as it has been, and there will be a time when the general revenue will not match the money needed to be spent.
Black served six years as Seventh District State Representative and he believes the state has done good things with the extra money it has received primarily from federal sources and has put the money toward projects that need to be done. He thinks that will ultimately save state taxpayers in the future.
Many state residents hope some money goes to the improvement of roads and bridges. He noted that the legislature passed a fuel tax, and that will free up some extra funds.
There were three rounds of federal funding that were included in the state budget. The extra money from that was added to colleges and K-12 education to do projects on facilities. He said the intent was to make schools’ budgets better later.
With the state having a lot of money in its regular general revenue, some “pretty good” core increases were given to all higher education institutions last year. He thinks that will have a “great” impact.
He is unsure if there will be the same funding this year.
Twelfth District State Senator-Elect Rusty Black.