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Missouri Attorney General joins 19 state coalition urging Congress to reject legislation that increases energy fees

Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt joined a 19-state coalition urging Congress to reject burdensome legislation that would increase fees on energy producers and hit American consumers with even greater price hikes. The two bills in question are the Methane Emissions Reduction Act in the Senate and a provision of the Build Back Better Act in […]

American Rescue Plan Act Graphic with Missouri Seal

State of Missouri creates American Rescue Plan Act spending toolkits for local governments

 The State of Missouri has created and made available spending toolkits to help local governments identify allowable uses for American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) local funds.  “We want to assist our local partners in making strategic, responsible investments that will serve Missourians for generations to come,” Governor Mike Parson said. “Our first priority is to ensure taxpayer […]

Student Loan Application (Photo by Nick Youngson via Creative Commons)

Democrats’ vision for free community college would boost undocumented students

(Missouri Independent) – The massive economic policy package Democrats are trying to muscle through Congress could open the door to free community college for undocumented immigrants. But that lifeline for many people now denied access to higher education could also reignite controversies in Republican-leaning states over immigration and federal overreach. The provision on immigrants was […]

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Higher loan limit now available for USDA guaranteed farm loans

The U.S. Department of Agriculture is announcing a higher loan limit will be available for borrowers seeking a guaranteed farm loan starting Oct. 1, 2021, from $1.776 million to $1.825 million. “Farm loans are critical for our customers’ annual operating and family living expenses, emergency needs, and cash flow,” FSA Administrator Zach Ducheneaux said. “Raising […]

Josh Hawley Courtesy of Missourinet

New bill by Hawley to allow parents to sue big tech, like social media, for harm to children

U.S. Senator Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) introduced new legislation to make social media companies liable for bodily or mental harm their products cause to children. Senator Hawley’s bill would close the Section 230 loophole protecting these companies and allow parents to sue and obtain damages from social media companies wholly or partly responsible for harm to users under […]

Senator Roy Blunt of Missouri

Congress passes bill to prevent government shutdown, Blunt only Missouri Republican in support

(Missouri Independent) – Congress made a last-minute dash to avert a government shutdown on Thursday, with the U.S. Senate and House approving a short-term spending bill just hours ahead of a midnight deadline. Every Democratic and independent senator and 15 Republicans supported the bill in the 65-35 vote. The GOP senators in the “aye” tally included […]

Senate Building at Night - Photo by Darren Halstead on UnSplash

Senate GOP torpedoes U.S. government funding bill, raising odds of federal fiscal crises

(Missouri Independent) – U.S. Senate Republicans blocked an attempt by Democrats on Monday evening to begin debate on a broad bill that would avert multiple looming fiscal crises for the federal government. The measure to briefly keep the government operating past the end of the fiscal year on Thursday, as well as to increase the […]

MOSERS or Missouri State Employees Retirement System website

Lawsuit filed by lobbyist accuses MOSERS of violating Missouri Sunshine Law

(Missouri Independent) – A new lawsuit will test whether public agencies can hide how much they are paying attorneys and determine how far they must go in searching for records sought under the Missouri Sunshine Law. The lawsuit, filed Sept. 10 in Jefferson City by lobbyist John Gaskin of Flotron McIntosh, accuses the Missouri State Employees […]

Immigration

Immigration reform blocked from reconciliation bill in Congress, but Democrats vow to try again

(Missouri Independent) – The U.S. Senate parliamentarian has turned down a plan to include a pathway to citizenship for millions of undocumented people in the $3.5 trillion reconciliation package, a blow for Democrats and immigration advocacy groups when the decision was disclosed late Sunday. “We are deeply disappointed in this decision but the fight to […]

Farm Scene

Struggle over tax break for inherited farmland churns below surface in reconciliation bill

(Missouri Independent) – Agricultural groups and farm-state lawmakers notched a significant win when U.S. House Democrats chose not to touch a big tax break for inherited property, avoiding, for now, a confrontation. But opponents remain wary that the idea could come back at any time as Democrats shape their massive $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation package, and […]

Abortion Graphic

New report says “Restricting abortion access brings big financial trouble”

Limiting women’s access to abortion and other reproductive health care can have a devastating impact on state economies. According to new data from the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, restrictions on the books in Nebraska cost the state $1 billion annually in lost income, productivity, and state revenues. Andi Curry Grubb, Nebraska state director for Planned […]

Amtrak Missouri River Runner train#313 pulling into Kirkwood Missouri Amtrak Station

U.S. House Democrats add more mass transit, high-speed rail into infrastructure bill

(Missouri Independent) – The U.S. House transportation panel early Wednesday passed along party lines the panel’s $60 billion slice of Democrats’ $3.5 trillion budget plan, adding nearly $20 billion for a new transit program and high-speed rail development in the states. Chairman Peter A. DeFazio of Oregon had considered these and other items underfunded in […]

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USDA launches resource guide to assist rural communities seeking disaster and recovery assistance

United States Department of Agriculture Deputy Under Secretary for Rural Development Justin Maxson today unveiled a resource guide as part of National Preparedness Month to help rural communities seeking disaster resiliency and recovery assistance. This guide follows the Biden-Harris Administration’s announcement of the American Jobs Plan, which targets investments to support infrastructure in communities that are most physically […]

Disaster Relief

White House seeks at least $24 billion to aid states struck by natural disasters

(Missouri Independent) –  The White House is urging Congress to approve at least $24 billion — and likely more — for disaster relief costs, saying that the aid should be included in a short-term spending bill expected this month. That tally includes $14 billion for recovery costs related to extreme weather events, including hurricanes, floods, and wildfires during […]

Gavel and Missouri Flag

Judge orders no change – for now – in Missouri’s prisoner health care contractor

(Missouri Independent) – Work to bring a new contractor for prisoner health care services online in Missouri can continue, but the actual transition from Corizon, the current provider, won’t occur until at least early November, Cole County Circuit Judge Daniel Green ordered Tuesday. Green issued a temporary restraining order blocking the state from canceling its […]