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Monday, Dec. 22, 2014

March 28, 2012

Posted Thursday, May 10, 2012, at 3:18 PM

The darkening skies outside the Capitol matched that within as the State's 24 billion dollar budget was debated for long hours on the House Floor. Nearing week's end as the budget received approval and all involved who had worked so hard on this constitutionally required duty breathed a sigh of relief as the storm clouds receded, bright sunshine poured across mid Missouri.

Focusing on helping businesses in the State of Missouri, HB 1326, prohibits a business owner or operator from restricting any person from lawfully possessing a firearm in a motor vehicle except in a vehicle owned or leased by the business. Business owners have a duty to guard against the criminal act of a third party unless they know or have reason to know that the acts are occurring or are about to occur on the premises.

HB 1191 authorizes the State Treasurer to deposit all of the moneys in the State Park Earnings Fund in any of the qualified depositories of the state and require all of these deposits to be secured in a manner provided by a law relative to state deposits. Any interest earned must also be included in the fund.

Because agriculture is the largest industry in Missouri, we must take steps to protect those who work with animal agriculture in this state. HB 1324 sponsored, will affirm the rights of citizens to raise livestock in a manner adhering to the state and local laws as enacted on August 2012 or at the commencement of operations, whichever is later.

Changing the laws regarding financial transactions including the investment of certain funds, the perfection of security interest and residential mortgage, HB 1400 sponsored by, will allow political subdivisions to invest in different deposit accounts allowing more options. This will provide banks more available moneys to loan out to local communities.

There is a common theme that emerges as I discuss issues with many of you in the district; Government needs to live within its means. This principle guides you in your personal affairs as you cope with the current economic downturn. And here in the Missouri House, I agree that your state government should live by that same principle in coping with our current budget shortfall.

For this reason, we pledged in our Blueprint for Missouri to balance our budget without raising job-killing taxes. This week, we kept that promise by passing a $24 billion budget without raising your taxes by a single penny.

Unlike the federal government, we pass balanced budgets. Our challenge this session was to find $500 million in cuts while still providing funding for the investments that will continue moving us forward as a state. Despite the cuts we had to make, we were able to increase funding in some key areas that invests in our future.

In this year's budget, we continued our commitment to education, making it our top priority. Children are the future of our great state and investing in education ensures the success of our children and our economic viability as a state for years to come.

Summary of Budget Bills:

HB 2001 appropriates money to the Board of Fund Commissioners; HB 2002 appropriates money for the expenses, grants, refunds, and distributions of the State Board of Education and Department of Elementary and Secondary Education; HB 2003 appropriates money for the expenses, grants, refunds and distributions of the Department of Higher Education; HB 2004 appropriates money for the expenses, grants, refunds, and distributions of the Department of Revenue and Department of Transportation; HB 2005 appropriates money for the expenses, grants, refunds and distribution of the Office of Administration, Department of Transportation, and Department of Public Safety; HB 2006 appropriates money for the expenses, grants, refunds, and distributions of the Department of Agriculture, Department of Natural Resources and Department of Conservation; HB 2007 appropriates money for the expenses and distributions of Economic Development; Insurance, Financial Institutions and Professional Registration; HB 2008 appropriates money for the expenses, grants, refunds and distributions of the Department of Public Safety; HB 2009 appropriates money for the expenses, grants, refunds and distributions of the Department of Corrections; HB 2010 appropriates money for the expenses, grants, refunds, and distributions of the Department of Mental Health, Board of Public Buildings, and Department of Health and Senior Services; HB 2011 appropriates money for the expenses, grants, and distributions of the Department of Social Services; HB 2012 appropriates money for the expenses, grants, refunds and distributions of the statewide elected officials, the Judiciary, Office of the State Public Defender, and General Assembly; and HB 2013 appropriates money for real property leases and related services.

I understand that the state needs to live within its means. This is a value you hold dear as you make your family decisions. This week, we kept our promise to taxpayers across the state by balancing the budget without digging any deeper into your pockets. It was the responsible thing to do.

As always, it is an honor to serve you in the Missouri House. If you would like to discuss any issue, please call 573-751-3629. You can also email me at Kent.Hampton@house.mo.gov. I look forward to hearing from you.



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State Representative Kent Hampton
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