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Wednesday, Sep. 28, 2016

January 30, 2013

Posted Tuesday, January 29, 2013, at 4:42 PM

On January 23, 2013, the Missouri House of Representatives welcomed Chief Justice Richard B. Teitelman for the delivery of the State of the Judiciary Address. Chief Justice Teitelman delivered a brief address designed to pay respects to the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., recognized the efforts of some exceptional Missouri citizens, and offered his view on the benefits of cooperative government.

Though sometimes taken for granted, the State of the Judiciary is far from symbolic. There are few who know better, or are as well versed, in the effectiveness of our state laws than the justices who came before us today. Their knowledge of the direct impact and success of policies like drug courts - which our legislature created and the judiciary implemented - serve to reinforce the rule of law in the most beneficial way to Missourians.

This week in the House, I am happy to report that we saw the quick passage of a bill that supports and affirms good government procedure and protocol. HB 110, makes our law clear that the voice of the people will be heard when filling a vacancy for a statewide offices such as; lieutenant governor, governor, secretary of state, attorney general, state auditor, state treasurer and US senator .

HB 110 is a much needed piece of legislation that will ensure the power to select statewide office holders remains in the possession of the people. The current system--based on precedent, not law--excludes the people from the process.

Furthermore, this legislation stipulates that the governor must call for the special election to coincide with a scheduled general election. This is an important change that would give the people a say in the process without creating additional financial burden for Missouri taxpayers.

Now we await and anticipate swift action on HB 110 by the Senate so that it can go before the governor for his approval. Upon the governor's signature, it would immediately become law because it contains an emergency clause. This measure is an example of the common sense government the people deserve. The voters should have the ultimate authority to decide who represents them in the halls of government.

Of the hundred pieced of legislation that have been and will be filed, one of the first to start moving through the legislative process is HB 87. This legislation seeks to reauthorize what have come to be known as benevolent tax credits. These are tax credits that encourage Missourian's to donate to charitable organizations that perform essential services to our states neediest. Most importantly it encourages private sector solutions instead of forcing the government's involvement, which so often drains resources and administrative costs.

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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