Criminal Justice

Missouri Republicans pass bill to counter calls to ‘defund the police’

BY: - May 14, 2021

Missouri Republicans have pushed through a bill that would penalize cities that cut police budgets and bolster protections for officers under investigation for misconduct. The House took a final vote on Friday afternoon, sending the bill to the governor’s desk. The bill’s sponsor, Sen. Bill Eigel, R-Weldon Spring, said the budget piece was a way […]

Exterior Missouri State Capitol building

Missouri lawmakers head home without passing bill crucial to Medicaid funding

BY: , and - May 14, 2021

Missouri lawmakers ended the 2021 legislative session with a $2 billion question left unanswered.  For the first time in 30 years, the General Assembly failed to renew taxes on hospitals, nursing homes and pharmacies that last year accounted for $2.3 billion of Missouri’s $10.8 billion Medicaid program.  A fight over birth control and abortion derailed […]

Missouri Senate approves bill seeking to nullify federal gun laws

BY: - May 13, 2021

State and local law enforcement would be prohibited from enforcing certain federal gun laws under legislation approved Thursday night by the Missouri Senate. For more than six hours, Democratic Senators tried to add an amendment to the bill aimed at keeping people convicted of domestic abuse from buying and keeping firearms — but ultimately failed.  […]

Missouri lawmakers close to passing bill targeting protesters, cities that cut police budget

BY: - May 13, 2021

This story has been updated since it first published.  A push to crackdown on protesters that block roadways, penalize cities that cut police budgets and bolster protections for officers under investigation for misconduct is on the precipice of clearing the Missouri Legislature — though Senate Democrats vow to fight to kill it.  Sen. Bill Eigel, […]

As KC battled to keep residency requirement for cops, councilwoman pushed repeal

BY: and - May 13, 2021

As Kansas City officials were working to block a legislative effort to repeal the city’s residency requirement for police officers, the council’s lone conservative member had other ideas. Councilwoman Heather Hall traveled to Jefferson City last week with the Northland Regional Chamber of Commerce, where she met with lawmakers over dinner and meetings at the […]

Missouri lawmakers strike a deal on crime bill after governor’s veto threat

BY: - May 12, 2021

House leadership backed off its insistence that a wide-ranging crime bill include stiffer penalties for lying under oath to the legislature a day after Gov. Mike Parson threatened a veto. Parson said Tuesday that he objected to giving lawmakers more investigative power, calling it “a total power grab.” He said any bill that included the […]

medical marijuana dispensary kansas city

Missouri House votes to require disclosure of medical marijuana ownership records

BY: - May 11, 2021

The Missouri House voted Tuesday afternoon to require state regulators to turn over ownership information for businesses granted medical marijuana licenses to legislative oversight committees.  The amendment, which was approved 82-59, was sponsored by Rep. Peter Merideth, D-St. Louis. He said the Department of Health and Senior Service’s decision to deem ownership records confidential has […]

Missouri House approves prescription drug monitoring program, sends bill to the governor

BY: - May 11, 2021

In an historic vote, the Missouri House signed off Tuesday on legislation creating a prescription drug monitoring program — inching one step closer to ending Missouri’s designation as the only state without one. The bill now heads to Gov. Mike Parson for his signature or veto. Sen. Holly Rehder, a Sikeston Republican who has sponsored […]

Parson vows to veto crime bill if it includes penalties for lying to Missouri legislature

BY: - May 11, 2021

The fate of a wide-ranging crime bill was called into question on Tuesday over a provision that would stiffen penalties for lying under oath to the legislature or obstructing a legislative investigation. During a conference committee on Tuesday morning convened to work out differences on Senate Bill 53, House members said the bill stands no […]

AG Schmitt joins effort to convince Facebook to abandon plans for children’s Instagram

BY: - May 10, 2021

Nearly every state attorney general, including Missouri’s Eric Schmitt, signed onto a letter this week demanding Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg abandon plans to create an Instagram for kids, arguing that the company has a “record of failing to protect the safety and privacy of children on its platform.” In a letter from the National Association of […]

medical marijuana dispensary kansas city

Secrecy around ownership records raises questions about Missouri marijuana networks

BY: and - May 10, 2021

Greenlight Dispensary advertises 16 medical marijuana locations across Missouri, from Cape Girardeau to Kansas City, and all points in between. Justice Grown, a Pennsylvania-based company, has ties to 14 dispensaries in Missouri. Yet Missouri’s constitution prohibits the state from granting more than five dispensary licenses to any single entity or individual. The goal was to […]

Longtime Republican political consultant, lobbyist indicted on felony tax charge

BY: - May 6, 2021

David Barklage, an influential campaign consultant and lobbyist who has been a fixture in Missouri Republican politics for decades, has been indicted for allegedly failing to pay more than $150,000 in taxes over the course of a three-year period. The indictment was handed down in U.S. District Court in St. Louis on April 28, but […]