Report from the 62nd District

State tour gives legislators insight into Missouri resources, services

BY State Rep. Bruce Sassmann, Missouri’s 62nd District
Posted 6/30/21

Last week, I had the pleasure of joining other freshman members of the Missouri House of Representatives on the traditional freshman tour of the state.

The tour is intended to give the …

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Report from the 62nd District

State tour gives legislators insight into Missouri resources, services

Posted

Last week, I had the pleasure of joining other freshman members of the Missouri House of Representatives on the traditional freshman tour of the state.
The tour is intended to give the representatives a glimpse of the state’s resources and an overview of our legislative responsibilities. Typically, this two-week tour takes place between the November election and the start of our first legislative session in January. Because of Covid, the traditional start date was postponed to the end of our first session and condensed to one week on the road.
Our first day started at one of the Missouri Highway Patrol training centers in Jefferson City. The next stop was the new Missouri Historical Society building in Columbia. Along the way to Chillicothe, we stopped at the Litton AgriScience Center, the Trans-Ova Genetics facility, Bethel AME Historical Church, the Chillicothe Sliced Bread Innovation Center, and the Cultural Corner Art Guild and Gallery.
Day two began at the Chillicothe Correctional Center before heading south to Kansas City. Stops in KC included the World Charter School, Truman Medical Center, Metropolitan Community College, and the Urban Youth Sports Academy. A Kansas City Police training exercise escorted our bus through the city with all the services and privileges offered to the President of the United States.
From KC we traveled east with our first stop on Wednesday morning in Columbia for a visit with Missouri Task Force 1, a FEMA elite team of emergency responders. In St. Louis, we toured the Boening Strike Fighter Plant, the new Wildlife facility of St. Louis Zoo, and the Historic St. Charles riverfront.
Thursday’s bus ride to the Ameren Control Center at Taum Sauk offered us tours of the mountain reservoir, a visit inside the turbines 800 feet below the lake, and views of the scars on the mountain from the reservoir’s massive dam failure in 2005. We made one stop at a Missouri State Park, Elephant Rocks.
On the return to St. Louis, we visited the Pony Bird, a care facility for our most developmentally fragile citizens. Dinner was at the Russell House in Hillsboro.
Our last day included a stop at the Harris Stowe State University and the Northview High School. Every day and evening was filled with introductions, explanations, orientations, and statistics. We returned to Jefferson City mid-afternoon on Friday, exhausted.
While we were on the tour the State Senate has been working on their version of the Federal Reimbursement Allowance, FRA, a program that funds our state’s Medicaid program. The House originally passed a clean, single-issue FRA appropriations bill.
The Senate has complicated and compromised the House version.
If we don’t come up with a plan to renew this program by July 1st, the Governor will be forced to make severe cuts to other areas in our state budget.
On Monday, June 28th, the House of Representatives returned to the Capitol for a technical session. It is our great hope we can reach a compromise on the FRA that includes strong pro-life language without cutting other programs that impact the needs of our citizens.
In the meantime, my capitol office is still open. My legislative assistant, Jill Ryals, will be in the office Monday through Thursday. If you need any assistance, please feel free to call 573-751-1344. My email is bruce.sassmann@house.mo.gov.

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