Nov. 5th, 2010

Republicans gain seats in state Senate, House

In the Missouri legislature,  Republicans increased their majority in the House by 18, bringing the House breakdown of Republicans-Democrats to 106-57. In the Missouri Senate, they increased their majority by three, to 26-8. Republicans expanded their 2/3 majority in the Senate, and are two votes short of having 2/3 majority in the House.

A summary of the election results in the Missouri House, Senate, and U.S. Congress are provided below. Also, a listing of legislators who have attended or graduated from an UM campus has been prepared in addition to an overview of the highest educational attainment of the newly constituted Senate and House.

Parties elect new leadership

Lawmakers gathered Wednesday and Thursday in Jefferson City to elect new leadership. Here is the overview of leaders in the Senate and House for 2011:

Senate Republican Leadership:
• Rob Mayer, R-Dexter, President Pro Tem
• Tom Dempsey, R-St. Peters, Majority Floor Leader
• Jack Goodman, R-Mt. Vernon, Asst. Majority Floor Leader
• Bill Stouffer, R-Napton, caucus chair
• Eric Schmitt, R-Glendale, caucus secretary
• Mike Parson, R-Bolivar, caucus whip

Senate Democratic Leadership:
• Victor Callahan, D-Independence, Minority Leader
• Jolie Justus, D-Kansas City, Assistant Minority Leader
• Timothy Green, D-St. Louis, Minority Caucus Chair
• Robin Wright-Jones, D-St. Louis, Minority Caucus Secretary

House Republican Leadership:
• Steven Tilley, R-Perryville, Speaker-elect
• Shane Schoeller, R-Willard, Speaker pro-tem
• Tim Jones, R-Eureka, Majority Floor Leader
• Jeanie Riddle, R-Mokane, Assistant Majority Floor Leader
• Jason Smith, R-Salem, Majority Whip
• Shelley Keeney, R-Marble Hill, Assistant Majority Whip
• Sue Allen, R-Town and Country, Caucus Secretary

House Democratic Leadership:
• Mike Talboy, D-Kansas City, Minority Leader
• Tishaura Jones, D-St. Louis, Assistant Minority Leader
• Mike Colona, D-St. Louis, Minority Whip
• Terry Swinger, D-Caruthersville, Caucus Chair
• Chris Carter, D-St. Louis, Assistant Caucus Chair
• Sara Lampe, D-Springfield, Caucus Secretary

October Budget Numbers are Announced

The state announced that net general revenue collections increased in the month of October by 7.6 percent, or $476.4 million. Collections in October 2009 were $442.7 million.  State Budget Director Linda Luebbering also announced that fiscal year-to-date general revenue collections increased by 3.6 percent compared to the last fiscal year. For the month of October, individual, sales and use, and corporate income and franchise taxes all increased.

MU Chancellor reviews Mizzou Advantage program with St. Louis audience

Business leaders, researchers, alumni and supporters came to the Donald W. Danforth Plant Science Center in St. Louis on Wednesday, October 13, to hear MU Chancellor Brady Deaton provide an update on the Mizzou Advantage, the University’s program to focus research strengths around several key areas.  Focus areas include Sustainable Energy, Food for the Future, One Health, One Medicine, Media of the Future, and Disruptive and Transformational Technologies.
Several University programs, including MU Extension, provided displays during a reception that followed the Chancellor’s remarks.  Legislators attending included Senator Joe Keaveny, D-St. Louis; and Rep. Jill Schupp, D-Creve Coeur.

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MU Chancellor Brady Deaton (left) visits with Senator Joe Keaveny (right) at the Mizzou Advantage program.

Missouri S&T Campus hosts 8th Congressional District debate

The Associated Students of the University of Missouri (ASUM) hosted one of the four debates in Missouri’s 8th U.S. Congressional District. Incumbent Jo Ann Emerson (R) was joined by Democrat Tommy Sowers, Libertarian Rick Vandeven, and Independent Larry Bill in the two-hour debate held in Castleman Hall on the Missouri S&T campus.
Questions of the candidates were submitted by students, and included questions regarding student loans, border control, free trade agreements, and military conflicts, among others. The debate aired live on KMST radio and later aired on Rolla’s local area access channel. The Southeast Missourian newspaper placed the debate on YouTube and the first segment can be found here.

8th Congressional Candidates 2010

From left to right: Larry Bill (I), Jo Ann Emerson (R), Rick Vandeven (L), and Tommy Sowers (D).

Blunt visits UMKC

Missouri Congressman Roy Blunt came to Kansas City to meet with UMKC leaders and tour facilities on Tuesday, October 12.  While on the tour, he met with UMKC Chancellor Leo Morton and other administrators and toured the School of Medicine.  The candidate for U.S. Senate discussed challenges of training doctors and health care workers and was updated on facility needs and research strengths. He went on to win the U.S. Senate seat in the November 2 election, and will replace retiring senator Christopher S. “Kit” Bond in January.

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From left to right: (in behind) Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Gail Hackett, UMKC Alumna and Public Affairs Consultant Annie Presley, Chancellor Leo Morton, Congressman Roy Blunt (R-7), and (in behind) Assistant to the Dean, Mel Davis. 

Columbia lawmakers get tour and update on Missouri Psychiatric Center

A year after it was transferred from the state to the University of Missouri, the MU Psychiatric Center is undergoing major renovations and providing a fresh perspective to mental health treatment.  Originally operated by the state as the Mid-Missouri Mental Health Center, the operation was closed in 2009 and opened a day later as the new center within the University of Missouri Health System. The entire facility is being renovated, and lawmakers were given a tour and an update on the progress October 19. 

Local legislators Rep. Chris Kelly, D-Columbia; and Rep. Mary Still, D-Columbia, were on hand for the tour. Kelly and Senator Kurt Schaefer, R-Columbia, were instrumental in securing the $13 million from the state needed for renovations of the center.

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Representative Chris Kelly (left) discusses the ongoing construction project with CEO of UM Health Care Jim Ross (middle) and Vice Chancellor Hal Williamson (right).

Governor addresses academic leaders from state’s public four-year institutions

Higher education leaders are looking for ways to collaborate and cooperate in preparation for another difficult budget year and record enrollment at many institutions.  University of Missouri leaders convened a statewide meeting October 25-26 in Columbia to look for new ways to collaborate with four-year institutions and provide education to students in new and innovative ways. Governor Nixon encouraged attendees to focus on collaborative efforts among public, private, two, and four year institutions.

Mizzou students, faculty host Missouri House candidate forum

On Wednesday, October 27th, three student groups and the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) co-hosted a candidate forum for Missouri’s 21st, 23rd, 24th, and 25th districts. In attendance were candidates Kelly Schultz (21-D), Stephen Webber (23-D), Chris Kelly (24-D), Laura Nauser (24-R), and Mary Still (25-D).

The event was held in the New Student Center on the MU campus with questions submitted by audience members. Topics ranged from tax policy and intellectual property to the state’s budgetary outlook.  Approximately 100 students and faculty attended.

Candidate Forum - MU

From Left to Right: Kelly Schultz, Rep. Stephen Webber, Rep. Chris Kelly, Laura Nauser, and Rep. Mary Still

Senator Bond gives College of Business Lecture

Missouri senior U.S. Senator Christopher “Kit” Bond (R) gave the 2010 “Schram Lecture in International Business” for MU’s Robert J. Trulaske Sr. College of Business and discussed collaborative economic efforts with Southeast Asia. Senator Bond discussed how “smart power” is combining military might with economic, development, educational, and diplomatic strategies.

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U.S. Senator Kit Bond giving a lecture to MU undergraduate and graduate students on “Smart Power”  on October 14th.