This week, the Missouri General Assembly completed work on the FY23 budget, spending roughly $45 billion in state and federal dollars, the largest amount in Missouri history. The $15 billion increase in spending over FY22 is due largely to federal dollars flowing to Missouri from Congressional COVID relief bills passed during the pandemic. Included in the budget that both chambers approved is funding to increase the minimum salary for teachers to $38,000, fully funding school bus transportation, and fully funding expansion of the Medicaid program after voters approved expansion of the program in Nov. 2020. The FY23 budget includes $2 million in additional funding for the Alternatives to Abortion program, which provides funding for social service agencies that offer support to mothers facing unwanted pregnancies.
HB 3020, an additional spending bill using American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds, includes $411 million for lead pipe removal, $250 million for broadband expansion, and $148 million in additional funding for Missouri’s Federally Qualified Health Care Centers. These budget bills now head to the governor’s office. He has until mid-July to sign or veto the budget bills. Because these are appropriation bills, he can veto parts of each bill if he chooses. The House and Senate can then override his vetoes if they can muster the votes of two-thirds of their respective members.