Missouri General Assembly Finishes Work for 2020 Session...For Now

Capitol Landscape

The Missouri General Assembly completed its work for the 2020 legislative session, putting the finishing touches on bills filed earlier this session after passing the FY 2021 budget late last week. The 2020 session was interrupted by the COVID-19 outbreak in mid-March and didn't resume until April 27, when the legislature returned to address the budget amid revenue shortfalls brought on by the global health crisis.

The legislation that ultimately passed were, for the most part, bills that had been vetted in hearings before the recess. But that didn't stop some spirited debate on the floor of the House and Senate where (some) legislators wore masks and most made efforts to maintain social distancing. Most public hearings and debate that occurred after legislators returned was broadcast online, although some hearings fell victim to technological challenges, and the public was largely absent from the building during the last three weeks of session. Even lobbyists were scarcely seen in the building. Bills the MCC worked on are highlighted in this edition of MCC Weekly Update.

Governor Parson indicated during a press conference this week that he had no current plans to call a special session over the summer, but left the possibility open. He mentioned the possibility of being forced to "withhold" additional funding for state programs over the next few months, as revenues continue to disappoint as a result of the health crisis. His administration has been largely focused on addressing the pandemic while trying to restart the economy, a delicate balancing act. If a special session is called, it would likely address budgetary issues as well as issues surrounding the fall election, as many still fear leaving their homes and may not feel safe going to the polls in August and November.

May 19, 2020 - 10:45am

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