Defending traditional families

Under the Dome: April 24-28

– Week in Review –

Week of April 24-28, 2006

MONDAY, April 24, 2006

HCR 26 was heard in the House Rules Committee Monday afternoon. Majority Caucus Chair Rep. Bob Dixon sponsored this resolution, which “expresses the gratitude” of the General Assembly to faith based organizations around the State.

A weakened version of HCS HB 2047 was also heard in the House Rules Committee. Unfortunately the bill was “gutted” by in committee last week by Chairman Bob Johnson. The original provisions in HB 2047 would empower cities and municipalities to restrict the locations of “sexually oriented business.” Sponsored by Representative Bryan Stevenson, HB 2047 would put a major damper on the porn industry. Prayerfully, Representative Stevenson will be able to amend his bill on the floor, to “put the teeth” back in it.

In the Senate Judiciary, Civil and Criminal Jurisprudence Committee; Representative Marilyn Ruestman presented HB 1461. HB 1461 changes Missouri law by adopting a true “castle doctrine” in defense of home owners, when they must defend themselves against intruders. Under this, and other bills including similar provisions, a home owner would have the legal right to defend themselves against intruders without having to risk criminal or civil charges for merely protecting themselves.

OTHER ITEMS OF INTEREST OCCURRING ON MONDAY:

SB 873 – Gibbons – Makes changes to laws regarding criminal background checks

Referred to the House Crime Prevention & Public Safety Committee

SB 913 – Vogel – Excludes amusement devices from inclusion in the terms “gambling” and “gambling device” thereby legalizing a whole new level of gambling industry in Missouri (without age restrictions!)!

Referred to the House Special Committee on General Laws

Public hearings were conducted in the Senate Judiciary and Civil & Criminal Jurisprudence Committee on these bills;

HB 1182 – Stevenson – Allows persons with custodial rights to petition the juvenile court to extend jurisdiction over a child until he or she reaches age 18 � a voluntary process which respects parental rights.

HB 1317 – Lipke – Modifies the laws relating to crime victims’ rights

HB 1322 – Lipke – Modifies the laws relating to DNA profiling analysis

HB 1698 – Lipke – Modifies laws relating to sexual offenders

HB 1864 – Nolte – Prohibits the admission of unlawfully present aliens to public institutions of higher education. Previously passed by the House, now referred to the Senate Judiciary and Civil & Criminal Jurisprudence Committee

TUESDAY, April 25, 2006

The House Special Committee on Student Achievement and Finance heard SS SCS SB 912, presented by Senator Jack Goodman. This Senate version of the �Virtual Schools� bill is practically identical to the House version. Having worked with both the House and Senate sponsors, we are confident that this legislation will have no adverse effect on home schoolers. If anything, any Virtual Schools created here would help parents to get their children out of an unhealthy school environment.

After just over two hours of debate the House finally voted on HB 1075. This important legislation still needed to be �third read� and voted on one last time to send it out of the House and to the Senate (which did occur on Thursday).

For the last three months, Planned Parenthood has run point on what they have dubbed the �sex miss-education Bill�. Running weekly handouts and touting their propaganda openly, they are determined to fight for unregulated access to Missouri�s school children. The advances Planned Parenthood has made is very discouraging, not just because we have a republican majority� but because PP has been preaching blatant lies and the results of term limits have left the Legislature dominated by less experienced lawmakers unaware of the abortion industry�s dishonest tactics.

HB 1075 is the most openly attacked bill this year by Planned Parenthood. Their motivation comes from financial losses (from loosing State teaching contracts, and school material sales), which is expected to reach into the millions of dollars. This battle however, is not just about money. It is about the hearts and minds of our children and grandchildren. It is about the rights of parents to know that their children are being taught how to put on condoms by �practicing� on bananas � and parental rights to �just say no�.

SB 588 is an omnibus sex crimes bill which enhances penalties and creates new prohibited acts and establishes various law enforcement programs. Sponsored by Senator Matt Bartle, and passed a few weeks ago by the Senate, was heard in a public hearing in the House Crime Prevention & Public Safety Committee.

SB 1250, sponsored by Senator Bill Alter, seeks to enact multiple provisions regarding illegal aliens in Missouri. This bill was �perfected� in Senate debate on Monday and given its final �third read vote� on Thursday. This attention to the bill now places it in the House for consideration where it has been referred to the House Special Committee on Immigration Reform Committee.

OTHER ITEMS OF INTEREST OCCURRING ON TUESDAY:

SJR 31 – Ridgeway – Elevates allowable level of bonded indebtedness for school districts from 15% up to 20%.

Reported Do Pass by the House Special Committee on Student Achievement and Finance Committee and referred to Rules Committee pending formal debate before the full House.

HB 994 – Dusenberg – Exempts motorcyclists age 21 and older from wearing a helmet when operating a motorcycle or motortricycle.

Voted Do Pass by the Senate Transportation Committee.

HB 1534 – Lembke – Provides funding for umbilical cord blood banks and non-fetal human stem cell research as an ethical alternative to embryonic stem cell research which kills babies in the embryonic stage.

Previously adopted by the House, the bill was sent to the Senate and referred to the Senate Judiciary and Civil & Criminal Jurisprudence Committee.

HJR 39 – Bearden – Secures a person’s right to pray and acknowledge God according to personal convictions. This Missouri Constitutional amendment would clarify citizen�s religious liberty rights, including public school children who are too often prohibited, or discouraged, from praying.

Public hearing conducted in the Senate Education Committee (previously passed by the House).

WEDNESDAY, April 26, 2006

The Senate Committee on Pensions, Veteran Affairs & General Laws passed the House eminent domain bill, passing it as Senate Committee Substitute for House Bill 1944. SCS HB 1944 will now move on to the Senate floor. This new version of the bill has restored some key provisions previously removed from the bill, however, special protections for Missouri Churches was dropped from the bill!

OTHER ITEMS OF INTEREST OCCURRING ON WEDNESDAY:

SB 912 – Goodman – Establishes a virtual school program

Public hearing held in the House Special Committee on Student Achievement and Finance Committee on Tuesday and voted �Do Pass� by the committee. On Thursday the bill also cleared a vote in the House Rules Committee.

HB 1865 – Bearden – Establishes the “Access Missouri Scholarship Program”

Sent to the full Senate from the Senate Education Committee.

HJR 43 – Dethrow – Proposes a constitutional amendment requiring a two-thirds majority for voter approval of initiative proposals relating to hunting

Voted Do Pass by the Senate Agriculture, Conservation, Parks & Natural Resources Committee

THURSDAY, April 27, 2006

HB 1075, sponsored by Representative Cynthia Davis, finally received a final vote in the House on Thursday afternoon. This bill seeks to prohibit abortion providers such as Planned Parenthood from stepping in as classroom instructors during public school sex education courses. After the bill was picked up, we got to hear all the same false rhetoric as the debate started to heat up again. Majority Floor Leader Tom Dempsey interrupted the argument to move for the �Previous question�, a move which would force the House to skip further unnecessary debate and vote. HB 1075 passed with ninety-five �YES� and sixty �NO�. Now it will be sent over to the Senate where it will need to go through the committee process before being sent to the floor for more debate and possible passage.

After HB 1075 passes through the Senate, if there is even one word different than the language passed through the House; the bill must still come back to the House for another vote before it goes to the Governors desk.

HB 1485, sponsored by Representative Allen Icet, creates a 50% tax credit for contributions to pregnancy resource centers. The bill was well received during a public hearing in the Senate Ways & Means Committee.

OTHER ITEMS OF INTEREST OCCURRING ON THURSDAY:

SB 894 – Nodler – Renders multiple alterations to the state’s education policy

Hearing conducted in the House Rules Committee where the bill was voted �Do Pass�.

HB 1026 – Rucker – Prohibits protest activities during funeral services

Reported from the Senate Judiciary and Civil & Criminal Jurisprudence Committee to the Floor

HB 1275 – Baker – Establishes a virtual school program

Reported from the Senate Education Committee to the full Senate Floor for further debate

HB 1347 – Myers – Requires students at public institutions of higher education to take courses regarding United State Constitution, the Missouri Constitution, American History, and governmental institutions

Passed by the House and sent to the Senate for consideration.

HJR 28 – Jackson – Exempts from taxation property owned by veterans’ organizations

Reported from the Senate Ways & Means Committee to the full Senate Floor