Senator Bill White’s Capitol Report of May 5, 2022
The countdown to adjournment
With just one more week to turn legislative proposals into law, lawmakers are working diligently to debate bills, negotiate wording, add amendments and bring legislation one step closer to the governor’s office. The provisions of my Essential Caregiver Program Act, Senate Bill 671, have been added to House Bill 2116, which is on the schedule for third reading. My measure to urge the President to designate a state funeral for the last Medal of Honor recipient upon his death, Concurrent Senate Resolution 28, passed May 3, and my measure of public utility, Senate Bill 756, also removed another hurdle in the House this week. I remain hopeful that the House will pass and pass my child protection legislation, Senate Bill 823, before adjournment on May 13.
The focus this week has been on passing final versions of the bills that make up the state’s 2023 spending plan before our May 6 constitutional deadline. With several glaring discrepancies between the Senate and House versions of the appropriations bills, a conference committee, made up of members from both houses, conducted a lengthy hearing this week to find a compromise on how our state spends the resources of taxpayers and the federal government. I will provide a breakdown of the finalized operating budget for fiscal year 2023 in a future report.
Protect the life of the unborn child
With a draft U.S. Supreme Court opinion circulating that says the court could potentially strike down Roe vs. Wade, Missouri is about to take an unprecedented step toward protecting the unborn child. Passed in 2019 in preparation for this early announcement, the Missouri Stands for the Unborn Act positions Missouri as one of the first states to ban nearly all abortions, when and if the draft advisory is upheld. Congratulations to all of the pro-life advocates who helped shape this monumental decision!
Aging my way
American Seniors Month is underway, a time to commemorate the contributions of seniors in our communities. This year’s theme, Age My Way, promotes ways seniors can maintain their independence while remaining involved in the community.
Tribute to the dead
From sunset May 6 to sunrise May 8, the Capitol dome will be lit blue to honor Missouri’s fallen law enforcement officers. Additionally, a candlelight vigil will be held on May 6, followed by a memorial service on May 7 to honor the brave officers who made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty. My thoughts and prayers go out to the families of Lane Burns of Bonne Terre and Jake Reed and Benjamin Cooper of Joplin, the police officers who perished in March while protecting our community.
Softball Team Wins 2nd Place
The 2022 Legislative Charity Softball Tournament was held May 3 to raise money for the Samaritan Center of Jefferson City, a charity that provides families with food, clothing, legal and medical assistance. The team I sponsored, Map This!, took second place in the tournament. The event raised over $12,000 for the charity, and everyone had a great time.
The softball team made up of Senate and House staffers, Map This!, won the 2nd place trophy at the charity softball tournament.
White team honor trainee
Thomas Booker has joined my team for the 2022 legislative session, and I am grateful to him for the assistance he provided to my staff and my constituents during his internship in the Missouri Senate. Thomas will graduate from William Woods University later this month to pursue a career in biochemistry. Best wishes to you for the future, Thomas!
Team White pays tribute to Thomas Booker on his last day in the Missouri Senate. Pictured above are Mike Kelley, Gina Richardson, Thomas Booker and Senator White.
Missouri Humanities offers grants
Missouri Humanities connects Missourians to the people, places, and ideas that have shaped our society to strengthen communities and enrich lives. The organization offers two types of grants, mini-grants worth $2,500 and major grants that can fund projects up to $10,000. The next grant cycle ends February 1, 2023, so visit the Missouri Humanities website for more information.
Immanuel Lutheran Church celebrates 125 years of service
On May 1, I had the honor of presenting a resolution to the pastor and congregation of Immanuel Lutheran Church. Founded by German immigrants in 1897, Immanuel Lutheran Church is one of the oldest churches in Joplin, and its ministry has been the spiritual foundation of our community for over a century.
Senator White presents a resolution to Reverend Gregory Mech to commemorate the 125th anniversary of the Immanuel Lutheran Church.
Execute, Remember, Rebuild
The 11th annual Joplin Memorial Run is scheduled for May 7 in Cunningham Park to commemorate the 161 lives lost and celebrate Joplin’s resilience and unity in response to the 2011 tornado that devastated our community. The event is open to seasoned runners as well as amateur walkers. Visit the Joplin Memorial Run website and Facebook page for more information.