Missouri Governor Jay Nixon’s State of the State Address
Missouri Governor Jay Nixon gave his Sate of the State address on Monday night.
Nixon is vowing to back a ballot initiative to restore limits on campaign contribution if lawmakers refuse to approve them.
Nixon said in his State of the State address Monday that Missouri must reinstate strict limits on how much money candidates can receive from individual donors.
If lawmakers don't approve contribution limits, the Democratic governor said he will do everything within his power to ensure that a citizens' initiative makes the ballot and is approved by a statewide vote.
Missouri's Republican-led Legislature repealed the state's campaign contribution limits in 2008. They argued that the limits led big donors to funnel money to politicians through a variety of obscure committees. Republicans said unlimited donations made it easier for people to track the money.
Governor Nixon is calling on lawmakers to expand Medicaid coverage for low-income adults and authorize hundreds of millions of dollars of bonds for improvements to schools, parks and state buildings.
The Democratic governor outlined the proposals Monday as part of his State of the State address to the Republican-led Legislature. He proposed a $25.7 billion operating budget for the fiscal year that starts July 1, including $900 million of federal funds for the Medicaid expansion.
Nixon's plan would eliminate a tax break for low-income seniors and disabled residents who rent their homes and direct the money to other services for them.
He proposes to fund the bond program by paring back existing tax credits for low-income housing, the renovation of historic buildings and other programs.