Sen. Mike Parson’s Legislative Column: Supporting Public Safety Officers and the Military

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Hermitage R-IV 8th graders visiting with Senator Parson on Wednesday, April 6th.
Hermitage R-IV 8th graders visiting with Senator Parson on Wednesday, April 6th.

Every day, brave men and women put on public safety uniforms and risk their lives to protect, save and serve us. Some of these men and women lose their lives or are disabled in the call of duty. For their families, the state has created a college tuition grant to attend a college or university. This program is a way to pay our respects to the families who have lost a loved one that served our communities and state.

House Bill 1964 will add certain professions, such as air ambulance pilots and uniformed employees of the State Fire Marshall, to the list of those eligible for the grant and also guarantees their children and spouses will receive unpaid worker’s compensation claims when an employee is killed while performing their duties. This bill was heard in the Senate’s Committee on Small Business. As chairman of this committee and the senate handler of this bill I will work to get this legislation passed this year.

After months of work by the Senate Appropriations Committee, the Senate debated the full budget for Fiscal Year 2017 this week. The $27.1 billion budget currently reflects many of the priorities of the Senate. Any difference between the House and Senate proposed budgets will be ironed out in a conference committee throughout the coming weeks.

Finally, the Senate Transportation Committee heard legislation I filed to help veterans use their armed services skills to acquire a commercial driver’s license without taking the written and driving exams. Under Senate Bill 1078, the written and driving test for commercial driver’s licenses may be waived for military personnel with training in that area within one year of leaving active duty. The legislation allows the Department of Revenue to promulgate rules to create the exemption. The bill is one more way for us to support the armed service members who protect our country.

Visitors this week:  Roy Harms, Melissa Britton, Agape Choir-Stockton, Alex Miller, Chase Schrecengost, Kevin Kennedy, Heather Officer, Tiffany & Tommy Simpson, Joe Wissbaum, SBU students, Georgia Reid, Ken Kuszak, Mirandara Ramaeker, Linda Browning, Don Ferguson, Charlie Dickerson, Hermitage 4th graders, & Ezard Elementary.