Senator Doug Libla Welcomes Visitors to the Capitol and Announces District News for March

Randy Schultz visited for the Funeral Home Directors and Embalmers Association legislative advocacy day. I had a wonderful time visiting with the Poplar Bluff Teenage Republican Club during their visit to the State Capitol, they were escorted by Mitchell Davis and Michelle Clark Massey. The students had the opportunity to see firsthand how issues and legislation are discussed. I appreciate these students’ interest in government, and wish them well in their classes! The Missouri Cattleman’s Association and The Missouri Grocer’s Association also had their legislative advocacy days, and it was informative visiting with representatives from each group.

I also visited with 8th grader Ethan Andrews and his family from Puxico. Ethan presented me with a piece of artwork to display in my office, entitled “Turkey in the Straw.” He was chosen as a winner from the Arts Council of Southeast Missouri. This month also celebrated Fine Arts Education Week, and it was great to see Ethan and many other talented young students in the Capitol showcasing their skills.

In addition, I had a wonderful visit with the Missouri Transportation Construction Coalition. Led by Jeff Glenn from Cape Girardeau, we had productive discussions about transportation, infrastructure, and economic development.

Matthew Rigdon from Cape Girardeau also visited from the SEMO Alliance for Disability Independence, Inc, and shared with me information about the different projects and issues they are working on, along with the positive impact on the citizens they are helping. The Missouri Farm Bureau also had their annual Spring banquet, and it was great to have a lot of farmers make the trip from the 25th district!

I also met with Darlene Shelton from Dexter, her son, Daniel and his wife, Kristin, and her grandchildren. We discussed the current Emergency Medication Protocol with the federal guidelines which prohibits EMT and ER docs from administering any medications not on the ambulance or at the hospital. As part of the Hemophilia community, they are advocating for families with bleeding disorders and other rare disease who carry their own rare, very expensive lifesaving drugs to have an exception or amendment to this protocol as quickly as possible. I learned a lot from them about this issue and appreciated their passion on the subject.

My good friend Richard Deason visited. I nominated him for the 2014 Lieutenant Governor’s Veterans Service Award, which recognizes Missouri veterans who provide exemplary volunteer service in their communities. He was recognized during a banquet at the Capitol in Jefferson City. Brian Kelly and Mike McGill from Dexter visited to discuss railroad infrastructure, and I also met with Michael Davis, Chief Juvenile Officer from Stoddard and Dunklin Counties to learn more about the good work being done by the Juvenile Justice Association.

Lastly, I met with Myra Callahan and her dedicated staff from Poplar Bluff and Southeast Missouri from the Family Counseling Center, Inc. They work with folks who may have a mental health illness and help raise awareness about this important issue. They also help the patients and their families with counseling and support. I visited with Rev. Sandra Mick and Carmella C. Fenske from Recycling Grace Women’s Center in Poplar Bluff. They traveled to Jefferson City for the Missouri Recovery Network Legislative Advocacy Day. Sandra and Carmella shared with me their personal stories and experiences of helping other women fighting addictions. I appreciate them taking the time to visit our State Capitol and raise awareness for this great cause. Recycling Grace Women’s Center operates through donations from the community and assistance from its board of directors and partners. Please consider supporting the good work being done there. They need volunteers for transportation, mentoring, secretarial work, fundraising assistance and volunteers to assist participants. Thank you Sandra and Carmella for your tireless hard work!

In-District News

Congratulations to the Naylor "Eagle" Girls Basketball team for their superb season! Making it to the final four is a tremendous accomplishment, but to play in the championship game is just incredible and requires a lot of hard work and talent throughout the year. The team had lots of support from fellow students, school officials, parents, and friends cheering them on. Taking 2nd  place in the whole state is huge thing! We are very proud of you!

At Three Rivers College in Poplar Bluff many veterans, families, and friends from around the area came together for the 42nd anniversary of the last American combat troops leaving Vietnam on March 29, 1973, at a “Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day” event at the Bess Activity Center. This is an officially recognized day in eight states, and was established to honor the more than 2.7 million Americans who served in Vietnam. There were over 58,000 who paid the ultimate sacrifice, plus more than 300,000 soldiers injured in the line of duty.

The celebration included a POW-MIA ceremony, a color guard, and a Salute to the Fallen. Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA) Chapter 1056 President Larry Kimbrow was the Master of Ceremonies and Missouri VVA State Council Membership Chair Bill Kiefer was the featured speaker. My friend, Robert J. Whelan, presented a Senate Resolution recognizing this day, and my wife Elaine attended as well. Many citizens honoring our brave veterans and their family members were there to show support for our military.

The inaugural "Badge of Honor" 5K - 10K - 1/2 marathon run was in Poplar Bluff, and it was very successful. Despite the 30 degree temperature and crisp breeze there were approximately 150 runners and many volunteers that came out to compete and support the event. Thank you to Lt. Jeff Vitale (MSHP), the race committee, and many others for your hard work in making this a great event. Congratulations to our very own Kyle Aubuchon of Jeff City for winning the 10K race. There were many great runners, in my opinion, and everyone that participated was a winner! Special thanks to all of the community minded sponsors who contributed to the success of this event.

I had a wonderful time at the dedication for the Carroll Cookson Basketball Court and Mildred Wiggins Volleyball Court at Advance High School. There was a great show of support from the community, and many former students and athletes were in attendance. They shared stories about their playing days, and the gym was decorated beautifully. I appreciate everyone who helped organize the event to honor these two great coaches. We honor two extraordinary leaders with larger-than-life accomplishments whose success is well known the Advance Community and beyond. Congratulations to these two coaches, and more importantly great friends, mentors to young folks and role models. Go Advance Hornets!

Senator Doug Libla proudly serves the citizens of Butler, Carter, Dunklin, Mississippi, New Madrid, Pemiscot, Shannon and Stoddard counties in the Missouri Senate.