Serving in the Missouri General Assembly since 2007
Legislative Column for the Week of May 15, 2017

Senator Curls' Biography
Senator Shalonn "Kiki" Curls, a Democrat, represents part of Jackson County (District 9) in the Missouri Senate. After serving in the Missouri House since 2007, she won a special election to the Missouri Senate in February 2011. Senator Curls won re-election to the Senate in 2012 and again in 2016. <<more

Capitol Office
201 W. Capitol Ave.
Room 434
Jefferson City, MO 65101
(573) 751-3158

District Office
4609 Paseo Blvd.
Suite 102
Kansas City, MO 64110
(816) 923-6000

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Legislative News

With the final gavel’s fall Friday, the First Regular Session of the 99th General Assembly officially drew to a close. Like every session before and every session to come, the 2017 session produced many legislative and emotional highs and lows for Missouri lawmakers and the citizens we represent.

One of the Legislature’s greatest achievements was the successful expansion of regulations for transportation network companies (TNCs), or ridesharing companies. This will further open the door for companies like Uber and Lyft to operate throughout all of Missouri, not just in our major metropolitan areas. Here in Kansas City, we’ve seen the positive benefits of ridesharing services. They create jobs, invite greater economic opportunities, give our citizens another affordable transportation option and save lives by helping to combat drunk driving. Unfortunately, statewide expansion had stalled in previous years due to a variety of concerns. Thankfully, a compromise was able to be reached this session in the form of House Bill 130, and TNCs were able to start applying for an annual permit from the Department of Revenue to do business in Missouri beginning April 28, 2018.

We also passed legislation that will strengthen Missouri laws relating to child protection. Among other provisions, Senate Bill 160 modifies the definitions of child abuse and child neglect to include victims of sex trafficking or severe forms of trafficking. Additionally, the definition of "those responsible for the care, custody, and control of the child" is modified to add any person who takes control of the child by deception, force or coercion. It also adds children’s museums to the list of public places sex offenders can’t enter or be found loitering within 500 feet. Finally, it creates the Foster Care Bill of Rights, which states that the best interests of the child shall be the first priority of the Children’s Division in all circumstances.

Also on its way to the governor’s desk, Senate Bill 50 modifies several provisions to health care. It requires the Department of Health and Senior Services to expand current newborn screening requirements to include spinal muscular atrophy and Hunter syndrome. It also establishes a statewide health care directive registry to provide a secure place to electronically store an advance health care directive and to give authorized health care providers immediate access to them when a patient is admitted to a hospital. Advance directives identify a representative to speak for you and make decisions for you if you would become unable to as a result of an accident or illness. Without them, decisions about your medical treatment or end-of-life care may be left up to people who don’t know you or your wishes.

Finally, just last week, the Legislature agreed to compromise language regarding implementation of the federal REAL ID Act of 2005. Congress passed REAL ID in response to the 9/11 Commission’s recommendation that the federal government set minimum standards for state-issued driver’s licenses and ID cards. The Act requires states to scan and retain source documentation of Missouri citizens. Citing privacy concerns, many states, including Missouri, chose not to comply with the law.

In 2009, state lawmakers passed a bill to ban the Department of Revenue from complying with the Act. On Jan. 22, 2018, the Department of Homeland Security will implement the next phase of the Act, which requires passengers to present a REAL ID-compliant license before they are allowed to board domestic flights. If signed into law, House Bill 151 will allow the DOR to issue REAL ID-compliant driver’s licenses and IDs; however, rather than forcing Missourians to get a compliant ID, this legislation will give citizens the option of choosing if they want a compliant ID.

As for my sponsored legislation, language I filed pertaining to Kansas City’s school board elections was sent to the governor’s desk as part of Senate Bill 283. Among other provisions, this measure will provide some much-needed consistency to Kansas City Public Schools during a critical time in our school district’s history. In 2013, Senate Bill 258 changed Missouri law regarding the date on which the Kansas City Public Schools school board elections would occur and reduced the number of school board members from nine to seven, aligning it with other districts throughout the state. The effective date was set for 2019. Senate Bill 283 modifies the 2013 law and allows initial staggered terms of school board members in 2019. This will allow the Kansas City School District to avoid having a full and complete turnover of our sitting board on one election day.

I also sponsored a measure this session allowing the Kansas City Police Department to add an additional lieutenant colonel, who will be responsible for investigating matters relating to homeland security in the Kansas City area and coordinating disaster relief efforts when necessary. Our current statue only allows five lieutenant colonels in our police department. Passed as part of Senate Bill 112, my language simply raises the number from five to six to accommodate the growing need for homeland security investigations.

Finally, I was disappointed to see lawmakers once again fail to establish the Missouri Senior Farmers’ Market Nutritional Program. This program would have provided low-income seniors with vouchers that could be exchanged for eligible food items at farmers’ markets, roadside stands and community-supported agriculture programs. Missouri is currently one of only seven states not participating in a senior farmers’ market nutrition program. My legislation, Senate Bill 373, truly was a win-win for all parties — it would have provided nutritious meals and local produce for some of Missouri’s most vulnerable citizens while supporting local economies and increasing profitability for area farmers.

There is no getting around it or denying it — with Republican supermajorities in both chambers of the Legislature and a Republican governor, it was a tough session for Democrats. And yet, despite being few in number, Senate Democrats held their own. We made sure our voices and the voices of our constituents were heard loud and clear. We were determined to do whatever we could to lessen the blow of harmful legislation, and we ultimately succeeded in securing a good number of compromises. At the end of the day, I’m proud of what we were able to accomplish.

To view a list of all legislation passed by the Missouri General Assembly during the 2017 session, please visit the Senate website at or click here.

It continues to be an honor serving the men, women and children of Missouri’s 9th Senate District. Please know I value your input, and I invite you to visit my Capitol office if you are ever in Jefferson City.

For a complete list of all Sen. Curls' sponsored legislation and committee assignments, please click here or visit her official Senate website at

Sen. Curls’ Sponsored Legislation for 2017

Bill Number



Senate Bill 25

Allows the Kansas City Police Department chief of police to appoint a lieutenant colonel to be responsible for homeland security matters.

Passed as part of Senate Bill 112.

Senate Bill 26

Allows Kansas City to employ airport police officers.

Hearing conducted in the Senate Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.

Senate Bill 27

Modifies residential property receivership.

Referred to Senate Small Business and Industry Committee.

Senate Bill 92

Creates a new tax credit for first time purchasers of homes in a blighted area that will be used for owner occupancy.

Referred to Senate Economic Development Committee.

Senate Bill 93

Modifies the length of terms of office for certain members of the Kansas City Public School board of directors to ensure terms are staggered.

Passed as part of Senate Bill 283.

Senate Bill 94

Changes the notice requirement to a tenant living in a foreclosed property from ten days to ninety days.

Referred to Senate Small Business and Industry Committee.

Senate Bill 135

Repeals provisions regarding nonjudicial foreclosure proceedings and requires all foreclosure proceedings to be handled judicially.

Referred to Senate Judiciary and Civil and Criminal Jurisprudence Committee.

Senate Bill 136

Allows a charter county to submit to voters a proposal for a $5 user fee on instruments recorded with the Recorder of Deeds for an assistance program for homeless persons.

Hearing conducted in the Senate Local Government and Elections Committee.

Senate Bill 137

Specifies that Kansas City may require the registration of certain properties.

Referred to Senate Local Government and Elections Committee.

Senate Bill 298

Modifies nuisance action procedures for deteriorated properties in certain cities and counties.

Passed by the Senate Small Business and Industry Committee.

Senate Bill 299

Allows certain people to enter abandoned property to secure it, remove trash and graffiti, and maintain the grounds, and provides immunity from civil and criminal liability.

Passed by the Senate - Consent; Passed by the House General Laws Committee.

Senate Bill 365

Modifies provisions requiring LLC's owning rental or unoccupied property in Kansas City to list a property manager with the city clerk.

Hearing conducted in the Senate Local Government and Elections Committee.

Senate Bill 373

Establishes the Missouri Senior Farmers' Market Nutrition Program.

Referred to House Rules – Legislative Oversight.

Senate Bill 387

Modifies provisions of law relating to long-term care certificates of need.

Referred to Senate Health and Pensions Committee.

Senate Bill 388

Allows the Missouri Dental Board to create and issue dental faculty permits.

Hearing conducted in the Senate Professional Registration Committee.

Senate Bill 436

Provides a process for the Parole Board to review the case histories of offenders serving more than 25 years in prison and recommend clemency or allow release on parole.

Referred to Senate Judiciary and Civil and Criminal Jurisprudence Committee.

Senate Bill 487

Designates each month of April as “Parliamentary Law Month.”

Referred to the Senate General Laws Committee.

Senate Bill 540

Establishes notice procedures for potential adverse action against a State Board of Registration for the Healing Arts licensee who is delinquent on state taxes or has failed to file state income tax returns in the last three years.

Referred to the Senate Professional Registration Committee.

Senate Concurrent Resolution 17

Urges a commitment to equal rights for people with cognitive disabilities to access technology and information.

Passed by the Senate Rules, Joint Rules, Resolutions and Ethics Committee.

Senate Concurrent Resolution 23

Designates each month of April as "Parliamentary Law Month."

Referred to the Senate Rules, Joint Rules, Resolutions and Ethics Committee.

Senate Joint Resolution 18

Requires certain statewide elected officials, members of the General Assembly, and judges to receive cost-of-living adjustments if such adjustments are provided to all state employees.

Referred to the Senate Rules, Joint Rules, Resolutions and Ethics Committee.





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