Senator Barbara Anne Washington's Legislative Column

Monday, January 9, 2023

- Week of Jan. 6, 2023

On Jan. 4, the 2023 legislative session began with the swearing in of newly elected and recently re-elected senators and the convening of the 102nd General Assembly. The first week of session is filled with ceremonial traditions, like the legislative ball, the annual Governor’s Prayer Breakfast and designation of Senate leadership. There are now 12 women serving in the Missouri Senate, so I’m excited about working across the aisle with these women and the entire Senate body to improve the quality of life for Missourians.

During the interim, I’ve enjoyed attending events and meeting with you in our beloved city. I always learn so much from visiting with you, and I formulate and prioritize my legislative proposals from these discussions. Two of the overarching concerns you have shared with me are criminal justice reforms and limiting assessors’ ability to raise property taxes. To address these issues and several others, I have filed 17 bills and one Senate Joint Resolution to date.

The first bill I filed deals with certifying juveniles for trial as adults. Currently, children as young as 12 years old can be tried and prosecuted as an adult. Senate Bill 432 raises the age of certification for trial as an adult to age 14. I don’t believe any child should be tried as an adult, regardless of the crime, but raising the age by two years is a step in the right direction.

Another criminal justice reform measure that is near and dear to my heart is helping incarcerated mothers bond with their children. No child should have to suffer because their mother made mistakes, and far too many children whose mothers are incarcerated are living with little or no contact with them. Senate Bill 438 creates a two-year pilot project at two of our state’s correctional facilities for women to increase visitation and help provide transportation for children to the facility once a month. I believe this will reduce stigma, decrease recidivism and restore hope to countless moms and children.

If you haven’t checked out my Senate website lately, please bookmark it now. It contains a variety of services and resources you may find beneficial. I’ve also added a digital Community Services Directory to help you connect with municipal, county and statewide agencies and nonprofit organizations.

Below is a list of the bills I have sponsored in 2023. If you have questions or need additional information or assistance, please contact my office.

Senator Washington’s Sponsored Legislation for 2023

Bill Number




Senate Bill 423

Modifies provisions relating to certification of juveniles for trial as adults

First Read

Senate Bill 424

Creates new provisions on discriminatory practices relating to hair.

First Read

Senate Bill 425

Authorizes a tax credit for the purchase of certain homes.

First Read

Senate Bill 433

Authorizes a sales tax exemption for feminine hygiene products.

First Read

Senate Bill 434

Authorizes a tax credit for providing services to homeless persons.

First Read

Senate Bill 435

Creates a Text-to-Donate program for homeless services in certain cities.

First Read

Senate Bill 437

Authorizes a tax credit for providing housing to victims of domestic violence.

First Read

Senate Bill 438

Creates a pilot program for incarcerated mothers to have access to their children.

First Read

Senate Bill 439

Creates the offense of unlawful possession of a handgun.

First Read

Senate Bill 440

Establishes the “Cronkite New Voices Act” to protect the freedom of press in school-sponsored media.

First Read

Senate Bill 441

Creates provisions relating to firearms.

First Read

Senate Bill 442

Modifies provisions relating to concealed firearms.

First Read

Senate Bill 443

Modifies provisions relating to medical marijuana program participants in family court matters.

First Read

Senate Bill 444

Creates provisions relating to reporting requirements of law enforcement agencies.

First Read

Senate Bill 445

Modifies provisions relating to use of force by law enforcement officers.

First Read

Senate Bill 446

Modifies provisions relating to restitution for individuals who are actually innocent.

First Read

Senate Bill 447

Modifies provisions relating to criminal records.

First Read

Senate Joint Resolution 36

Places limits on increases of the assessment of certain properties.

First Read

It is an honor representing the great people of Kansas City’s 9th Senatorial District. If you need assistance navigating state government or understanding the legislative process, please contact me by calling 573-751-3158 or emailing My team is here for you!