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This Week in the Missouri Senate for March 16, 2015

The final week before spring break proved to be a busy one. Monday began with a presentation of Senate Bill 399 to the Senate Committee on Financial and Governmental Organizations and Elections. SB 399 makes paper ballots the official ballot in elections, thereby creating an auditable “paper trail” in every election. Given the security breaches we seem to hear of daily, it is important that we take every step possible to ensure the integrity of our elections.

Later in the week I had an opportunity to present SJR 12 to the Senate Education Committee. The resolution provides that parents have the right to choose the academic institution their school aged children attend. It allows parents the right to choose between a public education, a private education, in-home education or a combination thereof and states that students in private or in-home education settings cannot have their curriculum dictated by the state or any agency or entity acting on its behalf. I believe that our fundamental rights should not hinge on the whims of the next legislature or Supreme Court but instead should be protected for all parents and children.  This legislation would add recognition of these rights to our state Constitution.

I also presented Senate Bill 478 to the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs & Health.  SB 478 allows for physicians to enter into medical retainer agreements with their patients whereby the physician provides services based on an agreed upon fee.  “Direct primary care” is likely to become more and more popular in the post-Obamacare era, and the point of this bill is to create the legal framework in which these consumer-driven health plans can thrive.

These presentations, combined with two others, made for a busy week.  The second half of session promises to be similarly busy when we return from the week-long Spring break.

As I’ve discussed in previous columns, the Senate has a few important accomplishments under its belt prior to breaking for the midway point.  Those include legislation that restores a cap on non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases, which my newsletter discussed last week.  Other accomplishments include important tax policy reforms to protect Missouri businesses and ensure that policies set forth by the Missouri Department of Revenue are transparent and consistently applied.

Looking ahead the Senate will have many large scale issues to tackle, including a continued discussion of establishing a prescription drug monitoring database in the state, a proposal that I do not support.  Given the continuous security breaches of major companies across the nation, as well as the Missouri Department of Revenue data leak in 2013, creating a database of personal medical information is of great concern to me.

The Senate will also be tasked with reviewing the budget passed by the House, considering proposals to reform the state unemployment system and continuing the discussion of school transfers that we started at the beginning of session.

I appreciate your continued interest in our work at the Capitol.  I encourage you to call or email me any questions or concerns you have about legislation that is of importance to you.  I wish you and families an enjoyable beginning to the spring season and look forward to reporting back to you after we return from break.

Very Sincerely,

Sen. Bob Onder
2nd District

I appreciate your interest in our work here in Jefferson City, and am grateful for the opportunity to serve you.  Please do not hesitate to contact my office with questions about legislation, ideas for bills and any other matters we can assist you with.  

For scheduling and general questions, please contact my Scheduler and Deputy Legislative Director Sam Saffa at  

For constituent questions or concerns, please contact my Director of Constituent Services Theckla Spainhower  

For questions pertaining to legislation, please contact my Chief of Staff and Legislative Director Jennae Neustadt

You can reach my Capitol office at (573) 751-1282.  You can also e-mail me personally at

I would like to encourage you to sign up for my weekly capitol reports so we can inform you of our work each week.  Please email Sam Saffa at to be added to our mailing list.

Sen. Onder Serves a Portion of St. Charles Couty in the Missouri Senate.

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Senate District 2.


Contact Information:

State Capitol Building, Rm. 226
Jefferson City, Missouri 65101
(573) 751-1282


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Elected to the Senate in 2014.