The 2022 Legislative Session Begins
On Jan. 5, Lawmakers returned to the State Capitol in Jefferson City for the start of the 2022 legislative session. The start of session always marks the beginning of a busy four and a half months in the Capitol, but this year seems especially busy as we prepare to take on a packed agenda.
We once again have hundreds of bills to consider, covering a wide range of issues facing our state. As chairman of the Senate’s Commerce, Consumer Protection, Energy and the Environment Committee, I continue to look for ways to improve our state’s energy sector and have filed several bills that I believe will do just that this year. I’ve also sponsored Senate Bill 659, which aims to help prepare our students for the future by expanding computer science coursework throughout high schools, middle schools and elementary schools.
Aside from bills I have filed, lawmakers will also be considering bills aiming to strengthen election integrity in this state, through possible photo-ID and paper ballot requirements. I also expect that we will discuss ways to build upon our success in protecting the sanctity of life in our state before session ends in Mid-May. And I’m sure the General Assembly will continue to push back against federal overreach and vaccine mandates coming out of Washington, D.C. In addition, the General Assembly will also need to pass a balanced state operating budget for the upcoming fiscal year before the end of session.
Somewhat unique to this session is that lawmakers will also be undertaking congressional redistricting. This is the process of redrawing Missouri’s eight congressional districts to reflect population shifts within our state following the completion of the U.S. Census. The goal of redistricting will be to ensure all eight of Missouri’s congressional districts represent roughly the same amount of people and that Missourians are represented fairly. In the early days of session, the Senate’s Select Committee on Redistricting, which I have the honor of serving on, will handle much of this important work before sending the proposed district map to the full Senate for consideration.
As you can see, we have a lot of work to complete over the next four and a half months, but I look forward to helping move our state forward. I am honored to continue serving the citizens of the 8th Senatorial District. Please feel free to contact my office in Jefferson City at (573) 751-1464. For information about committees or sponsored legislation for the 2020 session, please visit my official Missouri Senate website at senate.mo.gov/Cierpiot.