Legislators Look Back on Session during Chamber Event

Published 05/30 2014 02:17PM

Updated 05/31 2014 03:00PM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.)  St. Joseph legislators offered their take on this year's session in Jefferson City during an event in St. Joseph Friday.

They talked about the highs and lows during a chamber event called St. Joe Rising at the Ramada Inn.

An audience of city and county leaders listened as St. Joseph's elected officials shared takeaways from the latest legislative session.

"They talked about health care reform, not just insurance reform, but changing the hospital system itself perhaps and transportation issues. So, I think it was a very good, informative session for everyone," said Kristi Bailey, Chamber of Commerce.

State Senator Rob Schaaf joined state representatives Pat Conway and Delus Johnson as the featured guests.

They explained what happened during the session and the impact of some of the new laws.

"A lot of times when the legislation finally passes, when it's amended or sent from the Senate to the House in the last few minutes, the changes aren't as noticeable as they are in the aftermath of the session," said Conway.

There was also discussion about changes needed to move the state forward.

"What we truly need is campaign finance reform, in my opinion," said Schaaf. "That, in the sum total of my experience in the legislature, would do more good to allow us to execute good public policy than any other single thing we could do."

"Politics, in this climate, when we have a super majority in the Senate, and almost a super majority in the House, to me, it turns into almost like a game of rugby," added Conway.

Conway also said with some issues going before voters later this year, it's important to educate the public about what's ahead.

"We want to start the information campaign of those issues as they come out and hopefully people will be better informed when they get to the polling places this fall and in November," he stated.

The Chamber's St. Joe Rising events take place each quarter.

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