Lawmakers prepare for legislative session
JEFFERSON CITY - Members from both Democratic and Republican parties are gearing up for the 98th legislative session. The legislative session begins at noon Tuesday.
Speaker Pro Tem Denny Hoskins, R-Warrensburg, said his main goal in the session is to change the Department of Revenue's dealings with small businesses, specifically by getting rid of notification by audit.
"Small businesses are definitely the backbone of the state," Hoskins said. "We definitely need to do everything that we can to protect small businesses from over-regulation by our state government."
Senator Joe Keaveny, D-St. Louis, said he expects the main discussions to focus on Ferguson-related issues. Keaveny said those discussions could take several different angles, from criminal justice to race to economic. Keaveny said he would start a Ferguson-related discussion with offering more structured education to areas like Ferguson, starting with preschools.
"These problems we're going to have to deal with, we're not going to solve overnight," Keaveny said. "These are generational problems. And I feel the long-term solution is to provide an education for these kids so that they're qualified, so that they get a decent job."
Keaveny also said he expects lawmakers to discuss ethics, including accepting money for campaigns and gifts from lobbyists.