Legislative session ends with few bills passed, only one by a South County legislator


Doug Beck

By Lucas Irizarry, Staff Reporter

The 2022 Missouri legislative session was a bust for many South County legislators in the Missouri House of Representatives, with no bills proposed by South County representatives making it to the desk of Gov. Mike Parson and only one bill from a South County senator making it across the finish line. 

Some bills that were delivered to the governor in time include more strict election laws involving private donations and voter auditing, allowing healthcare patients to specify “compassionate care visitors” and one permitting the Director of the Department of Health and Senior Services to issue a statewide order for addiction mitigation medication.

In the upper chamber, legislation sponsored by Sen. Doug Beck, D-Affton, passed both the House and Senate and establishes Will’s Law, which ensures school nurses have health care plans in place for students with epilepsy and other seizure disorders, and requires school personnel to complete sezuire-response training every two years. 

In the lower chamber, a bill introduced by Rep. Jim Murphy, R-Oakville, which would have required political subdivisions to pay for the installation of electric vehicle chargers if it requires them made it as far as the Senate. 

Rep. Michael O’Donnell, also R-Oakville, had several bills make it to Senate committees, including one which would have modified public utility provisions. The bill would have added rural electric cooperatives to the list of agencies eligible for Missouri Disaster funds and had other regulations for costs related to electricity services.

A bill removing the sales tax from food stamp eligible food was proposed by Rep. Mary Elizabeth Coleman, R-Arnold, made it as far as House committees. 

Two anti-abortion bills, one by Coleman and one by Rep. David Gregory, R-Sunset Hills, made it to the House committee level. The two bills were similar in intent and effect. Coleman’s bill is similar to the one which recently has taken effect in Texas. It would have prohibited state funding for abortion clinics, while prohibiting most abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected. The bill included provisions to prohibit dilation and evacuation, abortions and to protect children who survive a failed abortion attempt.

While Gregory and Coleman’s anti-abortion legislation did not make it further than, one of the state budget bills includes a provision that denies public funding for Planned Parenthood.

Bills by Gregory and Murphy affecting public schools did not pass the house. Gregory’s bills included a reading success plan requirement and one that would enact provisions promoting dignity and nondiscrimination in public schools. A bill by Murphy to establish lessons on the responsible use of social media did not pass.