The Springfield City Council received an update on their legislative priorities and was informed of the impact that the COVID-19 lockdown had on delaying or negatively impacting Council priorities.
Will Marrs with Governmental Services Group addressed Council with an update and fielded questions.
“This is different than any session I’ve been a part of, and any of us have been a part of in our collective memory,” Marrs told Council.
He said cuts are coming to all areas of the budget in the coming years, especially in education, and that close monitoring of the state budget is going to be required going forward to minimize “negative impact” on Council priorities.
Marrs said that they were initially told that bills would be related to COVID-19 when they came back to session, but it “ended up being a race to the finish.”
Lobbyists were encouraged to not enter the building and they didn’t have much oversight on what the legislature was doing.
“That lead to a lot of problematic language coming forward,” Marrs said.
He talked about the problems of omnibus bills, and mentioned one of the city’s successes was part of a 107 page omnibus bill.
He said 38 bills were passed, and the governor has only signed 3 of them.
“Politics were hyper partisan at the state level,” Marrs said.
He called the lack of passage of an internet sales tax a major disappointment and said that it hope it could come back in the near future.
Marrs said some of the “more poorly thought out provisions were stopped” by the houses including items that were considered for parts of omnibus bills.
Mayor McClure reiterated the importance of wayfair and that the Council is disappointed in its lack of passage; he said the legislators in Jefferson City need to know what a priority it is for the city.