JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — State Rep. Allen Andrews filed several bills at the start of the Missouri General Assembly’s session last week.
Below are condensed summaries of those bills. Full summaries are available on the House’s website at house.mo.gov.
Currently, in order to qualify as a newspaper legally acceptable in which to run public notices and advertisements, a newspaper must have been published regularly for a period of three years or must be the successor newspaper to a defunct newspaper and begin publication no later than 30 days after the termination of the prior newspaper.
This bill reduces the time period of regular publication from three years to one year, and increases the time period from 30 days to 90 days within which a successor newspaper must begin publication.
The bill also allows a newspaper that has been purchased or newly established by another newspaper that satisfies these conditions to qualify.
Additionally, the bill changes rules around ads for defaulted property. Currently, the notice to sell defaulted property must be made in the classified section of a newspaper in the jurisdiction.
This legislation retains that notice, but allows the seller to advertise in any other commercially reasonable manner. The advertisement is commercially reasonable if at least three independent bidders arrive at the sale.
The bill passed unanimously in the House last session, but was not taken up by the Senate for a vote.
This bill would restore a dedicated funding source for the Unemployment Automation Fund, which is used to pay for the state’s automated unemployment insurance systems.
Andrews’ legislation would implement a surcharge of two-hundredths of one percent of an employer’s total taxable wages for specified employers. The total amount due would be capped at $5 million.
Until 2018, when it was repealed, leaving the fund without a dedicated funding source, the surcharge had been five-hundredths of one percent and the cap was $13 million.
Andrews proposed a similar bill last year that made it out of committee but no further.
This legislation would establish a Time-Critical Diagnosis Advisory Committee, whose members would be appointed by the Department of Health and Senior Services, for the purpose of improvement of public and professional education related to time-critical diagnosis, research endeavors, policies and recommendations for changes.
The bill would also establish a State Advisory Council on Emergency Medical Services whose members are appointed by the governor to make recommendations to the governor, the General Assembly, and DHSS on policies, plans, procedures and proposed regulations on how to improve the statewide emergency medical services system.
The proposal includes several provisions that would overhaul parts of how information is disseminated in situations that include time-critical diagnoses.
In a statement relayed over the phone to The Forum by his office, Andrews called the bill “life or death.”
He proposed similar legislation last year that was widely supported by hospital officials, but opposed by EMS groups, who saw much of the language as catering to hospitals and hospital interest groups. Andrews’ office said he will continue to talk with all stakeholders on the bill.