On April 22, the Missouri Senate Appropriations Committee passed its version of the 13 bills that comprise the state operating budget for the 2022 fiscal year. Next, this blueprint will move to the full Senate for discussion. After the Senate’s version of the budget is approved, both the Missouri House of Representatives and the upper chamber will meet to discuss their differences in a series of conference committees. According to the Missouri Constitution, the budget must be truly agreed to and finally passed by May 7. The governor will then consider which parts of the budget to sign into law, and which parts — if any — to veto and send back to the Legislature. The 2022 fiscal year begins on July 1.
Budgeting for our state remains tricky. While we have been fortunate, in terms of staying economically above water during this pandemic, there will be a lot of questions ahead. This is mainly due to the federal assistance we have been receiving for the past year. At some point, though, these funds will be gone.
These are the issues lawmakers will continue to look at as the budget moves through the Missouri Senate. As chair of the Missouri Senate Appropriations Committee, I take the responsibility of helping to craft a spending guide for our state very seriously. Granted, state law requires lawmakers to draft and pass a balanced budget, but there is still a great deal of time and energy devoted to ensuring every dollar that comes into our state is used as intelligently and efficiently as possible. There are a lot of great people who spend thousands of hours every year on these sending plans for the Show-Me State, and I am incredibly thankful to work with them throughout the course of the legislative session.
As always, please feel free to call, email or write with your ideas or concerns. My Capitol office number is 573-751-1415, my email is email@example.com and my mailing address is Room 332, State Capitol Building, Jefferson City, MO 65101.
Dan Hegeman is the 12th District State Senator.