AN EXTRAORDINARY EFFORT AND AN
UNPRECEDENTED LEGISLATIVE SESSION
MRTA! YOU'RE THE BEST!
Dear MRTA Members:
MRTA members gave an EXTRAORDINARY legislative effort again this year. Our biggest wins and accomplishments were to kill legislation harmful to our pension systems and benefits. These pieces of legislation never made it out of committee. Thank you to more than 700 MRTA members for "SHOWING UP" on the coldest day of the year for MRTA Legislative Day. Our strategy of rallying early in the session is an effort to prevent bad bills from passing out of committee. These bills are listed below. Public School funding did receive a slight increase, although not nearly full funding of the Formula. Full Funding of the Formula is one of MRTA's priorities. CONGRATULATIONS, MRTA on a job well done.
MRTA pushed for passage of a few bills in an effort to keep our pension system more sound and to give our school districts tools to keep great educators in the classroom. We issued five "CALLS TO ACTION" in which your responses were very effective. We had all our positive legislation in the Senate and amended to four different bills, each needing just one more vote for passage. THROUGH NO FAULT OF OUR OWN and due to circumstances beyond our control, all these bills died the last week of the Legislative Session. The Senate Leadership brought forth the "NUCLEAR OPTION" on Right-to-Work legislation forcing a vote through a Parliamentary Procedure known as the Previous Question (PQ). The Senate then melted down. To add insult to injury, the Speaker of the House resigned amidst a texting scandal with a 19 year old intern. The House and the Senate failed to meet for a day and a half during the last two days of session. I have been involved with the Legislature for 23 years and have never seen nor heard of such a thing. This was an unprecedented week in Missouri history.
Bills Opposed by MRTA - Killed in Committee
- HB 1205 (Leara) - Cutting Benefits of Saint Louis City Active Educators
- HB 485 and 486 (Koenig) - Moving public employees into 401(k) retirement plans
- SB 94 (Emery) - Same as HB 485 and HB 486 above
- SB 27 (Emery) - Eliminating tenure. A measure mirroring Amendment 3 of 2014
Bills Opposed by MRTA
- HJR 34 (Burlison) - TABOR - Died on Senate Calendar
Bills Supported by MRTA and pushed forward in the Senate that died due to lack of Senate action
- HB 478 (Fitzwater) and SB 219 (Wallingford) - Permanently enacting 2.55 after 31 years
- SB 270 (Nasheed) as amended - Divorce Pop-Up and W.A.R. Reform
- SB 172 (Romine) as amended - Divorce Pop-Up and W.A.R. Reform
- SB 300 (Silvey) as amended - Divorce Pop-Up and W.A.R. Reform
It should be reported that our efforts and priority to obtain a COLA for Saint Louis City Retirees (HB 1008 Mitten) was blocked by Speaker Diehl and the Saint Louis City Schools. The COLA bill never received a committee hearing. We will not give up as these retirees have not had a COLA for 9 years and have lost 25% of their buying power.