for the week ending January 5, 2018

Lawmakers Open 2018 Session:  State legislators returned to Jefferson City Wednesday to open the Second Regular Session of the 99th Missouri General Assembly.  Despite a  Republican super-majority in both chambers, infighting among  factions in the Senate, and a continuing battle with Governor Eric Greitens over interim appointments to the Missouri Board of  Education, are likely to impact the agenda early in the session.

Opening day saw 112 Republicans and 46 Democrats seated in the House; with 24 Republicans and 10 Democrats in the Senate.  Leadership remains in the hands of Senate President Pro Tem Ron Richard and Speaker of the House Todd Richardson.   Lawmakers are expected to focus this session on changes to the state’s ethics laws, revising the Missouri tax code, highway funding, and tort reform.  Work will get underway in earnest next week when Governor Greitens delivers his State of the State message to a joint session of the legislature on Wednesday evening.

Silvey Appointed to PSC:  Senator Ryan Silvey, chairman of the Senate Commerce, Consumer Protection, Energy & Environment Committee, has been named to the Missouri Public Service Commission by Governor Eric Greitens.  The appointment was announced Tuesday evening, just hours before lawmakers were set to convene for the 2018 session.  Silvey ((R- Kansas City) is serving his second term in the Senate.  He served in the House from 2004 to 2012.

The Senate confirmed his appointment on Thursday morning, clearing the way for him to begin his  six-year term on the  PSC immediately.  He will replace Commissioner Stephen Stoll, a former Democratic Senator, whose term expired in December.  Silvey is the first Commissioner to be named to the five-member panel by Governor Greitens.  The current chairman and commissioners were all appointed by former Governor Jay Nixon.

Pritchard Named to Foundation Board: State Technical College of Missouri has named Matt Pritchard, regional director of external affairs for AT&T, to the STC Foundation board.  The foundation is the charitable arm of the college, supporting development and fundraising in the private sector.  Pritchard is a graduate of STC’s electronics engineering program, and has been with MTIA member-company AT&T for 17 years  His previous assignments included technician tech-support, network operations and management.  He replaces MTIA President Ric Telthorst on the board.

City Annexation List Available:  A listing of the most recent annexations by Missouri’s municipal governments is now available at Fourth Quarter 2017 Annexations.  The list is useful in checking that telecom carriers are collecting city sales taxes at the correct rate in their service areas.  For more specific information on any annexed area, call the city clerk’s office of the municipality in question.

Industry Partner of the Week:  MTIA member-company Brydon, Swearengen & England P.C. provides a full range of legal services, with emphasis on general corporation law and regulatory matters, for Missouri’s telecommunications providers.  For more information, contact Trip England at 573-635-7166; or visit them online at www.brydonlaw.com.

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