The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO


March 4, 2013

Other Views: Shorter sessions bad idea

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Good government is not dependent on a time element. State Sen. John Lamping, R-Ladue, wants to trim the legislative session from 18 weeks to 12.


“The idea I had,” Lamping said, “essentially, had most to do with just being more productive. Not wasting time, but making the best of the time that you have here.”

Many jobs, including journalism, have deadlines, which means doing the best job possible in the allotted time.

Reducing the amount of time, however, does not necessarily translate into a better product.

Missouri voters in 1988 changed the constitution to establish the regular legislative session from early January to the second full week in May each year, followed by a veto session in the second week of September.

Lamping’s proposed amendment to the constitution would establish the end of March as the conclusion of the regular session and move the veto session to June.

Is time wasted during the 18-week duration of the regular session?

Of course.

The legislative process is complicated, sometimes convoluted.

Bill are introduced; committees established; information studied; hearings held; issues debated; amendments offered; votes taken; proposals advanced; conference committees formed; compromises sought.

Even under optimum conditions, the process involves lulls in the action — lulls that may be advantageous for gathering more information, hearing additional arguments or simply easing intensity.

Recently, we cautioned lawmakers to avoid haste and to research issues thoroughly to avoid unintended consequences.

We see no advantage to shortening the legislative session.

Good government depends on the quality of leadership and representation, not the quantity of time spent.

The Jefferson City News Tribune

Text Only
  • Other Views Other Views: Eroding court’s authority

    While Kansans were focused on the twists and turns of school finance this past week, lawmakers made an unnecessary and historic change in how the state’s district courts operate, coercively tying the reforms to badly needed funding.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Your View: Travesty

    What a travesty that a terrific young man from Spain is on the verge of deportation even though he has proven his worth in America (Globe, April 13).

    April 18, 2014

  • Your View: Astonishing transformation

    The transformation of the Republican Party in the last decade is astonishing.

    April 18, 2014

  • Your View: The changing view

    It is heartbreaking to hear the decades old trees (which border on South Pennsylvania in Webb City) cracking and being bulldozed down.

    April 18, 2014

  • Our View.jpg Our View: Safe and sound

    Of the 7,500 Joplin and Duenweg homes hit by the 2011 EF-5 tornado, fewer than 20 percent of them had basements.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Other Views Other Views: Funding for state’s roads

    Missouri is finding there is no good alternative to growing the economy, adding new well-paying jobs and expanding the tax base.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Geoff Caldwell, columnist: Government without apology or explanation

    Americans feel closest to their Uncle Sam at this time of year as he extends his hand for his “fair share” to fund his numerous endeavors.

    April 16, 2014

  • Your View: Step aside

    The people of Joplin made it clear they wanted change at City Hall with their decisive votes to replace two council members.

    April 16, 2014

  • Your View: Serious drawbacks

    Joan Banks’ guest column (Globe, April 13) lays out clearly and persuasively the serious drawbacks with so-called right-to-work legislation.

    April 16, 2014

  • Your View: Free choice

    Joan Banks’ guest column (Globe, April 13) regarding right-to-work seems to assume that if workers are given the choice of joining a union, they won’t join.

    April 16, 2014

Local News
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter

A Missouri Senate committee has endorsed a 1-cent sales tax increase to fund transportation projects. The proposed constitutional amendment passed the House earlier this month. If passed by the full Senate, the measure would head to the November ballot for voter approval. Would you vote in favor of it?

     View Results
NDN Video
Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest Police Arrest Suspect in Highway Shootings Drought Concerns May Hurt Lake Tourism Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home Calif. Investigators Re-construct Fatal Bus Cras Mayor Rob Ford Launches Re-election Campaign Appellate Court Hears Okla. Gay Marriage Case