The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

January 3, 2014

House speaker cites ‘growth agenda’ for session starting next week

JOPLIN, Mo. — Growing jobs in Missouri will be the top priority among the Republican majority in the Missouri House of Representatives, House Speaker Tim Jones said during one of a series of stops in Joplin on Friday.

That tops his agenda for the session that starts Wednesday, Jones said, along with funding education, generating abundant energy and protecting “Missouri values,” including state’s rights, private property rights, right-to-life issues and the Second Amendment.

Jones said making Missouri a right-to-work state will open the door for more businesses to grow in Missouri and relocate here. That, along with lower taxes and medical malpractice reforms, he said, “are the three pillars that will produce jobs.”

Those steps have been taken in states that are growing, especially in the south and the southwest, while Missouri ranks 47th in the nation in growth, the speaker said before a small crowd at Employer Advantage in Joplin’s Gryphon Building.

Jones said Missouri’s economy is improving but is “not out of the woods” and noted that the state also is surrounded by border states that are competing with Missouri for jobs.

Though he said businesses “are strapped by over regulation,” Lee Allphin, who heads Employer Advantage, also cited an improving local economy. Employer Advantage is a Joplin-based firm that helps nearly 500 area companies comply with state and federal laws and rules.

The speaker said Missouri is poised to grow because of its balanced budget, general fund surplus and AAA bond rating.

“And right-to-work is no longer an experiment, it’s in place in 24 states,” he said.

That legislation will start in the House Workforce Development and Workplace Safety Committee, chaired by Rep. Bill Lant, of Pineville, who was present Friday along with other representatives from the region.

Lant said the change is outlined in nine pre-filed bills, including three he is sponsoring.

Opponents say right-to-work translates to lower wages for all workers, but Jones said right-to-work states are now seeing higher wages.

Rep. Bill White, of Joplin, will sponsor another bill favored by the speaker that would cap non-economic damages in medical malpractice suits. Both Jones and White said the absence of caps, which are in place in Kansas and Oklahoma, are causing the state to lose doctors.

Jones said GOP lawmakers also are committed to increasing funding for education while holding school districts accountable. He said he is not a fan of the education standards posed in Common Core because they were put into place without legislative oversight and are “one size fits all. I really believe local control has to be the key,” he said.

Other stops on Jones’ tour of Joplin included Empire District Electric Co. State Line Plant and Ducommon Industries. He said he also favored reducing the regulatory burden on utilities to help them move forward on replacing aging infrastructure.

Local representatives

Also on hand at Friday’s session were State Reps. Tom Flanigan, of Carthage, vice chairman of the House Budget Committee; Charlie Davis, of Webb City, chairman of the House Veterans Committee; and Bill Reiboldt, of Neosho, chairman of the House Agriculture Policy Committee.

Text Only
Local News
  • Carthage prepares for Marian Days

    The 37th annual Marian Days celebration will start in two weeks, and planning is well under way for the event that will bring tens of thousands of Catholics of Vietnamese descent to Carthage.

    July 23, 2014

  • Mike Pound 2010.jpg Mike Pound: It’s not Mayberry, but Carthage is close

    When I was a kid, I wanted to live in Mayberry. In a way, I suppose I still want to live in Mayberry, the fictional town featured in the classic Andy Griffith show of the 1960s.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Miami council waives fees for barbecue event

    The Miami City Council voted Tuesday to waive $3,750 in usage fees for Miami Elks Lodge No. 1320 for an upcoming barbecue championship at the Miami Fairgrounds.

    July 23, 2014

  • Joplin couple indicted in child porn case

    A federal grand jury indicted a Joplin couple Wednesday for alleged sexual exploitation of a second child in addition to a girl who was the subject of a preceding indictment of the husband for allegedly producing and distributing child pornography.

    July 23, 2014

  • Galena council rescinds landfill decisions

    The Galena City Council voted Wednesday to rescind decisions it made two weeks ago regarding a proposed landfill at Riverton.

    July 23, 2014

  • Missouri attorney general defends his support of Amendment 1

    With a large cornfield behind him and campaign signs all around, Democratic Attorney General Chris Koster appeared Wednesday at the David Collard farm to tout Amendment 1, an Aug. 5 ballot measure that would make the “right to farm” part of the state constitution.

    July 23, 2014

  • Joplin school board reviews audit procedures

    A team from the Missouri State Auditor’s Office has begun requesting documents in its task to audit the operations and management of the Joplin School District, the audit manager told the Board of Education on Tuesday.

    July 22, 2014

  • Joplin man to stand trial in accident case

    A passenger accused of causing an accident on Interstate 44 in Joplin that injured three others as well as himself was ordered bound over for trial Tuesday on three felony counts.

    July 22, 2014

  • Pseudoephedrine sales in Pittsburg to require prescription

    Starting Friday, those who purchase pseudoephedrine and related products in Pittsburg will need a prescription to do so.

    July 22, 2014

  • r072214soroptimist3.jpg Volunteers spend week providing camp experience to foster youths

    Karen McGlamery is a massage therapist. Terri Falis-Cochran is a finance manager. Jane McCaulley is a retired art teacher. But for a week each summer, the three are among dozens of area residents who become camp counselors.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

Must Read


Have you ever served as a volunteer for your state's conservation department?

A. Yes.
B. No.
     View Results
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter