CAPITOL REPORT: REPRESENTATIVE PATRICIA PIKE
House Members Resume Session to Approve Supplemental Budget
Dear Citizens: Following a modified schedule and current health measures, members of the Missouri House of Representatives and Senate returned to the Missouri State Capitol building this week to work toward approval of a supplemental budget bill that will provide vital funding for the state’s efforts to fight the spread of COVID-19.
House members earlier
approved a version of HB 2014 before Congress appropriated the federal stimulus
package, thus initiating the process for the Senate to proceed and send the
legislation back to the House. Substantive
changes to HB 2014, include adding funds to DESE, DHEWD, OA, DED, DPS, DOC,
DHSS, DMH, DSS, and the governor’s office. In addition, adding approximately $3
billion in federal funds and additional general revenue to the bill.
The supplemental budget bill contains funding that will keep state government functioning through the end of the fiscal year, which ends on June 30 of 2020. In addition to funding for the state’s efforts to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus, the bill contains funding for items ranging from early childhood education to services for seniors to enhanced access to care for uninsured children.
Gov. Parson Announces
Spending Restrictions to Ensure Balanced Budget: Because of the severe impact of COVID-19, the
state has seen its once-healthy economic growth stagnate and is now expecting a
significant revenue decline. In order to ensure the budget remains balanced and
the state will have the funds necessary to combat the spread of COVID-19, Gov.
Mike Parson this week announced $180 million in expenditure restrictions.
The governor’s restrictions include reduced funding for several state departments including the Department of Higher Education and Workforce Development, Department of Transportation, Office of Administration, Department of Natural Resources, and the Department of Economic Development, among others. The Judiciary and Secretary of State also worked to identify savings in their own budgets that can be restricted.
These actions are necessary to ensure the state can provide essential government services and be as prepared as possible to deal with the pandemic throughout the rest of the fiscal year. The governor’s office anticipates the additional federal funding that will be contained in the supplemental budget bill will help the state deal with the projected budget shortfall. The Governor’s Office is hopeful for an additional $315 million in federal funding this year to help with the shortfall.
From US Treasury Website – “Economic impact payments: What you need to know”
Small Business Support: The Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”) authorizes up to $349 billion in forgivable loans to small businesses to pay their employees during the COVID-19 crisis. The loan amounts can be used to cover payroll costs and most mortgage interest, rent, and utility costs over the 8 week period after the loan is made. Complete information on website listed below including the application and lender sites. Contact your banker and tax preparer/accountant to assist with documentation you will need.
Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on SBA disaster assistance.
Unemployment: If you have unexpectedly found yourself out of work during this crisis, the Missouri Department of Labor offers directions on how to file for unemployment on its website: https://labor.mo.gov/coronavirus and https://uinteract.labor.mo.gov/benefits/home.do#
Daily Updates: MO State Department Directors and Governor Parson are providing up-to-date information for citizens daily at 3:00 p.m. on the Governor’s Facebook page (under Governor Mike Parson). Those live updates are also archived on his Facebook page for citizens to watch at their convenience.
My office is working remotely and we are available to assist you at Patricia.Pike@house.mo.gov or by calling 573-751-5388. My thoughts continue to be with our citizens and communities.