Governor Nixon has until July 15 to sign or veto legislation, but he has already signed two bills supported by the Missouri Catholic Conference.
HB 1565, sponsored by State Representative Kevin Engler (R-Farmington), raises the asset limit allowed for elderly, blind, and disabled to receive Medicaid health coverage. Right now the asset limit is set very low-$1,000 for individuals and $2,000 for married couples. The new law will gradually increase the limit until by 2021 the limits are set at $5,000 for individuals and $10,000 for married couples. Increasing these limits will allow people to retain some of the savings they have built over their lifetime and not exhaust them completely due to entrance into a nursing home or other related expenses.
HB 1979, sponsored by State Representative Caleb Rowden(R-Columbia), is an ethics reform proposal that will require a six month “cooling off” period before a resigning legislator can become a paid lobbyist. The MCC supported the legislation as a way to better ensure legislators stay focused on legislating for the common good rather than legislating on behalf of their future employer. The MCC also supported legislation limiting lobbyists’ gift to legislators, but legislators did not pass this proposal.