As of March 30, Missouri has 1,031 COVID-19 cases – 23 days after the first case was reported in the state.
I. LEGISLATIVE BRANCH
• The Senate has indicated it is planning to return the week of April 6, to discuss House Bill 14 (the supplemental budget bill) and the passage of an extension to the existing Federal Reimbursement Allowance (FRA) which is a voluntary tax on hospitals and nursing homes to draw down federal matching funds.
• The House is scheduled for a technical session on Tuesday, April 7th and no timing has been announced on when they plan to return to address the fiscal year 2021 state operating budget bills and other key legislation that needs to be passed before the Constitutionally mandated May 30th adjournment.
• Several options may be added in the weeks ahead if the General Assembly is unable to hold session due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Options may include the Governor extending the current session or calling lawmakers into a Special Session in June or July.
• The COVID-19 pandemic will have significant budgetary impact to the end of the current fiscal year (June 30, 2020) and the upcoming state operating budget for FY21. The Governor’s budget, which House members had just reviewed and prepared their budget, was based on a revenue increase of 1.3-1.9 percent growth. The impact of the pandemic to state revenue, expenses and federal stimulus will be tremendous. We are monitoring the budget closely.
• We will keep you informed as to any developments regarding the session as soon as decisions are made.
II. EXECUTIVE BRANCH
• Executive Order 20-06: On March 27, the Governor mobilized the Missouri National Guard to support the response to COVID-19. The Guard will support the state and community operations for testing and transporting equipment and supplies. This will potentially include: set up and operation of community-based testing sites, provide intrastate transportation of personnel and equipment, logistical support and construction of temporary facilities.
• Effective March 26, the President approved the Governor’s request for a major disaster declaration to support the state’s response. This allows the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Public Assistance Program to be utilized to reimburse eligible expenditures made by local governments, nonprofit organizations and the state for COVID-19 response costs.
• The Department of Agriculture has eased certain restrictions including requiring a telephone to be on-site in case of emergencies and use of a master electrical shutoff to the dispensing system.
• Division of Public Safety – Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Control has extended renewal deadlines by two months for liquor licenses. The Statewide Emergency Management Agency is procuring massive quantities of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to be better prepared to assist the medical community moving forward.
• The Missouri Department of Labor has waived its one week waiting period and the requirement to apply for at least three jobs per week during the emergency period.
• Department of Natural Resources – The department has temporarily extended the time frame for when vehicle emissions test is due, to coincide with the extended vehicle registration cycle as defined by the Missouri Department of Revenue. DOR has extended the license plate expiration period for an additional 60 days.
III. LOCAL GOVERNMENT
• The counties of Cole, Chariton, Perry and Randolph have ordered stay-in-place orders. A full set of the counties and orders can be found here: https://lgpmconsulting.com/2020/03/30/missouri-county-and-city-stay-at-home-orders-updated-march-30-2020/
• The Kansas City and St. Louis earnings tax deadline has been moved to July 15, 2020 to be consistent with the Federal and State Income Tax dates
• The recent federal stimulus bill, signed on March 27, has several different areas it covers. We are happy to work with you and try to answer any questions. Here is a link to more information regarding details of the bill: https://sites-lathropgpm.vuturevx.com/55/916/march-2020/cares-act-overview.asp?sid=bc545c86-b47b-4e14-bff9-3a73243c78d9