The general election is next Tuesday, Nov. 6. I encourage each of you to become educated on the candidates and issues and cast your vote.
In addition to elections for U.S. Senate, state auditor, Greene County presiding commissioner, and other federal, state and local offices, there are several issues on the ballot:
- Constitutional Amendment No. 1 would change the way boundaries for legislative districts are drawn. It would also establish a series of changes to the state’s ethics laws.
- Constitutional Amendments Nos. 2 and 3 and Proposition C would modify or remove the state’s prohibitions on medical marijuana. Each issue is slightly different than the others, so it would be worthwhile to research each of these medical marijuana ballot issues before you vote. News-Leader reporter Steve Pokin gave thoughtful analysis in a column he wrote recently on these three ballot measure, which you can find here.
- Constitutional Amendment No. 4 would modify laws that limit bingo games.
- Proposition B would incrementally change Missouri’s minimum wage each year until it reaches $12 per hour.
Why I support the fuel tax
I would encourage you to carefully consider one ballot issue in particular. Proposition D would increase the motor fuel tax by two and one half cents per gallon annually for four years. Proponents of this measure worked to put it on the ballot because:
- Missouri significantly underfunds its transportation system, and this threatens the safety of our roads.
- Missouri has the 7th largest highway system, but the state’s motor fuel tax is 49th in the United States.
- The motor fuel tax has not been increased since 1996. During that 22-years, inflation has eroded 60 percent of the tax. Today the 17-cent tax approved in 1996 has 7 cents of purchasing power.
Proposition D would address these concerns by generating $28 million in funding for roads and bridges and $124 million for city and county transportation projects.
While I recognize that none of us like to pay more taxes, I have been vocal about my personal support for Proposition D. You can find my letter to the Springfield News-Leader about Proposition D online.
In addition to all the reasons cited above, I will be voting for Proposition D because each year Missouri State University faces significant competition for state funds. If the transportation gap is not funded with designated revenue under a proposal like Proposition D, state funding for critical transportation projects will make it ever more difficult to receive funding for higher education.
You can see the full list of candidates and issues that will be on the ballot in Greene County on the county clerk’s webpage.
Cast your vote at Welcome Center
We will be partnering once again with the Greene County clerk’s office to utilize the Davis-Harrington Welcome Center as a central polling location. If you are registered to vote anywhere in Greene County, you can vote in the Welcome Center instead of at your regular polling location.
The Welcome Center will be open for voting 6 a.m. – 7 p.m. on Nov. 6.
The Greene County clerk’s office anticipates a large volume of voters on Election Day, so plan accordingly and, if you don’t want to wait in a long line, avoid heavy traffic times (right before the workday, the noon hour and right after the workday).
Convocation speaker shares experience
This year’s Public Affairs Convocation will be at 7 p.m. on Nov. 5 at Juanita K. Hammons Hall for the Performing Arts. This year’s speaker is Fredi Lajvardi. Lajvardi captivated the country when he led a team of disadvantaged teenagers in a university-level underwater robotics competition, where they defeated leading schools, including top-ranked MIT.
I encourage all members of the Missouri State community to attend this year’s Public Affairs Convocation lecture and be inspired to put the public affairs mission into practice.
Thanks for all you do for Missouri State!
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