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Missouri special session begins to fix 2 bills vetoed by Parson

State lawmakers return to the Missouri Capitol on Monday for a special session designed to pass two pieces of legislation vetoed by Gov. Mike Parson.

And Wednesday they’re scheduled to hold their annual veto session, which may be relatively short and quiet.

Parson called the special session to reach an agreement on the only two bills he vetoed this year – HB 2562 would have expanded drug treatment courts, and SB 894 would have promoted science, technology, engineering and math curriculum in K-12 schools.

He vetoed the so-called STEM bill because he said it appeared to favor one specific vendor, which he did not identify. He vetoed the treatment courts bill over concerns it violated the state Constitution’s single-subject rule. Lawmakers amended that bill to include regulations regarding abandoned property and the retirement of judges.

Lawmakers are not expected to override the vetoes on Wednesday, but likely will instead use the special session to pass alternate versions of the bills for Parson to sign.

“As governor, it is my responsibility to give students every opportunity to be fully equipped with the skills needed to enter Missouri’s workforce,” Parson said in a statement. “It is also important that, when needed, Missourians receive the proper treatment services necessary to gain employment or further their education. By proclaiming a special session, these issues will be addressed.”

This is the second special legislative session this year. House and Senate leaders called themselves into a special session in May to consider the possible impeachment of the-Gov. Eric Greitens. That session quietly ended after Greitens resigned from office.

Parson also used his veto pen to strike several line items out of this year’s state budget. Lawmakers in each chamber will need to garner two-thirds majority votes for each budget bill if they choose to override them on Wednesday.

Follow Marshall on Twitter:  @MarshallGReport

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Marshall Griffin is the Statehouse reporter for St. Louis Public Radio.
Marshall Griffin
St. Louis Public Radio State House Reporter Marshall Griffin is a native of Mississippi and proud alumnus of Ole Miss (welcome to the SEC, Mizzou!). He has been in radio for over 20 years, starting out as a deejay. His big break in news came when the first President Bush ordered the invasion of Panama in 1989. Marshall was working the graveyard shift at a rock station, and began ripping news bulletins off an old AP teletype and reading updates between songs. From there on, his radio career turned toward news reporting and anchoring. In 1999, he became the capital bureau chief for Florida's Radio Networks, and in 2003 he became News Director at WFSU-FM/Florida Public Radio. During his time in Tallahassee he covered seven legislative sessions, Governor Jeb Bush's administration, four hurricanes, the Terri Schiavo saga, and the 2000 presidential recount. Before coming to Missouri, he enjoyed a brief stint in the Blue Ridge Mountains, reporting and anchoring for WWNC-AM in Asheville, North Carolina. Marshall lives in Jefferson City with his wife, Julie, their dogs, Max and Liberty Belle, and their cat, Honey.
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