Marshall Griffin | KBIA

Marshall Griffin

Statehouse Reporter

Missouri Public Radio State House Reporter Marshall Griffin is a proud alumnus of the University of Mississippi (a.k.a., Ole Miss), and 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 the 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 Mason, and their cat, Honey.

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Promoters of Missouri tourism, stung when then-Gov. Eric Greitens cut the state tourism budget in half, are encouraged that his successor wants to restore the funding.

Gov. Mike Parson made it known early in his administration that he wants to promote tourism.

Updated Friday with a response from the attorney generals office A non-profit group set up to promote the agenda of then-Gov. Eric Greitens is asking a Cole County judge to dismiss a lawsuit that seeks records of its activities.

St. Louis-based attorney Elad Gross filed suit in June against A New Missouri. He said he took action after the Missouri House committee that had been investigating the former governor halted its probe after Greitens’ resignation from office. The committee was also seeking records from A New Missouri, including its financing.

Proponents of Missouri’s voter photo ID law contend it has not restricted voting, while opponents argue it keeps people from the polls.

The two sides made their final arguments Monday in a lawsuit seeking to toss out the ID law.

Proponents of Missouri’s photo-ID voter law argued Monday it’s not burdensome, while those suing to overturn it say it’s exclusionary.

House Bill 1631, which was passed in 2016 and took effect in June of last year, limits the types of photo ID that can be used for voting to non-expired Missouri driver’s licenses, a non-driving state-issued photo ID, a military ID, or a U.S. passport. It also took effect because 63 percent of Missouri voters passed Amendment 6 in November 2016, which allowed for a photo-ID requirement to be passed by the Legislature.

Despite recent rainfall, more than half of Missouri is still in a drought, hitting hard at one of the state’s key economic engines: agriculture.

Missouri hay — the primary feed for livestock — has hit its lowest production levels in 30 years, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Ideally, each acre of pasture produces two tons of hay a year, which would be two of those large circular rolls often seen in farm fields. In 1988, the average acre in Missouri only yielded 1.2 tons, and this year it’s been 1.5 tons.

It’s mission accomplished for Gov. Mike Parson, as the Missouri Legislature’s special session is all but over.

The Senate Friday debated and passed both revised bills the governor wanted – legislation to allow expansion of treatment courts in Missouri, and to create an online science, technology, engineering and math curriculum for middle-school and high-school students.

While the special legislative session moves forward, Missouri lawmakers have wrapped up their annual veto session with no overrides.

The House did vote in favor of overriding four of Gov. Mike Parson’s line-item vetoes, which would’ve restored $785,546 to the current state budget. But the Senate needed to override them, too, and it didn’t.

Missouri’s latest special legislative session is underway as House and Senate members work to revise two bills vetoed earlier this year by Gov. Mike Parson.

The legislation would promote science, technology, engineering and math curriculum, known commonly as “STEM,” and expand treatment courts.

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.

Missouri has a website designed to make government more transparent, according to state Treasurer Eric Schmitt.

Schmitt’s office recently launched ShowMeCheckbook.mo.gov, which he calls “a one-stop shop” for information on state finances, revenue, payroll, expenses and cash flow.

Gov. Mike Parson has removed the interim tag from Sandra Karsten’s job title as director of the Department of Public Safety.

Last week, the superintendent of the Missouri State Highway Patrol was named interim director of the safety department when the governor announced he was parting ways with Drew Juden, who was appointed last year by former Gov. Eric Greitens.

A panel of five retired judges heard arguments Wednesday over whether new DNA evidence in the Marcellus Williams death penalty case is enough to exonerate him or at least warrant a new trial.

Williams, 49, was sentenced in 2001 for the 1998 murder of Lisha Gayle, a former reporter for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Missouri is experiencing one of its worst droughts in decades, and state officials are implementing some emergency measures to help ease the pain.

Gov. Mike Parson, three of his Cabinet members, and a group of agriculture leaders announced Monday that farmers and ranchers can now get hay and water from several state-owned properties.

Gov. Mike Parson is replacing one of the Missouri Cabinet members he inherited from former Gov. Eric Greitens.

Charles “Drew” Juden has served as public safety director since January 2017. He was among three Cabinet picks Greitens announced before his inauguration.

Col. Sandra Karsten, superintendent of the Missouri State Highway Patrol, will serve as interim director while a search for a successor is conducted. She will continue to head the Highway Patrol as well.

Although Mike Parson has been a regular fixture at the Missouri State Fair for several years, the 2018 fair is his first as governor of the state.

And he spent much of Thursday preaching the need to improve infrastructure to help the state’s agriculture industry.

Updated 6:02 p.m. with plaintiffs’ announced appeal - Missouri residents will have the chance in November to vote on a gas tax increase.

Associatate Circuit Judge Robert Schollmeyer in Osage County on Tuesday tossed out a lawsuit seeking to strip Proposition D from the ballot. If approved by voters, the measure would gradually raise the fuel tax from 17 cents to 27 cents a gallon by the year 2022.

Today is the last day visitors to the Missouri Capitol can walk up to the top of the building’s iconic dome until the year 2020.

The top of the dome has a small, circular observation deck with panoramic views of the Jefferson City and the Missouri River. It’s also dirty and needs a lot of repair, so it’s being closed for renovation.

A lawsuit heard Tuesday in Jefferson City would remove a referendum from the November ballot to gradually raise Missouri’s fuel tax by 10 cents a gallon.

The proposal was added onto a bill passed this year that created a tax deduction on Olympic medals for athletes living in the state. The bill was also amended to include the creation of a fund that would be used to eliminate “bottlenecks” along major trucking routes. It’s due to be listed on the ballot as Proposition D.

Right to work is dividing the three Republicans hoping to succeed District 110 Rep. Paul Curtman, who’s running for state auditor.

Term-limited out of her Senate seat, Maria Chappelle-Nadal is facing three newcomers as she tries to move to the House for one final term.

Whoever wins the Democratic primary in House District 86 won’t face any opposition in November. The district includes University City, Wellston, Vinita Park, Pagedale and Hanley Hills.

Taxes on income, fuel and property are driving the Republican contest for the Missouri House seat that covers portions of St. Louis and Franklin counties.

Dottie Bailey and Matt Doell, both of Eureka, are hoping to succeed Kirk Mathews, R-Pacific, who chose not to run for re-election in District 110.

Two St. Louis County attorneys hoping to succeed Democrat Stacey Newman in the Missouri House want to improve K-12 education and curb gun violence.

Ian Mackey and Sam Gladney are seeking the Democratic nomination for the district that includes Clayton and parts of Brentwood, Ladue, Richmond Heights and University City.

Despite being rural and largely conservative, state Senate District 18 was held by Democrats until 2010, when Republican Brian Munzlinger unseated then-incumbent Wes Shoemyer.

Four contenders are hoping to keep the seat in Republican hands now that Munzlinger is vacating the office due to term limits. They all support gun owners’ rights, cutting taxes and opposing abortion rights.

They primarily differ on who would do a better job of representing most of northeastern Missouri in the state Senate.

The right-to-work proposition may determine who succeeds Missouri state Rep. Marsha Haefner in District 95.

Joe Patterson and Michael O’Donnell – each with different views on Proposition A – are seeking the Republican nomination for the seat that covers portions of south St. Louis County. Haefner, R-Oakville, is leaving the office due to term limits.

Four Republicans are set to face off in the Aug. 7 primary for Missouri auditor, hoping to unseat Democrat Nicole Galloway in November. 

The four contenders are Paul Curtman of Pacific, Saundra McDowell of Jefferson City, Kevin Roach of Ballwin, and David Wasinger of St. Louis County.

Gov. Mike Parson is now detailing the reasons why he made several line-item vetoes to Missouri’s fiscal year 2019 state budget, which took effect this month.

The state constitution requires that vetoes of bills or budget line items be accompanied by a letter alerting the Legislature of each veto, and why it was made. While Parson issued explanations for the two standard bills and one resolution he vetoed, he initially did not for the budget cuts.

Updated July 12 with brief response from plaintiffs' attorney - A Cole County judge has dismissed a lawsuit challenging the appointment of Mike Kehoe as Missouri’s lieutenant governor.

In a ruling issued late Wednesday, Cole County Circuit Judge Jon Beetem said that Gov. Mike Parson had the authority to appoint fellow Republican Kehoe to the state’s No. 2 office, under the Missouri Constitution.

A Cole County judge heard arguments Thursday on whether Mike Kehoe can legally hold the office of Missouri lieutenant governor.

The Missouri Democratic Party filed suit along with Darrell Cope, 93, a World War II veteran from southern Missouri who said in a written statement that he wants the opportunity to vote for the state’s lieutenant governor, instead of having him picked “in backroom deals.”

A lawsuit has been filed in Jefferson City to stop Missouri voters from going to the polls in November to decide whether to raise the state’s fuel tax.

The proposal is part of a House bill passed on the final day of the 2018 regular session. It would gradually raise Missouri’s fuel tax from 17 cents a gallon to 27 cents by July of 2022.

Eric Greitens’ resignation as Missouri governor earlier this month has now officially brought to an end the mission of the House committee that’s been investigating him, but the chairman still plans on filing an ethics complaint.

In a letter sent Monday to members of the House Special Investigative Committee on Oversight, chairman Jay Barnes, R-Jefferson City, said that the House does not have “inherent authority to investigate anything it wants.”

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