8-30 Letters to the Editor

August 30, 2013 

Dear Editor:

We are being swamped by misleading TV ads and mailers from Grow Missouri telling us to call and support tax cuts. It is of interest to note that this campaign is being paid for to the tune of over $2.4 million by one man, multi-millionaire Rex Sinquefield of St. Louis.

The ads don’t tell you that the median Missouri family will not even notice their estimated $6 tax cut. What you will notice, is the impact on your local school district and other state funded services. What these ads are really talking about is House Bill 253, which was vetoed by Gov. Jay Nixon.

Cass County schools would see an estimated loss of revenue of $4-7 million dollars. Our Missouri schools are already underfunded by $600 million dollars.

Many school boards, PTAs, school administrators, and teacher organizations have already voiced their opposition to this bill. Local districts would have to make some drastic cuts.

The bill would also reinstate sales tax on prescription drugs and college textbooks. This would amount to a $200 million dollar tax increase.

The Missouri Department of Mental Health would see cuts amounting to $87 million dollars . Additionally, they would lose $87 million dollars in matching federal funds.

Funding for early autism detection and treatment for autistic children would see a 25 percent cut.

Five out of seven residential facilities for the mentally handicapped and two psychiatric care facilities would close. The residential facility in Higginsville is one example.

Several regional DMH offices would close. DMH projects 850 positions lost!

I see a lot of Missouri jobs lost due to this bill.

The ripple effects to the state’s economy from just the cuts to education and mental health haven’t even been factored in! The only winners from the override of the veto of HB 253 are lobbyists, some corporations, and the very wealthy.

Your voice is important! Cass County Representatives Rick Brattin and Donna Pfaustch, and Senator Ed Emery voted for this bill along with bill co-sponsor, Chris Molendorp. Rep. Joe Runions does not support HB 253. Call, write, or email your legislators to encourage them to sustain the Governor’s veto of HB 253 and not to bow to a multi-millionaire’s pressure.

Wayne Scrudder

Pleasant Hill

Dear Editor:

While I sympathize with the desire to memorialize a lost life, I write to request that people planning such events as the recent balloon release consider a way of doing this other than a mass pollution wildlife endangerment ceremony.

For images of the harm done to wildlife by descended ceremonial balloons, see www.balloonsblow.com. I would like to suggest planting a tree, placing a memorial bench in a park, or building a handicapped accessible fishing dock instead of teaching children that throwing trash into our skies is acceptable.

Sandi Leonard


Dear Editor:

My thanks to the Harrisonville R-IX School Board for voting unanimously Aug. 27 to adopt a resolution to uphold Governor Nixon’s veto of House Bill 253.

Each school board member stood firm for the students of Harrisonville, deserving thanks and support from every citizen in the district.

There have been many mailers and TV commercials about House Bill 253, all funded by one individual, talking about a tax cut for all Missourians.

The average citizen would see approximately $12 per year, thats $1 per month. However, the school’s budget would take a huge hit if the Governor’s veto is overridden. If the veto is overridden, what would the school district have to cut then? Teachers? Textbooks? Sports? Band? Is that worth a $1 per month tax cut?

House Bill 253 is a poorly written bill with many flaws. Not only does it affect the budgets of every school in Missouri, but it also eliminates the sales tax exemption on prescription drugs, cuts funding to public services, among others. However, it does give big tax cuts to large corporations, LLCs and lobbyists.

Email or call State Senator Ed Emery, State Rep. Donna Pfautsch, or State Rep. Rick Brattin and ask them to support education by voting to uphold the Governor’s veto of House Bill 253. Our school board already has.

Debbi Lehr


Dear Editor:

I am an active genealogist who has researched years upon years in many of the counties in Missouri. Except in Cass County.

I live a ways away, and called to see where, and when, I could come and look up public records. I was told the staff was short-staffed, but I could write to them with the names, dates and information being requested and that they would get back with me.

However, because they were extremely short-staffed, the information could take months upon months to get a response.

Why am I unable to enter Cass County Courthouse for the purpose of family history research?

Being short-staffed is not my problem and no excuse for the rudeness I experienced. I do have an issue of not having access to said records, though.

I feel bad for you, Cass County residents.

For genealogists everywhere...

Melissa Barker


Dear Editor:

Once again this year, the Shepherds Staff Food Pantry is hosting its annual food drive 7 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 7 at the Harrisonville Walmart.

Volunteers from the Ministerial Alliance churches will be at the doors of the store accepting gifts of food and money that will be used to feed people in our community.

If you could pick up a few extra items as you do your grocery shopping that day and put them in our barrels, you would be helping your neighbors.

The pantry continues to serve more than a thousand people in Cass County every month, so there is always a demand for help.

Lyle Krohn


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