The Senate Rules Committee, chaired by Senate Majority Floor Leader Mike Kehoe, today approved HJR 79, sponsored by Rep. Rick Brattin. The resolution would establish Right to Work in the Missouri Constitution if approved by voters at the November 6, 2018 election. AIM testified in support of the resolution and the committee advanced the bill to the full Senate for further consideration. The joint resolution must be passed by the Senate before the session ends Friday at 6:00 p.m.
Meanwhile, the Missouri House debated and Truly Agreed and Finally Passed SCR 49 today. The Senate Concurrent Resolution, if approved by Governor, would move the election date of the “Right to Work” referendum on from November 6, 2018 to August 7, 2018. The measure is sponsored by Sen. Dave Schatz, and handled in the House by Rep. Holly Rehder. In contrast to the constitutional amendment in HJR 79, SCR 49 would simply move the decision on enacting a statute passed by the legislature last year in SB 19 to the August primary election.
SB 19 was passed by the General Assembly and signed by Gov. Eric Greitens last year. That bill should have been effective August 28, 2018. But before it could become effective, union leaders gathered more than enough signatures to require the issue to be place on the November 2018 ballot unless an earlier date is chosen by the General Assembly. SCR 49 would move the election date to August 2018.
Associated Industries of Missouri was the only business group to support SCR 49, primarily because of the economic development benefit it could provide.
“Every day that goes by that Right to Work is not the law in Missouri we miss out on more opportunities to add new facilities or additional work at existing facilities from companies that will only locate that work in Right to Work states,” Ray McCarty, president and CEO of Associated Industries of Missouri testified at the hearing on SCR 49. “We don’t even know the opportunities we are missing because we don’t meet the initial criteria established by some companies,” he said.