JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Gov. Mike Parson is calling for a special session on a supplemental budget next month. It will start on Nov. 5, two days after the election.
This is the second special session the governor has called in less than six months. Parson called lawmakers back to Capitol at the end of July to discuss his anti-crime package. That special session lasted more than 50 days costing taxpayers nearly $215,000.
The goal of this new special session is to distribute CARES Act funding across the state.
“We still have CARES Act money that needs to be distributed to Missourians,” Parson said. “We have to just to get money in and get money out to pay some bills”
The governor said it will include funding for school nutrition programs, job training grants, emergency solution grants for the homeless, domestic violence programs, and child support.
The governor said he has already spoke to both the House and the Senate about returning to Jefferson City.
“I’ll let the House and the Senate decide what those days are, but I think it’s more of a technical session of what it should be and it shouldn’t extend past the timeline that we are talking,” Parson said. “It should be short.”
Parson said he is not opposed to discussing COVID liability.
“I think if the legislature is willing, I think the legal liability issue should be front and center in this state,” Parson said. “If it’s not done in special session, it definitely should be a priority in the session.”
The governor also addressed the rising cases in Missouri.
“As far as COVID-19 hospitalizations, our seven-day average is roughly 1,400,” Parson said. “Against, why this is higher than previous levels, overall, our health care system is still stable and meeting the demand.”
Before making the announcement, Parson said Missouri was outpacing its economic and budget forecast.
He said that is why a few weeks ago the state was able to release some of the general revenue funds it restricted earlier this year as well as $95M in CARES Act Funding.
Parson did not say how long the special session could last but says he plans on it being short. If Parson loses the election on Nov. 3 to State Auditor Nicole Galloway, it would become a lame-duck session.