Fearful families worry after state legislature adjourns without measure on pandemic overpayments

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ST. LOUIS – Thousands of Missouri families are fretting over their future after the state legislature adjourned without passing a measure giving citizens a break from having to repay pandemic funds.

Governor Mike Parson first wanted the money that jobless families got in federal and state funds to be repaid. He softened somewhat on the federal funds after a bipartisan group of Democrats and Republicans in the House passed legislation giving citizens a break on repaying federal funds.

Senate Republics and Democrats had been working on legislation that would forgive them from repaying state overpaid funds.

But the session ended before any of those measures were sent to the governor.

State Representative Peter Merideth (D-St. Louis) said there is a silver lining from the feds. He said they’re barring the state from collecting any of the federal money overpaid, adding the state will repay money that’s been collected already.

Families have faced liens on their homes and even garnishments as the state attempted to collect the money. These are families that have already been slammed by losing their jobs in the pandemic.

Some legislators are hoping to be able to take up the issue in a special session.

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