Missouri senators trying to target budget cuts at the agency that issues driver's licenses may have instead blocked funding for the registration of boats and mobile homes.
The Senate passed a budget plan late Monday that eliminates the entire $3.5 million allotment for the Motor Vehicle and Driver Licensing Division.
During debate, senators said the proposed cut could halt the issuance of driver's licenses. They described it as negotiating leverage to get additional information from state officials about the data collected from driver's license applicants.
After nearly eight hours of debate Monday, the Missouri Senate has passed next year’s state budget.
The roughly $25 billion spending plan still does not include Medicaid expansion, but not for a lack of trying by Democrats. Minority Floor Leader Jolie Justus offered up an amendment that would’ve added $890 million to the Social Services budget, enough to expand Medicaid to around 260,000 Missourians next year.
Missouri’s budget for the next fiscal year has been passed by the State House.
While Medicaid expansion has dominated most of the debate, spending hikes were approved in other areas. There’s an extra $65 million for K-12 schools, although the increase still falls short of fully funding the state’s public school formula. Republican Mike Lair of Livingston County chairs the Appropriations committee on Education.