MO Lawmakers Seek to Clip Governor’s Wings

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Missouri House leaders made a bipartisan pledge Monday to block Gov. Jay Nixon from billing state agencies for his airplane flights.

Missouri House leaders made a bipartisan pledge Monday to block Gov. Jay Nixon from billing state agencies for his airplane flights.

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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) – Missouri House leaders made a bipartisan pledge Monday to block Gov. Jay Nixon from billing state agencies for his airplane flights.

It’s a practice the governor has continued even while ordering employees to cut back on their own travel.

House Speaker Steven Tilley and Minority Leader Mike Talboy told The Associated Press they intend to insert provisions into the budget bills for Missouri departments prohibiting agency money from being used for gubernatorial travel.

The AP first reported in 2009 that Nixon was charging agencies for his flights instead of paying for them out of his office budget.

Nixon, a Democrat, said Monday that it is both appropriate and efficient to bill departments, especially when agency officials accompany him on trips related to issues they oversee.

But legislative leaders said Nixon is diverting state money from its intended purpose. Tilley said “it’s deceiving to the public” for Nixon to bill agencies for his flights.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press

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