© 2024 KRCU Public Radio
90.9 Cape Girardeau | 88.9-HD Ste. Genevieve | 88.7 Poplar Bluff
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Nixon On Vetoed Income Tax Bill, Rodeo Clown

Jacob McCleland

Governor Jay Nixon continued his attack on HB 253 in Cape Girardeau on Monday. HB 253 is the controversial income tax cut bill that he vetoed in June.

Speaking at the Autism Center for Treatment and Diagnosis at Southeast Missouri State University, Nixon said an override would mean $164 million in cuts to mental health services throughout the state.

Citing a new report by the Department of Mental Health, or DMH, Nixon said regional autism projects have helped families care for children with autism for more than two decades with broad bipartisan support.

“DMH anticipates the need to reduce funding for these programs by $1.8 million statewide and $315 thousand annually here in southeast Missouri,” Nixon said. “With the incidence of autism spectrum disorders continuing on the rise, now is not the time to reduce access to these vital services.”

Nixon added that an override of his veto would force his administration to close the Cottonwood Children’s Residential Treatment Center in Cape Girardeau and the Hawthorn Children’s Psychiatric Hospital in St. Louis.

“Under this bill, DMH would have to cut funding for its diagnostic center by 25 percent, or about a million dollars,” Nixon said. “For [the Autism Center for Treatment and Diagnosis at Southeast Missouri State University], that’s about $124 thousand annually. Reduced funding for diagnosis means families waiting longer for answers, and children waiting longer for treatment.”

Nixon said he is heartened by the response of both Republicans and Democrats to the controversial rodeo clown act this weekend at the Missouri State Fair. Nixon condemned a rodeo clown who impersonated President Obama, while an announcer asked the crowd if they wanted to see Obama get run down by a bull.

He said the performance did not reflect the values of Missourians or the state fair.

“We’re going to have the Office of Administration look at all of the contracts around this and what not,” Nixon said. “They’ll review what other steps might be taken to make sure that not only something like this doesn’t happen, but to look at those contracts to see if there is anything within those contracts that could specifically hold them accountable for these actions.”

Republican Lieutenant Governor Peter Kinder was critical of the act on Twitter, where he wrote, “We are better than this.”

Related Content