JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Missouri’s chief executive put pen to paper to create two new task forces this week while also announcing a German-based company will bring 500 new jobs to the state.
“This investment will just enhance Missouri’s already successful AgTech industry,” Parson told reporters. “Regardless if it is in St. Louis County, whether it is in Jefferson City, or whether it is in a rural town in the Bootheel, it is important to work to create jobs for the future and good jobs for the future.”
The Missouri Health Insurance Innovation Task Force will come up with ideas for improvement for healthcare services and options for more affordable insurance options, the Governor’s Office announced Wednesday.
“Missouri knows best when it comes to taking care of our citizens, not Washington, D.C.,” Parson said in a statement. “Our health insurance market is not competitive, and there is no ‘one size fits all’ federal solution that addresses every issue of healthcare access and the rising cost of insurance premiums for Missourians.”
The flood recovery working group will identify areas where attention is needed and provide input on priorities for allocation of state funding as Missouri recovers from this year’s flooding. In addition to addressing short-term repairs to levees, the group will also explore options to improve the conveyance of floodwater through Missouri’s major rivers.
Parson also faced scrutiny this week following the release of a closeout audit of his time as lieutenant governor.
The audit, released Thursday, blasted the lack of an up-to-date calendar and questionable spending related to travel, payroll, and vehicle purchases. Parson’s office disputed the findings regarding expenditures, noting: “Some of the Auditor’s findings exceed the mandate of a post-audit and encroach upon the Lieutenant Governor’s discretion to make purchases and manage his office.”
The report was released just days after the quarterly campaign finance filings were turned in. According to the Missouri Ethics Commission report, Parson — who could potentially launch a 2020 gubernatorial bid — brought in nearly $120,000 for the cycle ending July 1. He has $1.15 million cash on hand.
Alisha Shurr was a reporter for The Missouri Times and The Missouri Times Magazine. She joined The Missouri Times in January 2018 after working as a copy editor for her hometown newspaper in Southern Oregon. Alisha is a graduate of Kansas State University.