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Fitzpatrick named new budget chair

Haefner named chair of Fiscal review

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – House Speaker Todd Richardson, R-Poplar Bluff, named Rep. Scott Fitzpatrick chair of the House Budget Committee and Rep. Marsha Haefner chair of the House Fiscal Review Committee Tuesday afternoon.

Fitzpatrick, R-Shell Knob, had served as vice chair of the committee. That included being pressed into service as the de facto chair during the critical final stages of session last year when then-chair Rep. Tom Flanigan was out sick.

“Scott has impressed me and his colleagues on both sides of the aisle with his understanding of the extremely complex budget process, and his willingness to stand up and fight for the fiscally responsible spending priorities of House members. In what was a difficult situation in the final days of budget negotiations, he proved he can get us across the finish line with a balanced budget that responsibly invests in the priorities shared by all Missourians without raising taxes,” Richardson said. “Scott has already proven he can excel in this position and I am confident he will build on his success by working with a new governor and new legislators to protect and wisely invest our tax dollars.”


Fitzpatrick also called out Gov. Jay Nixon this summer over maneuvers the governor used to, in Fitzpatrick’s view, keep the state from meeting the automatic threshold for a tax cut.

“I want to thank Speaker Richardson for entrusting me with the responsibility of leading our budget process. I am optimistic that we will have a governor who will work with us in good faith to craft responsible spending plans based on realistic revenue projections. It will take hard work and tough choices but I think we can work together to give the people of Missouri more for less of their tax dollars,” Fitzpatrick said “The way the people’s tax dollars are spent is extremely important. Passing a budget is the one constitutional responsibility of the legislature that we have to do if we do nothing else. I consider it the most important task that we have.”

Haefner was elevated to replace outgoing Fiscal Review Char Sue Allen. Haefner had spent six years on the Budget Committee.

“Marsha is a strong fiscal conservative and one of our most experienced budget experts who understands the importance of having a strong oversight process for the legislation we pass. She has provided outstanding leadership with her appropriations committee and with her years of work on state operating budget,” Richardson said. “I am confident she is the perfect choice to lead this committee as it works to ensure the bills we pass make efficient use of taxpayer dollars.”


Haefner welcomed the new role as an honor.

“I am honored to have this opportunity and thankful that the Speaker has selected me to lead a committee that plays a vital role in protecting taxpayers from irresponsible or excessive spending,” said Haefner, R-St. Louis. “I’m excited to get to work with my committee members when session begins. We have a difficult task ahead of us but I am confident we can work together to ensure the bills we pass represent sound public policy and a wise investment of our tax dollars.”

Both Fitzpatrick and Haefner will assume their positions with the new legislative session in January.