JEFFERSON CITY, Mo — The governor of Missouri withdrew — and then reappointed — five members to the State Board of Education.
In a press release, Gov. Eric Greitens announced that the move was intended to give the Senate “extra time” to evaluate the nominees.
“We’re here to help teachers, students, and families succeed,” Greitens said. “We found a great group of leaders in our state to work with us. I appreciate the Senate reaching out, to let us know they want ample time to hear these appointees.”
The five interim appointees — Eric Teeman, Eddy Justice, John “Doug” Russell, Marvin “Sonny” Jungmeyer and Jennifer Edwards — were withdrawn early Wednesday. At noon, the start of the 2018 legislative session, the same five members were resubmitted.
“I know there is a desire among senators to be involved in this process and to give our advice and consent to well-qualified appointees,” Sen. Ron Richard, President Pro Tem, said in the release. “Today’s action will free up extra time for the Senate to give prompt consideration to a number of the Governor’s other important interim appointees.”
Appointments made while the General Assembly is in recess has 30 days from the beginning of session to be confirmed. Since the interim members were withdrawn and then resubmitted while the legislature is in session, the Senate now has until it adjourns in May to make the confirmations.
“The Governor has nominated a number of high-quality individuals to a variety of departments, boards and commissions that are now before the Senate for approval,” said Sen. Mike Kehoe, Senate Majority Floor Leader. “I believe allowing the Senate additional time to weigh in on these very important positions on the State Board of Education was a positive decision by the Governor.”
With this move, the productivity of the State Board of Education is in question. Appointments made while the legislature is in session must wait until confirmation to serve. Interim appointments are not held to the same restriction. This leaves the board with three active members — all confirmed under former Gov. Jay Nixon — and shy of a quorum.
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.