JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – HB 1452, sponsored by Rep. Denny Hoskins, R-Warrensburg, means to increase how often personal financial disclosure (PFD) statements are filed with the Missouri Ethics Commission (MEC) was perfected by the House on Wednesday.
“Missourians have a right to open, timely information regarding the personal financial reports of elected officials,” Hoskins told The Missouri Times.
Hoskins proposed an amendment upon opening, which delays the effective date to January 1, 2017.
The MEC defines a PFD as “a statement, completed and filed, by a public official, an employee or a candidate, disclosing the financial interests of themselves, their spouse and any dependent child(ren). Historically used to disclose any potential conflicts of interest between an individual and their subdivision. A filed PFD statement, also known as a Financial Interest Statement, is available to the public upon written request.”
Currently, PFDs are filed annually, due each May 1, for the preceding year. If the bill were to become law, statements would be required to be filed biannually, no later than January 15 for the preceding July 1 to December 31, and on July 15 for the preceding January 1 to June 30.
Hoskins, who testified in support of the bill, told the Government Accountability and Oversight Committee on Monday that the bill would create more accountability by keeping closer track of personal financial disclosures. No opposition was voiced to the committee.
The bill, which passed out of the committee on a vote of 8 to 0, is similar to 2015’s HB 438, which was reported “do pass” from committee, but failed to see floor time.
HB 1452 is among the first four ethics bills to make it out of committee and to the floor for perfection this session. Speaker Todd Richardson vowed in his opening day remarks last Wednesday to refer all ethics bills to committee and to make ethics reform a priority this legislative session.
Rachael Herndon was the editor at The Missouri Times and also produced This Week in Missouri Politics, published Missouri Times Magazine, and co-hosted the #MoLeg podcast. She joined The Missouri Times in 2014, returning to political reporting after working as a campaign and legislative staffer.
Rachael studied at the University of Missouri – Columbia. She lives in Jefferson City with her husband, Brandon, and their two children.