Governor Nixon reflects on time in office - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Governor Nixon reflects on time in office

(Source: KFVS) (Source: KFVS)
(Source: KFVS) (Source: KFVS)
MISSOURI (KFVS) -

In a matter of days Missouri Governor Jay Nixon will retire from public service.

After more than 30 years working in all three branches of government he’s heading to the private sector.

Governor Jay Nixon’s time leading the Show Me State is marked by highs and lows.

Devastation in Joplin following a deadly EF5 tornado and the deadly shooting of Michael Brown at the hands of police that thrust Ferguson into the national spotlight.

Since that time of turmoil, the governor says he has worked to bring the state together.

“We’ve listened to a lot of folks," said Governor Nixon. "We’ve learned and things are getting better. The changes we’ve made in police officers' training, the fact that we have a lot of summer programs now for youth, that fact that we have municipal court reform in St. Louis. All those show that while this is a long hard battle, it’s one that we’re making progress on in Missouri.”

The most overridden Governor in Missouri’s history, Nixon has met resistant at times from the Republican-led state legislature.

But still feels, he’s been able to make important changes that better serve the public.

"I feel very good about some of the things we’ve done in higher education where we’ve kept tuition affordable," Governor Nixon said. "Number one in the country keeping tuition down and that’s one of the reasons we’ve had such an increase in graduation. Also in the mental health area, the autism mandate, the building of a new state mental health hospital in Fulton. And out there helping folks with developmental programs and out here in law enforcement.”

Governor Nixon says he feels like he made progress during his last eight years in office.

"When I became governor people were losing their jobs, factories were being closed, our schools weren’t performing as well as they are today," he said. "We’ve had a 36 percent increase in college graduates in Missouri. 44 percent increase in 2 year school graduates, unemployment dropped in half. Bottom line is there’s lot of good things going on.”

Like what he calls the rebirth of the American auto industry.

"We’ve had over 2 billions dollars in investment, not only Ford and GM, but 64 companies have made investments to rebuild that manufacturing base in Missouri. We’ve added 26,000 jobs advanced manufacturing jobs in the state of Missouri in the last 3 years. Those are all solid steps forward that I’ll be very proud of when my time is over," said Governor Nixon.

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