MISSOURI (KFVS) - Missouri Governor Mike Parson delivered the 2020 State of the State address on Wednesday, Jan. 15.
Gov. Parson highlighted several of the state’s major successes in workforce development and infrastructure in 2019, including a $1.5 billion investment from General Motors and an $81.2 million Infrastructure for Rebuilding American grant to build a new I-70 Missouri River Bridge at Rocheport, among others.
Following the recap, the governor focused on issues in four main areas for 2020: stronger communities, workforce and education, infrastructure and government reform.
“We have made record progress over the past year, but there is still more to do and much more we can achieve with hard work,” Governor Parson said. “That is why my call this legislative session is to propose initiatives aimed at building stronger communities, improving workforce development and education, revitalizing our aging infrastructure, and making government more accountable.”
After meeting with the mayors of St. Louis, Kansas City, Springfield and Columbia, Governor Parson announced their solutions to help combat violent crime in Missouri. It included providing greater protection for victims and witnesses, providing more mental health resources and services and strengthening laws to target violent criminals.
He also shared the results of joint federal, state and local law enforcement efforts in Kansas City and St. Louis to combat violent crime.
The governor also emphasized the importance of early childhood education to workforce development, noting that Missouri recently received a $33.5 million preschool development grant aimed at creating a more effective, high-quality early learning system.
With the funding, the state can strengthen its early childhood offerings and better prepare Missouri children for success.
Another focus for 2020 is increasing opportunities for high-demand job training at the high school level.
Gov. Parson again called for key investments in Missouri’s infrastructure, including $4 million in disaster recovery funds and another $50 million for the transportation cost-share program.
In his speech, the governor highlighted the state’s efforts to drive efficiency and accountability for Missourians’ tax dollars, including a savings of $84 million in the Medicaid system.
You can see the full text of his speech below.
Following the governor’s address, the House Democratic Caucus will hold its own news conference.
This will be in the House Lounge.
House Minority Leader Crystal Quade, D-Springfield, will answer questions in reaction to the governor’s address.
House Democrats said they expect the governor to propose a state operating budget and policy agenda.