Missouri Political News: Money for Missouri Western, Flood Victims in 2020 State Budget

JEFFERSON CITY, MO (STL.News) — The Missouri State Senator Tony Luetkemeyer released the following statement:

State Senator Tony Luetkemeyer, R-Parkville, is pleased to announce that the state budget agreed to this week by the Missouri General Assembly includes money for flood relief along the Missouri River, increased funding for Missouri Western University and a half-million dollar grant for Missouri Western State University’s nursing program.

Missouri Western University will receive a $1 million increase in its core operating budget in the 2020 budget.  The core budget increase reflects a revision the Missouri Senate made to the original recommendation from the House of Representatives, which called for a one-time appropriation.

“Missouri Western emerged a winner from this year’s budget negotiations,” Sen. Luetkemeyer says.  “Absent a future funding cut, this core increase to the school’s budget should stay in place from year to year.  Together with the funding for the nursing school, we’ve prioritized higher education in the 34th Senatorial District.”

The 2020 state budget awards a $557,000 MoExcels grant to create the Center of Excellence in Applied Health Care Learning at MWU.  The new center will allow Missouri Western to offer more health-related majors, grow admissions and increase graduation rates.

The budget also includes $8 million for flood relief in northwest Missouri. Rising floodwaters along the Missouri River have decimated farms, homes and businesses throughout the spring of 2019.

“State funding will provide relief for citizens affected by historic flooding, but some of the damage could have been avoided if the federal government placed greater emphasis on flood control in its river management efforts,” Sen. Luetkemeyer said.  “The floods of 2019 brought to light the need for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to prioritize the protection of human life, family farms and small business owners over its concern for fish and wildlife.”