Representative Yolanda Young's Newsletter

March 20, 2021

Contact me at: 
201 W. Capitol Avenue, Room 102
Jefferson City, MO 65101
Phone: (573) 751-3129

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Dear Neighbors,

While we are in session, I travel back and forth between Kansas City and Jefferson City, spending at least Monday through Thursday at the Capitol. I am thrilled to have been able to spend this week, our legislative spring break, at home in District 22. Extra time spent with my grandchildren and a birthday zoom call from my immediate and extended family and friends brought immense joy to me. I am recharged and ready to get to Jefferson City for work on Monday. 

Throughout my spring break I have been able to engage in some legislative work in our area. Last Friday, I traveled to the Black Archives of Mid-America to prepare for the virtual town hall I am hosting with Representatives Mark Sharp and Michael Johnson on March 27th (there are more details later in the newsletter). 
This morning, I was able to join Governor Parson and several other legislators from Kansas City for a press conference about the mega COVID-19 vaccination event that is currently being held at Arrowhead Stadium today and tomorrow (March 19th and 20th). We learned today that there were an extra 2,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine distributed for the event, meaning 8,000 Kansas Citians will be fully vaccinated after tomorrow. I was glad to hear that all 8,000 appointments have been booked for the event and am hopeful that this event marks a huge leap forward in vaccinating people in our communities. 

If you or someone you know needs any assistance, please don't hesitate to call my office at (573) 751-3129.

Yours in Service,

Yolanda Young
State Budget and Other Major Issues Await 
Lawmakers return to the state Capitol March 22 following their annual spring recess with all of the major issues of the 2021 legislative session still awaiting action, including passage of a proposed $34 billion state operating budget for the upcoming 2022 fiscal year and a possible increase in the state fuel tax for the first time a quarter-century. Just eight weeks remain in the 18-week session, which ends May14.
When he submitted his budget plan in January, Governor Parson, included full funding to expand Medicaid eligibility to 138 percent of the federal poverty level as required by a constitutional amendment Missouri voters ratified last year. As expansion supporters had long predicted, Parson’s budget doesn’t require a tax increase or deep cuts to other programs, which opponents had long claimed would be necessary despite ample evidence to the contrary in states that had already implement it.
Under the federal Affordable Care Act, the federal government will pay 90 percent of the cost. Monetary savings from more people having access to preventative care plus the economic benefit from the additional federal health care dollars flowing into Missouri is expected to more than cover the state’s share. An additional 275,000 Missourians will be eligible for Medicaid after expansion.
While the governor’s support for expansion after years of opposition encouraged supporters, the fight for implementation isn’t over. In a surprise turn, House Budget Committee Chairman Cody Smith (R-Carthage) unilaterally removed Medicaid expansion from the regular budget process and placed it in a stand-alone appropriations bill. Isolating expansion funding from the rest of the Department of Social Services’ budget could make it easier for opponents to block the necessary spending authority, even though 90 percent will come from federal dollars.
The budget process is behind schedule, with the various appropriations bills still awaiting final review by the House Budget Committee before they can advance to the full House of Representatives. After that, the process starts over in the Senate. Just seven weeks remain before the May 7 constitutional deadline for granting the budget final passage.
Another issue awaiting lawmakers is a possible 12.5-cent-per-gallon increase in the state fuel tax. Under Senate Bill 262, the tax gradually would rise from its current rate of 17 cents per gallon to 29.5 cents in 2025. The GOP-led Senate approved the increase by a vote of 21-13 on March 11.
The measure, Senate Bill 262, would generate an estimated $462.39 million a year for state and local transportation projects once fully phased in. Missouri last increased it in 1996 under legislation enacted in 1992. During a March 11 news conference, House Speaker Rob Vescovo (R-Arnold) was noncommittal about the bill’s chances in the lower chamber.

A separate tax issue involves long-sought legislation to allow the state and local governments to better capture sales tax revenue from online purchases that already is due under state law but rarely collected. Just before the spring recess, the House and Senate traded so-called Wayfair bills, named after a 2018 U.S. Supreme Court case that clarified the taxable status of online purchases. One or both of the bills must now advance through the other chamber before winning final passage.
After widespread protests last year in Missouri and elsewhere over police brutality, criminal justice reform was expected to be on the agenda for lawmakers this year. However, instead of embracing calls for reforms to make it easier to hold law enforcement officers accountability for illegal or unconstitutional actions, some legislators have moved in the other direction. One measure they’ve advanced, Senate Bill 26, would severely restrict investigations of police officers and provide them with special protections during such investigations that aren’t afforded to residents being investigated by police. The bill has already cleared the Senate, with a House committee scheduled to hear it March 22.
So far during the 2021 session, lawmakers have granted final passage to just one bill, a supplemental appropriations bill for the current FY 2021 state budget that the governor signed into law Feb. 11.
Republicans hold a 24-10 advantage over Democrats in the Senate and a 114-48 majority in the House, which has one vacant seat last held by a Democrat. That vacancy will be filled following an April 6 special election in which the Democratic candidate faces only minor party opposition.
COVID-19 Vaccine Updates
If you are one of the 8,000 people who have secured a vaccine appointment at Arrowhead Stadium, be sure that you arrive on time for your appointment with your ID and your appointment registration number. 

If you are contacted for an appointment, RideKC and KCATA will be providing free bus transportation to everyone needing a ride to Arrowhead for their vaccine appointments. 

If you do not already have an appointment, you are not able to get a vaccine at this event and will be turned away (and probably still have to wait in the long line). If you would like to schedule a vaccination appointment in Kansas City, there are still several opportunities to do so. 
We are still in Phase 1B- Tier 3, so if you are a healthcare worker, resident of a long-term care facility, a first responder, are considered a high risk individual (65 and older or have a qualifying health condition), or are considered to be a part of our state's "critical infrastructure," you are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. Governor Parson also announced this week that beginning April 9, ALL Missourians will be eligible to receive the vaccine. If you are interested in receiving the vaccine when it become available, I encourage you to be put on the wait-list at any of the locations listed below. 

If you are unable to get an appointment to be vaccinated at Arrowhead Stadium, I encourage you to visit the COVID-19 map to find a vaccination site near you. I have been told that the following places are currently offering vaccines in Kansas City: 
If you register at more than one location, be sure to call to remove your name from other lists and free your spot for someone else who wants the vaccine.
Hope Faith Homeless Assistance has also partnered with Heart to Heart International to those who are experiencing homelessness and those working with the homeless population. If you or someone you know might qualify, visit the Hope Faith website or call their office at 816-705-0505.
Virtual Town Hall Series
Please join us for the first of this three-part series of Town Hall meetings offering important information and dialogue brought to you by Representatives Mark A. Sharp, Yolanda Young and Michael Johnson in partnership with Black Archives of mid-America in Kansas City, Bruce R. Watkins Cultural Heritage Center, and Concord Fortress of Hope Church. 

Join from a PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone or Android device: 
Click Here to Join
Passcode: 569361

Or iPhone one-tap:
US: +13017158592,,82888625922# or +13126266799,,82888625922# 
Or Telephone:
Dial(for higher quality, dial a number based on your current location):     
US: +1 301 715 8592 or +1 312 626 6799 or +1 929 205 6099 or +1 253 215 8782 or +1 346 248 7799 or +1 669 900 6833 
Webinar ID: 828 8862 5922 
Participant ID: 483863
Passcode: 569361
International numbers available:
Women Legislators of Missouri Scholarship
Women Legislators of Missouri are encouraging young women, set to graduate from high school, to apply for a $500 college scholarship. Each year the group selects one student from each of Missouri's congressional districts to receive the award. 

The Women Legislators of Missouri created the senior scholarship program to provide financial assistance to students on the basis of leadership, academics, and community service. Candidates must fill out an application and are required to submit a 500-word essay answering the questions, "If you were a state legislator, what would you hope to accomplish and why?" 

A link to download the scholarship can be found at 

The submission deadline is Tuesday, March 31, 2021. For further information please contact 573-751-2042. 
State government can be hard to navigate. If you need assistance with a state department or with unemployment, Medicaid, food stamps, or other state benefits call my office at (573) 751-3129. We can also guide you to community resources such as rent and utility assistance, food distribution, and COVID-19 related issues. My staff and I are here to help in any way we can. 
District 22 Staff

Kaylee Bauer
201 W. Capitol Avenue, Room 102
Phone: (573) 751-3129 
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State Representative Yolanda Young · 201 W Capitol Ave · Jefferson City, MO 65101-1556 · USA

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