LEGISLATIVE UPDATE 4/15/2022
April 15, 2022
LEGISLATIVE UPDATE 4-15-22
There is still no agreement between the House and Senate on the congressional district bill, the House has asked meet in conference with the Senate hash out a compromise, but the Senate has refused to meet. The House has passed the budget and sent it to the Senate several weeks later than normal, the Senate has taken little action toward the budget which must be approved by May 6, per the Missouri Constitution. Bills from the opposite chamber are now being heard. Below are summaries of bills of interest. Changes from last week are shown in red. Bills that have not yet been assigned to committee have little change of moving and have been deleted. Bills that have not had a hearing have been lined through.
The links below will take you to the weekly hearing schedules. Bills are added throughout the week, by clicking on the link and committee name you can see the most current bills that will have public hearings or be voted out of committee.
HB 1992 (Coleman) – exempts food from state and LOCAL sales taxes. Ways & Means Committee. Heard 2/9. Passed Committee 3/9. Referred Rules Committee. Passed Committee 3/23. Near the top of the Perfection Calendar and could be debated next week. (Oppose)
SB 743. (Crawford) – authorizes any taxing jurisdiction to impose one or more sales taxes for purposes to be designated by the taxing jurisdiction, provided that the total combined rate of local sales taxes imposed and retained by a taxing entity that is an incorporated city, town, or village shall not exceed 4.5%; the total combined rate of local sales taxes imposed and retained by a county shall not exceed 4.5%; the total combined rate of local sales taxes imposed and retained by the City of St. Louis shall not exceed 9.0%; and for all other taxing jurisdictions, the total combined rate of sales taxes in any given taxing jurisdiction shall not exceed 3.0%. Perfected 3/9. Passed Senate 3/21. House Government Accountability Committee.
The provisions of this bill have been included in the Senate Committee Substitute for SB 649 (Eigel) Perfected 3/2. 3rd Reading Calendar.
The provisions are also in SB 759 (Hough) – Local Government and Elections Committee. Heard 1/26. Passed Committee 2/16. (Support)
SB 930 (Koenig) – a public governmental body is authorized to close records that are related to email addresses and telephone numbers submitted to a public governmental body by individuals or entities for the sole purpose of receiving electronic or other communications. Government Accountability Committee. Heard 3/3. Passed Committee 3/10. (Support)
HB 1594 (Walsh) – repeals the gas tax increase. Government Oversight Committee. Heard 2/8. Passed Committee 2/16. Referred Rules Committee. Passed Committee 2/24. Informal Perfection Calendar. (Oppose). Similar bills are SB 782 (Moon) and SB 811 (Eigel)
HB 2363 (McGirl) – current law authorizes ambulance and fire protection districts in certain counties to propose a sales tax at a rate of up to 0.5%. This bill allows such districts to propose a sales tax of up to 1.0%. The bill also allows municipalities that contract for fire protection services to, with voter approval, implement a sales tax of up to .5%. Local Government. Passed Committee 3/3. Referred to Rules Committee. Passed Committee 3/23. Perfection Calendar. (Support) Similarly there is HB 2147 (Schwadron) – allows cities which contract for fire service to levy up to 1/2 cent sales tax. Local Government Committee. Heard 3/10. Passed Committee 3/24. Referred Rules Committee. (Support)
HB 2209 (Hurlbert) – the state, any political subdivision thereof, and any other entity that receives public funds shall not establish, levy, maintain, or collect any fee for parking on any public street or road and shall not use any mechanical or electronic device to receive funds for such a fee including, but not limited to, on-street parking meters. (Oppose) Downsizing Government Committee. Heard 3/23. Passed Committee 3/31. Referred Rules Committee. Passed Committee 4/6. Informal Perfection Calendar
HB 1702 (Roberts) – amended to prohibit a court from issuing an arrest warrant for a person’s failure to respond, pay an assessed fine, or appear in court for a traffic citation issued for an offense that is classified or charged as an infraction. Instead, the court must issue a notice, which will include a second scheduled court date, to be sent to the driver of the vehicle. If the driver fails to respond a second time, the court will issue a second notice of failure to respond, pay the fine assessed, or appear. A copy of the notice will be sent to the driver and to the Department of Revenue. When the driver applies to renew his or her driver’s license, the Department of Revenue must deny the application until all delinquent fines and fees in connection with the traffic offense have been satisfied. Crime Prevention Committee. Heard 2/14. Passed Committee 2/28. Referred Rules Committee. (Support)
HB 2007 (Haffner) – allows municipal judges to suspend the driver’s license for failure to appear in court for violations of municipal ordinances. Local Government Committee. Heard 2/23. Passed Committee 2/24. Referred Rules Committee. (Support)
Economic Development Bills
HB 1598 (Falkner) – prohibits a redevelopment project from collecting economic activity taxes or payments in lieu of taxes from any tax whose revenues are dedicated to public safety unless the governing body of the municipality or the commission established under current law has voted to allow the redevelopment project to collect the economic activity taxes or payments in lieu of taxes of that tax. Local Government Committee. Heard 1/13.
SB 735 (Koenig) – requires NIDs, CIDs and TDDs to be terminated upon completion of improvements and satisfaction of debt. Also limits total combined sales taxes of CIDs and TDDs to 3.25% and exempts food. Ways & Means Committee. Heard 1/20. Passed Committee 1/27.
SB 874 (Arthur) – allows a school district to exclude real property from a proposed tax increment financing redevelopment area if the school district determines that such redevelopment area will have an adverse effect on such school district. Ways & Means Committee. Heard 3/3. Passed Committee 3/10. Perfection Calendar. (Oppose)
SB 908 (Koenig) – requires the governing body of a city or county establishing a NID, CID, TDD or TIF to submit to the State Auditor and the Department of Revenue a description of the boundaries of the district, as well as information on assessments made in the district, as described in the act. Ways & Means Committee. Heard 3/2. Passed Committee 3/10. Passed Senate 4/6. House Government Oversight Committee. Heard 4/13.
HB 1601 (Chipman) – requires a person appointed to elective public office not be delinquent in the payment of state income tax, personal property tax, municipal tax, or real property tax. Elections Committee. Heard 3/9. Passed Committee 3/10. Referred Rules Committee. Passed Committee 3/23. Informal Perfection Calendar.
HB 1611 (Sassmann) – requires candidates for political subdivision or special district offices that are currently designated as nonpartisan to file an indication of their political party membership, if any, when running for office. Independents may continue to run for such local offices in the same manner. General Laws Committee. Heard 1/24. (Oppose)
HB 1859 (Eggleston) – political subdivisions or special districts shall label ballot measures of any type that are submitted to a vote of the people alphabetically in the order in which they are submitted. Elections Committee. Heard 2/9. Passed Committee 2/16. Referred Rules Committee. Passed Committee 2/24. Perfected 4/14.
HB 1911 (Shaul) – political subdivisions or special districts shall label ballot measures of any type that are submitted to a vote of the people alphabetically in the order in which they are submitted. Elections Committee.
HB 2678 (McCreery) – allows elected officials to use campaign funds for legal fees incurred as result of official duties. Judiciary Committee. Heard 3/2. Passed Committee 3/9. Referred Rules Committee. Passed Committee 3/30.
HJR 91 (Eggleston) – upon voter approval the Constitutional amendment would change the process and requirements for initiative petitions seeking a Constitutional amendment. Heard 2/1. Passed Committee 2/9. Referred Rules Committee. Passed Committee 2/16. Perfected 2/24. Passed House 3/10. Senate Elections Committee. Heard 4/13. Similar to HJR 102 (Evans) Elections Committee. Heard 1/26.
SB 1049 (Brattin) – requires all candidates for offices in cities, towns, villages, and townships to declare a political party affiliation when filing for office. Local Government Committee. (Oppose)
HB 1581 (Mayhew) – provides that, for a city of the fourth classification with no more than 2,000 inhabitants, if a statute or ordinance authorizes the mayor to appoint a member of a local board or commission, any requirement that the appointed person be a resident of the city will be deemed satisfied if the person owns real property or a business in the city. Local Government Committee. Heard 4/7. Passed Committee 4/14. Referred Rules Committee.
HB 1584 (Murphy) – requires political subdivisions that require the installation of electric vehicle charging stations at certain businesses to pay the costs associated with the installation, maintenance, and operation of such station. Transportation Committee. Heard 1/12. Passed Committee 1/26. Referred Rules Committee. Passed Rules Committee 2/10. Perfected 2/28. Passed House 3/10. Senate Commerce/Environment Committee. Hearing 4/20.
HB 1614 (Lovasco) – prohibits the state and any political subdivision of the state from making or enforcing any statute, ordinance, or rule regarding the parking of an unlicensed motor vehicle on private property if the vehicle is wholly within the property boundaries, is parked on a surface suitable for a driveway or parking area, and is not supported by any device other than its own tires unless it is being repaired for a period not to exceed 72 hours. The bill also prohibits the state and any political subdivision from making or enforcing any statute, ordinance, or rule, except for a statute, ordinance, or rule restricting air pollution or noise pollution, that would prohibit or penalize a noncorporate owner or renter of a private, single family residence from using the residence in a way that does not pose a clear and present danger to the health or safety of the neighbors, or would require a noncorporate owner or renter of a private residence to use the property in a way contrary to the wishes of the owner or renter. Downsizing Government Committee. Heard 3/2. Passed Committee 3/9. Referred Rules Committee. Passed Committee 3/23. Informal Perfection Calendar.
HB 1633 (Morse) – currently, political subdivisions that fail to submit the required annual financial statement to the State Auditor are fined $500 a day. This bill reduces the fine to an amount of not more than 10% of the total sales and use tax revenue of the fiscal year for which the annual financial statement was not filed for municipalities with fewer than 3,500 inhabitants. Financial Institutions Committee. Heard 4/6.
HB 1657 (Hicks) – specifies that the General Assembly occupies and preempts the entire field of legislation touching in any way the control or regulation of specific breeds of dogs. However, a village, town, city, or county can still prohibit dogs from running at large or to further control or regulate dogs within its boundaries so long as the ordinance, order, policy, or regulation is not breed specific. Local Government Committee. Heard 1/27. Passed Committee 3/3. Referred Rules Committee.
HB 1661 (Hicks) – adopts the “International Swimming Pool and Spa Code” as it existed on May 1, 2021, and promulgated by the International Code Council, as the county and municipal swimming pool and spa code for the state. The Code applies to all construction, alteration, remodeling, enlargement, and repair of swimming pools and spas in any county or municipality that elects to regulate pools and spas. Counties and municipalities are authorized to establish procedures for the administration and enforcement of the International Swimming Pool and Spa Code and are authorized to adopt local amendments to the Code or amendments made by the International Code Council. Economic Development Committee. Heard 2/24. Passed Committee 3/24. Referred Rules Committee.
HB 1682 (Brown) – amended to state that no political subdivision shall require a property owner to have a home inspection conducted of a residential property regarding the sale of the property. This provision shall not apply to any inspection requirement of new construction or occupancy permit. Perfected 3/30. Passed House 4/6. Senate Local Government Committee.
HB 2454 (Murphy) – provides that political subdivisions shall not enforce any ordinances struck down by a court and
that the chief executive of the political subdivision may be fined for any such enforcement. Emerging Issues Committee.
HB 2593 (Lovasco) – limits political subdivisions regulations on home-based businesses. Downsizing Government Committee. Heard 2/23. Passed Committee 3/3. Referred Rules Committee. Passed Committee 3/8. Perfected 4/6. Passed House 4/14. (Oppose)
SB 697 (Gannon) – a village, town, city, or county may prohibit dogs from running at large or further control or regulate dogs within its boundaries so long as the ordinance, order, policy, or regulation is not breed specific. Local Government Committee. Heard 3/2. Passed Committee 3/9.
SB 724 (Hegeman) – if a political subdivision’s failure to timely submit annual financial statement is the result of fraud or other illegal conduct by an employee or officer of the political subdivision, the political subdivision shall not be subject to a fine if the statement is filed within 30 days of discovery of the fraud or illegal conduct. If the political subdivision has an outstanding balance for fines at the time it files its first annual financial statement after August 28, 2022, the Director of Revenue shall make a one-time downward adjustment to such outstanding balance in an amount that reduces the outstanding balance by 90%. Local Government Committee. Heard 1/2
SB 809 (Koenig) — limits political subdivisions regulations on home-based businesses. Small Business Committee. Heard 3/8. Passed Committee 3/22. Perfection Calendar.
SB 842 (Moon) – repeals the prescription drug monitoring program. Public Safety Committee. (Oppose)
SB 867 (Koenig) – establishes the statewide mechanical contractor license for mechanical contractors which shall be regulated by the Division of Professional Registration, within the Department of Commerce and Insurance. This act creates the Office of Mechanical Contractors within the Division to carry out the provisions of this act. Political subdivisions may establish their own local mechanical contractor’s license but shall recognize a statewide mechanical contractor license in lieu of a local license for the purposes of performing contracting work or obtaining permits to perform work within such political subdivision. No political subdivision may require the employees of a statewide licensed mechanical contractor or its subcontractors or manufacturers’ representatives to obtain journeymen licenses, apprenticeship licenses, or occupational licenses that require passing any examination or any special requirements to assess proficiency. General Laws Committee. Heard 3/1. Passed Committee 3/22. Perfection Calendar.
SB 891 (Moon) – creates recall provisions for elected municipal officials. Local Government Committee.
SB 1028 (Moon) – provides a cause of action against a public body that causes economic detriment to a person for misapplication or unequal enforcement of the law. Judiciary Committee.
SB 1135 (Hegeman) – bases for closing records and meetings are modified to include certain records relating to records relating to operational guidelines, policies, and plans regarding responses to critical incidents. Existing or proposed security protocols of property owned by a public body may be closed under the act. Records containing any residential address, personal phone number, or personal email address of any employee, customer, or constituent of a public body or applicant for employment or appointment to the public body may be closed. Public bodies may close records containing business or personal addresses, telephone numbers, or email addresses of elected or appointed officials, or other individuals if the public body determines that disclosure would impair the body’s ability to protect the security or safety of persons or property. The act authorizes the closure of inter-agency or intra-agency memoranda or letters that would not be available by state or federal law to a party other than an agency in litigation with the agency, provided that this exception shall not apply to records created twenty-five years or more before the date the records were requested. Also, a public governmental body is authorized to close records that are related to email addresses and telephone numbers submitted to a public governmental body by individuals or entities for the sole purpose of receiving electronic or other communications. The public body may also close records of utility usage and bill records for customers of public utilities unless the customer requests them or authorizes their release.
Currently, requests for records must be acted upon with three business days. This act changes this requirement to five business days and conditions the earliest possible date that the records will be available upon receipt of payment. If the custodian of records requests payment of a fee prior to providing the earliest date the records will be available, the public body shall consider the request fulfilled if payment is not received on or before the date requested by the public body or if the requester fails to respond within thirty days to the body’s request for payment. Government Accountability Committee. (Support)
Personnel & Employment Bills
HB 1640 – (Seitz) – recognizes posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as an occupational disease, under Chapter 287, RSMo dealing with Workers Compensation, when diagnosed in specified first responders. Public Safety Committee. Heard 3/29. Passed Committee 4/5. Referred Rules Committee.
HB 1656 (Hicks) – specifies that no political subdivision can require its employees to reside within a jurisdiction. Public Safety Committee. Heard1/25. Passed Committee 2/1. Referred Rules Committee. Passed Committee 2/22. Perfected 3/23. Passed House 3/28. Senate Transportation/Infrastructure Committee.
HB 2439 (Hovis) – adds additional grounds for when the Director of the Department of Public Safety shall discipline peace officers. Crime Prevention Committee. Heard 1/31. Passed Committee 2/7. Referred Rules Committee. Passed Committee 3/24. Informal Perfection Calendar.
SB 689 (Williams) – adds additional grounds for when the Director of the Department of Public Safety shall discipline peace officers. Public Safety Committee. Heard 1/25. Passed Committee 3/1.
SB 708 (Beck) – provides that post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) diagnosed in any person who is a firefighter, police officer, emergency medical technician, emergency medical dispatcher or other first responder shall be presumed as an occupational disease resulting from employment if the person has completed at least 5 years of employment and the person was examined by a medical professional upon commencing employment and the examination failed to reveal any evidence of PTSD. Insurance Committee.
SB 728 (Onder) – establishes the “Public Employee Janus Rights Act,” permitting a public body to withhold fees from public employee paychecks for the purpose of paying any portion of labor organization dues, agency shop fees, or any other fees paid to a labor organization only with the written, informed consent of the public employee. The act also requires the public employee’s written, informed consent for labor organizations to use such fees or dues for political purposes. Any authorization required by this act may be in written or electronic form. Any authorization must be submitted to the public body employer before such fees may be withheld. Furthermore, the employer shall require clear and compelling evidence that the authorization was freely given. Any consent given by an employee may be revoked at any time. Failure to comply with these requirements on the part of an employer shall result in a fine of no more than $500 per violation. General Laws Committee.
SB 854 (Washington) – the POST Commission and the Attorney General shall each create and maintain a database that shall store public data related to officer misconduct. Each law enforcement agency shall submit individual officer data which shall be redacted of personal identifying information of the officer. Public Safety Committee.
SB 1188 (Beck) – current law prohibits punitive damages against a public entity. This act allows punitive damages to be awarded if a plaintiff shows by clear and convincing evidence that the public entity violated a safety standard issued by the employer or the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), regulation, or statute in this state or any lawful order of a court or other judicial body. Small Business Committee.
Public Safety Bills
HB 1462 (Schnelting) – allows a concealed carry permit holder to lawfully carry firearms on public transportation, as defined in the bill. Anyone with a permit may also carry a firearm while traveling by bus. Also removes the prohibition on the carrying of firearms in churches and other places of worship by a person with a valid concealed carry permit. General Laws Committee. Heard 1/31. Passed Committee 2/7. Referred Rules Committee. Passed Committee 2/24. Perfected 3/1. Passed House 3/9. Senate General Laws Committee. Heard 3/29. Passed Committee 4/5.
HB 1660 (Hicks) – allows concealed carry permit holders to lawfully carry firearms on public transportation. “Public transportation system” is defined in the bill. In addition, this bill exempts persons transporting non-functioning or unloaded firearms on buses from the crimes prohibiting the possession of weapons on buses. General Laws Committee. Heard 1/31. Passed Committee 2/7. Referred Rules Committee.
HB 2154 (Perkins) – the costs of installing a fire hydrant, excluding dry fire hydrants, within the city limits of an incorporated city shall be paid by the city. If a city cannot or does not pay for the installation of such a fire hydrant, the city shall not require the installation of any such fire hydrant. Public Safety Committee. Heard 1/25. Passed Committee 4/5. Referred Rules Committee.
HB 2432 (Roden) – returns the control of the City of St. Louis Police Department back to the Board of Police Commissioners. Public Safety Committee. Heard 3/29.
SB 752 (Burlision) – repeals provisions that prohibit someone with a valid concealed carry permit from carrying a concealed weapon in any meeting of the governing body of a unit of local government or the General Assembly. General Laws Committee. Heard 1/25. Passed Committee 3/1.
SB 795 (Washington) -modifies provisions relating to police use of force. Judiciary/Criminal Jurisprudence Committee.
SB 804 (Onder) – a person carrying a concealed firearm who possesses a valid concealed carry permit or endorsement shall not be prohibited from accessing or using any public transportation system. The person may not be harassed or detained for carrying a concealed firearm on the property, vehicles, or conveyances owned, contracted, or leased by such systems that are accessible to the public. Additionally, an employee of the Bi-State Development Agency may carry a weapon into any facility or conveyance of the agency. General Laws Committee. Heard 1/25. Passed Committee 3/1.
SB 859 (Mosley) – creates police protection districts which shall be a political subdivision organized and empowered to supply protection to people and property from crimes and hazards, to render first aid for the purpose of saving lives, and to give assistance in the event of an accident or emergency. The police protection district must consist of contiguous tracts or parcels of property containing all or parts of one county and may include, in whole but not in part, any city, town, or village. Public Safety Committee.
SB 1012 (Eigel) – returns St. Louis City police to state control under a board of commissioners appointed by the Governor. Public Safety Committee.
SB 1033 (Rizzo) – repeals provisions relating to law enforcement officers who enforce certain federal laws or who provide material aid to federal law enforcement officers. General Laws Committee.
Taxation & Revenue Bills
HB 1583 (Murphy) – if, prior to the expiration of a temporary levy increase, voters approve a subsequent levy increase, the new tax rate ceiling shall remain in effect only until such time as the temporary levy expires under the terms originally approved by a vote of the people, at which time the tax rate ceiling shall be decreased by the amount of the temporary levy increase. If, prior to the expiration of a temporary levy increase, voters of a political subdivision are asked to approve an additional, permanent increase to the political subdivision’s tax rate ceiling, voters shall be submitted ballot language that clearly indicates that if the permanent levy increase is approved, the temporary levy shall be made permanent. Ways & Means Committee. Heard 1/12. Passed Committee 1/19. Referred Rules Committee. Passed Rules Committee 2/7. Perfected 4/6. Passed House 4/14.
HB 1740 (Dogan) – prohibits telecommuting work from being subject to earnings taxes. Workforce Development Committee. Heard 2/7. Passed Committee 2/14. Referred Rules Committee. Passed Committee 3/3. Informal Perfection Calendar.
HB 2214 (Hurlbert) – allows any municipality to levy up to 1/2 cent sales tax for public safety, subject to 4/7 vote. Also allows any municipality with a fire department, municipality contracting for fire service or fire district to levy an additional 1/2 cent sales tax for fire service. All taxes must be approved by a 4/7 vote. The League has long opposed sales tax authority for County fire districts. Local Government Committee. Heard 2/24.
HB 2220 (Falkner) – relates to penalties for failure to file annual municipal finance reports. Penalties could include disincorporation. Local Government Committee. Heard 2/23. Passed Committee 3/3. Referred Rules Committee. Passed Committee 3/10. Informal Perfection Calendar.
HB 2619 (Railsback) – allows any municipality to levy a hotel tax of up to 5% per night for promoting tourism. Subject to voter approval. Tourism Committee. (Support)
HB 2729 (Davidson) – requires each political subdivision to reduce its property tax levy such that the amount of tax revenue generated by such tax levy shall be reduced by an amount that is substantially equal to 50% the total amount of funds received by such political subdivision pursuant to the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. Clearly violates federal law. (Oppose) Local Government Committee. Heard 3/24.
HJR 126 (Pietzman) – constitutional amendment to phase in property tax exemption for senior citizens. Public Policy Committee. (Oppose)
SB 911 (Eigel) – for the 2022 and 2023 calendar years, this act requires each political subdivision to reduce its property tax levy such that the amount of tax revenue generated by such tax levy shall be reduced by an amount that is substantially equal to the total amount of funds received by such political subdivision pursuant to the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 during such calendar years. Clearly violates federal law. Ways & Means Committee. Heard 2/24. Passed Committee 3/3. (Oppose)
SB 967 (Hough) – requires all motor vehicle dealers to apply to collect and remit sales tax on motor vehicles sold by such dealer. Transportation Committee. Heard 3/1. Passed Committee 3/8.
SJR 59 (Brattin) – replaces all property taxes with a sales tax on property sales. Ways & Means Committee. Heard 3/31.
Transportation and Vehicle Bills
HB 2705 (Lovasco) – prohibits the use of traffic cameras. Downsizing Government Committee. Heard 4/13.
SB 782 (Moon) – repeals the gas tax increase. Transportation Committee. (Oppose)
SB 811 (Eigel) – repeals the gas tax increase. Transportation Committee. (Oppose)
SB 1149 (White) – repeals the gas tax increase. Transportation Committee. (Oppose)
HB 2016 (Black) – allows any political subdivision of the state to form a broadband infrastructure improvement district. In addition, the board of a district may allow the inclusion of a private entity, as defined in the bill, in the district. Broadband Committee. Heard 3/10.
HB 2353 (Riggs) – authorizes political subdivisions to form broadband infrastructure improvement districts. Broadband Committee. Heard 3/10.
SB 1074 (Hegeman) – no federal funds received by the state, or a political subdivision shall be expended for the construction of broadband internet infrastructure unless the project to be constructed is located in an “unserved area” or “underserved area”, and the project will provide broadband internet service to customers at certain speeds as stated in the act. Commerce Committee. Heard 4/6. Passed Committee 4/13.
SB 1232 (O’Laughlin) – modifies the definition of “video service” for provisions of law relating to video service providers and such definition now includes streaming content. The act also states that any suit arising out of a dispute over the video service provider fee established in statute shall be filed by the Public Service Commission under its own name or on behalf of the franchise entity seeking to recover an additional amount or seeking a refund. A video service provider shall not be required to retain financial records associated with payment of the video service provider fee for more than 3 years unless the Public Service Commission, rather than a franchise entity, has commenced a dispute regarding such payment. Commerce Committee. Heard 4/13.
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