Crime Bill passes Missouri House

The Missouri House has passed legislation to address crime in the state of Missouri. State Representative Bill Hardwick of Waynesville serves on the Committee on Crime Prevention and Public Safety and worked in the crafting process of House Bill 301. During the committee process, several amendments were introduced including requiring individuals to register to purchase ammunition, making it illegal for anyone under 20 to purchase a semiautomatic rifle, and criminalizing someone under the age of 18 for possessing a firearm on public land. Representative Hardwick was successful in getting the gun control language stripped from the bill. The bill was debated on the house floor for over 3 hours and included a discussion on the issue of the second amendment.

Hardwick went on to say that he will not compromise on the right to bear arms. The bill also included a provision that would allow the Governor to appoint a special prosecutor in areas of the state with an excessive homicide rate, specifically in an area that has a homicide rate in excess of 35 cases per 100-thousand people, and where the Governor determines there is a threat to public safety and health.
Hardwick spoke on the house floor in favor of the special prosecutor provision….

According to language in the bill the state will provide funding to the special prosecutor who would be authorized to hire up to 15 assistant prosecutors and up to 15 staff members. It also contains language to establish Peace Officer Basic Training Tuition Reimbursement and would implement a policy to help offenders apply for Medicaid and obtain vital documents like birth certificates or a social security card. The bill now goes to the Missouri Senate for consideration.