Greetings Fellow Missourians,

    I am currently serving as the Legislator for Missouri State House of Representative in the newly formed 125th district—thanks to the supporters in the Primary elections of 2012, 2014 and 2016. This district includes the southern half of Benton, northern third of Cedar, and all of Hickory and St. Clair Counties. [see map]

The Latest News

CAPITOL REPORT - October 12, 2017. It’s no secret that I have a passion for history, especially local history.  My report is somewhat different this week as I want to share some of that local history with everyone.   A few weeks ago, I was asked by the St. Clair County Historical Society to give a presentation at the Iconium Cemetery Historical Walk-Through on a beautiful Sunday afternoon, October 8th.  About 30 like-minded history enthusiasts joined together for a step back in time. 

Stop #1 was presented by Dr. Wayne Morton.  His presentation was about Dr. John W. Wright, born December 20, 1836, in Washington County, Kentucky.  His father, Nathaniel Wright, was born October 14, 1806, and on October 11, 1831, married Miss Elizabeth Parker, daughter of Richard and Elizabeth Parker; she was born October 11, 1813, in Culpeper County, Virginia.  John W., the second child and oldest son in the family, received a good education in youth, attending the Georgetown College at Georgetown, Kentucky, where he graduated in the class of 1861.  Entering the Medical College of Kentucky at Louisville, he graduated in 1863, and in 1864 was a graduate from the Louisville University, having been a member of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of that institution.  He first commenced practice in Louisville, but after remaining there one year, went to High Grove in 1865, where he had an extensive patronage for four years.  April 1, 1868, he married Miss Amanda Rouse, a daughter of William A. and Amanda Rouse, of Bullitt County, Kentucky, and they had two daughters:  Nancy A., born April 19, 1869, and Matilda B., born August 28, 1875.  In 1870, Dr. Wright purchased a tract of 80 acres of land in Jackson Township, St. Clair County, Missouri, and devoted some attention to agricultural pursuits and raising livestock.  From time to time, he added to his original purchase until he became owner of 1,200 acres of excellent land on both sides of the Osage River in Tally Bend, several hundred acres which were fenced and well adapted for fine stock which included Kentucky Horses.  In 1880, he served St. Clair County as a Democrat representative in the state legislature.  Upon completion of his service, he resumed his extensive medical practice.   A member of the A. F. & A. M. and A. O.U. W. fraternities, he was known for being well versed in his profession, kind and gentle to the sick, and affable in his manners. 

Janine Jacomb shared about Grace Souther for Stop # 2.  Janine and her husband, Jim, own and live in the "Ben and Grace Souther Home" located across from Scott’s Iconium Store on Highway C.  During the early years of the H. Roe Bartle Boy Scout Camp, which was started in 1929, the Souther Home operated as a hotel.  Then during the 1950's and early 60's, Grace Souther was the Iconium Post Master, and operated the Iconium Rural Station Post Office from her home. 

I gave the 3rd Iconium Cemetery walk-thru presentation.  The subject was Granville Green, born May 8, 1822, in Kentucky. He married Martha Smith also born in Kentucky.  They moved with several young children to the Iconium Prairie in the late 1840's and lived on a farm 1/4 mile west of Iconium.  When St. Clair Countians filled out their 1861/62 personal property tax assessment, many were earmarked as being Southern Sympathizers. During 1862, they were hunted down and killed by the Missouri State Militia (MSM).  On December 8, a squad of MSM federal funded soldiers rode their Cavalry Horses into the earmarked Green Family yard.  Granville managed to hide, however, his pregnant wife, Martha, holding the hand of little 2 year old James Green, watched from the porch as the soldiers caught two of the older boys about ages 10 and 12.  The young boys were roped and dragged to a tall tree nearby.  They were hung by their feet and swung back in forth in taunting torment until their father, Granville, came out from hiding.  The soldiers shot and killed Granville.  His young sons were allowed to live, however, heartbroken at the loss of their father at Christmas time.

Wade Harris, a VFW and member of the American Legion, gave a very interesting presentation on the 4 Lewis Brothers of Iconium (see photo below).  These 4 brothers all served in the Army in Europe during WWII.  D-Day,  June 6, 1944, was the day the Allied powers crossed the English Channel and landed on the beaches of Normandy, France, beginning the liberation of Western Europe from Nazi control during WWII.  Within 3 months, the northern part of France would be freed and the invasion force would be preparing to enter Germany.  Two of the brothers, George and William were in the early invasion and were both killed during the first two months.  The third brother, James, served through the terrible winter and the Battle of the Bulge before being killed.  After the loss of 3 brothers who gave their all for our freedom, the 4th brother, John, was called in from the battlefield and sent back home.  The 3 brothers who were killed in action were buried in France.  Then in 1948, the Lewis Family requested that the 3 brothers’ remains be returned home.  One of the largest graveside military funerals ever held in the Iconium Cemetery was on that day of re-interment. 


There will be a special Veterans Week Kickoff at the Capitol on Saturday, November 4, hosted by Lieutenant Governor Mike Parson to honor veterans, law enforcement, and emergency personnel. Special performances, displays and recognition have been planned for the ceremony that will take place on the South Lawn beginning at 10:00 a.m.   Motorcycles and patrol cars are welcome and encouraged. 

If you would like to be added to the e-mail list to receive our Capitol Reports, you may e-mail me at or call the Capitol office at (573) 751-4065 and speak with Kelley Rogers, my Legislative Assistant.

“Ride’n for the Brand”

State Representative

Representing the good people

of the 125th District

CAPITOL REPORT - October 5, 2017. My wife, Marla, and I were blessed on Sunday to attend the 125th Anniversary Celebration of New Hope United Methodist Church in Edwards.  The original church was constructed in 1892 with free labor.  There have been many loving additions and expansions; and just recently, they doubled the fellowship hall area with no debt incurred along the way.  I was honored to present Minister Cliff Saupe and the congregation with a resolution recognizing this wonderful anniversary and building dedication of the fellowship hall addition.  Church members and visitors celebrated with a delicious dinner with all the trimmings and praise music.  “To God be the Glory” was ever present throughout the day’s worship and praise. 


I visited the El Dorado Springs Senior Center last Friday and was given the opportunity to work at the Reception Desk meeting and greeting visitors during lunch time.  I have sure enjoyed the time I have spent during September learning more about the vital role senior centers play in our communities.  The El Dorado Springs Senior Center serves almost 27,000 meals per year.  That’s about 520 meals per week just in the El Dorado Springs area alone.  Yes, the meals are very important, but all of the other activities, services, and social time that each senior center provides are irreplaceable.   As I have encouraged before, please consider attending, volunteering or taking part in a fundraiser. 


Join me in Fristoe on Saturday, October 14, for the Community Fish Fry.  It will be held from 4-7 p.m. at the Community Center in Antwiler Park on Route CC.  Fristoe is making plans for a new community center to include many wonderful opportunities, and surveys will be available at the fish fry for public input on the new center.  


MoDOT Cautions Motorists to Watch Out for Slow Moving Vehicles 

It’s harvest time on Missouri farms and MoDOT wants to remind motorists to pay extra attention to farm equipment using and crossing state roadways. “Harvest season is a busy time of the year for Missouri’s farm families, and MoDOT wants to make it a safe time of year, too,” said MoDOT Highway Safety and Traffic Engineer Nicole Hood.  “Farm equipment vehicles can be slow moving, and motorists may be surprised when they come up behind one on a Missouri highway.”  Missouri’s 34,000 miles of state roadway pass alongside the fields of thousands of farms throughout the state. Farm equipment vehicles were involved in 582 crashes in the three years of 2014 through 2016.   These crashes resulted in 17 people being killed and 199 injured.  The majority of these crashes occurred on letter routes and county roads, but some crashes also occurred on interstates and other high-speed roadways.  Motorists are advised to slow down when approaching farm vehicles.  Be patient as the farm vehicles travel to and from their field entrances.  As a reminder, legislation was passed in 2015 that allows weight limitations to be exceeded by as much as 10% on highways for hauling grain and grain co-products during the harvest season. 


There will be a special Veterans Week Kickoff at the Capitol on Saturday, November 4, hosted by Lieutenant Governor Mike Parson to honor veterans, law enforcement, and emergency personnel. Special performances, displays and recognition have been planned for the ceremony that will take place on the South Lawn beginning at 10:00 a.m.   Motorcycles and patrol cars are welcome and encouraged. 

It is my honor to serve the constituents of District 125. If you ever have questions, concerns, or input, please feel free to contact me any time at (573) 751-4065. YOUR District 125 Capitol office is 235B, and YOU are always welcome! 

CAPITOL REPORT - September 28, 2017.  Last Thursday I attended another Prayer Across Missouri gathering in Stockton.  Hoping for a “mighty movement of God throughout the Show Me State,” the Missouri Baptist Convention started its initiative of prayer meetings on October 4th and currently has meetings scheduled through November 3rd with a goal of gathering in each of Missouri’s 114 counties during 2017-2018 hoping to transform lives and communities.

My wife, Marla, and I attended the 8th Annual Capitol Commission Southwest Missouri Banquet in Springfield last Thursday.  As a non-partisan and non-denominational organization, the Capitol Commission message is one of hope, faith and love.  Rather than a political message to the state capitol, it brings the “good news” of Jesus Christ to legislators and state leadership.

Since September is National Senior Center Month, I visited the Harbor Village/Warsaw Senior Center during the lunch hour on Friday and had the pleasure of going on the Meals on Wheels route with Margie Hetherington.  On Monday, I visited the McCarty Senior Center in Wheatland.  These visits have been made possible through Care Connection which manages the operations of each of the senior centers in District 125.  They are a non-profit Area Agency on Aging serving 13 West Central Missouri counties operating 22 senior centers.  Last week I reported that the Rivers Crossing Life Center serves almost 26,000 meals in the Osceola area each year.  The Harbor Village/Warsaw Senior Center serves almost 47,000 meals per year, while the McCarty Senior Center provides over 43,000 meals each year.  These are amazing numbers and an even more amazing service provided to our seniors.  I urge everyone to spend some time and volunteer at one of these fine locations.  Pilates exercise, line dancing, guitar lessons, computer class, beading, Zumba exercise, quilting…the choices are many!

PHOTO ABOVE: Rep. Love visits with Harbor Village/Warsaw Senior Center staff last Friday during National Senior Center Month: (l-r) Regional Services Director Chris McCune, Love, Cathy Miller, and County Services Director JoAnn Jordan.

PHOTO ABOVE: In the kitchen with McCarty Senior Center staff on Monday:  (l-r) Diana Burns, Rep. Love, Center Coordinator and Head Cook Mark Swigert, Eileen Haston, Rosalie Roberts, and Donnita Stanley.

American Legion Auxiliary Unit 217 hosted a President’s Homecoming Dinner last Friday evening.  Marla and I attended, and I had the honor of recognizing Carolyn Sanford for her service as President of the Department of the Missouri American Legion Auxiliary.  She is a 15-year member of Unit 217 and also serves as the Warsaw Representative to the Board of Directors of the Base Community Council at Whiteman Air Force Base.  She and her husband, Dick, have resided in the Warsaw community since 1995.
The President of the Dept. of the MO American Legion Auxiliary, Carolyn Sanford, is recognized for her service with a resolution in her honor by Rep. Love.

Warsaw Pioneer Heritage Days is scheduled for October 21st and 22nd.   Knowing this, I inquired with MoDOT and was informed that construction on the Highway 7 bridge in Warsaw will be temporarily suspended for the festival and reopened to two-lane traffic to ease traffic congestion.  Also, MoDOT mowers are currently working statewide on a complete right-of-way clearing.  Every other year, mowers focus on clearing one path on either side, and each opposite year they perform an entire clearing.  Be vigilant of MoDOT crews as you are out on state highways.

The board members of “Discover More on Route 54” will be meeting on Monday, October 2, at 8:30 a.m., at Smith’s Restaurant in Collins, MO.   We will be discussing a restructuring of website administration.  I am sad to report we will be losing an invaluable board member as Teresa Smith will be leaving her position as Secretary/Treasurer and Website Technician.  We certainly appreciate Teresa’s years of service and commitment to promoting tourism and awareness.  All “Discover More on Route 54” interested parties are encouraged to attend the meeting.

CAPITOL REPORT - September 21, 2017.  “Pray Across Missouri” events took place last Thursday in District 125, and I was fortunate to be able to attend the events in Hickory and St. Clair Counties.  Organized by the Missouri Baptist Convention, their goal is to hold prayer meetings in each of Missouri’s 114 county seats during 2017-2018 to pray for all of Missouri’s servants, and recognize that God has placed men and women in authority to promote good and restrain evil, positively impacting lives and communities. 

I also attended the El Dorado Springs Chamber of Commerce monthly luncheon on Thursday and found out that the Missouri Department of Conservation plans to have mandatory deer tissuesampling checkpoints throughout District 125 on November 11 and 12.  MDC is requiring hunters who harvest deer in any of 25 select counties of its 41-county CWD Management Zone during the opening weekend of the firearms deer season to present their harvested deer at one of the MDC sampling stations so tissue samples can be taken to test the animals for Chronic Wasting Disease. The 25 mandatory CWD sampling counties include:  new counties added to the CWD Management Zone, counties with previous CWD positives, and counties very near previous positives.

  • Sampling locations will be open from 7:30 a.m. until at least 8 p.m.
  • Deer must be presented by the hunter who harvested the animal.
  • Hunters will be asked to identify the location within the county the deer was harvested.
  • Deer may be field dressed before being taken to a sampling station.
  • Hunters have the option of presenting just the deer head with about six inches of neck attached.
  • For bucks bound to a taxidermist, the cape may be removed prior to being taken to a sampling station as long as about six inches of the neck is left attached. 

MDC Sampling Stations Include:

  • Benton - Cole Camp High School Stadium, 500 S. Keeney St.
  • Benton - Warsaw, Lost Valley Hatchery, 28232 Hatchery Ave.
  • Cedar - El Dorado Springs Chamber of Commerce, 1303 Hwy. 32
  • Cedar - Stockton, Stockton Lake-Crabtree Cove Park, 17630 ECT-1
  • Hickory - Hermitage, Pomme de Terre US Corps of Engineers Maintenance Shop, Hwy. 254 West
  • St. Clair - Appleton City High School, 408 W. 4th St.
  • St. Clair - Collins, Former MoDOT Maintenance Shop, 1501 Business 13 South
  • St. Clair - Osceola, Conservation Department Shop, 3815 NE. Hwy. 13. 


I was invited to speak to the members of the Missouri Association of Veterans Organization (MAVO) on Tuesday in Jefferson City.  My presentation centered on efforts to compose and pass a state law to preserve and protect military cemeteries and all veterans’ objects of remembrance throughout the state.  I stressed the importance of contacting Governor Greitens and each person’s legislator to support such legislation.   


It always amazes me how busy the district senior centers are on a daily basis.  I was reminded again yesterday of their significance when I visited Rivers Crossing Life Center in Osceola.  Are you aware they offer in in-home services, tax preparation, care management, Medicare and Medicaid information, education classes such as horticulture, exercise classes, and even country line dancing?  This is all in addition to serving over 30 onsite meals each weekday and around 70 home-delivered meals each day.  That adds up to almost 26,000 meals in the Osceola area each year! 

Senior centers are always in need of additional funding and volunteers.  Rivers Crossing Life Center sponsors several fundraiser events each year including quarterly Mexican dinners, a pie auction, and cappuccino sales.   Volunteers are certainly needed for these events, but more importantly, volunteers are needed to serve as front desk receptionist, deliver meals to homebound people, assist in the kitchen and help with telephone calls.  I encourage everyone to donate some time well spent.  I read a wonderful quote in their recent newsletter:  “The Best Classroom in the world is at the feet of an elderly person!”

CAPITOL REPORT - September 14, 2017.  My "Hat's Off" to the Warsaw American Legion Post 217 for presenting a moving tribute to honor the fallen and remember the valor on 9/11.   I was very honored to be asked to say a few words.  My comments focused on thanking First Responders, Firefighters, Law Enforcement, and Military.   I reminded everyone how our Great Nation rallies together during conflicts.   All the stories of heroism that came out of 9/11 remind us that we can come together as a nation and support each other.  Another example of this support and unity is happening right now in Texas and Florida as families rebuild their lives amidst the devastation of Harvey and Irma. 

Also, it is my heartfelt purpose to mend fences with those who I offended by my recent choice of words, and I hope my mistake can even be used to bring unity to help eliminate some of the differences that exist between rural and urban Missourians. 


The members of the Missouri House of Representatives came together Wednesday afternoon to discuss the pieces of legislation that were approved by the General Assembly but vetoed by the governor.  Of the handful of bills to consider, HCB 3 received all of the discussion.  Members debated the merits of overriding the governor’s veto versus working together to find another funding solution to preserve in-home and nursing care for more than 8,000 disabled, seniors, and veterans of Missourians. 

As House members discussed a possible veto override of HCB 3, Senate Leader Ron Richard and House Speaker Todd Richardson announced that their two chambers will work together to develop a solution.  Also to be considered is restoring provider rate cuts including cuts to private duty nurses who administer in-home neonatal care.  Richard and Richardson have asked Sen. Mike Cunningham and House Budget Chair Scott Fitzpatrick to work together, and to work with their colleagues from both parties, to formulate a fiscally responsible plan that will ensure services are maintained for some of the state’s most vulnerable citizens. 


"Discover More on Route 54” is pleased to have a new sponsor:  The Highway 54 RV Park.   It is located on the west side of Wheatland and owned and operated by Randy and Gail Besser.  The RV Park has 50 current hookup sites, with plans to increase to 202 sites.  Several amenities are offered, and tent camping is also available.   Located near the famous Lucas Oil Speedway, the Highway 54 RV Park is just 7 miles from Pomme de Terre Lake.  They also refill and certify propane tanks.

Photo Above: Gail and Randy Besser, owners of the Highway 54 RV Park, and new sponsors of “Discover More on Route 54” pose with Rep. Love.

CAPITOL REPORT - September 7, 2017.  Last week, I attended the St. Clair County Health Department Board Meeting.  I had been allotted time on the agenda to address recent issues about new ordinances going into effect and insuring that the health department maintains compliance with the controversial and sometimes misinterpreted Revised Missouri Statute 192.300 that states ‘county commissions and county health center boards may make and promulgate orders, ordinances, rules or regulations, respectively as will tend to enhance the public health and prevent the entrance of infectious, contagious, communicable or dangerous diseases into such county, but any orders, ordinances, rules or regulations shall not be in conflict with any rules or regulations authorized and made by the department of health and senior services in accordance with this chapter or by the department of social services.’  

According to this statute, county commissions and county health boards need to consult with one another in establishing new ordinances and insuring proper procedure is followed, but in recent years there have been county health center boards adopt ordinances without the county commission’s approval.  This is what is controversial about statute 192.300.   However, a recent decision has been rendered this summer in Andrew County by Judge Randall Jackson who believes county commissioners do have to approve any new ordinances, and that Missouri law does not give county health center boards the authority to pass regulatory ordinances.   As a legislator, I firmly believe this statute needs to be clarified. 


Much of the work done by the Missouri House and Senate from January to May has finally become law as many of the bills approved during the legislative session and signed by the governor officially went into effect on August 28. It was during the 2017 legislative session that the House and Senate combined to send 56 pieces of legislation across the finish line, and gave approval to an additional16 appropriations bills. Some of the pieces of legislation that take effect as law as of August 28 include: 

Fairness in Public Construction (SB182)

Lawmakers approved a bill this year that is meant to put an end to project labor agreements (PLAs) and ensure a fair and competitive bidding process for public works projects in Missouri. In effect, the bill would ban PLAs, which ensure public works contracts are almost exclusively awarded to union contractors or contractors who agree to labor union demands. 

Project labor agreements require that public construction projects such as building schools or libraries be performed only by union contractors, or by contractors who agree to labor union standards. The current system allows non-union contractors to bid on a project, but in effect makes them become a union shop for the public project. The new law approved by the General Assembly will remove a 50 percent state funding threshold for political subdivisions and labor agreements, and prohibit bidders from entering into these types of agreements. 

Real ID (HB151)

The Real ID legislation is now in effect enabling the MO Department of Revenue to begin working with the Department of Homeland Security.  The first action will be setting a timeline for progress and obtaining another extension.  Extensions are determined by the Department of Homeland Security, but there is not another state making progress that has been denied an extension.  All progress is anticipated to go smoothly, but it will take the MO Department of Revenue approximately 18 months to reach all qualifications for compliance.  When the Department of Homeland Security authorizes full compliance, the MO Department of Revenue will begin issuing Real ID licenses.

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