2023 Legislative session comes to a close

By State Sen. Ben Brown, Missouri's 26th District
Posted 5/24/23

My first legislative session drew to a close when the Senate gavel pounded on May 12, signaling the end of the First Regular Session of the 102nd General Assembly. As a freshman senator, I’ve …

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2023 Legislative session comes to a close


My first legislative session drew to a close when the Senate gavel pounded on May 12, signaling the end of the First Regular Session of the 102nd General Assembly. As a freshman senator, I’ve learned a great deal about the policy making process, ushered several measures through the process and secured millions of dollars in funding for our community.

My first piece of legislation to earn the “truly agreed to and finally passed” mark is Senate Bill 167. What started as a temporary COVID-19 practice now awaits the governor’s signature to become law. Currently, a person who applies for a CDL has limited options to send their required medical certification to the state. Thanks to the passage of SB 167, applicants will also be able to submit this information by mail, fax or email to expedite the licensing process.

Another victory this session was the passage of Senate Bill 39. This legislation prohibits biological males from competing in women’s sports in public and private high school and college athletic programs. As a father of two daughters, I am proud we were able to ensure a level playing field for Missouri’s women athletes.

We also approved the Save Adolescents from Experimentation Act to protect children from life-altering treatments and surgeries in my opinion. I was proud to have been a co-sponsor of this legislation, which prohibits health care providers from performing gender transition surgeries or prescribing puberty-blocking or cross-hormone medications to minors. I believe protecting children from potentially dangerous and lifelong medical treatments is always the right thing to do, and that the allegations of abuse from a former caseworker at the Washington University Transgender Center exacerbated the need for this legislation.

Two of my other pieces of legislation came extremely close to crossing the finish line, passing the Senate and House Committee, being perfected on the House floor and placed on the House’s calendar for third reading. Senate Bill 411 would permit home-schooled children’s participation in their school district’s extra-curricular activities. Senate Bill 88 would have allowed experienced, qualified professionals from other states to obtain a temporary, two-year license to work in Missouri. I will definitely sponsor these necessary proposals once again next session.

Below are a few of the passed measures I believe will benefit Missourians:

• Senate Bill 51 permits physical therapists with an advanced degree to treat patients without a physician’s referral.

• Senate Bill 94 establishes the Show-MO and Entertainment Industry Jobs acts.

• Senate Bill 190 exempts Social Security income from taxation and freezes the property assessment on retirees’ homes.

• House Bill 417 incentivises employees to obtain credentials and prohibits denying employment based solely on the applicant’s lack of a postsecondary degree.

It is the honor of a lifetime serving and representing our community in the Missouri Senate. During the interim, I look forward to visiting the counties of the 26th Senatorial District and discussing important issues with you. I will continue fighting for our families, and I appreciate your trust and support.

It is an honor serving those who call the 26th Senatorial District home. If you need assistance with navigating state government or the legislative process, please reach out by calling 573-751-3678 or emailing Ben.Brown@senate.mo.gov.