HB 1256 is a large judicial omnibus bill that changes certain laws regarding judicial procedures; among those are the following:
|*||JOINT COMMITTEE ON CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT establishes a Joint Committee on Child Abuse and Neglect to study and analyze child abuse and neglect reporting and investigation system; Address the need for additional foster care homes and to improve the quality of care provided to abused and neglected children in the custody of the state; Make recommendations to provide adequate protection for the children of our state;|
|*||TRAFFICKING DRUGS -- Increases the class felony charges for a person who commits the crime of trafficking drugs in the first degree if he or she distributes, delivers, manufactures, produces or attempts to distribute, deliver, manufacture, or produce more than two grams of crack cocaine.|
|*||FOSTER CARE LICENSURE INFORMATION - A public governmental body may close meetings, records, and votes if they relate to personal information obtained in the process of licensing a foster home.|
|*||TERMINATION OF PARENTAL RIGHTS - prohibits a person who commits an act of rape from obtaining custody or visitation rights to the child who is the product of the rape; and no parent of the person can have standing as a grandparent or otherwise be permitted to file an action for custody or visitation during pending court proceedings.|
|*||ADOPTION PROCEEDINGS -- determines that a consent to adoption is final when executed unless the consenting party, prior to a final decree of adoption, alleges and proves by clear and convincing evidence that the consent was not freely and voluntarily given.|
|*||LANDOWNER LIABILITY TO TRESPASSERS- changes the laws regarding a landowner's liability as it applies to an individual trespassing on the owner's land.|
|*||UNCLAIMED SEIZED PROPERTY - specifies that computers, computer equipment, computer software and hardware, cellular telephones, or other devices capable of accessing the Internet which are used by the owner or with the owner's consent as a means for committing felonies must be forfeited to the state.|
|*||SEXUAL MISCONDUCT INVOLVING A CHILD - The crime of sexual misconduct involving a child is revised to include when a person knowingly coerces or induces a child who is known by the person to be younger than 15 years of age to expose a female child's breasts through the Internet or other electronic means for the purpose of arousing or gratifying the sexual desire of any person, including the child.|
|*||ENTICEMENT OF A CHILD -- increase the penalty in the crime of enticement of a child to the first degree.|
HB 1534 declares that the General Assembly finds the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act signed by President Obama exceeds the powers granted to Congress under the United States Constitution. Therefore, it is not law and is altogether void and of no force.
HB 1475 requires the parent or guardian of any person younger than 17 years of age -prior to the minor using a tanning device in a tanning facility- to annually appear in person at the facility and sign an acknowledgment stating that he or she has read and understands the warnings given by the facility and consents to the minor's use of a tanning device at the facility.
HB 1137 changes the laws regarding adoptions some of which include:
|*||Allows prospective adoptive parents and the parents of a prospective adoptee to enter into a written post adoption contract agreement to allow contact after the adoption between parents, siblings, or other relatives of the adoptee and the adoptee and the adoptive parents;|
|*||Allows any adopted person who is at least 18 years of age, born in Missouri, and who provides proof of identification or the adopted person's descendants if the adopted person is deceased to obtain a copy of the adopted person's original birth certificate unless the birth mother or birth father has objected;|
|*||Requires, if the birth mother and birth father consent to the release of the original birth certificate, the Department of Social Services, the child-placing agency which processed the adoption, or the court personnel to obtain a copy of a notarized form signed by the birth mother and birth father, if known, giving consent to release the original birth certificate;|
|*||Specifies that a copy of the original birth certificate cannot be released if the birth mother and birth father cannot be located or if they do not consent to its release.|
|*||Specifies that if the birth mother or birth father had objected, a copy of the original birth certificate can be obtained upon the birth mother's and birth father's death.|
STATE-WIDE NEWS: This week I attended the service wherein Governor Nixon announced he signed HB 678 which sets May 1 as the annual Silver Star Families of America Day. I was pleased when legislators passed this bill because you can never say "thank you" enough times in enough ways for the sacrifices our military men, women and their families have made in order to keep our country and the world safe and free.
Silver Star Families of America Day is designated as a day for honoring the wounded and ill members of the armed forces in the state of Missouri, and for recognizing the efforts of the Silver Star Families of America in honoring injured veterans across the United States. This event is intended to honor all military veterans who incurred wounds, injuries or illness while serving in combat areas.
MORE STATE-WIDE NEWS: The Missouri Youth Adult Alliance --whose mission is to empower "Missouri's youth to make healthy decisions about alcohol and other drugs" - is looking for some ambitious students to serve as 2012 Youth Ambassadors! Go to www.myaa.org to read more program information and to apply.
Also contact me if you need a letter of recommendation for an Youth Ambassador applicant.