Missouri Minute: Rx Savings Solutions plans hiring spree; appeals court sets back St. Louis-area pipeline

Hello, MBA readers,

Gov. Mike Parson has called a special session of the Missouri Legislature in hopes that lawmakers will extend a tax on health care facilities that is key to funding the state’s existing Medicaid program. Lawmakers failed to approve the tax during their regular legislative session that ended last month, with a group of conservative legislators seeking to limit access to contraceptives and bar Planned Parenthood from being a Medicaid provider. Without extending the tax, Missouri could lose out on nearly $1.4 billion in federal Medicaid funds over the next two years and face significant budget cuts, Parson said. Meanwhile, the governor also signed four new bills into law on Tuesday. Among those was a measure that increases the cap for administrative fees charged on vehicle purchases by $300. The Missouri Department of Revenue will use those fees to upgrade outdated vehicle titling and registration systems. And, in the Kansas City area, two companies are eyeing hiring sprees. Rx Savings Solutions plans to add 100 new employees this year, and Hill’s Pet Nutrition is investing $250 million in a new facility, where it plans to create 80 jobs by 2025.


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An aldermanic committee on Tuesday began discussions on spending federal pandemic aid amid continuing debate between Mayor Tishaura Jones and Aldermanic President Lewis Reed. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

Appeals court sets back St. Louis-area pipeline
A federal appeals court panel on Tuesday struck down the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s approval of a natural gas pipeline that runs through parts of Missouri and Illinois. (Associated Press)

Hill’s Pet Nutrition to build $250 million plant near KC
The company plans to build the 300,000-square-foot food processing plant in Tonganoxie, Kansas, by 2023. It’s expected to create at least 80 new jobs by 2025. (Kansas City Star)

Centene could forgo millions in subsidies if it relocates
The health insurer could leave millions of dollars in tax subsidies on the table if it moves from the St. Louis region and does not complete the expansion of its headquarters. (St. Louis Business Journal)

Columbia Water & Light hits one renewable goal, faces future challenges 
A city memo said the utility met an intermediate renewable goal last year, with at least 15% of its energy coming from renewable sources. Future targets could prove more difficult, though. (Columbia Missourian)

Rx Savings Solutions plans hiring spree
The Overland Park, Kansas-based company expects to add 100 employees this year and anticipates growth of its revenue and customer base to surpass 80%. (Kansas City Business Journal)

Dick’s Sporting Goods to bring discount store to KC market 
The Pennsylvania-based sporting goods store has a new off-price store that is coming to Johnson County called Going, Going, Gone. (Kansas City Star)

St. Louis agency delays incentive decision on Lux Living development
The city’s Land Clearance for Redevelopment Authority voted not to review incentives for a 150-unit apartment project that has waited a year for a decision. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

Rolla-based Investment Realty opens Springfield branch
The nearly 40-year-old property management company has entered the Springfield market. (Springfield Business Journal)

Columbia City Council pushes hotel expansion deadline to 2024
The developer of the Broadway Columbia received a three-year extension for building the downtown hotel’s second tower. (Columbia Missourian)


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E-commerce sales were up 7.7% in the first quarter of 2021 compared to the fourth quarter of 2020, and online shopping accounted for 13.6% of all retail sales in the first quarter. Internet commerce is also driving investment in related businesses. “There were people that were saying that warehouse and distribution center business was going to cool off, and we were kind of in the seventh inning of the boom,” said Bob Clark, executive director of construction firm Clayco. “Now, there’s no talk about the innings anymore, because I think everybody sees real growth in that sector for the next 10 years.”


Say that again

“Any time there are regulatory changes, that definitely does create a feeling of uncertainty in any potentially impacted entity, whether that’s agriculture or business.”

That’s Chris Wieberg, director of the Missouri Department of Natural Resources’ Water Protection Program, speaking about the recent regulatory changes put in place by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. A large number of Missouri’s waterways are classified as impaired as a result of nutrient-rich runoff from fertilizers and manure. The Biden administration has changed the rule put in place by the Trump administration in an effort to prevent further pollution.


Go figure

$500

Under legislation signed into law by Gov. Mike Parson on Tuesday, Missouri automobile dealers can now charge up to $500 in administrative fees, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports. This is an increase from the previous fee limit of $200. Starting in August, the state will receive 10% of those administrative fees to pay for an update to the Department of Revenue’s vehicle database. The fees will help pay for an estimated $105 million upgrade aimed at streamlining vehicle titling and other licensing and registration processes.


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Gov. Mike Parson on Tuesday called a special legislative session for lawmakers to extend Missouri’s Federal Reimbursement Allowance, or FRA, a tax vital to funding the state’s Medicaid program. The FRA program taxes health care providers in the state and uses those funds to earn federal matching contributions to Missouri’s Medicaid program. If the FRA is not passed, Missouri would miss out on nearly $1.4 billion in federal funds over the next two years, according to Parson’s office. The FRA has passed in every legislative session since 1992, but debate over Medicaid funding for abortion services prevented the passage of the bill in the regular legislative session that ended last month.


Hello, my name is

Min Jung Kim

She has been named that new director of the Saint Louis Art Museum, making her the first woman to hold the position in the 142-year history of the museum, the St. Louis Business Journal reports. She will become the 11th person to hold the position, succeeding Brent Benjamin in the role. Kim currently works as the director and CEO of the New Britain Museum of American Art in Connecticut and has almost 30 years of experience in museums.


It’s been a pleasure doing business with you this morning.


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