Missouri’s Department of Economic Development (DED) recently previewed how Gov. Mike Parson plans to allocate the state’s $2.6 billion portion of federal pandemic funds.
In late December, Maggie Kost, acting director of the DED, outlined major priorities for Missouri’s portion of the more than $195 billion in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds. A total of $350 billion will be delivered to the 50 states and the District of Columbia and local and Tribal governments throughout the nation to support the response and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. The total amount of ARPA funds, passed in March 2021, is $1.9 trillion.
“We want to give you an idea of what to expect as we get into the legislative and budget session here in January,” Kost said. “As you’re planning and setting priorities locally for communities, we want to make sure you have an idea of what’s to come so you can think about how to leverage state funds as you’re building out your local priorities.”
Days after Republican Gov. Mike Parson let emergency COVID-19 orders expire on Dec. 31, Missouri’s Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) reported significant increases in COVID-19 infections.
The DHSS dashboard on Monday showed 35,067 new confirmed cases during the last seven days, an 88.8% increase compared to the previous seven-day total. The seven-day positivity rate was 27.3%, an increase of 11.7 percentage points compared to the previous seven-day total. Many health organizations and agencies consider a positivity rate higher than 5 or 10% to be a predictor of rampant spread of sickness, resulting in increased hospitalizations and deaths.
“Thanks to the effectiveness of the vaccine, widespread efforts to mitigate the virus, and our committed health care professionals, past needs to continue the state of emergency are no longer present,” Parson said in a statement on Dec. 30, 2021. “Over the last 22 months, we have coordinated with local, state, and private partners to mitigate COVID-19 and work towards returning to normalcy. We all now know how to best fight and prevent serious illness from this virus. The State stands ready to provide assistance and response, but there is no longer a need for a state of emergency.”
Missouri Governor Mike Parson (R-Mo.) issued a pardon for the St. Louis couple that successfully defended their home from far-left terrorists last year, after local prosecutors had sought to charge them with a crime, according to ABC News.
Governor Parson made the announcement on Tuesday, following up on a promise he had made previously to pardon Mark and Patricia McCloskey if they were charged. The couple, who are both lawyers, responded to a mob of rioters storming into their gated suburb by standing outside their house with firearms, with Mark wielding a rifle and Patricia holding a handgun. The incident took place in June of last year, at the height of the race riots that burned numerous cities across the country.
After the mob broke through a gate that led into the neighborhood and began shouting violent threats at the various homes in the area, the McCloskeys stood their ground and ordered the mob to leave. The incident was captured on video and went viral, with the McCloskeys being hailed as heroes for standing up to a mob that vastly outnumbered them.