Gary Dusenberg, R-Blue Springs, 54th District

Gary Dusenberg, R-Blue Springs, 54th District

1 What are some of your top legislative priorities this year?
Obviously, I feel that the top priority, for not only myself, but all Legislators, is the budget. The current economic downturn has also affected the ability of Missouri to generate revenue like it did last year. We must make wise decisions on how we use the taxpayers’ money in the next budget. I have also introduced a bill that will eliminate the real estate taxes for those individuals 75 years of age and older meeting certain criteria.

2 You were recently re-elected to chair a committee. What was it and what is its purpose?
I was recently re-appointed to be Chairman of the Homeland Security Committee. The committee will mainly deal with matters relating to disaster and emergency preparation and the implementation of safety and security measures for state and local entities. We will also deal with homeland security cooperation between the federal government and the State of Missouri .

3 Are there any new developments at the state level concerning the proposed Missouri Innovation Park?
The proposed Missouri Innovation Park legislation is in the process of being developed and all legislators in Eastern Jackson County will have a hand in bringing this to the forefront. We are in the preliminary stages. This must be a team effort involving Blue Springs, the University of Missouri, the General Assembly, and other groups, if it is to become a reality.

4 What are some of the challenges your district faces in this tough economic climate?
Like all districts, some citizens are facing job layoffs and still have bills to pay at the end of the month. In the current economic downturn, this is a challenge to all citizens. There have been many economic downturns in previous history and Americans, which includes Missourians, have prevailed and we will this time.

5 What are some of the challenges the state faces in this tough economic climate? Have you been hearing of anything?
Again, back to the budget, unlike the federal government, we in Missouri cannot spend more than we take in to the state coffers. We face possibly a $300 million shortfall and it will be a challenge to balance the budget, but everything is possible and I am very optimistic the General Assembly is up to the task at hand.