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Rep. Mary Still announces that she will file for re-election

Monday, February 22, 2010 | 8:09 p.m. CST

COLUMBIA — Democratic State Representative Mary Still will file for re-election Tuesday for a second term to represent the 25th legislative district.

Still took office in 2008. Last year, she sponsored a payday loan reform bill that has been selected as a Democratic caucus bill and now includes 70 co-sponsors. She plans to continue working on the reform and publicizing it with hearings, traveling all over the state.

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“Since the Speaker of the House last year did not grant me a hearing on the payday loan reform, I decided to have my own,” Still said. “I have spoken in Columbia, Kansas City, St. Louis and more about this bill to raise awareness.”

Higher education is important to Still, she said. Still's district includes MU's campus. After serving as director of the MU News Bureau, Still said she has learned about the value of the UM System for the state.

“I want to remain a strong voice for the University of Missouri,” Still said. “Public education is the best economic tool we have for the state, especially true for Columbia.”

This year, Still has requested ethics reform legislation that places limits on the amount of contributions a candidate can accept. She has also filed a bill that bans statewide officials from joining the Housing Development Commission, where developers for low-income housing projects are receiving large sums of money.

She currently serves on the Higher Education Committee, the Ways and Means Committee and the Special Standing Committee for Health Insurance.

Before holding office, Still spent 12 years as director of communications and policy for the Office of the Attorney General.

“I was not naive going into this and can provide integrity in government and attention to issues important to Columbia,” Still said. 

Still has lived in the 25th district for 26 years. The district also includes downtown Columbia and neighborhoods east to the Boone/Callaway County line.

Still will hold a kick-off party from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday at The Rome Restaurant, 114 S. Ninth St.

Still is the first candidate to announce she will run for the seat; filing for the primary election started Tuesday. The primary election will be held Aug. 3. The general election will be held Nov. 2. The last day to register to vote in the general election is Oct. 6.


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Comments

David Risher February 22, 2010 | 11:35 p.m.

Last year her payday bills that she sponsored proved she hardly knew anything about the industry. This year she has educated herself enough to propose a 36% APR cap on the loans to put thousands out of jobs. However, being Nixon's right hand lady for so many years would prove why she's doing it. Can someone please step up and run against her!!!!!!!!!!!

(Report Comment)
Payday Lender February 24, 2010 | 3:55 p.m.

I agree with David Risher that Still has proven she hardly knows anything about the payday lending industry. Millions of customers across the country have used payday advance responsibly and appreciate having somewhere to turn when they need quick access to credit. I doubt Still has ever used the service; her criticism is drowning out the voices of all of these customers whose opinions have been lost in the debate.

(Report Comment)
Jeff Kursman February 26, 2010 | 10:11 a.m.

Rep Still....what have you learned from the customers of the payday loan industry? Wait, you haven't had them speak at your hearings. Who are these "advocates" to dictate what financial products are available to educated Missouri consumers?

Are these organizations offering to make short-term loans to those who need them to cover unexpected auto, medical, dental, vet, funeral, child care, etc. expenses?

Are these organizations returning charitable contributions from banks and credit unions who charge higher fees for smaller, shorter-term loans disguised as "overdraft protection"?

Are these organizations dropping affiliation with the "Center for Responsible Lending" a self-identified marketing arm of Self-Help Credit Unions which stands to benefit financially from a lack of competition, partners with Freddie and Fannie, funded by leading players in the mortgage and credit crisis (ie; Herb and Marion Sandler)? An organization itself labelled a "predatory charity" by the Consumer Rights League.

Listen to voices of customers, not self-proclaimed advocates and decide for yourself!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L6Iy-Z0WP...

(Report Comment)
Jeff Kursman February 26, 2010 | 3:32 p.m.

Dear Columbia Missourian and Rep. Still -

Why do you insist upon dictating what financial products are available to educated Missouri consumers?

Are the organizations who support a 36% APR cap offering to make short-term loans to those who need them to cover unexpected auto, medical, dental, vet, funeral, child care, etc. expenses and themselves charge less than 36% or are we just choosing to eliminate choice?

Are the organizations supporting an APR cap returning charitable donations from banks and credit unions who charge higher fees for smaller, shorter-term loans disguised as "overdraft protection"? Are you returning advertising revenue or campaign contributions?

Are you aware that the source of many of your arguments, the "Center for Responsible Lending" has been labeled a predatory charity by the Consumer Rights League, and that as a self-identified marketing arm of Self-Help Credit Unions, stands to benefit financially from a lack of competition, partners with Freddie and Fannie, and is funded by leading players in the mortgage and credit crisis (ie; Herb and Marion Sandler)?

Try listening to voices of customers, not the self-proclaimed advocates and decide for yourself!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L6Iy-Z0WP...

(Report Comment)
Jake Sherlock February 26, 2010 | 5:01 p.m.

Mr. Kursman,

Where do you get the notion that the Missourian endorses Rep. Still's call to regulate the payday loan industry?

We've run several pieces in the last few months, both calling for further regulation and saying that consumers can make their own choices.

This column by Brian Jarvis would fall under the former:
http://www.columbiamissourian.com/storie...

These two letters would fall under the latter:
http://www.columbiamissourian.com/storie...

http://www.columbiamissourian.com/storie...

Additionally, we asked Missourian readers to tell us where they stood on this issue here:
http://www.columbiamissourian.com/storie...

The Missourian does not write a staff editorial and hasn't for many, many years now. Unlike most newspapers that have an editorial board and do endorse ballot issues and candidates for public office, the Missourian does none of these things. What we do encourage is a wide range of debate on any and all issues important to Columbia and Boone County residents.

Jake Sherlock
Opinion editor

(Report Comment)

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