Don is the State Representative for District 138
District 138 takes in Stone County from north to south, plus the northwest corner of Christian Co. and southwest corner of Taney Co. Approx 38,000 people live in the district. There are 163 districts throughout the state with a Representative for each of them. There are 34 state senate districts with a Senator for each one.
The General Assembly is made up of the house and senate.
Don has been assigned to the following committees:
1. Crime Prevention and Public Safety (Chairman)
2. Special Committee on Tort Reform
3. Conservation and Natural Resources
4. Special Committee on the Justice System
Don has been appointed by the Speaker of the House to the Environment Committee of the National Conference of State Legislatures. This prestigious organization provides valuable training for State Representatives.
Don was appointed to the state Tourism Commission. The commission is comprised of 10 members with two being from the House of Representatives (a Democrat and a Republican) and the same from the Senate.
The Missouri Adoptee Rights Act becomes law!
HB1599, aka; the "Mo. Adoptee Rights Act" is a bill that gives Mo. born adoptees the ability to obtain a copy of their original birth certificate without a court order and without unnecessary expenses. Our current, antiquated law, is a violation of the 14th amendment of the U.S. Constitution as well as Article I, section 2, of the Mo. Bill of Rights; which both clearly guarantee equality for all citizens under the law! The bill has an amendment that offers birth parents a contact preference form that will be placed with the original birth certificate. It also offers a medical history information form that would also be placed with the birth certificate. This bill made history by passing out of the House by a vote of 125-28 and passed out of the Senate 31-0! Since it was amended in the Senate it had to come back for a final vote in the House and it passed 127-28. It then went to the Governor's desk and on July 1st., Governor Nixon signed HB 1599 into law!!
Current Legislation sponsored by Rep. Phillips for 2017 Session:
HB 179: Makes it a crime to cover one's face while unlawfully assembled and rioting.
This is not a priority bill of mine and I haven't attempted to get it moving.
HB 180: Designates the week beginning the second Saturday in June as "Law Enforcement Appreciation Week." This bill hasn't moved because I'm working with the Senate to achieve the same thing with a resolution. I put this bill on hold after a House Resolution was filed to do the same thing, except much quicker.
HB 181: Grants enforcement powers to Conservation Agents to enforce littering laws on our state's waterways. That section was inadvertently left out of the revised criminal code. This bill simply reinstates what was previously in law. It also has an emergency code so that if it does become law, it will take effect immediately upon the Governor's signature. This bill passed unanimously out of the Crime and Public Safety Committee and did the same at the Rules Committee. It's been perfected and will come up for a final vote in the House soon.
HB 645: Allows retired law enforcement officers to work on a voluntary status during times of natural disaster or a state of emergency. This bill passed out of the Crime and Public Safety Committee with a unanimous vote and did the same at the Rules Committee. It's now eligible for being on the House floor calendar. This bill got an overwhelming bi-partisan vote in the House and is now scheduled for a hearing in the Senate.
HB 1012: Allows municipal judges in communities with less than 15,000 people to serve as a judge in more than five municipalities.
HB 1013: Modifies provisions for when a license can be suspended for failure to appear on a traffic violation.
For further information: www.house.mo.gov (click on bill info / then bill tracking)
Don was appointed by the Speaker of the House to serve on an investigative committee to review the training and cost effectiveness of the 2011 merger of the Mo. State Water Patrol with the Highway Patrol.
Five committee hearings were conducted (two at the capitol, one in Osage Beach, one in Hollister and our final meeting was in St. Joe). A written report was submitted to the Speaker of the House to summarize our findings and recommendations. After a summer to get feedback from the public, the committee will meet again on Nov. 4th in Camdenton to evaluate the progress of the merger.
Brief Historical Summary:
In 2010, the General Assembly passed a bill that eliminated the Mo. State Water Patrol and merged them with the Highway Patrol. This merger was sold to the legislature as a more efficient way of operating as well as saving the state 3 million dollars annually. In reality, the efficiency has declined considerably and the savings are non-existent! In the last audit, the merger was costing the state $900,000 a year!
I know the Governor really pushed for this merger. The vote was taken in 2010, the same year I got elected (that November) to serve as a State Representative, I didn't have the opportunity to vote on it because I wasn't sworn into office until Jan. 2011.
I knew it was a bad idea and it would never save the state a dime. Now, with that said, there's positive things about the merger including uniformity of command, equality of pay, more manpower, etc. And, it seems generally that the rank and file members of the patrol that serve in the marine division are now pleased with the merger and are not in favor of going back to the previous Water Patrol. They like being Troopers and the opportunity of advancement in rank is better because of the merger.
Our committee made a number of recommendations with the primary focus being on adequate training because there's a critical need for enhanced training specific to water enforcement and public education. The Patrol is making those changes in training and will be implementing them as soon as possible.
We also viewed the "supplemental marine officer" as unnecessary, meaning that full-time road officers don't need to be functioning on an occasional basis as marine enforcement officers. It's our understanding that the supplemental marine officer will be eliminated. Note: Road officers could still be assigned to a special river enforcement project when it doesn't require boat operations. For instance, officers often work the rivers (from the bank) to control conduct and observe violations. They take enforcement action by wading into the water if necessary. Those type of operations could utilize additional officers that normally didn't work in the marine division.
We also wanted there to be more commitment to water enforcement within the marine division with total focus on that during the peak season, which is primarily late April through September or possibly October. That's also something the Patrol is now committed to do.
Don's campaign committee:
Larry Sifford, Chairman
Kathy Phillips, Secretary / Treasurer
This awesome collection of people are dedicated, extremely creative and are marketing experts! "The product my committee markets is 'me' and they do it better than anybody! Political campaigns have certain rules that most candidates follow. My committee and I for that matter didn't really know the rules and took a common sense, grass roots approach to the people. We did things that were unique, cost effective and ultimately proved to be successful!" Don Phillips
Don's campaign committee transitions to a steering committee after the election and offers evaluations, suggestions, gives feedback , etc. They do an annual performance review and give Don guidance for the upcoming year. They also function in their normal role as a campaign committee and establish a campaign plan based on various factors.
Don takes pride in serving his constituents regardless of their political affiliation.
Don has been endorsed by: TheMissouri Chamber of Commerce The Missouri State Teachers AssociationMo. Right to Life, The Mo. Assoc. of School Administrators, The National Rifle Association (NRA) ... "A" rating Also, Don was recognized as an "A.C.U. Conservative" by the American Conservative Union. This distinction was based on voting record and his commitment to our nation's constitution and America's core principles. Don is a member of the Mo. State Trooper's Assoc., and the N.R.A.
Locally Don is a member of the Rotary club of Table Rock Lake, Kimberling City Police Committee, Blue Eye Schools A+ Program committee and is a member of the board of directors for Christian Associates. He's past chairman of the annual Law Enforcement Appreciation Week, held in Branson.
Don was honored to be awarded the "Emory Melton Legislative Award" in 2012 at the annual Governor's Conference on Tourism. Don is a champion for Tourism and passed H.B. 316 in 2012 extending the current tourism funding formula to 2020.
He is also the chairman of the Tourism and Natural Resources Committee.
He was also honored by the Mo. Travel Council for his work in Tourism.
Don was given the "Legislator of the Year" award by the Mo. RV Dealers Assoc. The award was presented at a dinner during the annual board meeting held at the Double Tree Hotel in Jefferson City.
Don was given a "Distinguished Legislator" award by the Missouri Community Colleges Assoc. at an awards dinner on Nov. 7, 2014. The presentation was part of the annual MCAA meeting, held at the Hilton Convention Center, in Branson.
Note: Don was recognized by the Mo. Chamber of Commerce as one of only 18 legislators in the House and Senate combined to have a 100% positive voting record in the 2014 session for fiscally conservative bills that advance our state's economy!
On Feb. 19th, 2015, Don was recognized for his work in promoting tourism with a "Diplomat" award presented by the Springfield Convention and Visitor's Bureau. The awards ceremony was held at the Double Tree Hotel in Springfield.
On November 5, 2016, Don was honored by the College of the Ozarks Alumni Assoc. with a meritorious award for community service.