Attorney general to appeal MOSIRA ruling

Attorney General Chris Koster said Wednesday he will appeal Cole County Circuit Judge Dan Green's Monday ruling the Missouri Science and Innovation Reinvestment Act, known as "MOSIRA," is unconstitutional.

In a news release, Koster said: “The Missouri Science and Innovation Reinvestment Act is an important economic development tool that can bring high-tech jobs to Missouri, and preserve jobs that are already here.

“I don’t want to see important job-creating legislation fail,” Koster said.

Nanci Gonder, Koster’s spokeswoman, said Wednesday the appeal likely would be filed in the appeals court's Western District at Kansas City.

She did not know what issues would be raised in the appeal.

On Monday, Green issued an 11-page ruling in a lawsuit filed Dec. 1, 2011, by the Missouri Roundtable for Life and its president and chief spokesman, Fred Sauer; by Missouri Right to Life and its president, Pam Fichter; and by the group Lawyers for Life.

They had argued that the MOSIRA law, intended to help Missouri attract technology and life sciences companies, couldn’t be enforced because it was passed last September during the special session, with a contingency clause that said it could not go into effect until the Legislature also passed, and Gov. Jay Nixon had signed, a different, economic development bill that was being debated in the special session.

That second law failed, and the lawsuit said that canceled the MOSIRA law, too.

The state argued the contingency clause itself was unconstitutional, because it linked the two laws.

Green agreed with the state, but said the entire bill was void because he was convinced the MOSIRA bill would not have passed without the contingency clause.

Because constitutional issues are involved, the case eventually could end up before the Missouri Supreme Court's seven judges.

Koster said, in the news release: “We intend to appeal this matter to its conclusion.”

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