Gov. Jay Nixon said Missouri's economy continues to improve, and he's "more optimistic than ever about our future."
In his 51-minute State of the State address, Nixon didn't mention that his nearly $25.876 billion budget proposal includes a 2 percent pay raise for all state employees - effective Jan. 1, 2014.
Nor did he provide details of the 283 more state jobs he plans to eliminate, or the almost 100 new positions his budget plan creates in the state workforce.
House Speaker Tim Jones, R-Eureka - who delivered the Republicans' response to Nixon's speech - said he only is "cautiously optimistic about working with (Nixon) in the years ahead."