ST. LOUIS - Missouri Governor Mike Parson finished up a 2-day listening tour of the state with a visit to the Cortex Innovation Community in St. Louis. The district is a place where hi-tech jobs are fostered through relationships between corporations and academic institutions. He met with area leaders to listen to their concerns.
Cortex President and CEO Dennis Lower described the Governor’s visit a breath of fresh air. Lower said the governor asked follow-up questions and appeared to be sincere about identifying areas of concern.
“He was very hungry to hear the St. Louis region’s what’s on our mind, what is it that’s holding us back, what is it that we need to focus on and how can we as a state be helpful,” said Lower.
State Rep. Steven Roberts, (D) St. Louis, was among the leaders attending the meeting. He said he expressed concerns to the Governor that more needs to be done to address neglected areas of the state.
“When he met with the Democratic Caucus he made it clear that we might not agree on everything but there’s more things we agree on than we don’t,” said Roberts. “I really appreciate and respect that about him.”
After the meeting, the Governor stopped to take a few questions and expressed his thoughts about wrapping up a statewide 2-day listening tour with a visit to St. Louis.
“Two of the things that keep popping up as the most important things people face, infrastructure is going to be one of the main issues and workforce development skilled jobs,” said Parson.
“We got a commitment from him to follow up with him on those things in one-on-ones in Jefferson City and future venues where we can focus on particular issues one at a time,” said Lower.
Governor Parson was also asked about the case of death row inmate Marcellus Williams. His son came to Cortex to make the case for a special board of inquiry to continue examining his father’s case. The board canceled a scheduled meeting after Greitens resigned.
“Read the transcripts. Look at the DNA evidence and do the right thing,” said Williams son Marcellus Williams, II.
The Governor indicated he will consider whatever the board decides.
“We need to wait until that happens to see what they’re going to do and what their recommendations are and then we’ll decide how we’re going to handle that situation,” said Parson. “Also, I think that’s something our general counsel needs to take a look at.”
A few supporters of Planned Parenthood lined up outside the building where Parson met with St. Louis area leaders.
“We wanted to make sure that he knows that Planned Parenthood supporters do not want him to sign a bill that would defund care at Planned Parenthood.”