On final day of Missouri legislative session, lawmakers are cramming

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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Missouri lawmakers have passed legislation to raise penalties for crimes against police and create a “Blue Alert” notification system about suspects who assault law officers.

Legislators gave the measure a final vote of approval Friday, the deadline to send bills to Gov. Eric Greitens.

Greitens called for the provisions outlined in the legislation before taking office in January. He says they’re needed to show support for law enforcement officials.

The Blue Alert system would be similar to Amber Alerts for missing children. The public would be notified when those suspected of injuring law enforcement are at large.

The bill calls for tougher penalties for involuntary manslaughter, stalking, property damage and trespassing if the victim was intentionally targeted as a police officer or for being related to a law enforcement officer.

Restaurants, summer camps and sports arenas could keep emergency allergy treatment on hand under legislation passed by the Missouri Legislature.

Lawmakers voted to send the bill to Republican Gov. Eric Greitens on Friday, the deadline of the annual session.

If signed into law, businesses and organizations where there are allergens such as bees or certain foods could get prescriptions for epinephrine.

The legislation also would expand a trial program aimed at managing prescriptions of some Missouri Medicaid patients.

The program would seek to connect doctors and pharmacists who serve patients with multiple prescriptions. The aim is to prevent drug interactions, avoid duplicate scripts for the same medicine and ensure patients take medications as prescribed.

Legislative researchers estimate expanding the program will save the state about $11 million annually.

Missouri lawmakers are facing the Friday evening deadline to decide how and if to avoid cuts to personal care services for roughly 8,300 seniors and disabled people.

Funding for in-home and nursing care is one of several measures still hanging in the balance as a 6 p.m. deadline approaches to end work in the annual legislative session.

House and Senate lawmakers on Thursday refused to concede on potential solutions. Inaction likely will mean cuts in services to some of the state’s most vulnerable people.