Officials meet with public at two Eldon events

US Congressman Blaine Luetkemeyer speaks at Eggs and Issues in Eldon.

State and federal officials met with mid-Missourians Monday to discuss issues and policies affecting the community.

They began by attending the 12th Annual Eggs and Issues breakfast at the Eldon Community Center.

United States Congressman Blaine Luetkemeyer, State Senator Mike Kehoe, state representatives David Wood and Rocky Miller, as well as representatives for senators Claire McCaskill and Roy Blunt, all spoke to the crowd about issues affecting their specific areas.

"Creating jobs...and specific to that we've talked about a lot of infrastructure improvements," Kehoe said. "We have a proposal in front of us that would put a question before the voters, should they want to invest in a temporary one cent sales tax for the next 10 years to fund nearly $8 billion of infrastructure improvements around our state."

"Fiscal cliff, the debt limit, the sequestration, the extension of the budget, our new budget, budget presentation here probably around mid-April and then the new debt limit discussion probably in mid-May," Luetkemeyer said. "All of these things are sequenced so that we can try and drive home a message that we need to find a way to get our deficit under control and therefore our debt under control."

Because their position requires them to be a liaison between lawmakers and the public, both officials said interacting with the public is very important.

"We like to be transparent and we also like to be approchable so coming out to the community, coming to peoples' backyards if you will, that's the way government's supposed to work and that's the part of the job I probably enjoy the most," Kehoe said.

"This is important for them to get some good information to see what direction we want to go, how we're gonna get there, and for them to be able to make some good plans," Luetkemeyer said.

After the breakfast, all four officials went to Eldon Upper Elementary School to speak with the students for Democracy Day.

Upper Elementary teachers hope the conversations will have a positive impact on the students.

"I think it's wonderful to give our students the opportunity to see that there's more outside of Eldon. And it gives them the opportunity to see that anything is possible for them and they have someone to look up to," 6th grade teacher Carla Kroll said.

Miller said he hopes the kids walk away with an appreciation for democracy.

"We have the best system in the world and it's proven time and time again that we know how to do it and they can see exactly what we're up to," Miller said.