Rep. Ron Hicks (R-Dardenne Praire) filed House Bill 296 (HB296) on Dec. 18 for introduction in the 2019 legislative session. According to the Tenth Amendment Center,
“The proposed law would prohibit the state and its agencies, political subdivisions, special districts, or employees from assisting, participating with, or providing material support or resources to a federal agency to enable it to collect or facilitate in the collection or use of a person’s electronic data or metadata unless one of three circumstances apply.
(1) The person has given informed consent;
(2) The action is pursuant to a warrant that is based upon probable cause and particularly describes the person, place, or thing to be searched or seized; or
(3) The action is in accordance with a legally recognized exception to the warrant requirement.
The legislation stipulates that “The attorney general shall enforce the provisions of this section in accordance with the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of Missouri.”
HB296 is similar to a Michigan law that went into effect last summer.
Missouri could become the third state to take action to prohibit support for warrantless federal surveillance. In 2014, California took a smaller first step when Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill banning the state from participating in, or providing material support or resources to any federal agency engaged in the “illegal and unconstitutional collection of electronic data or metadata.” The California law needs additional steps for effectuation by defining specifically what actions constitute “illegal and unconstitutional.” The Michigan law and HB296 go further by prohibiting specific state actions and gives the movement to stop unconstitutional federal surveillance more momentum.”
CSPOA urges our members and friends to contact their state legislators to make sure their state has this type of law. If not, urge those elected officials to enact one.