- Associated Press - Thursday, May 7, 2015

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - The Missouri Senate has approved a bill to stop the state from considering how much money a bidder would return to the state if awarded a contract for a license office.

Senators voted 33-0 Thursday for the measure, which is aimed at addressing what some legislators have called pay-to-play.

The Revenue Department now awards contracts to run offices that issue vehicle and driver’s licenses in part based on how much of the profit bidders promise to pay back to the state.

A 2009 law required that bidding process to end political patronage.

But lawmakers have criticized that as disadvantaging nonprofit groups.

A measure that would exempt from the state’s sunshine laws bids made by St. Louis’ convention center was added to the bill, which now needs House approval.

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