Updated at 6:30 p.m.
JEFFERSON CITY • It looks like a Planned Parenthood executive won't have to appear before the Missouri Senate after all.
Last week, the Senate voted to compel Mary Kogut, the CEO of Planned Parenthood of St. Louis and Southwest Missouri, to explain why the group hadn't complied with a Senate-issued subpoena. She would've had to explain herself before the entire Senate.
The subpoena was issued in November, but the group has yet to turn over about six years worth of documents pertaining to fetal tissue disposal.
On Friday, however, state Sen. Kurt Schaefer, R-Columbia and the chairman of the interim Senate Sanctity of Life Committee, announced that the Senate and Planned Parenthood had reached an agreement over the documents.
"We do have an agreement with Planned Parenthood that they will comply with the subpoena and produce documents through their lawyer," Schaefer said.
In a statement, Kogut portrayed the news as a win for patient privacy.
"This agreement is a victory for Planned Parenthood patients and their confidence in our commitment to provide high quality confidential care — no matter what," she said. "What Sen. Schaefer was trying to do was wrong. We appreciate Senate leaders who agreed to request a narrower set of policy-related documents that in no way risk patient privacy."
Planned Parenthood has said that the documents sought would reveal personal medical information, but Schaefer has said that isn't the case.
Though Kogut said the documents the group would turn over are "narrower" in scope, Schaefer said the group would turn over everything the Senate asked for. It wasn't clear Thursday night what differences, if any, the two sides still had.
Schaefer said he expects the documents to be turned over Friday. He said a bipartisan group will review the records, though he added the final decision on who will make up the group will be made by Senate President Pro Tem Ron Richard, R-Joplin.
What will the group be looking for?
"I think all along, I mean, a big aspect of what Sanctity of Life was looking at was how are aborted babies disposed of at Planned Parenthood in St. Louis," Schaefer said. The St. Louis location is the only one in Missouri that provides abortion services.
Schaefer said videos over the summer purporting to show a Planned Parenthood official discussing the sale of fetal tissue was the impetus behind the committee. He's also cited reports out of Indiana saying that fetal tissue from Planned Parenthood's St. Louis location was improperly disposed of.
"The question we still have is: What is that policy?" Schaefer said. "How are they disposed of? And we still don't have an answer to that."
A probe over the summer by Attorney General Chris Koster, a Democrat, cleared Planned Parenthood of any wrongdoing in Missouri. But lawmakers have criticized Koster's investigation as not thorough enough.
The Senate also passed a resolution to compel Dr. James Miller of Pathology Services, Inc. to appear before the body, but he is using his Fifth Amendment right against self incrimination not to appear, Schaefer said.
if the Senate found either Kogut or Miller in contempt of the Senate, they would face either a fine of $300, 10 days in jail or both.