A group of state lawmakers have released their findings on the merger of the Highway Patrol with the water patrol. The 71 page report comes after the drowning of 20 year old Brandon Ellingson at the Lake of the Ozarks in May of 2014 while in the custody of the Highway Patrol’s water division. Some of the things the committee is recommending include swim training standards, establishing a specialized marine field training program and the appointment of former water patrol officer Matt Walz as the assistant director for the patrol’s water division. Walz who is conducting an internal review was appointed to that position January 1st. The merger was also supposed to save the state $3 million dollars a year but according to the report, the merger actually cost taxpayers $900 thousand dollars a year. The committee did find several benefits from the merger including better information and data access thru improved technology and increased support on marine operations boats and vehicles.