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Tue December 4, 2012
Lawmakers Seek Tax Credit & Lobbying Reforms
Missouri lawmakers in both chambers are pre-filing bills for next year’s regular session. Much of the legislation pre-filed in the State Senate so far deals with tax credits.
The proposals include incentives to lure amateur sporting events to Missouri, which has failed in years past – and one that would renew several benevolent tax breaks that expired last year, sponsored by GOP Senator Bob Dixon of Springfield.
“Chief among them is the ‘children in crisis tax credit’…my hope is that we can keep them separated from the larger debate, which certainly needs to occur – tax credit reform, that is.”
Another proposal would ban lobbyists’ gifts to lawmakers, including money for food, travel, lodging and entertainment. The proposal is sponsored by Democratic Senator-Elect Scott Sifton of St. Louis County.
“Taxpayers give us $104 a day as a per diem for meals and lodging in Jefferson City for every day that we’re in session, and that should be sufficient to get the job done…I think it’s very hard to argue that $104 a day isn’t enough to feed yourself off of, and that you would need to have somebody else picking up the tab.”
Sifton’s proposal would also ban lobbyist gifts to lawmakers’ staff, family members and election campaigns. Other bills pre-filed in the House include one that would specify that both the U.S. and Missouri constitutions must protect the rights of alternatives to abortion agencies to freely operate without government interference.
The 2013 regular legislative session begins January 9th.