Your Opinion: Lawmakers must not override tax cut veto

Dear Editor:

If Gov. Jay Nixon’s veto of HB253 is overturned the results will be disastrous for Missouri. Our state’s economy along with our quality of life would be seriously threatened and it would make Missouri less attractive for business investment.

Once the bill became law there would be tax cuts of more than $800 million each year, all of which would result in crowded classrooms, require higher college tuition, broken down bridges and roads and deteriorated public safety.

There would be major spending cuts required in order to pay for those tax cuts and a majority of those spending cuts would come from elementary and secondary education funds as well as higher education. “State funding is already $600 million below the legally required amount” (the MO Budget Project, 314-652-1400.)

The damage done to Missouri schools, K-12 and higher education would lead numerous problems including; lost jobs for many teachers and other elementary school personnel along with much higher and unaffordable tuition for the students while employers are seeking more highly educated employees.

If HB253 were passed those employees would soon not be available from MO thus Missouri schools, (i.e. higher education), would suffer a serious financial burden because the student would be forced to go to another state to study and eventually families would end up leaving MO because the cost of living would become astronomical.

Social service programs will suffer major cuts as well. The Missouri Department of Mental Health would take cuts ranging from $66 million to $100 million once HB253 was enacted should the veto be overturned. The Departments of Social Services and Corrections will experience similar loses/cuts from general revenue as well.

The speed and timing of those cuts will be affected by congressional action. If Congress enacts the Federal Marketplace Fairness Act, the departments will be under pressure to meet the deadlines necessary for the timing of their budget reductions.

HB253 must be stopped. If the Missouri State Legislature overturns that veto and then, as did Kansas, sees the serious mistake that they have made; unlike Kansas they can do nothing about it because of the Hancock Amendment.

Finally, unless you earn $500,000 each year or more the bill will do you no good. Additionally, be prepared to pay sales tax on prescription drugs.

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