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Perspective: Despite distractions, lawmakers push on

Perspective: Despite distractions, lawmakers push on

April 16th, 2018 by State Sen. Mike Kehoe, R-Jefferson City in Opinion

I am told the relatively common phrase "may you live in interesting times" is in fact an ancient Chinese curse where the term 'interesting' means something to the effect of dangerous, uncertain or unconventional.

Missouri government is in the midst of interesting times. I wish things in the governor's office were nowhere near as interesting as they are now, but I am absolutely certain our Founding Fathers devised a system of government greater than one person and fully able to handle these current challenges and distractions.

Thanks to the leadership of Speaker Todd Richardson and Sen. Ron Richard, the ship of state government sails steadily on course. Under their leadership, and with the focused efforts of the House and Senate, in the very near future, I look forward to Missouri once again making headlines for our growing economy, world-leading agriculture and food production, excellent workforce, and abundant opportunities.

On Thursday, the Senate sent SB 674 to the House for consideration. SB 674 simplifies Missouri's corporate tax code and is another tool to help keep current businesses in state, while also encouraging others to expand here, by lowering the state corporate tax rate from 6.25 percent to 3.5 percent. Additionally, the bill requires all corporations to use a single-sales factor income allocation method, meaning corporate taxable income will be based exclusively on the percentage of sales made in Missouri, not on the location of property or employees.

I am very pleased with the extensive discussions on tax reform that have taken place during this session and SB 674 represents yet another piece of the broader tax policy discussion.

This week, the Appropriations Committee spent extensive time working through and marking up the House version of the FY 2019 budget. During this process, Sen. Dan Brown and the members of the committee take the House version and work through more than 3,000 line items one by one. Mark-up is a critical and time-intensive process that will likely continue through next week. While lengthy and laborious, this line-by-line process is critical to crafting a balanced budget that represents the best interests of the state of Missouri. I am grateful for the leadership of Brown, as well as for the time commitment the members of the committee willingly make. Each member takes their responsibilities in this process seriously.

On Wednesday, the Senate sent several bills to the House including SB 891, which designates the week beginning the second Saturday in October as "Buy Missouri Week." This legislation piggy-backs on the efforts of the Lt. Gov. Mike Parson to promote Missouri businesses. Small businesses drive the state's economy and formally encouraging Missourians, during one week of the year, to make a conscious effort to support Missouri businesses is good and right.

The "Best Monday of the Year" is now just a few days away. I suggested last week that my chief of staff's children were better turkey hunters than their dad. This week, I want to declare that statement to be 100 correct correct as his two youngest both killed turkeys, in the cold, during last week's youth season. Not only that, they did it seemingly effortlessly without any need for excuses or wild stories of close calls. They just went out and got it done. While I was very happy for them, I was equally as pleased their success adds an additional layer of pressure and desperation on their dad. Of course I have every intention of rubbing his nose in their success, while mocking his inability to close the deal. For those of you hunting Monday, I wish you the best of luck. Please be safe and enjoy your time in God's great creation.

State Sen. Mike Kehoe, R-Jefferson City, represents the 6th Senate District. He shares his perspective each Monday during the legislative session and occasionally during the interim.