Auditor: Taxpayers "on the hook" for $1 billion for unapproved state projects

1 year 6 months 1 week ago Monday, April 10 2017 Apr 10, 2017 Monday, April 10, 2017 10:52:00 AM CDT April 10, 2017 in News
By: Kylie Callura, KOMU 8 Digital Producer

JEFFERSON CITY - Missouri State Auditor Nicole Galloway found taxpayers are paying almost $1 billion in outstanding transportation project costs that will be repaid with sales taxes they did not vote on, according to a report she released Monday

The unapproved costs total an estimated $941 million for about 60 percent of Transportation Development Districts, or TDDs, that requested financial disclosure documents.

Galloway said the audit found that TDDs across the state have little to no oversight or transparency on projects because the existing laws related to the districts are weak. This lack of oversight leads to unapproved project costs that fall on taxpayers in that district, she said.

TDD laws were originally created to help communities with transportation projects but have since morphed into public funding sources for private developers, according to the state auditor's office. 

"Insiders have rigged the system to take advantage of Missourians. It is outrageous that taxpayers are on the hook for a billion dollars in debt without even realizing it," Galloway said. "It appears as though the General Assembly has legalized self-dealing and conflicts of interest through the Transportation Development District laws. I am calling for a total overhaul of the laws that allow and even encourage this kind of activity."

The report cited multiple violations of noncompliance with state laws by transportation districts. All districts included businesses that violated the law by not notifying customers of sales taxes charged, the report said. It also said 58 percent did not include even one business that followed the guidelines of the customer tax notification law.

The following TDDs in Missouri were reviewed and found to be non-compliant with at least part of the tax notification law:

  • Rock Bridge (Boone County)
  • Harrisonville Market Place A (Cass County)
  • Highway 71/291 Partners in Progress in Harrisonville (Cass County)
  • Stone Ridge in Jefferson City (Cole County)

The report included eight other districts from around the state. 

In addition to the lack of compliance with the customer tax notification law, Galloway found the Department of Revenue failed to adequately monitor district boundaries. Of the 12 districts audited, incorrect boundary lines caused 42 percent of the districts to have sales taxes incorrectly calculated or collected, the report said. 

Galloway said the department did not provide information to taxpayers on taxes paid to the district that were supposed to be for public projects. The report said the department does not disclose how much TDDs receive in tax dollars if they did not have at least seven businesses.

The report concluded that the full amount owed may be much higher than the estimated $941 million and could continue to rise as new TDDs are formed.

More News

Grid
List
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Mega Millions jackpot has soared to an estimated $1 billion, as the second-largest lottery... More >>
2 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 12:10:00 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Police want the public's help finding a man who allegedly ran from a traffic stop after hurting... More >>
2 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 11:42:00 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
WASHINGTON (AP) — Just 1 in 4 people thinks Brett Kavanaugh was completely honest when as a Supreme Court nominee... More >>
4 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 9:58:13 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- The US moved closer to acknowledging the role of Saudi Arabia in journalist Jamal Khashoggi's apparent death as... More >>
4 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 9:36:16 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
RANDOLPH COUNTY - MoDOT announced they will close Randolph County Route CC from Route FF to Route K on Monday,... More >>
5 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 8:30:00 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
FLORISSANT (AP) — Authorities have arrested a suburban St. Louis student after finding a loaded gun and a razor inside... More >>
6 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 7:46:15 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
ST. CHARLES, Mo. (AP) — A Missouri man has been sentenced to life in prison in the 1984 beating death... More >>
7 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 7:10:00 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A Kansas City doctor has been sentenced to a year in federal prison for his... More >>
7 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 6:51:00 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
ST. LOUIS - Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill and Republican opponent Josh Hawley were sometimes heated and often derisive as they... More >>
17 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 9:02:00 PM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Chamber of Commerce will discuss the possibility of collaborating for a Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Friday... More >>
18 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 8:16:00 PM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Issues like Proposition D, Vision Zero and more were discussed at Thursday night's Transportation Committee Meeting in Columbia.... More >>
18 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 7:31:00 PM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
MEXICO - October is domestic violence awareness month and businesses across Mexico are showing their support for survivors by decorating... More >>
20 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 6:02:00 PM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
ST. LOUIS - Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill and her Republican opponent, Josh Hawley, are hoping for a debate win tonight... More >>
20 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 5:43:00 PM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY, Kan. — The Latest on the trial of two maintenance workers charged with misleading investigators after a 10-year-old... More >>
21 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 5:09:00 PM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Hundreds of people gathered for the grand opening of CenterPointe Hospital on International Drive Thursday. Governor Mike... More >>
22 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 3:42:00 PM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The influence of lower prices and convenience are affecting the way millennials approach primary care, according to... More >>
22 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 3:38:00 PM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - MU honored Dr. George Smith, the first Nobel Prize winner in university history, with a reserved space to... More >>
22 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 3:30:00 PM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
MOBERLY - Police arrested a man Wednesday after a search warrant led to finding five gallon-sized bags of marijuana. ... More >>
23 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 3:08:00 PM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 56°
3pm 56°
4pm 59°
5pm 59°
6pm 59°