Missouri pushes again to end economic border war

1 month 2 weeks 5 days ago Sunday, January 27 2019 Jan 27, 2019 Sunday, January 27, 2019 9:54:00 AM CST January 27, 2019 in News
By: The Associated Press

KANSAS CITY (AP) — Some Missouri lawmakers are pushing legislation that could end a long-running economic border war between their state and Kansas that has prompted both states to spend millions of dollars in the last decade to lure businesses in the Kansas City metropolitan region across the state line.

Kansas spent $184 million in incentives since 2010 to entice businesses to move, while Missouri spent about $151 million in the same time period, according to the Hall Family Foundation. Those millions resulted in a net of about 1,200 jobs in Kansas.

"We're using (economic development incentives) to divide the pie, not increase the pie," said Bill Hall, president of the foundation and a Kansas City metro area civic leader.

Missouri passed a law in 2014 that prohibited the use of state incentives to poach businesses in Douglas, Johnson, Miami and Wyandotte counties. But the law required Kansas to pass a similar bill pledging not to go after businesses in Clay, Cass, Jackson and Platte counties in Missouri, The Kansas City Star reported .

Kansas lawmakers and then-Republican Gov. Sam Brownback rejected the plan. Brownback suggested a similar proposal two years later but it ultimately failed.

Missouri's bill expired in 2016. Sen. Mike Cierpiot, a Republican from Lee's Summit, has filed a bill this session that would renew the legislation through 2021 to provide a chance for further discussion.

"I don't understand why reasonable people can't sit down and figure this out," Cierpiot said. "It's just bad policy."

Critics of the tax incentives say companies get millions of dollars in tax breaks to move a few miles and often add only a few new jobs.

For example, Kansas spent $3 million in tax breaks to move about 60 jobs at HCA Midwest Health four miles from Kansas City, Missouri, to Overland Park, Kansas.

New Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly said in a statement that everyone agrees the current situation doesn't make sense "but the devil is in the details."

"We will be looking at this issue and reviewing the legislation to determine if it is in the best interest of Kansas," she said.

Some Kansas City metro area question the need for legislation, saying the economic realities are different than they were in 2014.

Blake Schreck, president of the Lenexa Chamber of Commerce, questioned how urgent the problem is now because the economy is healthy and both sides of the state line are flourishing.

"We're all growing and doing fine, so it hasn't been a huge issue," he said.

But he said getting a bi-state agreement to award incentives only for net new jobs would help both sides.

"I would anticipate we'll take a crack at it sometime this year," he said.

Bill Hall, who has spent years advocating for a cease-fire in the incentives border war, said now is a good time to get an agreement because of the strong economy.

"The economy is not always going to stay good," Hall said. "This is the perfect time to deal with it because emotions aren't as high and more reason can be brought to it, because people aren't fighting for every last job."

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY - A priest at the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church has been removed for violating boundaries with a minor,... More >>
40 minutes ago Monday, March 18 2019 Mar 18, 2019 Monday, March 18, 2019 4:58:00 PM CDT March 18, 2019 in News
GLASGOW - Flooding has begun in the Missouri River from runoff of water in neighboring states. The midwest snow... More >>
2 hours ago Monday, March 18 2019 Mar 18, 2019 Monday, March 18, 2019 3:26:00 PM CDT March 18, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Court documents allege Kyle McClain of Moberly fraudulently sold insurance plans to clients of the Central Pantry under... More >>
2 hours ago Monday, March 18 2019 Mar 18, 2019 Monday, March 18, 2019 2:56:00 PM CDT March 18, 2019 in News
PETTIS CO. - Deputies recovered a truck Sunday believe to be stolen from Oklahoma by jail escapee Travis Davis. ... More >>
5 hours ago Monday, March 18 2019 Mar 18, 2019 Monday, March 18, 2019 12:28:00 PM CDT March 18, 2019 in News
CALLAWAY COUNTY - Carl DeBrodie's family continues to call for justice two years after their loved one's death. On... More >>
5 hours ago Monday, March 18 2019 Mar 18, 2019 Monday, March 18, 2019 11:51:00 AM CDT March 18, 2019 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — St. Louis police are investigating several shooting scenes after an unusually violent day, even for... More >>
6 hours ago Monday, March 18 2019 Mar 18, 2019 Monday, March 18, 2019 10:40:00 AM CDT March 18, 2019 in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Hundreds of homes have flooded in several Midwestern states after rivers breached at least... More >>
8 hours ago Monday, March 18 2019 Mar 18, 2019 Monday, March 18, 2019 9:13:00 AM CDT March 18, 2019 in News
CENTRALIA - The Lady Panthers Softball Team slid into success at the end of the season with some off-field accolades.... More >>
8 hours ago Monday, March 18 2019 Mar 18, 2019 Monday, March 18, 2019 8:45:00 AM CDT March 18, 2019 in Sports
JEFFERSON CITY – The Missouri state capitol is going to be a lot quieter this week with lawmakers' spring break... More >>
11 hours ago Monday, March 18 2019 Mar 18, 2019 Monday, March 18, 2019 6:24:00 AM CDT March 18, 2019 in Top Stories
BOONE COUNTY - Boone County will soon turn 200 years old, and county commissioners are working on a way to... More >>
12 hours ago Monday, March 18 2019 Mar 18, 2019 Monday, March 18, 2019 5:16:00 AM CDT March 18, 2019 in News
MARIES COUNTY - A 13-year-old girl died in a house fire Sunday in Maries County, according to a Facebook post... More >>
20 hours ago Sunday, March 17 2019 Mar 17, 2019 Sunday, March 17, 2019 9:10:00 PM CDT March 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Improvement District is offering a grant incentive to downtown restaurants that would eliminate messy grease bins... More >>
23 hours ago Sunday, March 17 2019 Mar 17, 2019 Sunday, March 17, 2019 5:42:00 PM CDT March 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Yoga Gives-CoMo held its monthly charity yoga event Sunday afternoon in collaboration with Logboat Brewing Co. This... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, March 17 2019 Mar 17, 2019 Sunday, March 17, 2019 4:03:00 PM CDT March 17, 2019 in News
AUDRAIN COUNTY - A family is forced to move on after a fire destroyed their home of 32 years Saturday... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, March 17 2019 Mar 17, 2019 Sunday, March 17, 2019 3:26:00 PM CDT March 17, 2019 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Police in Kansas City, Missouri, are investigating a stabbing death at a hotel. The Kansas... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, March 17 2019 Mar 17, 2019 Sunday, March 17, 2019 1:59:00 PM CDT March 17, 2019 in News
ST. JOSEPH (AP) - As rivers and creeks in flooded eastern Nebraska and western Iowa crest Saturday, officials have begun... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, March 17 2019 Mar 17, 2019 Sunday, March 17, 2019 11:17:00 AM CDT March 17, 2019 in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Three men have been sentenced this week for the kidnapping and torture of a... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, March 17 2019 Mar 17, 2019 Sunday, March 17, 2019 9:03:00 AM CDT March 17, 2019 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A Washington University student is suing after he was kicked out of the private St.... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, March 17 2019 Mar 17, 2019 Sunday, March 17, 2019 8:56:00 AM CDT March 17, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 53°
6pm 49°
7pm 47°
8pm 44°
9pm 42°