JEFFERSON CITY - The Missouri Senate gave a first-round approval to Senate bills 3 and 5, which would lower the income tax rate to 4.95% in 2023, during Gov. Mike Parson's special session Tuesday.

If Missouri state revenues continue at a constant rate, the state income tax rate would eventually fall to 4.5%. 

The combined bill is in response to Gov. Parson's initial call for a special session to lower the income tax rate to 4.8% as part of cuts that intend to decrease state revenue by $700 million annually. 

Those earning $14,000 or less per year won't have to pay income tax in Missouri under the combined proposal.

The bill was proposed by Sen. Lincoln Hough (R) and Sen. Andrew Koenig (R).

"I'm very glad the governor made this call and called us back into special session," Sen. Koenig said. "I think this is a very reasoned approach to this, we're not cutting too fast, I don't believe so. Currently this year revenues are up by $700 million, just within the first couple of months so I think ultimately we'll get to that 4.8 that the governor had in his call eventually."

Sen. Jill Schupp (D) questioned the need of even having tax cuts during session. 

"A lot of money that we have in our budget and in our surplus is really one time money as a result of crises that have occurred," Sen. Schupp said. "We're not going to keep being funded by the federal government in the way that we have been where we have a surplus budget." 

Members of the Senate are expected to vote on the bill Wednesday before it can move to the House.

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