Governor, Lawmakers Stump Over Tax Cut Bill

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JEFFERSON CITY- A Senate bill delivered to Governor Nixon would lower Missourians' personal income taxes throughout the next period of years beginning in 2017 but the Missouri State Teachers Association and Governor say the bill would negatively impact education in Missouri.

In a news conference Tuesday afternoon, Nixon said, "Senate 509 would cripple schools." He added, "the consequences would be a fiscal disaster and it'd be difficult to undue."

Missouri State Teachers Association Spokesperson Todd Fuller said the bill would cut more than half the state's revenue that goes toward Missouri's education budget.

Fuller said it would affect "testing and technology, and equal advancements for student's education" because schools depend mostly on the state budget for revenue.

According to a news release from the governor's office, an analysis of the bill done by a Washington University school of law professor states the bill would reduce state revenue by $4.8 billion annually.

House Speaker Tim Jones said in a news conference Monday the bill would not affect the education budget because it would also promote business revenue and growth.

Jones said the governor just doesn't want to see lower taxes for Missourians.

Nixon said he's "calling on members of this legislation to abandon this bill."

If the governor vetoes the tax cut bill, lawmakers would have to override his veto with a majority vote.

[Editor's Note: This story has been edited to add quotes from Gov. Nixon.]