The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

January 24, 2013

1-cent sales tax proposed for Missouri highways

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — The Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission has proposed a 1-cent sales tax increase to fund improvements to the state’s transportation infrastructure.

As designed, the tax would be administered over the next decade and would aim to raise a projected $7.9 billion. The tax would not be applied to medicine, groceries or gasoline, the commission said.

The plan would dedicate $1 billion to improving Interstate 70, which runs across mid-Missouri, from Kansas City through St. Louis, while splitting $5.15 billion in different regions in the state — including more than $768 million for Southwest Missouri, according to the commission’s report.

The proposal was presented Thursday at the Missouri Conference on Transportation in Jefferson City by Rudy Farber, a Neosho banker who is chairman of the Highways and Transportation Commission.

“It would create jobs, make roads safer, reduce commuter congestion, stimulate economic activity and create a more competitive Missouri,” he said.

The conference was put on by the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry, which is offering general support to proposals that would invest in the state’s infrastructure.

That support may prove crucial as advocates seek backing from legislative Republicans, many of whom campaigned on the promise that they would not vote to raise taxes. Under the Missouri Constitution, any proposal to increase taxes has to be put before a vote of the people. The highway commission called on the General Assembly to pass legislation to at least allow voters to consider the proposal.

“What we are asking the Legislature to do is to allow the citizens of Missouri to vote on whether they wish to tax themselves on transportation,” Farber said.

Sen. Mike Kehoe, R-Jefferson City, chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee, and Rep. David Schatz, R-Sullivan, chairman of the House Transportation Committee, both appeared at the news conference, and neither spoke against the proposal.

The commission concluded that despite Missouri’s comparatively low gas tax, an increase in sales tax is simply a more effective way to raise revenue as automobiles continue to become more fuel-efficient.

Earlier this week, House Speaker Tim Jones began a public push with Rep. Chris Kelly, D-Columbia, and Rep. Lincoln Hough, R-Springfield, to pass a bonding proposal through the General Assembly to fund infrastructure improvements.

The proposal — which is being carried in the Senate by Appropriations Committee Chairman Kurt Schaefer, R-Columbia — focuses more on “vertical infrastructure,” Kehoe said. It would create a dedicated fund to improve and build new structures for state universities, hospitals and even the Capitol building in Jefferson City.

Governor

Gov. Jay Nixon has not yet weighed in on specific transportation funding proposals, but the topic could emerge Monday when he delivers his State of the State address to a joint session of the General Assembly.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • Shrine Bowl band, cheerleaders, players arrive in Pittsburg this week

    Band members were the first Kansas Shrine Bowl participants to arrive at Pittsburg State University this week.

    July 24, 2014

  • Carthage prepares for Marian Days

    The 37th annual Marian Days celebration will start in two weeks, and planning is well under way for the event that will bring tens of thousands of Catholics of Vietnamese descent to Carthage.

    July 23, 2014

  • Mike Pound 2010.jpg Mike Pound: It’s not Mayberry, but Carthage is close

    When I was a kid, I wanted to live in Mayberry. In a way, I suppose I still want to live in Mayberry, the fictional town featured in the classic Andy Griffith show of the 1960s.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Miami council waives fees for barbecue event

    The Miami City Council voted Tuesday to waive $3,750 in usage fees for Miami Elks Lodge No. 1320 for an upcoming barbecue championship at the Miami Fairgrounds.

    July 23, 2014

  • r072414msw.jpg VIDEO: Carterville company expands to third generation

    What began as Ray “Mac” McCoy’s side job in his home 55 years ago has grown not only in square footage and reach, but in generations. This summer, a third generation took over the reins of MSW — Mac’s Specialty Woodwork — that now exceeds 90,000 square feet and creates custom furniture for chain restaurants coast to coast.

    July 24, 2014 2 Photos

  • Galena council rescinds landfill decisions

    The Galena City Council voted Wednesday to rescind decisions it made two weeks ago regarding a proposed landfill at Riverton.

    July 23, 2014

  • Joplin couple indicted in child porn case

    A federal grand jury indicted a Joplin couple Wednesday for alleged sexual exploitation of a second child in addition to a girl who was the subject of a preceding indictment of the husband for allegedly producing and distributing child pornography.

    July 23, 2014

  • Missouri attorney general defends his support of Amendment 1

    With a large cornfield behind him and campaign signs all around, Democratic Attorney General Chris Koster appeared Wednesday at the David Collard farm to tout Amendment 1, an Aug. 5 ballot measure that would make the “right to farm” part of the state constitution.

    July 23, 2014

  • Joplin school board reviews audit procedures

    A team from the Missouri State Auditor’s Office has begun requesting documents in its task to audit the operations and management of the Joplin School District, the audit manager told the Board of Education on Tuesday.

    July 22, 2014

  • Joplin man to stand trial in accident case

    A passenger accused of causing an accident on Interstate 44 in Joplin that injured three others as well as himself was ordered bound over for trial Tuesday on three felony counts.

    July 22, 2014

Must Read
Sports
Photos


Facebook
Poll

Amendment 8 in Missouri proposes a special lottery ticket to help fund state veterans homes. How will you vote?

For it.
Against it.
     View Results
Opinion
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter