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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri farmers will get a larger property tax bill for their land starting in 2015.
 
Property tax for agricultural land is based on its productive value. Farms are divided into eight groups based upon land quality, with the best in Grade 1 and the worst in Grade 8.
 
The Missouri Tax Commission has recommended increasing the productive values for all farms by about 5 percent. State lawmakers' deadline to reject that proposal was this past weekend. It means the new values will be in place for the 2015 and 2016 tax years.
 
The tax commission estimates the change will mean about 10 cents more tax per acre. The commission says the last change in productive values took effect in 1995.
Published in Local News
   JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Gov. Jay Nixon says Missouri employers could save $186 million in federal taxes after a revised projection indicates money borrowed to pay jobless benefits will be repaid early.
   The state Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund became insolvent in February 2009 during the economic downturn. Missouri borrowed from the federal government, and businesses pay a surcharge to repay the debt.
   Nixon said Tuesday the U.S. Department of Labor revised its projection for when Missouri would pay off the loan. Now, the state is expected to repay it in November instead of May 2015. Nixon says that would reduce business's federal unemployment tax by $84 per worker.
 
Published in Local News
Tuesday, 15 October 2013 02:26

Tax deadline not delayed by gov't shutdown

   Even a partial government shutdown that has most IRS workers furlough won't affect Tuesday's tax deadline.  

   Tax filers who requested a six month extension back in April must file their taxes by today.  

   Officials with the Internal Revenue Service say the shutdown hasn't changed that, but it has halted any refund checks until normal government operations resume.  

   There's also no one there to take calls or answer taxpayer questions, since more than 90 percent of IRS workers are on furlough.

Published in National News

   JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Fees will be rising on some consumer loans under a law enacted when Missouri legislators overrode a veto by Governor Jay Nixon.

   The fee increase will primarily affect smaller loans that are repaid over several months or years. It's not meant to affect payday loans, which can last no more than 31 days.

   The measure doubles the origination fee that lenders can charge from 5 percent to 10 percent of the principal. But it leaves in place a $75 fee ceiling. The means lenders can charge the full 10 percent fee only on loans of up to $750 and can collect a few more dollars on loans of up to $1,500.

   Lending industry lobbyists describe it as a minor change. But some consumer advocates don't like the new law.

 

Published in Local News
Wednesday, 11 September 2013 02:16

MO income tax cut faces challenge in veto session

   JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - A Republican push to cut Missouri's income taxes faces resistance as lawmakers decide whether to override Gov. Jay Nixon's vetoes.

   The Republican-led Legislature convenes Wednesday for a veto override session. The tax cut is the highest profile issue out of Nixon's 33 vetoes.

   The legislation would phase-in hundreds of millions of dollars of income tax cuts for businesses and individuals. Republican legislative leaders say it would spur the economy and help Missouri compete against recent tax cuts in Kansas and other states.

   But Nixon says the lost revenues could jeopardize education funding. And he says a drafting error would impose sales taxes on prescription drugs.

   A veto override requires a two-thirds majority in both chambers. Supporters may fall short in the House, because several Republicans plan to vote "no."

 
Published in Local News
Tuesday, 03 September 2013 03:30

Analysis: Huge MO tax cut largely hypothetical

   JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Governor Jay Nixon says a clause in the income tax cut bill that he vetoed could have triggered a $1.2 billion run on the state treasury.

   Attorney General Chris Koster agreed with Nixon's legal analysis this past week. But the projection remains largely hypothetical.

   The Missouri bill would trigger a one-half of a percent reduction in state income tax rates if the federal government enacts a measure making it easier for states to collect online sales taxes.

   That bill has stalled in the U.S. House. But if it passes, then all of Missouri's roughly 2.8 million income taxpayers would have to amend three years of tax returns for Nixon's projections to hit in a single year.

   The courts likely would have to determine whether the retroactive tax refund is legal.

 
Published in Local News

   Property taxes will remain the same for homeowners in the Ferguson-Florissant School District after voters rejected the district's first tax hike request in 21 years.  

   Only 42 percent of voters in Tuesday's election approved the measure that would have raised taxes by 75 cents for each $100 of assessed valuation.  The tax hike would have raised about $6 million for district schools. 

   The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the district is facing a projected $4.6 million shortfall for the coming school year, despite cutting before- and after-school programs and freezing teacher pay.

Published in Local News

   SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Illinois transit advocates are proposing a plan to fix the state's deteriorating roads through a new tax that would raise the price at the gas pump, The Associated Press has learned.

   The Transportation for Illinois Coalition says the $800 million dollar a year plan is necessary to get a toehold on needed repairs to roads, bridges and rails.

   The influential group is pushing legislation to replace the current 19 cents per gallon motor fuel tax with a 9.5 percent wholesale tax. It would add about 14 cents to today's price of a gallon of gas.

   Coalition co-chairman Doug Whitley laid out the plan for the AP in advance of making it public.

   The proposal would also increase vehicle licensing fees.

   Bill Fleishli of the Illinois Petroleum Marketers Association says the fuel tax would hurt business.

 
Published in Local News

   JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri's Republican-led Legislature put a priority on cutting taxes this year. But the same lawmakers who passed a $700 million income tax cut also approved numerous little-known fee increases.

   One of those measures could increase fees on driver's licenses and vehicle registrations, costing Missourians almost $22 million annually.

   Another bill would impose fees on mailed-in speeding traffic tickets, affecting an estimated 170,000 cases annually.

   Missourians could pay more to get copies of their own medical records or court transcripts. Businesses could get charged more for certain Agriculture Department services. And court fees could rise in some places.

   Although fees and taxes both take money from people, many Republican lawmakers have drawn a philosophical distinction. They say taxes are applied generally, and fees are charged only for specific services.

 
Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon says an income-tax cut bill passed by the Legislature also could levy taxes on prescription drugs.

Nixon released a written statement Thursday saying the legislation would repeal an existing sales tax exemption on prescriptions, which could cost consumers $200 million annually.

The Democratic governor has previously indicated that he is likely to veto the bill. His previous statements pointed to the eventual loss of hundreds of millions of dollars for state services as a result of the income tax cut.

The legislation was handled by Republican Sen. Will Kraus, of Lee's Summit. Kraus said Thursday that he did not intend to tax prescription drugs. If that's the case, he says Nixon should sign the bill and call a special session so lawmakers can fix it.

 
Published in Local News
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