April 17, 2014

NIxon veto of tax cut anticipated (AUDIO, VIDEO)

Governor Nixon leaves no doubt that he’ll veto the latest tax cut bill approved by the legislature. “This year’s reckless fiscal experiment looks a lot like last year’s reckless fiscal experiment,” he says.

Nixon says the tax cut will take more than 600-dollars out of the state bank account every year…and take the state in the wrong direction.

Majority Republicans say the tax cuts and increases will trigger economic development. 

The bill cuts the individual income tax by a half percent through a period of years, one-half of one percent anytime state income increases by at least $150-million above the previous year’s income.

The bill also allows individual income tax deductions for some businesses.

The legislature will have a chance to override his veto before the end of the session.  The House failed to override last year’s veto.

Nixon says the newest Republican tax cut bill is “irresponsible” and based on “discredited economics.”   He has not said he’ll veto it.  But his criticism  leaves little doubt he will.  He’s required to act soon enough that the legislature will have time to override.  The legislature failed to override Nixon’s veto of last year’s tax cut bill.

AUDIO: Nixon news conference 20:47

Senate moving to block sales taxes on some home sales (AUDIO)

The legislature is moving to keep the state from charging a sales tax anytime some Missourians buy a home.

A state Supreme Court ruling clears the way for the state to demand a sales tax be collected anytime one of about 217,600 manufactured homes is sold.  But the Senate is on the verge of passing a bill that would prohibit that.

About eight percent of the homes in Missouri are manufactured homes.  Those are the ones Senator Mike Cunningham of Rogersville wants to protect.  He says the Revenue Department will start demanding sales taxes be collected whenever one of those homes changes hands unless the legislature forbids it.

The problem is that a stick-built home is considered real property and sales tax is not charged on real property sales.  But manufactured homes are considered personal property and personal property is taxable when sold.  It’s in the same category as selling a used car, for example

.Cunningham says manufactured homes are important to many as starter homes, temporary homes for people moving to a different place, or retirees looking to downsize. 

The |Senate is about to send the bill to the House which has exactly a month to act on it. The legislative session ends a month from today.

AUDIO: Debate

Senate starts ethics debate (AUDIO)

The state Senate is considering a proposal that says people who run for the legislature better finish their terms before they take another job in state government—or else. 

Backers of the ethics bill say approval of it would rebuild public confidence in government.  Plenty of skeptics in the Senate doubt that claim.   

One part of the bill says any members of the legislature who takes another state government job before the end of their terms cannot be paid in that new job until their terms would have run out.

Two state senators facing the ends of their careers because of term limits this year have resigned; Ryan McKenna has become the state labor director  and Scott Rupp is the newest member of the Public Service Commission.  If Senator John Lamping’s proposal were in effect now, neither could get a paycheck in their new jobs until next January, when their terms would end. Lamping says commitments to voters should be fulfilled.

                                  AUDIO: Lamping :16 

But critics of his idea say it would eliminate opportunities for lawmakers to transfer their skills to another area of service to the public, and denies the public the services of people with special expertise gained through their legislative service.

Some lawmakers say they support most of the bill but they think it leaves out the most important element of restoring public confidence in government–tight limits on campaign contributions.

SW Mo. man triple murder suspect

A southwest Missourian who is known for white supremacist views is the primary suspect in a suburban Kansas City shooting.  Police in Overland Park, Kansas, say Frazier Glenn Cross, also know as F. Glenn Miller, of Aurora, Missouri, is suspected of killing a man and his grandson at the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City, and killing a third person less than a mile away at  Village Shalom, an assisted living center.

Police identify the dead as William Corporon, who was shot to death in his car, and Corporon’s grandson, 14-year old Reat Underwood who later died at a hospital. A third person shot to death less than mile away from the community center is identified as Terri LaManno, who was who was visiting her mother at the asisted living facility.

The Southern Poverty Law Center, a civil rights group,  says Cross, or Miller, has a history of anti-Semitism. The Center,. which has tracked Cross for many years says he served time in federal prison for plotting to kill the founder of the center and for planning various robberies.

Cross was once the Grand Dragon of the Carolina Knights of the Ku Klux Klan. He also founded the White Patriot Party in the 1980‘s .

Cross ran in 2010 as a write-in candidate for the U.S. Senate for Missouri. He released several commercialss throughout Missouri that the Missouri Broadcasters Association found offensive and recived FCC approval to refuse to run.

Although police feel that it is too early to release a motive for the shooting that took place on Sunday they are running the case as a hate crime.

Police say Cross shot at  two other people but missed both. Police found a shotgun, handgun and an an assault weaont when they arrested Cross at an elementary school in the area.




Senate moves to knock trolls off the bridge (AUDIO)

A story many people recall from their childhood has a real-life counterpart in the adult world. The legisalture is considering what to do about trolls.

Remember that trolls lived under the bridge used by the three Billy Goats Gruff and threatened to gobble them up as they crossed his bridge, until the third goat “crushed him to bits,” as one version goes.

The senate has approved Senator Mike Cunningham’s bill that takes on “patent trolls.”

AUDIO: Cunnigham :15

He says they usually demand $800 to $1200 dollars per user of their product.

AUDIO: Cunningham :16

Cunningham’s bill sets up seven standards the trolls have to meet to prove their cases in Missouri Courts and allows the Attorney General to go after trolls.

AUDIO: Cunningham :16

St. Louis Senator Scott Sifton, an attorney, says there are legitimate patent infringement lawsuits, but he calls the letters from patent trolls “legalized ransom” and says it’s time to attack their legality.

AUDIO: Sifton :17

Cunnigham’s bill has been sent to the House. Congress has had similar bills for three years but hasn’t acted.