The Governor’s proposals to raise money for education have been put before the State Senate. Senator Wayne Goode of Normandy proposes a five percent surcharge on incomes of more than $200-thousand, a 55-cent cigarette tax increase, a 20 percent increase in tobacco taxes, and a higher casino admission fee. He also sponsors the bill ending the practice of companies incorporating outside of Missouri and avoiding state coroprate taxes by charging extremely high franchise fees to people who run their stores here. Goode knows his proposals will have to run a partisan gauntlet. The State Chamber of Commerce is a key player. Majority Republicans listen carefully to what the Chamber says. The Chamber’s Fiscal Affairs Director, Ray McCarty, says the Chamber’s proposal is a work in progress that probably won’t be ready for action in the special session. But the Chamber says it’s goal is to elimate corporate tax scams that ship money out of state that should be paid as taxes and send it back to operators as dividends. He agrees that’s a form of money laundering that should be stopped. But he says it’s too complicated for quick special session action.
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