Beef producers could be enticed into keep their calves a bit longer under a bill sitting on the governor’s desk.
A $30 million beef tax credit is buried among a number of tax credits and incentives included in the $100 million-plus economic development bill, HB 327, Governor Blunt has yet to sign. Rep. Charlie Schlottach (R-Owensville) says the credit will provide an incentive to fatten calves here rather than sell them to out-of-state feedlots.
Missouri is the number two cow-calf state in the country; a $1 billion industry. Most calves, though, are shipped out-of-state to fatten and finish. Schlottach believes that if enough producers fatten, finish and process more cattle here the industry can grow to a $4 billion industry. Schlottach says a University of Missouri study indicates that for every one thousand calves fattened, six jobs will be added to the state workforce.
HB 327 grew larger than the Blunt Administration wanted. It does contain an enhancement of the Quality Jobs Program that is the state’s number one economic development tool. The administration says that is vitality needed, because the current program has maxed out its business incentives. The governor has yet to say if he will sign the bill. Blunt might have to sign what some consider a bloated bill to get the economic development tool he says the state needs.