A second major casualty of a filibuster on the last day of the legislative session is an economic development bill. Senator Eric Schmitt of Kirkwood had hoped to gain passage of a series of issues he says are at a ‘critical point”
The bill included new caps on two of the state’s biggest tax credits programs–historic preservation and low income housing.
Schmitt had argued the legislature needed to act after years of just talking. “Dear Lord! Every year somebody is waiting for this fairy tale scenario to drop from the sky to have the perfect bill…We don’t really live in that world. So this is an opportunity for us to move forward,” he told the Senate.
But northwest Missouri Senator Brad Lager says the bill reflects the ways the legislature has become too heavily influenced by special interests. “Right now we can’t pass anything through this chamber that the trial lawyers don’t bless. We can’t pass anything through this chamber that a handful of tax credit recipients can’t bless. We can’t pass anything through this chamber that fundamentally restructures the tax code of this state,” he said.
Lager says the priorities in the economic development bill were all wrong. He talked long enough during senate debate that the sponsor of the bill ran out of time to get it passed.