- Obama shortens sentence of inmate from Cape (1/19/17)9
- Business notebook: Jackson salon owner also opens a clothing store (1/16/17)
- Area hospitals hope a box helps prevent infant deaths (1/19/17)6
- Jackson police describe night of anger, car crashes, drug possession by 18-year-old (1/22/17)5
- Two subjects of interest in 1992 homicide to take polygraph tests (1/15/17)8
- Meat-processing plant faces $70K penalty for Clean Water Act violations (1/17/17)4
- Cape SportsPlex contractor offers a look at the project (1/15/17)14
- Local students to perform with choir at inauguration (1/19/17)3
- Southeast to lose $3.5 million from state in budget cuts (1/18/17)21
- Subjects of interest in 1992 killing take polygraph tests; results not revealed (1/18/17)2
A bill in the Missouri Legislature proposed to spur economic development by eliminating sales taxes on utilities used by manufacturers. But the proposal is a two-edged sword that should be carefully considered before it is adopted.
While state economic development officials say tax exemption would help Missouri regain some of the manufacturing jobs that have been lost in recent years, city and county officials worry about the loss of revenue.
As written, the bill says the cost of the proposed measure is unknown. The impact of the tax cut on Cape Girardeau's revenue stream, however, would be about $110,000 a year out of a total of $19 million the city gets from its sales tax. Cape Girardeau County officials are trying to determine how county revenue might be affected.
At first, a case for the legislation was made by arguing that some of the state's largest employers, such as the Procter & Gamble plant near Cape Girardeau, would be the primary beneficiaries. But "manufacturing" covers a broad list of business activities in the state. As local officials study the plan, some fear that it goes too far with too many unknowns.
Before this bill is put in its final form, everyone needs to be clearer about the specifics: How much will it reduce state and local sales-tax revenue? What are all the goods and services that would be exempt under the "manufacturing" label? How much economic development will likely occur to make up for the lost revenue?