Letter to the Editor

Credits need legislative review

Sunday, November 1, 2009

State Sen. Jason G. Crowell, who represents the 27th District in the Missouri Senate, sent this letter to statewide elected officials and to members of the Missouri General Assembly.

Looking at the state's current fiscal situation, it is my opinion that the General Assembly should provide itself with as many options as possible as we begin to make the tough decisions inherent in our state budget. In an effort to afford Missouri legislators with an option, I am respectfully proposing that Missouri's tax credit programs be made subject to the appropriations process.

Tax credits play a vital role in Missouri's economical development, but these cannot be an entitlement and should compete for Missouri's limited amount of resources against basic services provided by the state. By being subject to the appropriations process, the General Assembly will be able to provide greater accountability on how Missouri uses tax credits and have a greater ability to ensure our shared budgetary priorities are preserved.

To provide a better understanding of my proposal, I have attached a summary of the state's fiscal outlook, a breakdown of why legislators should subject tax credits to the appropriation process, and answers to many questions regarding the subjecting of tax credits to the appropriations process.

JASON G. CROWELL, Cape Girardeau