While in the St. Louis region Tuesday for a press conference on the Share the Harvest program (which you can learn more about below) Mo. Gov. Jay Nixon called his trade trip to China productive - however, he had little to say about whether he wants to renew efforts to get tax credits for a China hub.
The Democrat said his week-long trip resulted in $4.6 billion in export agreements between Missouri and China.
So, what's the top priority for everyone? A package of tax credits affectionately known as "Aerotropolis," which would provide incentives for the creation of a hub for Chinese cargo at Lambert Airport.
Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon says state officials expect to finalize billions of dollars of export agreements during an upcoming trade trip to China. Nixon plans to announce more details of the trip today during a visit to a Cargill soybean processing facility in Kansas City.
The governor said Monday the trip will allow the state to sign export agreements with Chinese agencies and provide a chance for numerous Missouri businesses to close deals with Chinese customers.
A Missouri House committee has advanced legislation offering new incentives for some businesses and international exporters.
The vote Wednesday by the House Economic Development Committee could pave the way for the full chamber to debate the bill Thursday.
The plan creates incentives for computer data centers, amateur sports events and air cargo exports at the St. Louis airport. It also scales back some existing tax credits, but not as much as proposed under a version passed last month by the Senate.
Special legislative session may end unless consensus found in 2 days
Supporters and opponents of the scaled-down tax credit bill spent more than six hours Monday trying to make their respective cases to a Missouri House committee. Senate leaders slashed $300 million from the Aerotropolis proposal before passing it, and say that the Compete Missouri provision in the bill can more than make up for the deleted warehouse incentives.
David Kerr, who heads the state's Economic Development department, testified in favor of the bill.
A smaller version of the wide-ranging tax credit bill received first-round approval Tuesday in the Missouri Senate. GOP Senate leaders realized there was not enough support within their own caucus for passing $360 million in air cargo incentives, not to mention a threatened filibuster.