Missouri lawmakers will again push legislation aimed at preventing an exodus of Kansas City and St. Louis students from their failing schools and overwhelming neighboring districts.
The Missouri Supreme Court ruled last year that students living in unaccredited districts are owed free transfers and that accredited schools must take the students. The courts continue to work out the details.
Missouri tax revenues have increased this year but are falling short of what was expected in the state's budget.
The state Office of Administration reported Friday that state revenues through November increased 2 percent, to $2.84 billion from $2.78 billion last year. So far, sales tax collections are up 3.4 percent but corporate income taxes are down 10.7 percent.
Governor Jay Nixon (D) says his administration wisely handled the vetting of a Los Angeles-based company that began building an artificial sweetener plant in Moberly, then pulled out after missing its bond payment to the small northeast Missouri town.
Moberly officials told a State House committee this week that the governor’s Department of Economic Development withheld emails from a DED consultant revealing that he could not verify whether Mamtek had a functioning plant in China. Nixon did not address that accusation when talking with reporters today, but he did say no taxpayer dollars went to Mamtek.
Missouri lawmakers began pre-filing bills today for next year’s legislative session, which begins January 4th.
One bill was influenced by the deadly Joplin tornado. If passed, it would allow Missouri residents to deduct up to $5,000 from their state income taxes for building storm shelters on their properties. It’s sponsored by State Representative Terry Swinger (D, Caruthersville).