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Missouri 2022 Legislative Session: Week 6 Recap of AARP Missouri's Priorities


Missouri 2022 Legislative Session: Week 6 Recap of AARP Missouri's Priorities

Logjam Breaks, Maps Still Stalled in Senate
The Missouri State Senate perfected their first pieces of legislation this week, but have not yet passed a single bill.

The re-drawing of Missouri’s Congressional Maps has illuminated the divisions within the super majority Republican Caucus.  Most members of the Senate Majority are pushing for a “status quo” map that changes districts slightly, but maintains Missouri’s 6 Republican/2 Democrat Congressional Delegation.  Members of the Conservative Caucus are pushing for a much more aggressive 7-1 map to counter what they perceive as partisan gerrymandering in other states.

Tempers remain high, but moderate and conservative senators were able to come together this week to perfect a work training program, known as “Fast Track”, and a proposed constitutional amendment that would cap personal income taxes and free taxes on services from the “Hancock Amendment” that prevents raising taxes without a vote of the people.

Property Tax Relief Measures
This week, legislation that will provide property tax relief to Missourians over the age of 65 made significant progress in the General Assembly.

Senate Joint Resolution 41, sponsored by Senator Steven Roberts (R-St. Louis) was debated on the Senate floor as an amendment to another piece of legislation.  SJR 41 would allow taxing districts, such as counties, cities, and school districts, to decide to freeze the amount of property taxes paid by seniors at the amount paid when the homeowner turns 65.  While that amendment was eventually withdrawn, Senate Leadership has moved up the consideration of the legislation, placing it on the floor calendar for next week.

House Bill 2200, sponsored by Representative Brad Hudson (R-Cape Fair), was heard in the House Ways and Means Committee.  Rep. Hudson’s bill would simply raise the eligibility for the Circuit Breaker Tax Credit for homeowners by $7,000 of income per year.

Senator Roberts’ legislation focuses on local government, while Rep. Hudson’s focuses on state government relief, but both would prevent older homeowners from being taxed out of their homes as they age.

Supplemental Budget Passes Senate Committee
The Senate Appropriations Committee passed their version of Governor Mike Parson’s first Supplemental Budget, Senate Committee Substitute for HB 3014.

The Senate Committee removed several problematic provisions from the House version, including several restrictions on early education and a new program that would reimburse parents for services to address learning loss in their children.  They also added a provision to prevent Medicaid from paying for services provided at Planned Parenthood affiliates.

The first Supplemental Budget should be on the floor of the Senate next week, but the changes will most likely mean that the bill will be going to a conference committee to iron out the differences.

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