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A bill reducing Missouri’s top income tax rate is headed to Gov. Parson

 The Missouri House of Representatives on the first day of the legislative session this past January at the Capitol in Jefferson City.
Brian Munoz
St. Louis Public Radio
The Missouri House of Representatives on the first day of the legislative session this past January at the Capitol in Jefferson City.

The top income tax rate in Missouri will be reduced to 4.95% next year and could go as low as 4.5% under a tax cut bill the state House of Representatives passed Thursday and is sending on to Gov. Mike Parson.

An income tax cut was one of two goals Parson cited when calling for the special session currently underway in Jefferson City.

The law also exempts the first $1,000 of taxable income after the standard deduction for all taxpayers, but it does not increase the standard deduction as Parson had requested.

“This bill means our administration will have cut Missourians' income tax rate by almost a full percentage point or a nearly 15% decrease,” Parson said in a statement, indicating he would sign the bill.

The legislature passed a one-time, nonrefundable tax credit earlier this year. Parson vetoed that bill, because he said it did not apply to enough people and was only temporary.

The House passed the Senate’s version Thursday on a 98-32 vote, but not without dissent, even from some lawmakers who supported it.

Bill Kidd, R-Buckner, voted for the measure but said legislators need to reduce taxes that affect poorer residents, namely property and personal property taxes.

“If you’re a low-bracket income earner, or you’re a fixed-income earner, this tax cut really isn’t going to do much for you at all. That’s the truth,” Kidd said.

Rasheen Aldridge, D-St. Louis, voted against the tax cut and said he’s upset the House stripped out a measure that would have lowered sales taxes on personal hygiene products, including diapers and tampons.

“You’re talking about items that are an essential need, not a luxury — talking about when people are struggling to keep their lights on and giving them some relief in their pocket when they have to purchase these items,” Aldridge said.

The House failed to pass an emergency clause, which means the measure cannot take effect immediately and will be implemented next year.

The legislature’s special session isn’t over yet. The House and Senate have yet to pass an agricultural tax credit plan, the other plank of Parson’s call for lawmakers to reconvene.

Both chambers are scheduled to return next week.

“Next week, we look forward to progress being made on the agriculture bill, so we can sign both pieces of legislation into law,” Parson said.

Follow Jonathan on Twitter: @JonathanAhl

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Jonathan Ahl reports from the Rolla Bureau for St. Louis Public Radio. His duties also include covering central and southern Missouri for Harvest Public Media. Before coming to St. Louis Public Radio in November of 2018, Jonathan was the General Manager for Tri States Public Radio in Macomb, Illinois. He previously was the News Director at Iowa Public Radio and before that at WCBU in Peoria, Illinois. Jonathan has also held reporting positions in central Illinois for public radio stations. Jonathan is originally from the Chicago area. He has a B.A. in Music Theory and Composition from Western Illinois University and an M.A. in Public Affairs Reporting from the University of Illinois at Springfield. He is an avid long distance runner, semi-professional saxophonist and die-hard Chicago Cubs fan.