02/18/19 -- HB 255 -- Modifies and Expands the Missouri Works Program

Bill Number: 
HB 255
Bill Purpose: 
Modifies and Expands the Missouri Works Program
Date of Vote: 
02/18/19
My Vote: 
No
Explanation: 

HB 255 was introduced by Representative Travis Fitzwater (Republican - District 49).  While it didn't exactly create a new program, it did create some new provisions within the existing Missouri Works program, which is in itself an initiative I do not support.  It is not the purpose of government to incentivize private businesses to create jobs.

This bill creates a tax credit to be awarded to businesses that demonstrate they have created a certain number of new jobs.  I am not generally in favor of tax credits as a general rule, however I will at least consider them in certain circumstances.  I will not, however, support tax credits that are refundable (can be paid out in excess of one's tax liability) or transferable (can be bought and sold like a bond or other investment).   This bill's tax credit has both attributes.  During the perfection process, Representative Deb Lavender (Democrat - District 90) introduced an amendment to remove the refundability and transferability of the tax credit.  I did vote for that amendment, but it failed on a voice vote.

I'm not sure I would have voted for this bill even had that amendment passed, however without it I was a firm no.  The bill passed anyway, likely because it is on the Governor's list of priorities.  You can view the roll call vote here.