Missouri Governor Eric Greitens visited Signature Packaging and Paper in Jackson today as part of a statewide tour to promote his “revenue-neutral” tax plan.
He began his address by announcing that Missouri has the lowest unemployment rate that it’s had in 17 years, and that they’re doing so through “common sense.” He also said they’ll be reducing the tax rate on businesses so the state will have the second lowest tax rate in the country.
“We’re competing with other states for business,” said Greitens. “And when we pass our plan, we‘re going to pass Michigan, Florida, New Mexico, Virginia, so we can bring more jobs and higher pay back to the state of Missouri.”
The Tax Plan
Greitens said that, with his new plan, they’ll be cutting taxes on 97% of Missourians, and that they’re targeting working families. They’ll first be cutting the income tax rate, and anyone making over $9,000 a year will see a 10% cut on their income taxes. A “Workers First” tax cut will also be implemented, giving 380,000 low-income Missourians a break on their taxes, and requiring them to pay $0 to the state of Missouri.
“Today, the state of Missouri has people making $40,000 a year paying $920 in taxes,” said Greitens. “Under this plan, we’ll be cutting it by $471, and cutting their tax bill over 51%.”
He said they’ve been carefully counting every penny so that they can cut taxes “without burdening our children with debt.” Ending loopholes and unnecessary, out-of-date special breaks in the tax code is also a benefit of the tax plan, he says, and that instead of giving people a bonus for paying their taxes, they’re simply giving everybody a tax cut.
Tax cuts will also be made on businesses so they will be able to hire more workers, and, as Greitens said, “invest in their workers.”
Upon press inquiries pertaining to higher education cuts, Greitens explained the need to make “tough choices” on the budget to make sure it balances. He said they brought in outside experts from the auditor group “Pricewaterhouse Coopers” to take a look at Missouri’s university system, who identified $70 million in administrative costs in the university system alone that “could be cut”.
“We’re actually very confident that our university administrators can cut that administration. We’ll also see, on higher education, that we increased funding for scholarships for students," said Greitens."I want to make sure higher education is affordable for students.”
Greitens defended the need for K-12 education funding, and explained that $87 billion has been put into primary and secondary school.
“One of the reasons for that is, I want to make sure kids are getting a quality education, and I want to see a raise for teachers,” said Greitens.
Reducing regulations was also a topic of the evening. Greitens explained that workers all over the state had spoken out about wanting less regulations, and even pointed out that we had more regulations here than were imposed on us in Washington D.C.
“In the state, the regulatory environment here had gotten worse than in the federal government regulations. When we came into office, we found 113,000 regulations in the state of Missouri,” said Greitens.
Greitens’ administration plans on getting rid of 33,000 unnecessary regulations out of 113,000 regulations in the state, such as getting rid of the requirement for small businesses to have a landline phone.
Greitens’ mentioned that, after calling a special session of the legislature, his administration passed a bill so Missouri could compete for steel mills and other advanced manufacturing around the state. This resulted in the establishment of a new, competitive steel mill in Missouri.
He also announced a plan to reward businesses that are building jobs in the state.
“Right now, we have outdated and unfair laws that encourage businesses to hire people and build their businesses outside of Missouri,” said Greitens. “What we want to do is have companies right here in Jackson and in the state of Missouri who are investing here, building here, and hiring workers here.”
Greitens also voiced his support for law enforcement, and pride of the American flag.