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Readers Split On Eliminating Personal Property Tax

December 18, 2019 Featured, Missouri, Politics/Policy, Taxes Comments Off on Readers Split On Eliminating Personal Property Tax
Missouri Capital, Jefferson City, MO, April 2011

A Missouri State Senator is going to try to eliminate personal property taxes by allowing citizens to vote on a constitutional amendment:

State Senator Bill Eigel says it’s time to end the payments. He sponsored the bill, SJR 44, which would ask voters to approve a constitutional amendment prohibiting counties and other political subdivisions from levying or collecting a tax on personal property. (KMOV)

In the recent Sunday Poll readers were split on the idea of eliminating the tax.

Q: Agree or disagree: Missouri should eliminate personal property taxes on vehicles.

  • Strongly agree: 8 [26.67%]
  • Agree: 5 [16.67%]
  • Somewhat agree: 1 [3.33%]
  • Neither agree or disagree: 1 [3.33%]
  • Somewhat disagree: 1 [3.33%]
  • Disagree: 6 [20%]
  • Strongly disagree: 6 [20%]
  • Unsure/No Answer: 2 [6.67%]

Sen. Eigel’s bill, SJR44, is the same as SJR5 introduced a year earlier. It never got out of committee.  Eigel represents part of St. Charles County.

I think most realize the folly of the state taking away a source of revenue for Missouri’s counties. Not all counties are equal, some likely depend much more than others on this revenue. Taking it away might mean a reduction in services provided, or an increase in some other tax.

I favor evaluating government services and revenue sources to ensure they’re fair, but I don’t favor constitutionally starving counties to the point they’ve got to substantially reduces services.

Hopefully this new bill also won’t get out of committee.

— Steve Patterson

 

Highway On-Ramp Over Civic Center MetroBus Transit Center Reopened

December 16, 2019 Featured, Transportation Comments Off on Highway On-Ramp Over Civic Center MetroBus Transit Center Reopened

Westbound ramps onto I-64, aka highway 40, are now reopened after being closed since late September:

Starting next Monday, drivers heading west from downtown will need to avoid the ramp from 14th Street to westbound I-64, as crews will close the ramp for two months to remove, repair and replace the driving surface.

Crews will close the ramp after 7 a.m. Monday, September 23. It is expected to reopen in mid-November. (MoDOT)

The ramp from 14th Street didn’t open in November, as originally planned. It reopened earlier this month.

The underside of the ramp in early August.
Same ramp on December 2nd

This ramp was interesting as it goes over Metro’s Civic Center MetroBus Transit Center. It’ll be nice not having to go around all the barricades when going from bus to light rail, and vice versa.

New infrastructure is sexier, but it is far more efficient to maintain what we’ve already got — we can’t afford neglect and total replacement.

— Steve Patterson

 

Sunday Poll: Should Missouri Eliminate Personal property Taxes?

December 15, 2019 Featured, Missouri, Sunday Poll, Taxes Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Should Missouri Eliminate Personal property Taxes?
Please vote below

It’s that time of year. Holiday parties, sure. But I’m talking about personal property taxes. Our bill is on our fridge with a calendar reminder. We pay online so we can wait until the last minute.

Our bill is significantly higher than previously because of the newer used car we bought in 2018.

At present, Missouri residents pay a yearly property tax on their vehicles. State Senator Bill Eigel from St. Charles County wants to put an end to that practice.

“I’ve been getting lots of feedback from my constituents, not only in St. Charles but around the St. Louis area, that are talking about the burden placed on households for having to pay for personal property tax on vehicles for a single year,” he said.

When the lawmakers go back to session in Jefferson City on January 8, Eigel said he will be working to get his bill out of committee and passed through the legislature so Missouri residents can vote on it. (Fox2)

This is the subject of today’s poll.

This poll will close at 8pm tonight.

— Steve Patterson

 

St. Louis Board of Aldermen: New Board Bills Week 26 of 2019-2020 Session

December 13, 2019 Featured Comments Off on St. Louis Board of Aldermen: New Board Bills Week 26 of 2019-2020 Session

The St. Louis Board of Aldermen meet at 10am today, their 26th meeting of the 2019-2020 session. As previously noted, they have the first two meetings labeled as Week #1, so they list this as week/meeting 25.

Today is their last full meeting prior to winter break, they’ll resume January 10, 2020.

Today’s agenda includes four (4) new bills.

  • B.B.#182 – Ingrassia/Coatar – An ordinance approving a Redevelopment Plan dated November 19, 2019 for the La Saison Scattered Sites Area.
  • B.B.#183 – Roddy – An ordinance approving a Redevelopment Plan dated November 19, 2019 (“Plan”) for the 4500-4540 Swan Ave. and 1305 & 1305R South Taylor Ave. Area.
  • B.B.#184 – NUMBER NOT USED THIS SESSION
  • B.B.#185 – Coatar – An ordinance approving a Redevelopment Plan dated November 19, 2019 (“Plan”) for the 618-624 & 700- 702 North 2nd St. Area.
  • B.B.#186 – Clark-Hubbard – An ordinance authorizing and directing the Fire Commissioner, to enter into and execute a Grant Agreement with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency, through the Missouri Department of Homeland Security, for the purpose of funding to support the Cybersecurity Coordinator position at the St. Louis Fusion Center, and to expend funds by entering into contracts or otherwise for grant purposes and containing an emergency clause.

The meeting begins at 10am, past meetings and a live broadcast can be watched online here. See list of all board bills for the 2019-2020 session — the new bills listed above may not be online right away.

— Steve Patterson

 

Missouri Is A Solid Red State

December 11, 2019 Featured, Missouri, Politics/Policy Comments Off on Missouri Is A Solid Red State

When I moved to Missouri in 1990 it was a swing state, a bellwether:

The Missouri bellwether is a political phenomenon that notes that the state of Missouri voted for the winner in all but three U.S. Presidential elections from 1904 to 2016 (the exceptions are 1956, 2008 and 2012). While states like Ohio, Nevada, Florida and New Mexico have been arguably stronger indicators of political trends in recent years, Missouri was a consistent swing state throughout the 20th century. Prior to the 2008 elections, Lincoln County, Missouri was said to be the only bellwether county in a bellwether state. (Wikipedia)

Missouri would go red or blue throughout the 20th century. However, the last time Missouri went blue was in 1996. The country went blue in 2008 & 2012, but Missouri stayed red. The 2008 election was very close in Missouri, but widened in 2012 & 2016.

Vintage photo of the former offices of the St. Louis Board of Election Commissioners. From my collection

Twentieth century bellwether, 21st century red state.  Here’s the results from the recent non-scientific Sunday Poll:

Q: Agree or disagree: The right Democratic nominee could turn Missouri from Red to Blue in the 2020 General Election

  • Strongly agree: 4 [13.79%]
  • Agree: 2 [6.9%]
  • Somewhat agree: 2 [6.9%]
  • Neither agree or disagree: 2 [6.9%]
  • Somewhat disagree: 3 [10.34%]
  • Disagree: 6 [20.69%]
  • Strongly disagree: 9 [31.03%]
  • Unsure/No Answer: 1 [3.45%]

Most agree with me — regardless of the Democratic nominee a majority of Missouri voters vote for Trump. Illinois, meanwhile, remains a safe blue state.

— Steve Patterson

 

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