A Tax Cut is the Gift that Keeps on Giving
At one time or another, I’m sure you’ve stressed about getting someone the perfect holiday gift. Everyone wants to get their loved ones something they’ll enjoy. And if lawmakers are looking for the perfect gift for their constituents, I can think of (at least) one thing that everyone would find extremely useful: an income tax cut. Stay with me here—this really is a great gift.
An income tax cut is basically the gift of money. Taxpayers would get to keep more of their hard-earned money to spend or save in any way that they want. That means more opportunities for taxpayers and more money that can be spent at Missouri businesses. And it’s the gift that keeps on giving, because you’d get this “extra” money year after year.
This would not only be an individual gift, but also a gift to Missouri’s economy. Income taxes are destructive to growth and disincentivize working. For a number of reasons, Missouri’s economy would be better off if the state relied more on other forms of taxation for revenue.
In recent years, Missouri lawmakers have taken steps to lower the individual income tax. The “Wayfair” bill in 2021, for example, added a reduction of the top income tax rate by 0.1 percent in 2024 and two triggers to eventually lower the top rate to 4.8 percent. But it’s not time to take our foot off the gas. Other states (like North Carolina) are implementing tax cuts, and Missouri should follow suit to support taxpayers and stay competitive.
In the mass of pre-filed bills, I know of at least one that would reduce the income tax, but it’s difficult to predict what will happen in Jefferson City in 2022. If lawmakers really want to give taxpayers a gift (albeit a late gift, given the timing of the legislative session), they’ll consider further income tax cuts this session.