“I’m very pleased the governor has signed Senate Bill 95 and Senate Bill 451, both of which contain provisions I sponsored this past session,” said Wasson. “Simply put, SB 95 allows the secretary of state’s office to upgrade their technology without having to use general revenue dollars, while HB 451 ensures changes in population won’t remove a city, county or political subdivision from operation of a law.”
Several provisions in current law allow the secretary of state to collect an additional $5 fee on fees for filings relating to business organizations, commercial transactions, trademarks, names and private emblems to be credited to the state’s technology trust fund. These provisions were set to sunset on Dec. 31, 2017. Senate Bill 95 extends the sunset provisions to Dec. 31, 2021.
In 2016, a Missouri court essentially found that laws based on population size are not valid if the municipality in question’s population has changed enough to where it no longer fits within a statute’s legal description. House Bill 451 clarifies that if a municipality’s population was correctly stated at the time the statute was originally drafted, any subsequent change in population shall not remove the entity from the operation of that law.
“What matters most isn’t what bill the governor ultimately signs — whether it’s my bill or another lawmaker’s bill that contains the same language,” added Wasson. “What matters is that the end-goal is achieved. Senate Bill 95 and House Bill 451 will make it easier for our business community to keep doing business here in the Show-Me State and allow our cities and towns to experience natural fluctuations in population without losing the protections and guidance of their existing laws, respectively.”
The governor previously signed two other measures that include provisions sponsored by Sen. Wasson. House Bill 93 contains the senator’s language on jobs training and adult high schools.
“With the jobs training legislation, my goal was not to reinvent the wheel, but to apply some of the same best practices other states are using, right here in Missouri,” said the senator. “One of those best practices is funding job training programs through appropriations, not through withholding tax. This will make it easier for businesses to work with our network of community colleges to get their employees trained or retrained in whatever capacity they need to continue operating successfully.”
With HB 93 now signed into law, Missouri will gradually move to a system where the state is able to provide up-front funding for Missouri Works Training projects with appropriations from the general revenue fund. For every year the Legislature appropriates more money for job training, a business will be able to reduce the amount of withholding tax they are required to collect.
“It’s also great knowing we can now move forward in establishing four adult high schools in the Show-Me State, finally giving adults who never graduated a viable path to receive a true diploma,” added Wasson. “This will further help address our shortage of skilled, trained workers by requiring each adult high school to offer an industry certification program in collaboration with public higher education institutions, based on regional workforce needs.
“Over the last several years, I’ve had numerous business and industry professionals throughout the state tell me that having a well-trained workforce is one of the top factors they consider when deciding where they will locate or expand operations. Both the jobs training and adult high school provisions contained in HB 93 will help transform Missouri into a place the business community knows they can find the highly skilled workforce they need to succeed.”
Also signed into law, Senate Bill 225 clarifies and streamlines the process for motor carriers to pay their property taxes by ensuring all counties in Missouri are assessing their property tax bills the same way. Currently, some counties use a different method for calculating the amount of property taxes an interstate motor carrier owes; this practice does not comply with the International Registration Plan. The new process is in line with how other states collect their property taxes on trucks operating in interstate commerce.
To find a complete list of the governor’s actions on measures passed by the Legislature during the 2017 regular legislative session, please click here or visit the Senate website at www.senate.mo.gov.