Sen. Mike Bernskoetter’s Legislative Column for April 22, 2021

Preserving History

This week, the Missouri Senate gave an initial round of approval to one of my priorities for the 2021 legislative session. Senate Bill 36 creates the Capitol Complex Tax Credit Program and allows qualified donors to receive a tax credit in return for supporting key restoration and renovation projects throughout downtown Jefferson City. The program would support the restoration of historic buildings such as the State Capitol, the Missouri Supreme Court building, the Old Federal Courthouse, the Highway building and the Governor’s Mansion.

I’m sure many of us remember the Capitol being covered up by a façade of scaffolding and plastic wrap not all too long ago. That was done as part of a project to restore the building’s outer beauty after decades of wear and tear brought on by elements. While the covered Capitol wasn’t much to look at, today, the renewed building is as magnificent as ever and shows just how important these kinds of projects are in preserving the beauty of our historic buildings.

While the external Capitol restoration was a significant accomplishment, more work remains to be done. Whether it be internal renovations to the Capitol or work on one of the other impressive historic buildings located downtown, restoration projects need to occur, but they need funding first. I believe SB 36 provides an important avenue to fund these projects by encouraging private investment while also helping lower the total cost to the state. At the end of the day, I believe that’s a win-win for generations of Missourians to come.

Senate Bill 36 needs one more round of approval from the Senate before it heads to the Missouri House of Representatives, where I’m hopeful it can make it across the legislative finish line before session ends on May 14.

As always, it is an honor to serve the 6th Senatorial District. If my office can be service to you, please feel free to contact us at (573) 751-2076. For information about my committee assignments or sponsored legislation, please visit my official Missouri Senate website at