JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. - Missouri's Republican-led Legislature enacted the state's first income tax rate reduction in almost a century Tuesday by overriding the veto of Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon, who has denounced it as a reckless financial experiment.
The law will gradually cut Missouri's top individual income tax rate starting in 2017 and make the state just the third in the nation to offer a special business-income deduction on personal tax returns. But the incremental tax cuts will occur only if Missouri's revenues keep growing.
The tax cuts could benefit about 2.5 million individuals and families, with the wealthiest standing to gain the most, and would provide an extra boost to hundreds of thousands of people involved in business partnerships, limited liability corporations or their own ventures.
The override vote capped an intense, multi-year campaign that included millions of dollars of advertising by tax-cut supporters and scores of opposition events organized by Nixon. Republicans made the tax cut a priority after failing last year to override Nixon's veto of a more expansive cut.
The GOP holds large majorities in both chambers but needed a little Democratic help to accomplish the two-thirds vote required to override this year's veto. The House voted 109-46, with Democratic Rep. Keith English of suburban St. Louis joining all 108 Republicans. The GOP-led Senate voted Monday to override the veto on a party-line 23-8 vote.