Missouri state senator proposes legislation to cap local sales taxes

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A Missouri state senator will seek during the upcoming legislative session to cap the amount of sales taxes that local governments can collect.

St. Louis-area Republican Sen. Andrew Koenig already filed legislation to cap the combined local sales tax for any Missouri city at a little more than 7.2 percent, KCUR reported.

Koenig said he thinks there are too many taxing jurisdictions in Missouri, where both cities and smaller jurisdictions such as community improvement districts can impose sales taxes.

“You have a quarter cent here, a quarter cent there, a tenth of a cent — and there is not really a good method for keeping a lid on things,” Koenig said.

Koenig’s bill would exempt from the cap taxes collected mostly from visitors, such as hotel and rental car taxes.

A similar measure to cap local and state sales taxes at 14 percent failed last year.

That measure met pushback from St. Louis and Kansas City officials, some of whom are expressing similar concerns with Koenig’s latest bill.

“The bill that’s being proposed would limit our ability to collect the sales taxes that either have been approved by voters or serve what we believe to be an important service or function,” Kansas City councilman Kevin McManus said.

If passed, Koenig’s legislation could derail Kansas City Mayor Sly James’ proposed 3/8-cent sales tax for pre-kindergarten programs. James’ proposal would raise sales taxes in parts of Kansas City above Koenig’s proposed cap.

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