JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Missouri House Leadership and other Republican House members are working toward helping working Missourians with the rising cost of living.

Democrats, however, are saying they had a similar amendment that was turned down earlier in April.

The House Budget Committee filed legislation (HB 3021) on April 11. The bill would create a one-time economic recovery tax credit for Missouri residents who paid personal income tax in the state for 2021. The Democratic version wanted to use the unprecedented general revenue surplus to make cash payments to Missourians.

With the latest piece of legislation, anyone filing an individual tax Missouri personal income tax return would get up to a $500 credit; married couples filing jointly will get up to $1,000. Missouri state Rep. Cody Smith said the credit is limited to people who lived in Missouri for the entire tax year of 2021.

A hearing on this house bill is planned for Wednesday, April 13.

“As families struggle to make ends meet with the rising cost of inflation, it’s important that we do everything we can to help them keep more of their hard-earned dollars,” said Smith, R-Carthage. “The state is fortunate to have a record surplus that we can use a portion of to provide direct economic relief to working Missourians.”

House Speaker Rob Vescovo, Majority Floor Leader Dean Plocher, and Speaker Pro Tem John Wiemann announced their strong support for the plan as it was filed.

“As a caucus, we have made it clear that we do not support the idea of spending every available dollar to increase the size of government, but instead believe individual Missourians are the best decision-makers for how to spend their tax dollars.”

Vescovo, Plocher, and Wiemann

Missouri Senator Lincoln Hough, R-Springfield, filed similar legislation in the Missouri Senate last month.

House Minority Leader Crystal Quade said Representative Kevin Windham (D-St. Louis) offered an amendment to House Bill 3020 on April 11 that would provide cash assistance to low and moderate-income Missourians. Quade said the Republicans defeated the amendment on a vote of 41-85.

“It’s astounding how quickly House Republicans flip-flopped on this idea,” said Quade. “However, unlike the Democratic version that was targeted toward Missourians who would most benefit, the GOP plan primarily benefits the wealthy. While we are pleased Republicans are following the lead of House Democrats on this issue, their proposal needs improvement.”

Vescovo said HB 3021 will be a priority during the House’s final weeks of the session.