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Home » Opinion » Bigger government means higher taxes

Bigger government means higher taxes

Bigger government means higher taxes

Jan. 27, 2012

Gary Cross
St. Rep. 48th District

Increasing the size of government can only lead to higher taxes. So, whenever we have the opportunity to limit growth in the state budget, I view it as an opportunity for us to resist raising taxes on hard-working Missourians. This week, the Missouri House moved forward with our Blueprint for Missouri by passing HJR 43, the Taxpayer Protection Act.

Families and businesses across the state plan their budgets with an eye toward the future. We save money when times are good and dip into those savings when times are tough. That is the idea behind the Taxpayer Protection Act.

During these tough economic times, revenues that fund the state budget have fallen short. Rather than hampering the recovery by raising your taxes, House Republicans have chosen to tighten our belts to keep the budget balanced. And we remain committed to doing it again this session.

However, while we work on balancing the budget this session, we must also plan for the future by taking steps that make budget shortfalls less likely in the coming years. The Taxpayer Protection Act is a step toward accomplishing this goal.

When times are good and the budget is flush with money, past legislatures have used the revenue windfall to increase the size and scope of government. The Taxpayer Protection Act limits growth by tying any increase in the budget to population growth plus the rate of inflation.  Any money left over after the adjustment is saved for times when the budget is short.

Critics who oppose this legislation and don't want to limit government growth often point to the effects it might have on education. HJR 43 allows extra funding to be included in future budgets if that money goes toward fully funding the school foundation formula. This allows us to keep our promise to our children while keeping your state government as lean as possible. 

Protecting you, the taxpayer, is a top priority for us in the House. The Taxpayer Protection Act protects you by limiting growth in the state budget while ensuring that education can be fully funded. Passing this legislation reduces the likelihood for tax increases in the future. That way, you can keep more of your money to plan for the future. HJR 43 now moves on to the Senate for consideration.

Please contact Gary L. Cross with any suggestions that you may have for Missouri legislation. Also, if you should experience problems in contacting or resolving an issue with a Missouri state agency, please feel free to call his Capitol office at 573-751-1459 or email gary.cross@house.mo.gov.


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  1. Rob Kraft says:
    January 27th, 2012 at 14:53
    This article begins with a false implied premise in the first line. It implies that increasing taxes is bad, and that is not a logical conclusion. For example, if my taxes increase my $10 a month, and that $10 a month goes to pay for trash services, but that causes my trash services bill to go down by $15 a month, then I am $5 per month better off by paying more taxes.
    I am not commenting about trash services, I just use it to illustrate how the climate of black and white thinking in politics leads to bad policies like Mr. Cross is advocating. Maybe he is advocating a good policy, but his logic is flawed. We can't claim that there is one right thing to do in all situations, in all cases, and at all times. The correct policy at any time depends on the state of the economy, the foundations of the economy, the direction of the economy, and a host of other factors.
    I long for the wisdom of our forefathers who could say, "This policy is the best policy for our current situation, and here is why; but it should be changed in the future when our situation changes to ...".
  2. Greg Hull says:
    January 29th, 2012 at 05:05
    I actually liked the story more before I read the bill. I was impressed by the first sentence but then it kept going. The bill starts by stating? "Upon voter approval, this proposed constitutional amendment
    prohibits appropriations in any fiscal year from exceeding the
    total state general revenue appropriations from the previous year........"
    This would have been common sense to say the least but then the lawyers and bureaucrats decided to keep writing. This bill looks embarrassingly over complex. I agree with what I believe was the intent of this bill, but urge our politicians to simplify it. Please read the bill and let me know your thoughts.

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