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  • Writer's pictureAIM Team

Governor Parson signs bills on electricity equipment exemption, regulatory pause for new ideas and tax clarity on streaming

By Ray McCarty, president/CEO, Associated Industries of Missouri

July 9, 2024 - Governor Mike Parson today signed several bills that are important to business. Although the Missouri Senate was completely paralyzed by a few senators up to and including the final day, the Missouri House again rose to the occasion and passed several bills Associated Industries of Missouri advocated for on behalf of Missouri employers. The Governor's action today completes the process and the bills will become law.

One of those bills, SS#2 SB 872, includes a provision that will lower the costs of providing electricity to end users. The bill will clarify the sales/use tax exemption of items such as poles, wires and transformers, used to provide electricity service to all consumers. Such items are exempt after a recent Missouri Supreme Court decision and legislative affirmation of similar previous decisions regarding telecommunications services.

"We passed this exemption clarification in 2014 but Former Governor Jay Nixon vetoed the bill because it was part of a larger bill that contained multiple issues, and we have tried ever since to pass this language," said Ray McCarty, president and CEO of Associated Industries of Missouri. "We want to thank advocates from both parties that spoke in favor of the bill, leading to a unanimous vote in the Missouri House and we thank Governor Mike Parson for signing the bill into law."

The bill will lower the cost of providing electricity and savings will be reflected in rates paid by all electricity consumers.

The bill also contains a clarification that local video franchise fees do not apply to streaming services, a provision that is also contained in HB 2057 that was also signed by Governor Parson today.

The Governor also signed SS SCS SBs 894 & 825, a bill that provides a "regulatory sandbox" for new ideas that would allow state agencies to temporarily waive regulations as new ideas are tested in the "proof of concept" stage. The bill allows veto power to state agencies, providing the necessary guardrails to prevent unfair competition with existing businesses. The "Right-To-Start Act" is also included in this bill. That Act requires a report from the Office of Administration regarding state contracts with businesses that have been in business less than three years. The bill sets up an Office of Entrepreneurship in the Department of Economic Development to support the growth of entrepreneurship of Missouri-based businesses with less than ten employees, including entrepreneurship within racial minority groups, and women and veteran entrepreneurship. Finally, the bill repeals language relating to the now-defunct Small Business Regulatory Fairness Board.

Yesterday, Governor Parson also approved SB 1388 that provides a sales/use tax exemption for all sales and purchases of tangible personal property, building materials, equipment, fixtures, manufactured goods, machinery, and parts for the purposes of constructing all or any portion of a nuclear security enterprise located in Kansas City. The bill will simplify the purchase of materials for that facility.

Governor Parson today also signed SS HB 1912, a very important fix for pass-through entities to allow them to take advantage of income tax changes we made previously (read more here).

Finally, SS HB 2062 was signed today by Governor Parson. The bill contains two provisions that were supported by AIM. The bill provides that when a local government issues a shutdown order, the local government must waive the business license fee for 6 months or the duration of the order, whichever is longer, and reduce the real and personal property taxes of the business. The bill also contains the electric vehicle charging station mandate relief AIM supported, but it was changed in the final bill to only apply to churches and nonprofit organizations.

With his actions today, Governor Parson has signed the bills we were able to pass in the 2024 Legislative Session.



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