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Sen. Kraus and Speaker Pro Tem Hoskins file legislation to protect Missouri Taxpayers

Bills would require the state to notify businesses of tax law changes

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Speaker Pro Tem Denny Hoskins filed legislation this week that would protect Missouri businesses from unannounced changes in Missouri tax policy. Hoskins pre-filed HB 299 to require the Department of Revenue (DOR) to notify businesses that will be impacted when tax laws or policies change.  Senate Bill 18 was also filed by Senator Will Kraus on the same subject.

“It is time to end the bad practice of notification by audit,” said Speaker Pro Tem Hoskins. “When tax law changes either by legislation, court ruling or administrative policy, the businesses affected should be notified. I want to see that all Missouri taxpayers are treated fairly and I want to see an end to bureaucrats making tax laws for our state.”

Similar language passed with overwhelming support in the General Assembly during the 2014 Regular Session, but was vetoed by the governor who Hoskins said used false and inflated numbers regarding the cost of notification to back his veto decision. In a direct answer to the governor’s and DOR’s cost claims, HB 299 specifies the means of notification that shall be acceptable to be either by mail or email, and further requires DOR to post all  tax policy changes on its website.

Hoskins has been a strong advocate for broad-based tax policies supporting a healthy business and economic climate in Missouri. He was fundamental in passing the “Big Government Get Off My Back Act” in 2011.

Hoskins’ bill is exactly the same as legislation filed by Senator Will Kraus on December 1. SB 18 also mandates the Department of Revenue notify businesses of changes to tax policy and, like Hoskins bill, SB 18 mandates the DOR notify taxpayers by either U.S. mail or e-mail.  Both bills require posting the changes on the Department of Revenue’s web page but add that posting does not satisfy the mandates of the notification requirement. Legislation vetoed by Governor Jay Nixon during the last legislative session was silent on the exact form of notice required and would have allowed DOR to simply post the notice of changes on their website.

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