Aug 14, 2014 by AFP

AFP-Missouri Calls for Discussion on Budget Reform

JEFFERSON CITY – Following last Tuesday’s vote on several ballot measures and a study issued this week calling MO a “sinkhole state” AFP-Missouri says it’s time to prioritize state spending on core government functions.

Last week, Missouri voters rejected a statewide ballot initiative that would have raised the sales tax for Missouri roads. Local taxpayers in Cape Girardeau, Columbia and Kansas City also voted to reject government expansion plans at the local level. Missourians sent a message loud and clear to policy makers at the state and local level that they are taxed enough and that they want a leaner more efficient government.

A report issued just this week, known as The Truth in Accounting’s “Financial State of the States Report for 2013”, called the state of Missouri a “sinkhole state”. According to the study, Missouri currently has a $7.9 billion debt resulting in a $4,400 debt burden for each MO resident.  Missouri is ranked 40th in terms of its economic performance, and ranked 46th in GDP (gross domestic product) according to the 2014 Rich State Poor State report.  Just last month, The Economist did a study giving Missouri a “C” grade for small business friendliness.  At some point these reports need to serve as a wake-up call for state and local leaders.

“Now is the time to begin the discussion for true long term budget reforms; including identifying the core functions of government, putting a cap on state spending, reducing regulatory hurdles to create jobs, and much more.  Americans for Prosperity-Missouri intends to do just that by engaging its 57,000 activists this Fall,” said Americans for Prosperity-Missouri State Director Patrick Werner.

Werner continued, “The problem with government today is that it thinks it has to do everything for everybody. As a result of that thinking, what ends up happening is that government ends up being stretched too thin by trying to do too many things and ultimately results in programs being underfunded. It’s time state and local leaders engage the public and define what the core government functions should be.” 

“As we saw last Tuesday, Missouri residents believe they are taxed enough.  Now, the ball is in the proverbial court of state and local leaders”, Werner concluded.