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Missouri Expects Billion Dollar Income Deficit In 2012

Missouri can expect a $1 billion income deficit in the 2012 fiscal year according to an assessment of the nonprofit Missouri Budget Project.

A billion dollars were cut from the state budget for the financial year that started July first. But the public policy analysis group believes the cuts have gone as far as possible. July tax collections were down 4.2 percent from a year ago. The Budget Project's Director Amy Blouinhe estimates the crisis has been escalating over the last decade. She said the answers lie in collecting revenue, such as multi-state corporations that headquarter in Missouri and pay no income tax.

"Base companies, [and] mom and pop operations that started here are contributing to the infrastructure that they benefit from," Blouin said. "And multi-state operations should be required to do the same thing."

Another innovation working for other states, said Blouin, is using sales tax to collect on internet purchases. A new study from University of Tennessee stated Missouri loses $187 million this year in state and local tax revenue from letting internet buying be tax exempt.

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