Rx drug sales tax veto subject of Kirksville stop

Gov. Nixon in Kirksville Thursday to discuss local impact of $200 million tax hike on prescription drugs

Missouri Governor Jay Nixon paid a visit to Kirksville Thursday afternoon. His first stop was Rider Drug to discuss the local impact of House Bill 253, which he vetoed last month. It would have implemented a sales tax on prescription medications and lowered the state income tax rate. Some organizations are calling for lawmakers to override the governor's veto because it would be the first time in 100 years that the personal income tax rate would be lowered.

Governor Nixon said if lawmakers override his veto it will hurt Missouri residents. â??Since 1979 Missouri has exempted prescription drugs from state sales tax,â?? Nixon said, â??an exemption this bill eliminates in one fell swoop. If this bill becomes law Missourians would pay a new tax of up to 10 percent in some localities, including up to nine percent right here in Kirksville.â?? The governor said raising taxes on Missourians who need lifesaving medications is â??unacceptable and dangerous.â??

â??As a small-business owner, raising taxes on the products we sell hurts our business and puts a financial strain on our customers,â?? said Craig Harris, owner of Rider Drug. According to the Governorâ??s news release, in September 2011 the state auditor recognized that Missouri has the seventh-lowest state taxes as a percentage of personal income.

House Bill 253 also is impacting Missouriâ??s education system. Click HERE to see what Truman State University President Troy Paino said and click HERE to see what Kirksville R-III Superintendent Patrick Williams said.

Missouri's Republican-controlled legislature returns to the capitol on Sept. 14 for its annual veto session. A veto override requires a two-thirds vote in the legislature.