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January 26, 2024

Divisions within the Republican supermajority escalated this week after Senate President Pro Tem Caleb Rowden, R-Columbia, removed four members of the Missouri Freedom Caucus from committee chair and vice chair positions. The announcement was made during a press conference Tuesday morning. The removal of a group of senators from committee leadership positions is unprecedented in modern Missouri politics.

Also this week, Gov. Mike Parson gave his final State of the-State address Wednesday. Parson outlined the achievements of his time in office and his priorities for the 2024 legislative session.

Committees Approve Bills to Increase MOBUCK$ Cap

Bills to increase the cap on the MOBUCK$ program were approved by their respective committees. House Bill 1803 is scheduled for a final vote in committee next week while the Senate companion, Senate Bill 736, was voted out of the Senate Insurance & Banking Committee on Tuesday. These bills are sponsored by Rep. Terry Thompson, R-Lexington, and Sen. Sandy Crawford, R-Buffalo, respectively.

House Panel OKs Bill Affecting Credit Reports for Consumer Loans

Legislation to allow banks to pass through the cost of a credit report on consumer loans was given “consent” status and approved by the House Financial Institutions Committee on Tuesday. Consent bills are fast-tracked and cannot be changed on the House floor. House Bill 2086, sponsored by Rep. Michael O’Donnell, R-St. Louis, now goes to the Consent and Procedure Committee for approval. If the committee approves the measure, it will be placed on the House calendar for a floor vote. It’s expected Senate Bill 835, sponsored by Sen. Sandy Crawford, R-Buffalo, will receive a hearing in the Senate Insurance & Banking Committee next week.

MBA Testifies in Support of Updating Money Transmitter Law

The Senate Insurance & Banking Committee also heard legislation to update Missouri’s money transmitter law with Conference of State Bank Supervisors model language. MBA staff testified in support of Senate Bill 737, sponsored by Sen. Sandy Crawford, R-Buffalo, along with the Missouri Division of Finance and the Electronic Transactions Association.

MBA Testifies At Hearing on Corporate Income Tax Bill

A bill to reduce and eventually eliminate the corporate income tax was heard in the House Special Committee on Tax Reform on Tuesday. MBA testified for information only because House Bill 2274 includes a provision — unbeknownst to the bill sponsor — that would eliminate the proportional rate reduction to the financial institutions tax when the corporate income tax is lowered. If the bill were to pass in its current form, banks would not benefit from the same tax reduction as other businesses. MBA received a commitment from the bill sponsor to remove this provision, which is why MBA didn’t testify in opposition.  

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