There are several statewide and local Amendments and Proposals on Nov 8th 2016 Ballot. Here’s a guide to help you decide how to vote:
Amendment 1 would renew the existing sales and use tax of 0.1 percent for 10 years. The revenue from the tax goes toward state parks and soil and water conservation efforts. The measure was designed to “continue to generate approximately $90 million annually for soil and water conservation and operation of the state park system.
This tax was approved by voters in 1984 and must be renewed by vote every ten years, It has gotten almost 70 percent approval in the last three elections.
Amendment 2 would establish limits on campaign contributions to state and judicial, but not municipal and federal, candidates, committees, and political parties. Candidates for state and judicial offices would not be permitted to receive more than $2,600 from any one individual, other than the candidate himself or herself, per election. Contributions from any one individual or committee to a political party would be capped at $25,000 per election. Corporations and labor unions would be prohibited from making direct contributions, although they could still form continuing committees. One candidate’s committee would be prohibited from contributing to another candidate’s committee. Candidates would be prohibited from accepting funds from out-of-state committees unless said committee registers in Missouri.
Unions object to their contributions being limited by this amendment while corporations go uncapped.
Note: This initiative was funded by conservative Fred Sauer who was enraged by the amount money Rex Sinquefield was giving to Republican candidates running in primaries against candidates Sauer supported. Gov. Nixon supports this Amendment.
Amendment 3 would raise the tax on a pack of cigarettes by 60 cents. Estimates of revenue range from $263 million to $374 million. A minimum of 75 percent would go to funding of pre-school. Between 10 and 15 percent of the revenue would be distributed as grants to hospitals and health care facilities for improving early childhood health. Between 5 and 10 percent of revenue would be distributed as grants to provide smoking prevention programs for pregnant mothers and youth.
Educators all agree pre-school is badly needed especially with at risk children, critics especially teacher organizations do not like the fact this would allowing funding of private and parochial schools for their pre-schools. Others object to the tax falling disproportionally on lower income family who smoke in higher numbers. Some object to the language banning any of the money being used for abortions.
Many of the major health organizations like American Heart Association, American Lung Association, American Lung Association and American Cancer Association oppose this amendment.
Amendment 4 would forbid the state and local governments from enacting sales and use taxes on any service or activity not subjected to one on January 1, 2015.
The rationale behind this law is the recent attempts in the legislature to eliminate income tax and replace it with higher and broader sales taxes. The leader in the fight for this amendment is the National Association of Realtors who fear a sales tax on selling a home. Joining them are bankers, optometrists, chiropractors, lawyers, CPA’s and other service organizations fearing a sales tax on their services.
Amendment 6 would authorize the state to require voters to present a form of identification to vote. The measure would also allow exceptions to be made. It would allow persons without ID to vote if they present a school identification, utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, or other government document, permit their picture be taken, and sign a statement. The state will provide free of cost a photographic ID and the state will pay for any certifications such birth certificates, marriage licenses, divorce decrees, etc. necessary for proof to get a photo ID
Opponents object the necessity of such a law saying there have been no voter fraud cases in recent memory this law would prevented. They feel it is just aimed at a minority population which large numbers without drivers licenses.
This proposal is to increase taxes on cigarettes by 23 cents per pack by 2021 and to add an additional 5 percent sales tax for other tobacco products. The approximately $100 million in added revenue will fund the state Department of Transportation.
This proposition conflicts with Amendment 3 for revenue from increasing taxes on tobacco products. If Amendment 3 passes it takes precedence and will negate a yes vote for Proposition A
While few would disagree, Missouri needs more funding for transportation, many object to taxing cigarettes for the revenue saying it disproportionally taxes lower incomes.
Proposition S (St. Charles County only)
A levy of five cents per each 100 dollars of assessed valuation for providing services to persons 60 years of age or older.
Over the past decade, state funding for programs for seniors has declined (cuts in home delivered meals for seniors, senior transportation, and aid in increasing drug costs). This will add $18 million to help seniors in St. Charles County to stay in their homes. The money will be distributed to already existing programs for seniors.
Prop Howell (Francis Howell School District)
A proposed 60 cents increase per 100 dollars assessed evaluation for the Francis Howell School District. Due to lack of the state in meeting their funding goals in public education and assessed evaluation still being 10 percent lower than before the recession, Francis Howell has cut $12 million in expense in the last two years. This includes the loss of 109 in personnel.
The 60 cents increase would offset approximately two thirds of those cuts.