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Hannibal Courier - Post - Hannibal, MO
  • Recommendations on amendments

  • The issue: Missouri voters will decide three constitutional amendments Nov. 2.

    Our view: All three deserve support with “yes” votes.



     


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  • The issue: Missouri voters will decide three constitutional amendments Nov. 2.
    Our view: All three deserve support with “yes” votes.
       Two of the three constitutional amendments that are on the Nov. 2 election ballot will not have a widespread impact, but all deserve “yes” votes.
       Amendment 1 would require charter counties to elect their assessors. The government office is filled by appointment now in the counties of St. Louis, St. Charles, Jackson and Jefferson.
       The amendment is really unnecessary in a way, because three of the four already elect or will soon begin electing their assessors.
       However, making the job-seeking process level for all assessors in the state is practical and fair.
       Amendment 2 also is one with which no one should disagree. It provides a homestead property tax exemption for former prisoners of war who have a total service-connected disability.
       The Missouri Veterans Commission estimates there are fewer than 100 former POWs living in the state who would qualify. The cost of the exemption to local governments would be more than $100,000 a year.
       Still, giving a bit of a break to people who sacrificed the best part of their lives in some foreign lockup for their country seems like the least we could do.
       Amendment 3 is the one that voters really must pass.
       Missouri property owners currently don’t pay a tax when their land changes hands, and a “yes” vote would keep it that way.
       The effort is a pre-emptive move to keep tax-hungry legislators from imposing such a fee. The tax might make sense in good times. But with the economy still lagging, now is not the time to make people open their wallets even wider.
       While such a transfer tax hasn’t been proposed yet in Jefferson City, you can bet your last dollar that the idea is percolating.
       Missouri is one of 13 states without such a tax, and voters should make sure it stays that way.
     

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