Cutting taxes for Missouri veterans

Friday, January 11, 2008

My administration has a solid record of increasing prosperity for Missouri families and growing our state's economy. Since 2005, we have passed meaningful reforms in litigation, workers' compensation, and business regulation. These pro-jobs, pro-growth initiatives have helped us turn the $1.1 billion deficit that we inherited into three consecutive budget surpluses without raising taxes. We have also enacted important job-creating incentives to attract large and small employers to our state, and cut taxes allowing Missouri families to keep more of their own income.

Since I became governor we have enacted three major tax cuts for Missouri families. We cut taxes for Missouri seniors by eliminating the tax on Social Security benefits. We cut taxes on health care premiums to help Missourians with their health insurance costs. And we provided a tax cut to protect manufacturing jobs in our state.

I believe that tax increases not only diminish personal liberty, they stifle economic growth and job creation. Lower taxes mean more money for Missourians to spend and invest, which leads to more growth, more jobs and a higher standard of living for all.

I recently proposed a fourth major tax cut initiative to again ease the tax burden on Missourians. This year, I am urging the General Assembly to pass a tax cut for veterans by eliminating all state taxes on all military retirement pensions. Military pensions represent more than ordinary work. They represent noble sacrifice for our country.

Our state and nation have been blessed with Missourians whose patriotic spirit led them to wear the uniforms of our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines to defend our freedom and security. Ending the tax on their military retirement is another way we can honor the service and sacrifice of Missouri Veterans.

I have worked to make Missouri a state of greater opportunity. That has meant reforming laws that were chasing entrepreneurs, small businesses, and large employers out of our state. It has meant creating incentives for job creators to add new jobs to our state economy. It has meant dramatically increasing our investment in education. And, it has meant cutting taxes. I urge the General Assembly to honor Missouri's Veterans by ending the tax on their military pensions.

-- Gov. Matt Blunt