A closer look at Proposition B appears to confirm that an additional funding increase for Missouri health and education initiatives is not guaranteed. States On The Take, has posted an "Open Letter" to Attorney General Koster seeking his opinion on this critical question.
Online PR News – 10-October-2012 – St. Louis, Missouri – When something sounds too good to be true it probably is. A stronger Missouri educational system is a laudable goal, but does Proposition B really deliver on its promises?
It's called Proposition B on the ballot. But a more apt description is "Proposition B-Careful." Supporters of Proposition B-Careful claim that this tax increase will only affect smokers and independent cigarette manufacturers. They also claim that Proposition B-Careful will result in a guaranteed increase to Missouri education funding and state health programs. However there is ample evidence to suggest that these claims may not be true.
As States On The Take contributing consultant Charles Andy Arnold, recently shared, "Proposition B is a tax increase and will raise tax revenues for increased spending as most tax increases do. However, I find nothing in Proposition B’s fine print that guarantees increased funding levels for current Missouri education programs.”
Arnold also added, “There’s also nothing that prohibits the legislature from taking funding out of the back door(re-directing or diverting funding)from education programs funded by Proposition B through the front door.”
A check of recent Missouri history with such measures confirms that similar claims were made when the state lottery was passed in 1988, the Master Settlement Agreement (MSA) in 1998 and most recently when voters were asked to remove loss-limits on the states casino’s in 2008.
In all those instances the additional money promised increases for Missouri education funding. However, through the state's budget “shell-game”, other revenue previously allocated for education was re-directed or diverted. As a result, funding for education did not realize the increases promised by supporters.
Proposition B-Careful appears to be another in a 10-year parade of tobacco tax-and-spend shell games sponsored by Missouri special interests. Missouri voters have fallen victim to this "tax-to-spend shell game" in the past and need to cautious this time around. The track record of tax increases in the name of certain areas of funding is littered with broken promises.
Concerned citizens deserve a right to the whole truth regarding this tax increase before Election Day. Citizen participation is needed immediately to make sure Attorney General Koster responds. Visit the Open Letter to Attorney General Koster and make your voice heard now: http://www.statesonthetake.com/open-letter
States On The Take is a government watchdog website, with an eight-year record of holding state government accountable. States on the Take was the first to reveal and brand the "stealth cartel" of "Big Tobacco" and state government. This stealth cartel constructed and implemented the de-facto monopoly that is the MSA.
Charles Andy Arnold is a principal owner of Arnold & Associates, a Missouri Consulting, Public Affairs & Lobbying firm. http://www.arnoldlobby.com Mr. Arnold is at the forefront of Tobacco Policy in Missouri. States on the Take has teamed with allies like Charles Andy Arnold regarding the reality of Proposition B-Careful, so that informed decisions can be made on Proposition B come Election Day. http://www.statesonthetake.com