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Missouri contest highlights supporters of bad tax-cut bill

Progress Missouri, a progressive advocacy organization, has launched a creative contest to support Gov. Jay Nixon's veto of a tax plan that would require devastating cuts to Missouri's schools, communities and families if it becomes law.

During the 2013 legislative session, the Missouri General Assembly passed House Bill 253, which would give a tax cut to the wealthy at the expense of the rest of Missouri's citizens, leading to overcrowded elementary and secondary classrooms, increased costs for college students, diminished public health and safety, and deteriorating infrastructure, including roads and bridges. In vetoing the bill recently, Nixon called it "an ill-conceived, fiscally irresponsible experiment."

Progress Missouri has come up with a contest to spotlight proponents of the bill, who want to override the veto. Any House member who votes to override the veto will be entered into a lottery. The "winner" will have an aerial banner flown over a high school or college football game in his or her home district, advertising the legislator's shortsighted vote against local schools. If the House does not take an override vote during its September veto session, Progress Missouri will use funds raised to thank representatives who have opposed the legislation from the beginning.

"We need to make smart investments for our children, our families and our schools, not cut taxes for the wealthy," says Andrea Flinders, president of the Kansas City Federation of Teachers, who has worked with Progress Missouri in Kansas City. "We are encouraging members to tell their representatives about the contest." [Dan Gursky, Progress Missouri]

July 10, 2013