By John Sharp
Missouri may no longer be the only state in the nation not to have a statewide prescription drug monitoring program or one of only two states in the nation not to tax internet sales if the top legislative priorities of the South Kansas City and Grandview Chambers of Commerce are approved this year by the Missouri General Assembly.
The top four priorities of the two Chambers include creating a strong statewide prescription drug monitoring program (PDMP) to allow doctors to tell if their patients have become or are in danger of becoming addicted to opioid pain killers. New Hampshire, the only other holdout, approved a PDMP in 2012.
In the absence of a state PDMP, St. Louis County established its own program in 2017 that a patchwork of other jurisdictions containing the great bulk of the state’s population including Jackson County have joined. However, their residents can still travel to the many areas in Missouri that have not joined the St. Louis County plan to get their opioid prescriptions filled with no monitoring.
Another top priority is implementing a sales tax on internet sales to level the playing field with brick and mortar Missouri businesses that are required to collect sales tax, without instituting tax cuts to offset the new revenue collected.
Florida is the only other state without a tax on internet sales.
The other top priorities of the Chambers are:
Implementing a long term sustainable transportation funding plan to adequately maintain the state’s highways and bridges to improve safety and foster economic development; and
Passing legislation to reduce violence in our communities, specifically to pass Blair’s Law (named after 11-year-old Blair Shanahan Lane who was killed here by celebratory gunfire) to make discharging a firearm with criminal negligence in cities a state offense.
Persons may access the full list of all the Chambers’ state and local legislative priorities by going to www.southkcchamber.com and scrolling down to SKCC Legislative Priorities.