JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Manufacturing companies will get new tax breaks from Missouri as part of an effort to stem the state's decline in manufacturing jobs.
Gov. Matt Blunt signed legislation Wednesday granting a state sales tax exemption for utilities and chemicals used in the manufacturing process. That means a business won't have to pay state taxes on the electricity used for an assembly line, or for other energy sources, such as natural gas, propane, water or coal, used to produce their products.
From 2000 to 2006, Missouri's manufacturing jobs fell by nearly 18 percent to just under 300,000 jobs. All of Missouri's neighbors except Illinois now offer tax breaks for utilities used in manufacturing, said the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
The Chamber of Commerce claims the lost tax revenues would be more than offset by increased economic activity by manufacturers, which would generate additional taxes.