JEFFERSON CITY - The Missouri House passed a constitutional amendment in a special session hearing Tuesday to create a new tax credit review process voted by both the House and Senate.
Under the new tax credit review process, it allows the General Assembly to review the tax credit programs every four years instead of six years applied by sunsets.
This proposed amendment came after the House and Senate have debated the tax credit bill for weeks without coming to a compromise.
The Senate is in favor of sunsets, which requires lawmakers to review tax credit programs every six years, but Rep. Ryan Silvey, R-Kansas City, said it is unfair that one person can in effect kill a program. More people have to vote on the tax credit programs more often, according to Silvey.
"We should not allow one senator to filibuster a renewal if a program comes to an end on a certain date and it needs to be authorized for renewal," Silvey said. "We don't believe that one senator should have the power to in effect kill a program that takes a majority of senators to create in the first place."
House Speaker Steve Tilley said although the House has a problem with sunsets, they can agree with sunsets if several reforms are made, which the Senate refused to do.
"What the Senate did is they took almost all the provisions that we all liked out and put in some provisions that they knew we didn't like, like the Compete Missouri and then said by the way you needed to live up to your end of the deal," said Tilley.
Tilley said the House never wanted to break one provision of their deal, but it is the Senate who broke the deal.
Although the House passed the proposed amendment in the hearing, the senators show no intention of returning to the state Capitol to discuss it with the House and vote on it. Tilley said the House didn't have sufficient discussion with Senate President Pro Tem Rob Mayer and he said he thought Mayer didn't do what he should do.
"Clearly, there is a lot senators he didn't contact and didn't clear with," said Tilley. "That is not the House's fault."
Tilley said the vote of 131 to 17 on sunsets from a big portion of democratic caucus showed sunsets are not acceptable even among democrats.
Rep. Shane Schoeller, R-Springfield, said what the Senate did is to centralize the power so they can control the power in the future. Schoeller said what Silvey is trying to do is to take that power out and create a more fair process.
The time period for the special session is 60 days, but after 45 days of debate, the House and Senate still haven't come to an agreement on the bill. With just 15 days left, the House and Senate may end up in a stalemate with no legislation passed. Tilley said if the Senate doesn't want to conference with the House, there is nothing else the House can do.
"If you don't want a bill, if you don't want to find middle ground, if you don't want to go to conference like the Senate has claimed to do now, then it's clear to us that you don't want a bill," said Tilley.
Tilley said without passing any legislation, the special session will just become a failure in the end.