Missouri residents could be taxed on prescription drugs

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - If you live in Missouri, you could soon be taxed on prescription drugs.

Governor Jay Nixon vetoed the bill in June, but now the Republican legislature is threatening to bring it back.

House Bill 253 was the Missouri legislature's response to Kansas' move to reduce income tax by streamlining and reducing some taxes in the state.

Governor Nixon's veto of the bill wasn't the end, but the beginning of the debate.

Many of Pharmacist Pete Spalitto's customers live day to day, and House Bill 253 could impact them greatly.

"We have a lot of uninsured people here who come in and ask how much something is and unfortunately have to walk out the door without receiving their medication," Spalitto said.

He's also worried about a little known portion of Missouri House Bill 253 which would eliminate the sales tax exemption on prescription drugs, forcing customers like Joe Williamson to pay more.

"Dollar wise, it might be $60 to $70 a month I'd say at least," Williamson said. "Putting additional barriers between Missourians and the prescriptions they need is unnecessary, unacceptable and quite frankly, dangerous."

Governor Nixon has spent the summer defending his veto of the bill which he feels harms the state.

The bill came with a 42 page fiscal note about how much it would cost the state and outlines the state will bring in more than $200 million from eliminating the prescription drug exemption.

Republicans in favor of the bill say those flaws can be fixed in the next session.

They've taken to the airwaves, running commercials trying to drum up public support before trying to override the veto during the September session.

Nixon vows to keep up his fight to keep his veto.

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