2014 North County Legislative Agenda

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North County Incorporated has partnered with Greater North County Chamber of Commerce, Maryland Heights Chamber of Commerce and Northwest Chamber of Commerce to collaboratively develop a Legislative Agenda for North County in 2014. 

2014 Legislative Agenda

Economic Development

Economic Development Tax Credits

We support the protection of proven, performance-based tax credits that leverage private investment and stimulate employment and economic growth for our region, provide a positive return on investment, and allow us to be competitive with other regions.

We oppose efforts to reduce the effectiveness of proven tax credit programs, including subjecting them to the annual appropriations process.

We support updating Missouri’s tax credit system to ensure that state resources are used effectively and efficiently and encourage companies to invest and reinvest in Missouri.

Job Training

We support continued funding for job training and workforce development to help attract new businesses and the expansion of existing businesses of all sizes.

Business Climate

We support the State reviewing and improving on existing laws that support business growth and job creation. These actions can strengthen the business climate in our State without creating additional State government expenses. We believe that when businesses are free from unnecessary regulatory burdens, they are much more likely to grow and create jobs.

We support measures to ensure stability and reasonableness of unemployment insurance and ensure that workers terminated for violations of state or federal law do not receive unemployment benefits.

Small Business and Entrepreneurial Growth

We support policies that stimulate an entrepreneurial culture and enhance the growth of small businesses.

We support assistance to small businesses with high growth and job creation potential, including mentoring, low-interest loans, matching funds, grants, and expansion capital.

Redevelopment

We support initiatives to spur redevelopment efforts in economically distressed areas, such as tax credits for brownfield cleanup.

We support meaningful liability reform for brownfield sites to encourage their turnover to a productive use.

Sustainable Development

We support legislation that creates regional solutions and partnerships to improve neighborhoods in downward transition.

We support legislation that provides for a rebuilding and conservation of assets, while guarding against policies that cannibalize St. Louis County, and imprudently use taxes to unnecessarily develop large areas that cause conflict with the sustainability of already established communities.

Logistics and Distribution

We support incentives and funding to enhance the region’s logistics, distribution, and transportation infrastructure capabilities, with an emphasis on international cargo and global competitiveness, including the State’s efforts in securing the International Cargo Hub at Lambert International Airport.

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Education

Early Childhood Education

We support policies that expand access to high quality early childhood education programs, especially for at-risk children. We support a statewide quality rating system for early childhood programs.

Primary & Secondary

Funding

We support the Missouri’s Vision project that calls for Missouri’s schools to be ranked in the top 10 by 2020. We understand for this to be feasible, appropriate financial support from the State is necessary. Therefore, we support appropriations for public schools sufficient to fully fund the foundation formula and all state mandated initiatives for education and provide additional support necessary to implement the “Missouri’s Vision for the Future” initiative.

We support legislation mandating fair and accurate property assessments.

We oppose programs that would divert public funding into private institutions if it is detrimental to our public school systems.

Autonomy

We support the local autonomy of school districts. Local school districts are in the best position to determine the most effective use of funds and other resources and provide safe learning environments.

Charter Schools

We support current charter schools using public funding be held to the same accreditation and academic standards as public school systems and parents should have access to recent performance results to aid in their decisions on where to place their children.

Student Placement

We support identifying solutions to solving at-risk school districts in a manner that does not contribute to the destabilization of communities. Solutions that focus on equitable education for all students and allow children access to close-to-home quality public education.

We support establishing reasonable parameters for the movement of students from unaccredited districts to accredited districts. Without reasonable parameters local school boards would lose qualitative decision making authority and unaccredited school districts would be financially devastated.

Legislation should include: districts ability to set class sizes, districts must receive adequate and equitable funding for any student transfers and the transportation of these students, all costs to be paid in advance directly by the State, incoming students must be assigned to buildings at the discretion of the district, districts must not be required to employ additional teachers or construct additional classrooms to accommodate transferring students, students wishing to transfer must have been enrolled in the unaccredited school district for at least one school year prior to the transfer, accredited districts should not be required to include transfer students’ statewide assessment scores in their district’s scores for three years.

Higher Education

Funding

We support protecting core funding and stable allocations during the current budget shortfall for higher education’s workforce training and skills development programs, especially in the key areas of science, technology, engineering, math, expanding manufacturing, and for additional highly-skilled workers in the health and mental health care field.

We support plans to provide capital funding for new construction and for maintenance and repair of existing buildings and equipment for both the University of Missouri-St. Louis and St. Louis Community College at Florissant Valley.

We support equity funding for higher education sectors and institutions.

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Healthcare

Funding

We support the State working to retain as much federal tax paid by Missouri employers and employees as possible. We support the State support Medicaid Eligibility Reform. Missouri’s choice to maximize coverage to those newly eligible would result in an estimated return of $8.4 billion in Federal funds to the State through 2021. These are funds that Missouri employers and workers have contributed with their Federal taxes. Failure on the part of the State to take advantage of this Federal investment increases the likelihood of potential liability by the State’s employers for increased taxes imposed by the ACA and the continued cost shifting of health care premiums now paid by Missouri employers to cover the cost to providers of the uninsured.

We support adequate funding of state health care programs and enhanced use of available federal funds to reduce the number of under and uninsured.

We support full, affordable and comprehensive access to health insurance, as well as informed choice of doctors, hospitals and insurance plans. We oppose health insurance mandates that undermine the ability of employers to provide high-quality health insurance at a reasonable cost.

We support adequate and timely Medicaid reimbursement to providers.

We support renewal of the Federal Reimbursement Allowance (FRA).  The FRA is the third largest revenue generator in the state of Missouri exceeded only by individual income taxes and sales and use taxes.

We continue to urge Congress and the State of Missouri to support the Federal Reimbursement Allowance Program to its fullest extent on behalf of the citizens of Missouri.

The FRA, which is itself supported by hospitals and other health care providers, is used to fund medical care under the MOHealthNet program.  In the absence of the FRA, medical services under the MOHealthNet program would be significantly reduced.

Other

We support certificate of need regulations that ensure a level-playing field between hospital and specialty providers.

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Transportation

Funding

We support adequate Missouri transportation funding and a formula that reflects the economic strength and development needs of the St. Louis region and encourages the consideration of economic development and job creation impact when funding future projects.

We support the emphasis on maintenance of existing infrastructure.

We support maintaining St. Louis’ representation on the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission and oppose efforts to redistribute money away from the St. Louis region.

We support various forms of user fees be considered as one source of new transportation funding.

Transit

We support policies and funding for Metro that promote more effective and sustainable system operations, as well as system expansions in accordance with the Long Range Transit Plan.

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General Issues

Predatory Lending & Payday Loan Operations

We support legislation that would impose stricter regulations, with penalties, on lenders who engage in unfair and deceptive lending practices. We support legislation establishing that the Missouri Attorney General should have increased responsibility to investigate and take legal action against predatory lenders, such as payday and title loan companies. In addition, legislation should allow cities to impose limits on the number of payday loan companies or, if desired by the community, to ban these operations entirely.

Tax Structure Review and Taxation for Local Governments

We support a tax structure review due to structural deficits caused by an out-of-date revenue system.  Missouri’s capacity to fund services is out of balance because the revenue system has not been modified for decades in what it taxes and how it taxes.  We support maintaining the existing sales tax authority in the statutes.  Extending the authority for sales taxes to other government entities will lead to a very high sales tax rate.  The legislature should maintain the clear delineation that sales taxes should be primarily maintained as a municipal revenue source and should oppose further incursions by other taxing entities that currently use other types of taxes.

Internet Sales Tax

We support legislative efforts to level the playing field for all retailers and require all companies selling on the internet to Missouri residents to collect Missouri Sales Taxes and remit them to the State. The United States Supreme Court has determined not to overrule the collection of sales taxes on internet sales.

Revision of Term Limits for State Legislators

We support that a legislator be limited to 16 years in the Legislature with no limits as to which house they serve in.

Oversight

We call for all legislation to clearly define expected measurable outcomes and accountability measures with built in oversight and transparency.

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NCI News

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North County Incorporated, Regional Development Association (NCI) names its 2017 NCI Salutes 30 Leaders in Their Thirties Leadership Award recipients. The rising professionals are recognized for making their mark in their careers and civic work in the North County area. They were honored at a luncheon October 31 at Christian Hospital.
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04 October 2017
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26 September 2017
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September 2017 eNews

CLICK HERE for St. Louis North County events, kudos, and other news for September 2017.
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To commemorate North County Incorporated’s (NCI) 40 years of service to the community, NCI recently held an exclusive Anniversary Celebration at Hendel’s Restaurant on July 23, 2017. 85 area leaders enjoyed an elegant dinner with wine pairing and silent auction at the sold out event.
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August 2017 eNews

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02 August 2017
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July 2017 eNews

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07 July 2017
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North County Incorporated Assists Small Business Owners in North Saint Louis County

This month North County Incorporated, in partnership with the St. Louis Community College at Florissant Valley and U.S. Bank, held Building Blocks for Growing Your Business Workshops. A U.S. Bank Foundation grant provided the funding to make the workshops possible.
27 June 2017
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June 2017 eNews

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