Missouri lawmakers enact ag disaster tax break


JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri lawmakers have approved a tax break for farmers who receive federal disaster aid payments.

The Legislature voted Wednesday to override Gov. Jay Nixon’s veto of a bill creating a state income tax deduction for disaster payments to cattle ranchers and other agricultural producers.

The new law is retroactive to 2014 when Missouri farmers received an unusually high amount of federal aid stemming from a 2012 drought. That means people can file amended tax returns seeking refunds.

Nixon’s budget office estimates the tax break could cost the state nearly $52 million.

But an analysis by an agricultural economist at the University of Missouri puts the cost near $12 million.

The Missouri Cattlemen’s Association says Arkansas is the only other state with a similar tax deduction.