The Senate Republican caucus held a press conference yesterday at the Capitol to address cost of living increases.
The group brought a set of ideas for legislation that they believe will provide permanent relief to the state.
State Senator Don DeWitte of St. Charles has filed a bill that would make the one-year state sales tax exemption for groceries permanent and also exempts prescription drugs and other medical devices from state sales tax beginning July 1st.
State Senator Jil Tracy has introduced legislation would provide parents with a state tax credit equal to 25% of the federal tax credit for each qualifying child. Under the proposal, qualifying families would receive a tax credit of up to $500 per qualifying child when they file their state income taxes. Tracy says her bill would help working parents find affordable and reliable child care: “The challenges of the last few years have been particularly devastating for parents struggling to find affordable and reliable child care for their children. Unfortunately, the burden has disproportionately impacted mothers who are quitting their jobs to be home with their children because the cost of daycare is too high. While there are many facets to the problem that need to be addressed including child care deserts, one thing that we can do is to help reduce the financial burden and establish a state child care credit.”
A final proposal came from State Senator Erica Harriss of Glen Carbon that would provide $200 million in energy rebates for Ameren customers. The program was initially established last year, but funds were never appropriated. Harriss’ bill would provide each household with about $170 in credits on their power bills.
Senate Republicans also discussed State Senator Sue Rezin’s proposal to increase the state’s income tax exemption for seniors from $1,000 to $2,000.
Currently, none of this legislation has moved beyond committees or a second reading in the Senate.