House Bill 253, passed by the General Assembly earlier this month, would increase taxes on Missourians who take prescription medication if it becomes law, Gov. Jay Nixon said today. An initial review has determined that the bill would eliminate the current sales tax exemption on prescription drugs and result in an estimated tax increase of $200 million annually, the Governor said.
"The out-of-pocket cost of prescription drugs, especially for those suffering from cancer, heart disease or other life-threatening conditions, already puts a strain on many Missouri families," Gov. Nixon said. "That is why it is so troubling that House Bill 253 would repeal Missouri's long-standing sales tax exemption on prescription drugs. If enacted, this provision would impose a $200 million sales tax hike on Missourians and increase the cost of the medications they need. This is a tax increase that Missourians cannot afford and don't deserve."
Since 1979, Missouri law has exempted prescription drug costs and co-pays from state sales tax. Language in Section 144.030 of House Bill 253 would repeal this exemption, resulting in an estimated $200 million tax increase on Missourians who take prescription medication.
Additional review of this legislation is ongoing.