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Rep. Greg Razer

Razer: Missouri-Kansas economic border war a “disaster”

(Missourinet) The economic “border war” between Missouri and Kansas involving tax incentives appears to be coming to an end. The governors of Missouri and Kansas will be headlining Tuesday’s Governor Summit, which is being hosted by the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce.

State Rep. Greg Razer, D-Kansas City, speaks on the Missouri House floor on April 11, 2019 (file photo courtesy of Tim Bommel at House Communications)

State Rep. Greg Razer, D-Kansas City, tells Missourinet the border war has been a “disaster,” saying both states and both metros have been throwing money away.

“As I sit here and do this interview with you I’m just a couple of blocks from State Line Road,” Razer says. “And you would literally see Kansas give millions of dollars in tax incentives to get a business to move across the road.”

Kansas is on one side of State Line Road, with Missouri on the other side.

The Kansas City-based Hall Family Foundation says more than 10,000 jobs moved between Missouri and Kansas in the past decade, with an incentive cost of $330 million. The jobs all moved in the Kansas City region.

Representative Razer, the ranking Democrat on the House Higher Education Committee, says the border war has created virtually no new net jobs. He also says it has drained resources from critical programs for both states.

“This has been a net loss to Missouri, it’s been a net loss to Kansas and it’s been a net loss to the Kansas City metro,” says Razer.

Razer will be attending Tuesday’s summit at Memorial Hall in Kansas City, Kansas. Missouri Governor Mike Parson (R) and Kansas Governor Laura Kelly (D) will be attending.

Governor Parson signed bipartisan legislation in June that restricts incentives to companies moving from Kansas to Missouri’s Cass, Clay, Jackson and Platte counties.

Governor Kelly signed an executive order earlier this month in Topeka, telling reporters that her order “ends the border war.”

Parson says both states have each spent “well over $100 million on this.”

Razer agrees, adding that this has been a bipartisan issue in the Missouri Legislature.

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