For Immediate Release
Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Court Win is Victory for Voters: Missourians Will Have Opportunity to Vote "YES" to Stop Double Taxation
Media Contact: Attorney Chuck Hatfield
Office: 573-636-6827 573-636-6827
E-Mail: chatfield@stinson.com

(Jefferson City, Mo.) – In a court victory for the rights of voters, Missourians will have an opportunity this fall to Vote "YES" to Stop Double Taxation. Cole County Circuit Judge Paul Wilson ruled Tuesday that the proposed state constitutional amendment barring transfer taxes on real estate received enough petition signatures from registered voters to appear on the Nov. 2 ballot.

"There is no dispute that enough registered voters signed the initiative. The Vote 'YES' To Stop Double Taxation Committee showed conclusively in court that thousands of valid voter signatures were incorrectly thrown out by election authorities. We stood up for the rights of these voters to be counted, and the court has supported the rights of voters to be counted," said attorney Chuck Hatfield, who represented the campaign committee during several days of hearings.

The Vote "YES" To Stop Double Taxation Committee submitted tens of thousands of voter signatures on petitions to place the amendment on the ballot. However, the Missouri Secretary of State's Office announced its conclusion that the proposal did not receive enough signatures of registered voters to qualify for the ballot.

The committee's own analysis showed validation rates around 80 percent across six of the nine congressional districts where signatures were gathered, and in some counties better than 90 percent. The committee also showed in court that thousands of valid voter signatures were thrown out by election authorities for an array of questionable reasons during their reviews of the petitions.

The court victory means the Vote "YES" To Stop Double Taxation Committee will move ahead with a strong educational campaign for Missourians about the unfairness of transfer taxes. Transfer taxes on home sales are double taxation because Missourians already pay annual property taxes on real estate, often over many decades of ownership.

Missouri is among just 13 states that do not impose a transfer tax on real estate sales, including all of Missouri's neighboring states. As state, county and city revenues decline, politicians are tempted to impose new transfer taxes - just as Missouri citizens are struggling to make it.

The proposed state constitutional amendment's language is straightforward and simple:

"Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to prevent the state, counties, and other political subdivisions from imposing any new tax, including a sales tax, on the sale or transfer of homes or any other real estate?"

The proposed amendment is sponsored by the 21,000-member Missouri Association of REALTORS®, which wants to keep Missourians from being saddled with unfair double taxation that can destroy the American dream of home ownership.

Learn more about the amendment at www.YesToSaveHomes.com.




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