According to the recent announcement made by Department of Revenue’s director of the state, the tax compliance investigators in Missouri will be given the permission to carry guns while they are on duty. Locals trying for Missouri registration are informed in order to avoid misunderstandings.
The director of the agency, Joel Walters, said that there were a total of 12 compliance investigators who were given the authority to carry firearms while they are conducting their job. He said that the decision was made according to the legislation made by the General Assembly wherein the safety of the agents should be prioritized. These agents are working under the Compliance and Investigation Bureau.
The policy was designed in order for tax compliance investigators to have the same privileges awarded to employees in the parole and probation sector which is under the Department of Corrections. Walters said that they are of the same level as a state agency and the policy dictates that investigators should be legally allowed to carry guns.
The 12 compliance investigators are considered to be peace officers that have sworn to investigate only limited situations such as conducting investigations on scrap yards and check for fraudulent titles. When doing their jobs, it is inevitable that they find themselves in situations where they might be harmed, one way or another. Anne Marie Moy, the spokeswoman for the department, said that they are always in risky circumstances thus they should be able to defend themselves, just in case.
The department of revenue clarified that the change in the policy is only made to revoke the changes that were made during the administration of Governor Jay Nixon wherein they have restricted investigators to carry guns while in their vehicles. Their nature of work made it impossible for them to have a firearm while on duty because of the former policy.
It is to be noted though that during Missouri registration, the employees doing state collection are not included in the policy but only the compliance investigators. They are the ones responsible in conducting investigations if there are complaints regarding fraud actions involving tax and titles.