JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — A proposal to expand a Missouri tax incentive program for businesses has passed the state House but is meeting push back in the Senate.

A bill to allow the Department of Economic Development to dole out tax credits to businesses sooner passed the House 136-29 on Monday.

A similar proposal is stalled in the Senate.

Backers say the program would serve as a “closing fund” to attract and retain businesses. The proposals would allow the Economic Development Department to offer tax credits within a year of striking deals requiring businesses to meet certain job creation metrics.

Currently, tax incentives are available after jobs are created and are spread out over a period of years.

Some Senate Republicans criticized the program as corporate welfare and questioned whether it’s necessary.