Concerns raised over business tax cut plan
Democrats are saying they are hearing from nationally recognized tax experts, including Kansas University law professor Martin Dickinson, that Gov. Sam Brownback’s tax cut for businesses raises serious questions.
Brownback’s plan eliminates taxes on nonwage income from a sole proprietor, partner or Subchapter-S corporation, regardless of the size.
“This part of the tax plan is the proverbial loophole that you can drive a Mack truck through,” said Senate Democratic Leader Anthony Hensley, of Topeka. “We have absolutely no idea of the fiscal impact of this provision.”
Brownback has said his plan will increase business activity in the state.
Quote of the week
“If Santorum has me on their call list, they may not be very well-organized.”
— House Democratic Leader Paul Davis of Lawrence after receiving a robocall from campaign of Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum.
Kansas in GOP presidential contest
After “Super Tuesday,” Kansas will be the focus of Republican presidential candidates for the GOP caucus Saturday.
So far, contenders Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul have announced plans to stop in Kansas.
Bill would allow drinks on trains
State Rep. TerriLois Gregory, R-Baldwin City, has introduced a bill that she says would allow the sale of alcoholic beverages on dinner trains.
A hearing on House Bill 2689 will be at 1:30 p.m. Monday before the House Federal and State Affairs Committee.
“With passage of the bill, the Elkhorn Valley Railcar Company would be able to move into Baldwin City and create economic development for surrounding tourist locations,” she said.
Kansas exports excellent
Kansas exports in 2011 reached the second highest level on record at $11.57 billion, according to the Kansas Department of Commerce.
The best year was 2008, with $12.4 billion. Exports have increased 170 percent since 1999. The top industrial export last year was aircraft sales at $2.12 billion.
Canada, Mexico, Japan and China were the state’s top four export markets, in that order. Nigeria rounded out the top five, supplanting the United Kingdom in the rankings.
• 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday — Medicaid and Managed Care summit at Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library, Marvin Auditorium, Room 101. Featured speakers include Joan Alker, co-executive director of the Center for Children and Families at Georgetown University Health Policy Institute; Jodi Mitchell, executive director of Kentucky Voices for Health; Jean Hall, director of the Institute for Health and Disability Policy Studies at Kansas University; and Scott Brunner, senior analyst and strategy team leader at the Kansas Health Institute.
• Noon Monday and Wednesday — House Redistricting Committee considering congressional maps.
• 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Tuesday — Issue briefing for Mental Health Advocacy Day at the Capitol, at Topeka Performing Arts Center Auditorium, 214 SE Eighth St.
• On Senate adjournment Wednesday — KU Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little to testify on budget before Senate Ways and Means subcommittee on higher education, Room 548-South, Capitol.
• 1:30 p.m. Wednesday — Hearing on SB 450, increasing school funding by $100 million over two years, before Senate Education Committee, Room 152-South, Capitol.
• 3:30 p.m. Thursday — Hearing on House Bill 2766, creating the Creative Industries Council, abolishing the Art Commission and Film Commission, before House Education Budget, Room 159-South, Capitol.