Topeka Gov. Sam Brownback on Tuesday signed into law a bill that is designed to provide an incentive for businesses to hire Kansans with disabilities.
Brownback called House Bill 2453 a “breakthrough.”
He added, “It really does move people to where they want to go — to a job — and uses the means of the state to do this.”
The law will allow businesses that have at least 20 percent of their workforce made up of Kansans with disabilities to win state contracts even if the company’s bid is 10 percent higher than the lowest bid. The companies also must do business primarily in Kansas and contribute at least 75 percent of the total health insurance premium cost for all employees.
Patrick Terick, director of governmental activities for the Cerebral Palsy Research Foundation, said the law provides “creative ways” to employ Kansans with disabilities. He thanked state Sen. Carolyn McGinn, R-Sedgwick, and state Rep. David Crum, R-Augusta, for putting the bill forward.
Brownback said the new law will “build paths to independence.”
He added, “Studies consistently show that those with disabilities who work lead happier and healthier lives.”