Archive for Friday, February 3, 2017

Kansas Senate to move quickly on bill that would repeal Brownback tax cuts

The Senate chamber of the Kansas Statehouse is pictured July 23, 2014 in Topeka.

The Senate chamber of the Kansas Statehouse is pictured July 23, 2014 in Topeka.

February 3, 2017, 10:26 a.m. Updated February 3, 2017, 5:43 p.m.


— Republican leaders in the Kansas Senate are planning to move quickly next week on a tax bill that would repeal the so-called LLC exemption and raise individual income tax rates.

Tax committee chairwoman Caryn Tyson, R-Parker, announced on the Senate floor Friday that she plans to hold an all-day hearing on the bill Monday, possibly extending into Tuesday, and then vote on the bill as early as Tuesday afternoon.

Senate Bill 147 would repeal the exemption for income derived from pass-through business entities, retroactive to Jan. 1, and would raise individual income tax rates by three-tenths of a percent starting in 2018.

The bill was just introduced Thursday afternoon, and the Department of Revenue had not yet published a fiscal impact statement Friday. A spokeswoman for the department said fiscal notes can only be released by the Legislative Research Department, and as of 5 p.m. Friday, none had been posted on the Legislature’s website.

Sen. Jim Denning, R-Overland Park, gave rough estimates Thursday morning that repealing the LLC exemption would generate about $230 million a year, and that each one-tenth of a percent increase in the individual rates would raise about $68 million. But others suggested later in the day that the fiscal impact may be much less than that.

The bill is being dubbed the “Senate leadership bill,” and as such it represents a major change of policy for many in the Republican caucus.

Gov. Sam Brownback, who has said previously that he opposes any reversal of the tax cuts he championed in 2012, did not respond to questions about it following a news conference in his office where he announced a higher-education initiative involving Cowley County Community College and Fort Hays State University.

Democratic leaders in the Legislature gave Senate Republicans credit for starting the tax debate early in the session, but they said they believe the proposal falls short of solving what they called the state’s “structural imbalance.”

“We are open to any conversation and compliment the Senate Republicans for starting that conversation,” House Democratic leader Jim Ward of Wichita said. “Here’s the test: Does it fix the structural problem we’ve been dealing with for five years, and second of all, does it provide a methodology for us to invest in public schools?”

He noted that the Kansas Supreme Court is expected to rule soon in a long-running school finance lawsuit in which plaintiffs are seeking upwards of $550 million a year in additional funding.

Ward and Senate Minority Leader Anthony Hensley of Topeka said they believe the state needs about $900 million to $1 billion over the next two years, not counting any additional school funding the Supreme Court may order.

Some Democrats are pushing to reinstate a third tax bracket for upper-income individuals.

“Why did Willie Sutton rob banks? Because that’s where the money is,” Ward said.


Richard Quinlan 1 year, 3 months ago

There still may be some intelligent life in Kansas , props to Ms Tyson

Lynn Grant 1 year, 3 months ago

Don't count on Sen. Tyson. She is a Brownback enabler.

Charles Jones 1 year, 3 months ago

People get angry when denied something they want. But far angrier when something they are given is taken away. Let's hope the Kansas Legislature learns a lesson from this. Do your job. Deliberate. Study important policy questions with intellectual honesty. Alfred Laffer has been discredited time and again. Supply side economics ignores the need for healthy demand. New businesses are more vulnerable to sales and property taxes (income only comes later). Ideologue Steve Anderson (BB's first Budget Director) never did, or could, come close to filling the shoes of Duane Goossen (who served both R and D governors).

Poor Kansas.

MerriAnnie Smith 1 year, 3 months ago

I'm giving Brownback an F-minus for his work so far as governor.

I'd do the same for many of the far right legislators but some of them seem to have dropped out due to failing grades.

I'll withhold my ratings on the current legislators until we see how well they perform on the final tests. They're on the line, though, so they might think about that every day. No watching TV when you're supposed to be doing your homework. No more blaming Susie for your poor performance. Now, eat your breakfast, brush your teeth, and when you get to school, remember what you're there for... yeah, the citizens... not the corporations and the ultra wealthy exclusively.

Joda Totten 1 year, 3 months ago

So those who didn't pay taxes for a few years will now be taxed, and those of us who paid taxes during those years will get a tax increase to make up for their tax breaks.

Greg Cooper 1 year, 3 months ago

Pretty much. But the ongoing alternative is sure not working!

Steve Jacob 1 year, 3 months ago

It's cute to think Brownback is going to sign this. The LCC exemption is here to stay, until the next Governor takes office (80% chance it's a Republican).

Jeffry Helms 1 year, 3 months ago

I know--we are right smack dab in the middle of a std/drug epidemic and sacrifices have to be made etc. for the good of all-BUT-- In my opinion --the city,state,county etc. pension fund etc.-is "fair"--if someone gets out of bad EVERYDAY etc. and pays into the pension fund-they deserve a pension after 20-30 years of quality service etc.. To give the "wealthy" free healthcare--iS NOT FAIR. In my opinion--so one of those two "options" are close to "going" --who knows which one--we'll see etc.

Steve King 1 year, 3 months ago

"...the Kansas Supreme Court is expected to rule soon..." Really? I've been hearing that for what? Two years now?

Michael Kort 1 year, 3 months ago

A retroactive tax ? ? ?

That is called changing the rules in the middle of a game that has already started !.....and some depend on those rules being consistently dependable once the tax year begins .

Well, that ought to end up in courts and if the courts throw it out, then they....and not an irresponsible Ks. legislature .......get to be the bad guys over why the state is in the poor house !

Legislative Genius at work ! ! !

What a perfect ending to absolve the KS. legislature of blame for being brownies *%#!?>"^&)# accomplices to help the governor with putting Ks.finances into the bath tub and drowning them in debt !

Is there a single lawyer at all in our Ks. legislature ?

William Davis 1 year, 3 months ago

They call it tax and spend for a reason, in order to spend money on services the people need you need tax dollars. If you cut taxes you can't spend money on services needed and expected. It is not wasteful spending, it is needed spending. The republican way of cutting taxes has proven not to work, actually Reagan proved that when he was president, that's how we got a 20 trillion dollar debt. Let's put taxes back where they were, look at spending, figure out what we need and what we don't need, then make the necessary spending cuts, then is successful, cuts taxes appropriately.

Cille King 1 year, 3 months ago

Yes, put the progressive income tax back (tax more for those able to pay the tax), then reduce the regressive sales tax back (tax that falls more for those less able to pay).
Brownback's tax plan gives the wealthy the tax break, while charging more for those who don't have the money.

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