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Late Night as the Senate Debates Tax Policy

04 May 2018 10:45 PM | Anonymous

The Senate passed tax cut legislation just after midnight and will return tomorrow.  The House adjourned around 11 p.m. and will come back at 10 a.m.

Tomorrow, May 4, is the scheduled Sine Die – last official day of the 2018 Legislative Session.  Many had hoped that tonight would wrap up their work.

The tax compromise conference committee report on HB 2228 decouples Kansas income tax policies from the Trump Tax Plan, in order to allow taxpayers to itemize on their state tax return even if they are not allowed to itemize their federal return.  It also includes a number of other tax policy items.  Read a summary of the bill here.  Supporters tout the bill as returning money to the taxpayers that would have increased Kansas revenues as a result of the federal tax plan. Opponents argue that the impact of the federal tax changes cannot yet be predicted, so the legislation is premature.

Meanwhile, we have another storm rolling through Topeka, so it isn’t a bad idea to be spending the evening in the State Capitol made of solid stone.  

Legislature Passes Budget

The 2018 Legislature is taking a step toward reversing some of the years of cuts to higher education, K-12 education, mental health and disability programs, nursing home and hospital rates, and adopted a small state employee pay raise. 

It took 12 rounds of negotiations over three days, but the House/Senate conference committee wrapped up budget negotiations around 7:30 p.m. Wednesday night.  All in all, it was the most courteous and respectful budget negotiations we have seen in a longtime  The bill was ready for floor debate by 5 p.m. on Thursday (today).

The final budget compromise spends less than the House had proposed but more than the Senate version.  The spending projections estimate the State will have over $400 million on hand at the end of this fiscal year - the healthiest balance in years.  You can see the specific budget bill details at this link .

The bill also includes a section that is a “sign of the times”-  restricting any agency from expending funds to create, enter into, or enforce any non-disclosure agreement in regards to claims from sexual harassment for FY 19, and restricting any agency from expending funds to settle sexual harassment claims against a state officer for FY 19.


                                      



Kansas Association of Beverage Retailers       P.O. Box 3842, Topeka, KS  66604      Email KABR  

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