Governor Sam Brownback signed a controversial tax bill into law today at ceremonies in Overland Park and Wichita. The bill, passed in the final hours of the legislative session, cuts income taxes but keeps a sales tax increase on the books that was set to expire in July. The bill deepens cuts passed last year that eliminated income taxes for nearly 200,000 Kansas businesses. Brownback says the tax cuts will attract new businesses and jobs to the state.
The governor says maintaining the higher sales tax was necessary to keep the state budget in the black until the growth he’s banking on occurs. Critics say the tax cuts won’t produce nearly as much growth as the governor predicts and will eventually force deep cuts in spending for education and safety-net programs.