The Kansas Senate heavily amended Governor Sam Brownback’s tax plan before giving it first round approval. The bill would reduce income tax rates and eliminate some business taxes with the goal of boosting economic growth. But senators made multiple changes. Brownback’s plan would have made permanent a three-year sales tax increase set to expire next year. An amendment changed that, so the tax increase would expire as planned. Senator John Vratil (vratil ryhyms with “rattle”), a Leawood Republican, said legislators who voted for the sales tax promised to let it expire.
Senators also voted to restore tax credits and exemptions the bill would have eliminated. But making those changes will add hundreds of millions of dollars to the bill’s cost. Senator Les Donovan, a Wichita Republican, said he believed the changes were aimed at killing the bill.
A final vote on the legislation could come today (WED). If it passes, House and Senate negotiators will need to find a compromise between bills that passed the two chambers.