Last night we told you about the unprecedented procedural moves by Kansas House Speaker Mike O'Neal and House conservatives that sent HB 2117, a massive corporate tax break bill, to Governor Brownback for his signature.
Reactions to HB 2117 from press, lawmakers and analysts statewide have painted a grim picture for the future of Kansas.
"Wednesday's tax-cut duel under the dome made it official: The legislative process in Topeka is bankrupt. Soon the state could be, too." Wichita Eagle, Political Thuggery, May 10, 2012
âPassage of the plan set off a firestorm of complaints that the tax package would leave gaping holes in the state budget and lead to severe cuts in services." Kansas City Star, Kansas House passes $3.7 billion tax-cut plan, May 10, 2012
"As the House speaker passed a tax-cut bill that promises to wreck the stateâs finances, he also junked the legislative process. First O'Neal blocked any debate on the specifics of a bill so significant as to end 80 years of balanced tax policy. Then he even cut off lawmakers' explanation of their votes." Wichita Eagle, Political Thuggery, May 10, 2012
"It sends our state to hell in a handbasket. It's a travesty, it's just terrible tax policy." Sen. Anthony Hensley, Senate Minority Leader, Topeka
"The bill headed for his [Gov. Brownback's] desk would leave the state $2.7 billion in the red in 2017 and undermine efforts to restore state funds cut in recent years from K-12 schools and social services." Wichita Eagle, Political Thuggery, May 10, 2012
"If you look at that kind of deficit, it would be devastating to education, to corrections, to our social services, go on down the list," Sen. Steve Morris, Senate President, Hugoton
"This is a story about public schools not getting their cuts restored, people dying on the waiting list because there's no money, public safety at risk when weâre already shipping prisoners all over the state. This is about the people of Kansas being put at risk." Rep. Jim Ward, Wichita
So what does all this mean for Kansans?
1. Less money for education means fewer teachers and overcrowded classrooms.
2. Property and sales taxes statewide are going to go up dramatically.
3. Higher taxes make it harder for families living paycheck to paycheck to make ends meet.
The impact of this reckless plan will put Kansas at risk for years to come, and does absolutely nothing to help the hard working Kansas families in our state.
â¨HB 2117 passed yesterday afternoon on a roll call vote 64 â 59. Below is the break down of the vote.
â¨Yeas: Alford, Arpke, Boman, Brown, Bruchman, Brunk, Burgess, Calloway, Carlson,Collins, Crum, DeGraaf, Denning, Donohoe, Fawcett, Garber, Goico, Goodman,Gordon, Gregory, Grosserode, Hayzlett, Hedke, Hermanson, Hildabrand, Hoffman, C.Holmes, M. Holmes, Howell, Huebert, Kelley, Kerschen, Kiegerl, Kinzer, Kleeb, Knox,Landwehr, Mast, McLeland, Meigs, Mesa, Montgomery, OâBrien, OâHara, OâNeal,Osterman, Patton, Peck, Powell, Prescott, Rhoades, Rubin, Ryckman, Scapa, Schwab,Schwartz, Seiwert, Siegfreid, Smith, Suellentrop, Tyson, Vickrey, Weber, B. Wolf.
â¨Nays: Aurand, Ballard, Bethell, Billinger, Bowers, Brookens, Burroughs, Carlin,Cassidy, Colloton, Davis, Dillmore, Feuerborn, Finney, Flaharty, Frownfelter, D.Gatewood, S. Gatewood, Gonzalez, Grange, Grant, Henderson, Henry, Hill, Hineman,Johnson, Kelly, Kuether, Lane, Loganbill, Mah, McCray-Miller, Meier, Moxley, Otto,Pauls, Peterson, Phelps, Phillips, Pottorff, Proehl, Roth, Ruiz, Schroeder, Shultz,Slattery, Sloan, Spalding, Swanson, Tietze, Trimmer, Victors, Ward, Wetta, Williams,Winn, K. Wolf, Wolfe Moore, Worley.