Republican majorities in Topeka approved a sweeping income tax cut during Tuesday’s special session, sending nearly half a billion dollars back to the hardworking families and businesses who have been forced to wait years for tax relief under relentless opposition from Governor Laura Kelly (D).

Thanks to the relentless efforts of Senate President Ty Masterson and Speaker Dan Hawkins, Kansans will finally reap the benefits of a streamlined dual-rate income tax, a reduced 5.58% top rate, a quadrupling of the personal exemption, and a complete elimination of the tax on social security income, among other components.

 “Today’s tax reduction marks a historic moment for Kansas families and businesses. While two dozen states reduced income taxes and five moved to a single rate income tax, Kansas stood alone as Governor Laura Kelly single-handedly denied Kansans needed tax relief for nearly six years,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. “Other states reduced taxes while Kansans were crying out for relief. The Republican leadership in the legislature answered with a big-time income tax cut – returning hundreds of millions in excess revenue back to the pocketbooks of the taxpayers, where it belongs.”

Kelly is expected to reluctantly sign the bill – but only after vetoing nearly 100 different tax cuts since taking office.

Today’s $425 million package is likely to be just the first step in a series of wider-ranging tax cuts next year and beyond. Multiple larger tax cuts, including a single-rate tax of 5.15%, were blocked in regular session by just one dissenting vote in the Senate – including self-described conservative senators Dennis Pyle, John Doll, Alicia Straub, and Rob Olsen, who joined all of their Democrat colleagues in upholding the governor’s veto of common-sense tax relief.

Pyle faces two credible primary challengers as a direct result of his vote for higher taxes. And in a rare moment of truth for the other three pro-tax Republicans, Straub, Doll, and Olsen have decided not to seek reelection.

They’ve clearly recognized that their constituents would rightly kick them out of office for voting with Laura Kelly against tax relief.