Last week Kansas taxpayers were threatened with the possibility of tax increases coming from many different directions, a threat that has not eliminated.  With an overspending problem of $467 million expected with the incoming FY2011 budget, too many legislators are looking to tax increases to address this problem.   

Early last week the Kansas House of Representatives was going to be considering House Bill 2549, a bill that would have eliminated many different sales tax exemptions on products and services, in turn hiking taxes by $320 million over the first two years of implementation.  This bill was postponed for the time being, kicking the can down the road for a possible vote later in the session, an action that will require vigilance from the taxpayers to defeat.   

On Thursday of last week, the Senate Committee on Assessment and Taxation tried to pass numerous tax increases, all of which failed.  They were considering higher taxes on cigarettes and alcohol, a higher sales tax, and new taxes on sweetened beverages.  To see ATR’s letter to Assessment and Taxation Committee members, click here.  Though these bills were killed in committee, they are still very much alive.  As early as tomorrow Kansans could be threatened with these tax hikes and others through amendments to other bills in the Senate Ways and Mean Committee or on the Senate floor. 

Legislators need to be addressing the real problem of overspending.  The Kansas budget has grown by just shy of 33% from 2004 to that of Governor Parkinson’s recommendations for the FY2011 budget.  ATR urges legislators to oppose and vote against any and all efforts to increase taxes, rather finding ways to cut spending in this recession as families all across Kansas and the United States are doing.  To see a list of legislators who have signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge committing to "oppose and vote against any and all efforts to increase taxes," click here