Governor Kelly vetoes tax bill

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Governor Kelly

On Monday afternoon Governor Kelly announced she is vetoing Senate Bill 22, the tax bill that state lawmakers approved earlier this month. 

This comes after days of speculation about whether the Democratic Governor would sign the bill that has been championed by Kansas Republicans. 

Senate Republican President Susan Wagle issued a statement about the decision shortly after. 

“Today, Laura Kelly showed us how little her words mean. With the veto of Senate Bill 22, Governor Kelly broke her campaign promise of no new taxes and her commitment to decrease the sales tax on food. Hardworking Kansans know how to best spend their money and more of it should stay in their own pockets. Governor Kelly clearly does not agree,” Wagle said. 

The Republican-backed bill, which passed the Kansas House and Senate, would prevent businesses and consumers from paying more in state income taxes because of 2017 federal tax law changes. The House added a slight cut to the state’s food sales tax from 6.5 percent to 5.5.

The bill has not gotten enough support in the Senate or the House to keep Kelly from vetoing it. Supporters said the bill allows people to fully enjoy President Donald Trump’s tax cuts.

“Senate Bill 22 is status quo,” said McPherson Rep. Les Mason, R. “If the federal government had not enacted the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, we wouldn’t be having this discussion.”

However, opponents argue there is more to the bill that allows companies to evade taxes.

“The bulk of this tax cut was the giant multi-national corporations,” said Newton Rep. Tim Hodge, D. “I’m not so cynical to say, okay let’s give everybody a penny and we’ll give the giant multi-national corporations $150 million.”

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