The Buzz

Groups take position on medical research tax

Updated: 2013-10-09T15:33:24Z

By DAVE HELLING

From Mike Hendricks:

The Citizens Association is the latest political club to turn thumbs down on the proposed half-cent sales tax to fund medical research in Jackson County.

The 80-year-old good-government organization made its position known Tuesday night after spirited appeals from those for and against the 20-year tax proposed by the business community.

Recently Freedom Inc. and the local chapter of the NAACP also said they would oppose the tax for much the same reason that inspired opposition from Citizens, and much earlier from the League of Women Voters.

That reason? The tax is regressive, and would have no direct benefit to the citizens of Jackson County.

“At the end of the day, this is a speculative investment of taxpayers’ dollars," Urban League president Gwen Grant told the Citizens Association board.

Supporters of the tax, led by the Civic Council of Greater Kansas City, have endorsements, too.

Among those who say the med tax is a good idea: the Committee for County Progress, Firefighters Local 42, the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, Mattie Rhodes Center and the Latino Civic Engagement Collaborative.

It isn’t clear what effect, if any, the endorsements will have.

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