An early look at Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback’s tax proposal to end the 2015 session shows that it would hurt many low- and middle-income taxpayers.
The non-partisan Institute of Taxation and Economic Policy found that the plan leaves behind the poorest 40 percent of Kansans.
“The data does not support Governor Brownback’s claims,” said Annie McKay, executive director of the Kansas Center for Economic Growth. “In fact, data indicates the governor’s proposal not only fails to fix inequalities of his 2012 tax plan, it actually appears based on initial analysis that low-income Kansas families will see tax hikes.”
Brownback is calling for eliminating income taxes on 338,000 Kansans. But he also would raise the sales tax to 6.65 percent from 6.15 percent, and the increase would apply to food.
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to The Kansas City Star
The center said the Brownback administration has yet to supply detailed figures that would more clearly spell out the impact of his plan. But McKay said the early numbers raise issues.
“The latest proposal is asking the Kansas Legislature to repeat 2012 mistakes, proposing dramatic changes to the Kansas tax code without identifying specific statutory changes or data to show the impact those changes will have,” the center’s statement said.
“In 2012, data warning the consequences of Governor Brownback’s tax plan was widely available but went largely ignored. Lawmakers across the political spectrum now openly admit that mistake. Even the Governor acknowledges his plan isn’t working as he promised it would," said McKay.
“If the governor’s goal is to fix the fundamental inequalities in his tax policy and ease the burden on low-income families, his latest plan wholly fails to accomplish that objective.”