Kansans demand restoration of higher income tax rates

TOPEKA (KSNT) – Dozens of frustrated, angry Kansans converged on the statehouse demanding a change in the Kansas tax structure. They weren’t demanding cuts in taxes, they actually want a return to older higher rates.

With applauses filling the statehouse rotunda in support of “Rev Up Kansas.” A group of nine different organizations and their supporters who spoke up against tax cuts made by the governor and lawmakers in 2012.

Organizers of the rally say the massive cuts cost the state millions of dollars. They spoke on budget cuts and how revenue deficiency is putting the economic stability of Kansas communities, in a dangerous position.

“Understand that quick fixes, short term solutions, are not going to benefit Kansas in the long run,” Annie McKay, Exec. Dir., of Kansas Center for Economic Growth.

But lawmakers say the purpose of the tax cuts was to help create a more business friendly environment and bring new businesses to the state and its working. “We’ve actually seen an increase in businesses moving into the state, we have seen job increases and we’ve seen lower unemployment rates,” Peggy Mast, (R – Emporia).

For the Self Advocate Coalition of Kansas, keeping the tax cuts is literally a make or break.

“We certainly can’t exist as we exist now without that funding, but it could completely destroy our organization if we don’t get some of that funding,” says Stephanie Sandford, Self-Advocacy coordinator. The coalition works with adults with intellectual and mental disabilities. They provide training and education across the state, helping more than 800 individuals.

“Taught me to how to speak up for myself and to look at my life very differently,” so without this program it leaves people like Hal Schultz, without the support he depends on, “Would not be able to have that.”

For organizations and people who are in support to ‘Rev Up Kansas’ they want legislators to continue the conversation to find a solution for the Kansas economy.

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