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Contact Susan

 
In Topeka:
State Capitol, Room 149-S
785-296-7644
susan@concannonforkansas.com

At home in Beloit:
921 N. Mill Street
Beloit, KS 67420
785-738-8087
susan@concannonforkansas.com


About the 107th

Committee Appointments

Dear Friend:

How was your Valentine's Day? I spent mine with the talented team at Smoky Hills Public Television: 
On the Home Front
The Department of Commerce Small Cities Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program recently awarded 39 projects across Kansas. Congratulations to the following recipients in District 107:
                   Concordia, $561,660, sewer
                   Miltonvale, $35,212, demolition
                   Minneapolis, $300,000 housing
Under the Dome
Amy Lange, Concordia City Administrator, stopped by.
It’s always a pleasure to host the Leadership Mitchell County folks in the Capitol!
Thanks to the folks from Farmway Credit Union for coming to say hello: Sherri Smith, Joe Deneke, Ryan Duskie, Jonell & Gerald Schenk
Area Agency on Aging visitors: Mary & Tom Claussen, Bob Severance, Mary & Tom Maxwell
It has been a busy two weeks of media coverage on the constitutional amendment. Thanks to those across the state who included my comments in your articles:
On the House Floor - This week’s Calendar. Times below are unless otherwise noted in the Calendar. Watch live here.
It was a slow week on the House floor, but you will see most of our time is spent debating bills in committees. The last week of February will be very busy as committees must move their bills out of committee and to the full House.
 
We passed HB 2466 over to the Senate on a 118-1 vote. I detailed the bill in my last newsletter – it would require paid tax return preparers to sign and include their IRS Preparer Tax Identification number on tax returns they prepare starting in 2021. Certified Public Accountants or individuals employed by a CPA firm would be excluded from the bill’s requirements. I voted YES.
Committee Work
Why explain what I’m doing in Committee? 
Many bills do not apply broadly to all Kansans. However, it’s helpful for you to know the breadth and depth of work we do. Committees range from nine on the small end and 23 on the large. Therefore, not every Kansan is represented on every committee. In our committee work, legislators represent all Kansans in researching, debating, and crafting legislation relating to the committees’ topics. 
Appropriations – Listen Live 9 am weekdays
The committee held a series of briefings focused on different agencies and issues this week, including performance-based budgeting; Kansas Development Finance Authority; Kansas Water Authority; Kansas Water Office and the Highway Patrol. The Kansas Bureau of Investigation also gave a briefing on its automated fingerprint identification system. Members also discussed budget committee reports for:
  • General Government Budget: Insurance Department
  • Transportation and Public Safety: Board of Indigents’ Defense Services
  • Higher Education: Behavioral Sciences Regulatory Board, Board of Healing Arts 
Bill hearings:
  • To eliminate some government red tape, HB 2439 would remove the requirement for non-profits to submit audited statements of actual expenditures, and for the Board of Regents to submit independent audits of contractors to Legislative Post Audit (LPA). 
  • Executive Reorganization Order 44 is Gov. Laura Kelly’s proposal to combine the Department for Children and Families and the Department for Aging and Disability Services into the Department of Human Services. This new department also would have oversight of juvenile justice programs currently within the Department of Corrections (except the Larned Juvenile Correctional Facility). The House introduced HR 6032 to formally disapprove of the plan. 
Children and Seniors – Listen Live 1:30 pm weekdays
The committee hosted the following briefings and bill hearings:
  • A joint meeting with the Committee on Health & Human Services welcomed young Kansans who are suicide survivors and their stories were incredible. They told us they want to be acknowledged by the adults and kids around them, and to have access to a suicide prevention text line, as well as over the phone. We are working on their recommendations.
  • Secretary Lee Norman, Department of Health and Environment presented on the “State of Health of Kansas”.  
  • Workforce issues for long-term care facilities from LeadingAge Kansas, an advocacy group of aging services professionals
  • Midland Care’s Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE
  • Continued hearings on HB 2229, which would remove restrictions on what can be admitted as evidence when that evidence is obtained using an electronic monitoring device that is placed in a resident’s room in an adult care home. Read the full testimony here
The committee passed HB 2438 to the full House for consideration. I discussed this bill in my last newsletter. As a reminder, it would allow the State Child Death Review Board to participate in a free national database to track child deaths. The legislation also would permit the Board to share information with law enforcement, as well as county and district attorneys, for investigation and prosecution purposes.
Taxation – Listen Live 3:30 pm weekdays
Income Tax Proposed Changes:
  • Standard Deduction: HB 2538 would increase the state’s standard deduction starting in tax year 2020 to $4,000 (from $3,000) for single filers; $8,000 (from $7,500) for married filers; and $6,000 (from $5,500) for head of household filers. In addition, the bill would determine future standard deductions after 2020 based on the cost-of-living adjustment used by federal tax laws.
  • Itemizing: HB 2005 would allow taxpayers to itemize deductions on their state tax returns even if they did not itemize on their federal tax returns. Under current law, taxpayers can only itemize on their state returns only if they did so on their federal returns. However, with the significant increase in the federal standard deduction, many Kansans no longer itemize on their federal taxes.
  • To encourage public service programs, HB 2427 would allow the amount of any National Service Education Award for service in an approved AmeriCorps National Service Program to be subtracted from income for state tax purposes. 
  • HB 2567 and HB 2542 are bills to reduce the amount of Social Security income taxable by the state. Under current law, taxpayers can subtract the full amount of Social Security income from federal adjusted gross income (AGI) from their Kansas income taxes. This bill would reduce deductible SS income by 10% for each $1,000 above the $75,000 threshold. 
  • HB 2460 would create a new income tax credit for 50% of eligible expenditures on railroad track maintenance of short line railroads, not to exceed $5,000. 
Sales Tax Proposed Changes:
  • HB 2513 would require marketplace facilitators to collect and remit sales, use and transient guest taxes from sales made through their online platforms. For example, Amazon would be responsible for calculating, collecting, and remitting sales taxes on products sold by third party sellers. 
  • We held three days of hearings (so far) on HB 2537, which would require out-of-state sellers to have at least $100,000 in gross sales in order to have to collect sales taxes from Kansas buyers. 
Property Tax Proposed Changes:
  • SB 104 includes provisions of HB 2466 discussed in my last newsletter, to require a paid tax return preparer to sign and include their federal Internal Revenue Service Preparer Tax Identification Number on each tax return that they prepare or substantially prepare on the taxpayer’s behalf. The Senate’s bill also would create a refund program for a portion of property taxes paid by taxpayers who have less than $50,000 per year in household income and are older than 65, or disabled veterans. Finally, the bill would allow disabled veterans who are renters to claim refunds of 15% of their rents under the current Homestead program.
Corporate Tax Proposed Changes:
  • HB 2499 would provide a tax credit for putting into service an alternative fuels fueling station. The credit would equal 75% of the expenditures incurred.
We passed just one bill to the full House this week:
  • HB 2490 would change current law to allow taxpayers to carry forward operating losses for up to 20 years instead of the current 10 years. 
Please feel free to contact me about these or other legislative issues. Thank you for the opportunity to serve and represent you in Topeka.

Sincerely,

Rep. Susan Concannon
R-Beloit
Copyright © 2020 Paid for by Concannon for Kansas, Tamarah Pruitt, Treasurer, All rights reserved.


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