Top Morning News 2.12.13

Feb 12, 2013

Panel to debate Gov's tax plan; Bill would bar public entities and governments from using tax dollars to lobby; Bill would ban sex-selective abortions.

Kansas Senate Panel To Debate Gov's Tax Proposals

Gov. Sam Brownback's tax plan is facing a crucial early test of its support among Kansas legislators.

The Senate Assessment and Taxation Committee is scheduled to meet Tuesday to debate a bill containing the governor's tax proposals. The legislation would revise the state's sales and income tax laws further after last year's massive individual income tax cuts.

Brownback's goal is to eventually eliminate personal income taxes in Kansas. He wants to phase in a second round of cuts in individual income tax rates over the next four years. However, the governor and lawmakers must also stabilize the budget.

Brownback wants to end two income tax deductions for homeowners and to cancel a decrease in the state sales tax scheduled for July.

Bill Bars Use Of Tax Dollars To Lobby Kansas Legislature

There's a controversial bill in the state Legislature that bans local governments or public entities from spending tax dollars on lobbying. It would affect the abilities of cities, counties and universities to support or oppose legislation.


Legislative Committee Considers Ban On Sex-Selective Abortions

Abortion opponents are urging a Kansas Senate committee to back legislation barring doctors from terminating pregnancies solely because a woman doesn't want a baby of a certain sex.


The Kansas Department of Health and Environment is asking for public comment on its plan to clean up contamination at the former Unocal Chemical Distribution site in Wichita.

The public comment period on the draft plan opened Monday online and closes on March 12. The agency will also hold a meeting next month to outline its preferred cleanup plan and ask for feedback. The session is set for March 5 at 7 pm at Wichita's Office of Environmental Health.