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This is Turnaround Week of the Kansas legislature, where most bills (with some exceptions) must be passed by their chamber of origin in order to remain alive for further consideration. In a flurry of floor debate on Wednesday and Thursday, the House and Senate voted on dozens of bills. In addition, the legislature finally attempted an override this week of Governor Laura Kelly’s veto of House Bill 2284, the legislature’s tax bill that includes a single-rate personal income tax. The House failed, by three votes, to override the veto. While the House can take another attempt at...

Under the newly-restructured Rail Service Improvement Fund Program Kansas Grain and Feed Association (KGFA) introduced and led the charge on passing legislatively in 2023, Governor Laura Kelly announced nearly $16.5 million toward 17 short line rail expansion and rehabilitation projects on Feb. 20, 2024. “We are incredibly pleased to see our state legislature and administration authorize nearly $16.5 million in support of our members and their need for reliable, safe and enhanced rail transportation,” KGFA President and CEO Ron Seeber said. “The cost-share program has been a tremendous asset to grain shippers for several years and due to our members' and our...

The Legislature, again this week, failed to take up an override vote on Governor Laura Kelly’s veto of the tax bill House Bill 2284. That vote to override will need to come by the end of next week or the governor’s veto of the bill will be sustained. Committees this week approved and advanced bills before multiple days of floor debate begin next week as we near the legislative ‘turnaround’. In both chambers, various bills have now been introduced that would limit foreign investment in real property in the state. As the issue has broad support...

The Republican-majority legislature failed, this week, to take up an override vote on Governor Kelly’s veto of the tax bill, House Bill 2284. That vote is expected to come early next week. Whether, or in what form, tax relief is passed this year is still an unanswered question. This week, committees continued hearings on unemployment insurance legislation, workers compensation max benefits, various tax bills, and other issues. One issue gaining momentum in Kansas, and other states, is the issue of limiting foreign investment in real property in the state. A handful of bills have been introduced that could potentially affect...

Roy Lee House, 80, of Bel Aire, Kan., and formerly of McPherson, Kan., passed away Feb. 3, 2024 after a long illness. True to form, he was a fighter to the end.House served on Kansas Grain and Feed Association's board of directors from 2006-09, graduated from the association's 1999 class of Tomorrow's Agribusiness Leaders and dedicated countless hours to the Kansas Agri Business Expo Committee. A rosary/vigil will be held on Thursday, Feb. 8, 2024 at 6:00 p.m. A funeral will take place Friday, Feb. 9 at 11:00 a.m.,...

Following Governor Laura Kelly’s swift veto of the Republican tax bill, House Bill 2284, legislative leadership worked this week to whip together sufficient votes for an override effort which will require a 2/3 supermajority vote in both the House and the Senate. The bill includes many provisions, but the key element distinguishing the bill from Governor Kelly’s tax plan is the inclusion of a single rate income tax at 5.25 percent (currently two rates exist). This provision was the cause of the governor’s veto. The bill would cost the state $1.6 billion in lost revenues over the first...

This week, the Kansas legislature sent its tax bill, House Bill 2284, to Governor Laura Kelly for consideration, who on Friday afternoon, vetoed the legislation. The bill proposed a single income tax rate at 5.25 percent (rather than the current two rates), along with exemptions on the first $6,150.00 in income for individuals and $12,300.00 for couples. Additionally, it would have increased the standard deduction, provided residential property tax relief, and created a 0 percent sales tax rate on food beginning in April. The bill would have cost the state $1.6 billion in lost revenues over the...

This week, while many new bills were being introduced, the Kansas legislature’s main focus was on assembling a tax bill to send to Governor Laura Kelly. On Thursday, lawmakers passed Conference Committee Report on House Bill 2284which includes a single (5.25 percent) income tax rate on individuals, an increase to the standard deduction, residential property tax relief and a 0 percent sales tax rate on food beginning in April of this year. The bill, which would cost the state $550 million ($1.6 billion over the first three years), is likely to receive a swift veto due to the...

The 2024 Kansas legislative session began on January 8, and we were honored to be at the capitol throughout the week to greet new members and welcome back returning legislators on your behalf. This year marks the second year of our legislative biennium, meaning all bills introduced in 2023 will still be alive and actionable, in addition to any new bills introduced this year. Republicans still hold a supermajority in the House under Speaker Dan Hawkins (R-Wichita) and in the Senate under Senate President Ty Masterson (R-Andover). A handful of Republican Senators, however, have already shown they are...

The selection committee for the Tomorrow’s Agribusiness Leaders (TAL) program met in early-December to review applications and select five members of the Kansas Agribusiness Retailers Association and five members of the Kansas Grain and Feed Association to comprise the 26th class of agribusiness’ premier leadership development course. The selection committee of TAL alumni chose: Nolan Allison (Bartlett Grain A Savage Company); Dusty Campbell (Producer Ag, LLC); Michael Carpenter (Stockton Farmers Union Mercantile and Shipping Association); Lance Cochran (Kennedy Berkley); Dalton Gantz (D.E. Bondurant Grain, Inc.); Nathan Larson (MKC); Kevin Lee...

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