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Kansas views on property-tax plan, chamber mailing, Kobach, teacher dress code, deer danger

  • Published Friday, Nov. 2, 2012, at 5:02 p.m.
  • Updated Monday, Nov. 5, 2012, at 12:15 a.m.

Property-tax plan – It has taken almost two years, but Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback finally has offered an economic idea we can support. The Property Tax Transparency Act would require property-tax mill levies to be automatically lowered as property valuations go up. Presuming this bill is passed, governments that desire increased revenue will be required to take a public vote. No longer would officials be able to hoodwink the public into believing costs are being controlled when in fact they are not.

Hays Daily News

Gov. Sam Brownback and fellow Republicans in the Legislature finally are setting their sights on taxes that really frustrate Kansans – property taxes. And they are doing so by trying to control a persistent problem – local property taxes that automatically rise because market-based property valuations escalate. Given the likelihood that Brownback’s income-tax cuts will put pressure on property taxes in the years to come, the property-tax lid plan comes at a good time.

Hutchinson News

Gov. Sam Brownback and Republican lawmakers, having lowered state income taxes further than was prudent, now think it’s necessary to protect Kansans from their local governments. We’d rather the party of small government would resist the urge to meddle in local governments.

Manhattan Mercury

Bully politics – Anonymous big money has entered the local race for the Kansas Senate again, sending those insulting, misleading mailers to voters. One, from the Kansas Chamber PAC, claims “There’s nothing moderate about (Democrat) Tom Hawk.” That tells us these shadowy donors know voters are looking for a moderate, and that they believe enough voters are ignorant enough of the facts that they will be swayed to vote against him on the strength of this distorted spin. But no matter who wins, the chamber figures it’s buying leverage in Kansas politics that most voters do not enjoy. Bully politics – a gift of the Citizens United decision.

Clay Center Dispatch

Kobach – A Topeka activist, Sonny Scroggins, has launched a recall petition against Secretary of State Kris Kobach, claiming in part that his immigration work prevents him from fulfilling his duties. We have doubts about Scroggins’ effort. Recalls are difficult to accomplish under the most egregious of circumstances. And given that nearly everything Kobach undertakes is controversial, many Kansans might prefer that he spend his time out of state.

Kansas City Star

Dress code – Topeka Unified School District deserves credit for initiating some standards of dress for teachers, but it is incredulous that the district had to do so. Professionals should know without being told what is and isn’t acceptable attire for the workplace. That the district had to negotiate with teachers to get all of them into proper dress is disturbing. Even more disturbing is the fact the district provided a $150 bonus to each teacher to help them transition “to a business casual daily dress standard.”

Topeka Capital-Journal

Deer danger – A national ranking of states where drivers are most likely to hit a deer saw Kansas jump six spots in the past year, from 25th to 19th. The report from State Farm listed the odds of a motorist in Kansas hitting a deer in the next 12 months at 1 in 128, worse than last year’s 1 in 164 – even though drought has reduced the deer herd in the state. Such a troubling trend points to a need for Kansas lawmakers and other officials to pursue more strategies to cull the deer population.

Garden City Telegram

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