Friday, December 19, 2014

TYSON: Taxes, guns, drug testing and roofers

By CARYN TYSON, Kansas State Senate | 5/8/2013

If your business is a sole-proprietorship, LLC, or S-Corporation, you might want to check if the business should be paying state income tax for tax year 2013. Last year, income taxes for small businesses were eliminated and lowered for all personal income taxpayers. Taxes were lowered to keep more money at home, not send it to Topeka.

• During regular session, several laws were passed protecting our Second Amendment rights in Kansas. Senate Bill 21 was signed into law and passed on a 38-2 vote. The bill allows reciprocity for individuals traveling through or visiting Kansas, recognizing a valid concealed carry permit from another state. The law requires a new resident with an out-of-state concealed carry license to obtain a Kansas concealed carry license. The new resident can apply for a 180-day permit from the Kansas Attorney General’s Office while working to get a Kansas concealed carry license. One of the requirements for the 180-day permit is that the out-of-state concealed carry license is from a jurisdiction that meets or exceeds Kansas requirements for concealed carry.

If your business is a sole-proprietorship, LLC, or S-Corporation, you might want to check if the business should be paying state income tax for tax year 2013. Last year, income taxes for small businesses were eliminated and lowered for all personal income taxpayers. Taxes were lowered to keep more money at home, not send it to Topeka.

• During regular session, several laws were passed protecting our Second Amendment rights in Kansas. Senate Bill 21 was signed into law and passed on a 38-2 vote. The bill allows reciprocity for individuals traveling through or visiting Kansas, recognizing a valid concealed carry permit from another state. The law requires a new resident with an out-of-state concealed carry license to obtain a Kansas concealed carry license. The new resident can apply for a 180-day permit from the Kansas Attorney General’s Office while working to get a Kansas concealed carry license. One of the requirements for the 180-day permit is that the out-of-state concealed carry license is from a jurisdiction that meets or exceeds Kansas requirements for concealed carry.

SB 102, referred to as the Second Amendment Protection Act, was signed into law. The law protects firearms and accessories manufactured in Kansas, owned in Kansas, and that remained within the borders of Kansas will not be subject to any federal law, regulations, or authority. The bill passed the Senate on a 35-4 vote.

House Bill 2278 was signed into law and changes the punishment for theft of a firearm. One of the changes is the theft of a firearm valued at less than $25,000 will be a level 9, nonperson felony. The punishment was a misdemeanor if the firearm had a value less than $1,000.

• SB 149 was signed into law. It requires regulations for drug testing of applicants or recipients of cash assistance programs, Unemployment Insurance benefits, and legislators be put in place. If a person fails a drug test the first time, benefits will stop until the person completes drug rehabilitation and job training. The second failure to pass a drug test will stop benefits for 12 months and until drug rehabilitation and job training are completed again. The third failure will result in the person no longer being eligible for benefits. The Senate vote was 29-9.

I supported those bills, however, I did not vote for the Kansas Roofing Contractor Registration Act, the substitute for HB 2024 that was signed into law. The law requires a roofing contractor to register with the Kansas Attorney General’s office. The annual registration fee could be as much as $500, with a late fee not exceeding $300. If a registration is not renewed, it would be revoked. To restore a revoked registration, a roofing contractor would have to pay the annual fee plus $500. The intent is to the keep unscrupulous contractors out of Kansas. While I support the intent of the law, I do not support the bureaucracy and fees that might or might not stop such contractors.

• The Legislature began its “Veto Session” Wednesday. We are required to pass a budget each year, so that work will be a majority of what we do during our Veto Session.  

Caryn Tyson, R-Parker, represents Franklin County and the 12th District in the Kansas Senate. Email her at Caryn.Tyson@senate.ks.gov or call (785) 296-6838.

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