Wichitans react to failed tax bill

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(KAKE) -

A local economist says whether services are cut or taxes raised, one of those two things must be done and quickly.

"The wrangling around budgets and revenue is costing Kansas more and more by not dealing with it," the Director for WSU's Center for Economic Development and Business Research,  Jeremy Hill, said.

The proposed tax bill would have raised income taxes for more than 55 percent of Kansans. Also, more than 330,000 small businesses, LLCs, would have started paying taxes again, with the promise to fix the states budget by raising $1 billion dollars in two years.

Hill says it's not that this is wrong, but he doesn't know if middle class Kansans would have been prepared for it. 

"Most of the businesses are going to pass that tax right back to the consumers," Hill said.

"It's definitely going to have an impact either on customers, hiring policies on the amount of stuff we plan on purchasing and marketing," said small business owner John Rhoden.

Some small business owners were worried. They say their businesses thrive with the tax break.

Rhoden, says he's hired more people, purchased new equipment, he's been able to afford bonuses for staff and more.

It's the same story for the CEO of Wichita Railway Services, Bob Aldrich. Aldrich started his company because of the tax break. He says if the tax break is eliminated, he'll be forced to eliminate a position he wanted to fill.

"Don't put it on the back of the small businesses," Aldrich said.

Rhoden is torn.

"When you read the news and see are schools going to be fully funded and you sit there and say, 'Well, shoot I'm not paying any taxes,'" Rhoden said.

He and Aldrich say they would be willing to contribute, but not at the tax rate that was proposed.

Lawmakers are back to the drawing board, working on a new proposal.

ALSO ON KAKE.com: Kansas Senate fails to override tax bill veto

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