Kansas Lawmakers: Taxpayers Shouldn’t Pay for Tax-Increasing Lobbyists

Published March 1, 2013

Kansas lawmakers are considering two bills that would stop people from using taxpayer dollars to agitate for more tax dollars.

Senate Bill 45 and SB 109 would ban the use of public funds to litigate or lobby state or local governments, making it a misdemeanor punishable by a $500 fine and a month in jail.

State Sen. Ralph Ostmeyer (R-Grinnell) says school districts, counties, and cities shouldn’t be able to use tax dollars to sue the state for more money. “It’s totally wrong,” he said. “We’re funding them. Why do you want to bite the hand that feeds you?”

Others argue lawsuits are the only way to get their needs met. Dodge City Superintendent Alan Cunningham said poor school districts, such as his, can’t get more money elsewhere.

But if taxpayers want to sue the state, they can easily raise private funds to do so, said Sen. Dennis Pyle (R-Hiawatha).

“We’ve been criticized for a long time on [this], but as far as I know the state of Kansas has lobbyists in Washington DC,” said Lynn Rogers, president of the Wichita Board of Education.

Reprinted with permission from Watchdog.org.Image by Missouri News-Horizon.