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Stop the exemption

The 2010 Kansas Legislative session began Monday. Citizens of Marion, Butler, Clay, Cowley, Dickinson, and Washington counties need to contact their state representatives and state senators regarding one of the most important legislative sessions in recent history — an exemption from local property taxes for the Keystone/TransCanada pipeline.

The construction of the pipeline is slated for 2010 and the counties in the pipeline corridor wil llose out on tax revenue of approximately $8.5 million per year for 10 years.

The pipeline company also reportedly signed a contract with Kansas Department of Commerce for more than $55 million in tax credits.

Even though the Legislation exempted the property taxes in 2006, it can be corrected. A bill can be introduced to rescind parts of KSA 79-227 that granted the property tax exemptions.

Kansas appears to be only state in the region that has granted a property tax exemption to the pipeline company.

State officials already are scrambling to find additional funds. This appears to be another leak in the bucket that could be stopped.

County Government Day is Tuesday at Topeka. It would be a good time to tell our legislators that we are not in favor of giving away money that we, as taxpayers, cannot afford to give.

Let us contact our elected officials and make them aware that they need to address and rectify this situation.

— susan berg

Last modified Jan. 13, 2010

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