Landowners are a “privileged” group, says a Kansas Senate committee that wants Marion County landowners to fork over about $1.8 million in excise taxes to the state for that privilege.
The Committee on Assessment and Taxation introduced a bill Thursday that would levy a $3 per acre excise tax on real property, with the proceeds designated for the state school finance fund.
The opening sentence of Senate Bill 302 reads:
“For the privilege of owning real property in this state there is hereby levied and shall be collected an excise tax on the taxable real property of this state at a rate of $3 for each acre or portion thereof.”
If every acre of Marion County’s 944 square miles of land were taxed, the bill for county landowners would be about $1.8 million. The excise tax would not be applied to properties exempt from ad valorem property taxes, so the actual total would be less.
While unfamiliar with the new proposal, County Commission Chair Dan Holub reacted negatively to the news.
“All they’re doing is taxing some people more, and some people not at all,” Holub said. “Why don’t they tax people that aren’t paying taxes?”
An agricultural landowner of 640 acres would see $1,920 added to their tax bill. Holub said that even with the money designated for education, the excise tax would have negative results.
“It’ll harm the landowners more than it will help the schools,” Holub said.