Legislative Update from Representative Shannon Francis

Congratulations to All of Our Graduates!

Our youth are our future. Leonel Hernandez, a 2007 graduate of Seward County Community College/Area Technical School, did a great job as the SCCC/ATS commencement speaker last Saturday.  It’s always great to hear the positive effect our local schools have on our graduate’s lives. I will be attending my daughter’s college graduation this weekend, thanks in part to the work and commitment of the educators at USD 480.  Carol and I are both grateful for the public schools in our community and state.  As Benjamin Franklin said, “An investment in knowledge pays the best investment.”  Again congratulations to all of our local graduates.

This Week in Topeka

The “Veto Session” continues.  The legislative session is limited to 90 days, however legislative leadership has failed to come together on a fiscally-responsible plan to address the state’s budget shortfall. Saturday (May 16) is the 90th day, meaning the Legislature will be working in overtime days when we return to Topeka on Monday. Effective on the 90th day of the session, I have filed the paperwork to return my legislative pay to the taxpayers for the rest of the legislative session. It’s not the taxpayers’ fault that the Legislature has failed to get its work done on time. Despite reaching the 90th day, the House has not yet been given an opportunity to vote on a budget. The first tax plan, SB 270, was brought to the House floor on Friday morning. That plan, which would have raised sales taxes and eliminated most income tax deductions, failed on a voice vote. Under SB 270, Liberal’s sales tax rate would have become 9.6%. Unfortunately, this isn’t the end of it. There are more plans in the works that would increase the cost of gasoline, increase sales tax on most items we buy, and increase taxes on health insurance policies. On the Senate side, numerous proposals have been debated in tax committee that would drastically increase taxes on the agriculture community.  So far, these proposals have failed to pass out of committee.

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As a result of continued negotiations, the state has reached a compromise with Uber on how to handle insurance requirements and background checks for Uber and other ride-sharing drivers. The comprise plan is expected to come to the House floor next week for a vote.

Much of the rest of the week has been spent voting on conference committees for bills with differences between the Senate and House.  The following conference committee reports were passed by the House:  House Substitute for SB 91 regarding renewable energy portfolio requirements, HB 2233 establishing a state plan to comply with the Federal Clean Power Plan, and HB 2154 regarding Veterans and Military Personnel Issues.

Thank you for the opportunity to serve. During the session please contact me any time.  My email is  Please do not use my office number, our office staff has been laid off until next year and there is no one available to answer.

Contact Shannon

At the Legislature

Room: 167-W
State Capitol Building
300 SW 10th Street
Topeka, KS 66612
Phone: 785-296-7655

At Home:

1501 Tucker Court
Liberal, Kansas 67901
Phone: 620-624-9571

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Paid for by Shannon Francis for State Representative, Lisa Hatcher Treasurer

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