2019 Legislative Report Card

These are the key legislative priority areas the KC Chamber engaged in the 2019 legislative sessions. The status of these priority areas indicates the accomplishments of Chamber advocacy. These policies reflect the business-friendly priorities of the KC Chamber and our 2,000 members in Kansas and Missouri.

Missouri State Affairs Legislative Report Card

Border War Bill

SUCCESSFUL

Legislation:

Prohibits the issuance of incentives for businesses moving jobs across the Kansas-Missouri state line.

Goal:

Require that businesses use their incentive dollars to create net new jobs as opposed to creating new job commutes.

Economic Impact:

Incentives across the state line have cost Missouri taxpayers $151 million since 2010.

 

Earnings Tax

SUCCESSFUL

Legislation:

Phase out and ultimately prohibit the 1% Kansas City earnings tax.

Goal:

Fund local police, firefighters, trash collection and other services.

Economic Impact:

The tax generates approximately $240 million for the city's General Fund.

Workforce Development

SUCCESSFUL

Legislation:

Establish workforce initiatives, including Fast Track and Missouri One Start, which support job training and post-secondary education attainment.

Goal:

Meet the growing demand from businesses for a stronger workforce pool and combat barriers to workforce development.

Economic Impact:

Strengthening the workforce talent pipeline will increase business productivity and stimulate the state economy.

Bridge Bonding

SUCCESSFUL

Legislation:

Transportation funding package to repair 215 bridges, including a plan to repay the borrowed bonds.

Goal:

Update the state's infrastructure to support safety and commerce.

Economic Impact:

The state will borrow $300 million in bonds.

Expungement

SUCCESSFUL

Legislation:

Adds several nonviolent felony and misdemeanor crimes to the lists of offenses for which people can seek expungement.

Goal:

Give former offenders opportunities to support themselves through legitimate and productive work, which data shows reduces recidivism and improves public safety.

Economic Impact:

Promote economic growth by increasing the available talent pool for employers.

Missouri Nondiscrimination Act (MONA)

UNSUCCESSFUL

Legislation:

Add protections for individuals based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

Goal:

End policy discrimination and foster inclusivity, so that businesses can attract world class talent, a necessity for an innovative business community.

Economic Impact:

Increase economic output by ensuring that businesses can attract world class talent and innovative ideas.

Kansas State Affairs Legislative Report Card

Medicaid Expansion

UNSUCCESSFUL

Legislation:

Support programs that provide greater access to coverage for uninsured individuals.

Goal:

Foster a healthy workforce to drive worker productivity and economic development.

Economic Impact:

Prepare the state's Medicaid system to maximize federal funding opportunities.

Education/Workforce Development

SUCCESSFUL

Legislation:

Add $90 million in school funding to account for inflation and institute more accountability measures for school districts.

Goal:

Give further transparency in achievement rates of schools within each district.

Economic Impact:

Cost $90 million

Higher Education Funding

MIXED SUCCESS

Legislation:

Adds $34 million, despite a request for $50 million, in state funding to public universities, including a 2.5% pay increase to state employees.

Goal:

Adds $34 million, despite a request for $50 million, in state funding to public universities, including a 2.5% pay increase to state employees.

Economic Impact:

Cost $34 million

A-OK Work Program

SUCCESSFUL

Legislation:

Establishes A-OK to Work Program, which requires  the Kansas Board of Regents (KBOR) to award a high school equivalency credential to any qualified student who is approved to participate in an A-OK career pathway approved by KBOR for college credit and meets other KBOR requirements.

Goal:

Provide accelerated certification programs in order to meet the growing demand from businesses for a qualified labor pool, which will lead to job growth and increased economic prosperity.

Economic Impact:

Ensure that businesses have access to a skilled labor pool.

Experiential Learning

UNSUCCESSFUL

Legislation:

Amends the liability of students at job sites from the employer to the school district.

Goal:

Make experiential learning more accessible to students.

Economic Impact:

Increase business productivity by ensuring a trained and skilled talent pool.

Criminal Justice

SUCCESSFUL

Legislation:

Establishes the Criminal Justice Reform Commission to encourage the state’s criminal justice system to expand reentry and reemployment programs for ex-offenders.

Goal:

Reduce recidivism rates and expand the talent pool for employers.

Economic Impact:

Promote economic growth by increasing the available talent pool for employers.

T-Works Completion

SUCCESSFUL

Legislation:

Meet transportation needs, including finishing the T-Works project and other local projects, with a requirement of a 25% local match for all local projects.

Goal:

T-Works is designed to preserve highway infrastructure, create jobs, and provide economic development opportunities through the expansion of state transportation services.

Economic Impact:

$166.4 million allotted to the Department of Transportation for FY2020

Adequately Funded Transportation

SUCCESSFUL

Legislation:

Expands state tolling and increases electric and hybrid vehicle fees to include a $100 registration fee for all-electric vehicles and a $50 fee for vehicles that are electric hybrid or plug-in electric.

Goal:

Create new roads and expand capacity on existing roads.

Economic Impact:

Fees will result in an additional $600,000 in state revenue.

Long-Term State Transportation Expansion

UNSUCCESSFUL

Legislation:

Establishes a comprehensive transportation plan modeled after the Chamber's Big 5 Initiative to guarantee adequate funding, strategic planning, and unique innovation.

Goal:

Ensure that Kansas’ transportation systems adapt to changing transportation mobility needs of businesses and workforce.

Economic Impact:

Drive worker and business productivity to increase economic output from the state.