November 26, 2014

Rep. Jones updates on issues from legislature

Rep. Kevin Jones
Legislative Update
The way our Kansas Court of Appeals and Supreme Court judges are selected has become an item of spirited discussion. We are the only state in the nation that essentially allows a relatively small group of lawyers – not chosen by the people – to nominate these positions of authority. There is a movement in the legislature to change this to a more democratic selection process which would follow the model used at the federal level in which the President nominates a person and there is an approval by the Senate.
The mortgage interest deduction is another hot topic. Removal of this is part of the Governor’s strategy to continue on the path to 0 percent  income tax for us. His intention is to no longer offer that deduction as an option, and to use that revenue to help off-set the income-tax revenue reduction that will affect our budget this year. His argument is that only 30 percent of us Kansans even itemize our tax returns, and of those, even fewer would be affected by this change. He pleads that we look at the overall tax reduction on each Kansan and not focus on this one as an “increase.”
Gun control laws have been another hot topic because of what is going on at a federal level. As I write this there is another Second Amendment rally going on outside the south window of the House. Who would have guessed that our federal government would try to dictate our God given right to protect our families here in Kansas? Measures have been drafted and introduced here that intend to protect and solidify the Second Amendment rights of Kansans.
Personally, I am doing well as a “freshman” legislator in Topeka. I have downsized to a gas-sipping car for the commute home each day, I have settled into my office in 512-N, and I am working hard in my committee assignments as well as learning the ropes. The question many of you have asked: “Is it everything you thought it would be?” To that I must admit, “Yes and no.”
I did not fully comprehend the degree of political posturing that takes place, but being able to represent and serve my neighbors, friends, and family by being a positive influence at the State level is an absolute honor.
If you have a concern, a bill idea, or you want to honor someone, please do not hesitate to contact me.
If you are interested in receiving news from me, please send your contact information to my office.
Email: kevin.jones@house.ks.gov. My office phone number is (785) 296-6287. Stop by my office at 512-N in the capitol. It is a pleasure to serve.
Rep. Kevin Jones represents the 5th District, which includes Wellsville, in the Kansas Legislature.

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