Kansas business survey finds taxes concern, split on repealing cuts

TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - A new poll of Kansas business leaders finds health care and taxes their top issues impacting whether they make a profit, but a split on whether they're willing to pay more in taxes.

The Kansas Chamber surveyed 300 business owners and leaders in Kansas. 81 percent of those responding represented businesses with fewer than 10 employees.

Asked their top concern, 28 percent listed taxes, followed by government mandates and regulations (13 percent). The survey also asked business leaders to name the two most important issues to profitability. Nearly half (44 percent) put health care on the list, followed by taxes (38 percent).

But the business community is split in the debate over whether to roll back small business tax cuts. It's a key issue in talks over how to balance the state's budget, which faces a $340 million gap in the current fiscal year ending June 30. Of those responding, 39 percent favor repealing the cuts, while 42 percent oppose it. Of those supporting repeal, twice as many want the revenue to be used to lower other taxes, while only 15 percent would support using it for more government spending.

The Kansas Chamber says the survey also found 21 percent of those surveyed felt the small business tax cuts helped their company stay in business, the same as their 2015 poll.

Among other findings of the survey the Chamber released:
*Asked how much should be cut from state government before raising taxes, 11 percent said never cut government spending; 24 percent say cut up to 5 percent; 16 percent said cut between 6-10%; 11 percent said cut more than 10%; and 21 percent said never raise taxes.
*66 percent of business owners oppose a sales tax on professional services, with the opinion shared by those involved in the retail (64%) and construction (67%) industries