Constituents’ priorities: Jobs and economy – Osage County Online | Osage County News

Constituents’ priorities: Jobs and economy

Rep. Peggy Mast, District 76
Kansas House Speaker Pro Tem

020914_rep_mast_peggy_1I recently sent out a survey in order to better understand my constituents’ priorities. Based on the responses the top priority is jobs and the economy.

Last year was another record year for business formation in Kansas with 15,469 new businesses formed. Since 2011 we have added 66,200 new private sector jobs. And income tax rates have reduced from 23 percent to 26 percent.

I will continue to show my support for jobs and the Kansas economy.

Here are some pro-growth bills I supported last week:

House Bill 2668

One important bill is House Bill 2668. HB 2668 is a bill regarding insurance for qualified professional associations. The bill will exempt all qualified trade, merchant, retail, or professional associations from the jurisdiction of the Commissioner of Insurance. This means these associations will have a self-funded alternative to consider when managing their healthcare costs. For associations that have been in existence for five or more calendar years and consist of five or more employers, they can turn to self-funded insurance in order to avoid some aspects of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).  This opportunity includes ag associations who can choose to self-insure and they would also have the option to purchase catastrophic insurance to cover severe illness. These alternative plans will still comply with ACA mandates such as covering preexisting conditions, but will have more flexibility to refuse coverage or charge higher premiums based on the group’s medical conditions. I supported this bill.

House Bill 2398

House Bill 2398 is another important bill regarding the business environment in Kansas. HB 2398 makes some amendments to the limited liability company (LLC) act. However, the bill does not greatly alter existing law. The bill will allow LLCs the power to grant, hold, or exercise power of attorney. This includes revocable power of attorney as well as irrevocable power of attorney when it comes to internal affairs and termination of an LLC. This bill also brings LLC business dealings into the modern age by allowing meetings of members and managers to be held by means of electronic communication such as a conference call. Additionally, the bill will prohibit the elimination of the contractual agreement of members or managers. Finally, the bill would allow members of an LLC that has been dissolved to revoke the dissolution and continue the business. The bottom line of this bill is that it updates Kansas law concerning LLCs and creates a more appealing business environment for those looking to bring their LLCs to Kansas. I supported this bill.

House Bill 2447

HB 2447 protects Kansas property owners from a federal case that expanded the duty of care that property owners owe to trespassers. Under this bill, property owners cannot be sued for negligence if a trespasser is hurt on their property. As long as a property owner does not intentionally harm a trespasser, the trespasser has no ground for legal action against the property owner. This has existed in common law for many years, and this bill simply protects that common law from an expansion given by federal judges. I supported this bill.

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