Sunday, October 14, 2007

State Sen. Nick Jordan - - - MIA ????

State Sen Nick Jordan apparently does not feel it is necessary to respond to questions concerning taxes. I sent him an email on 8/26/07 with a follow up on 9/15/07. To date, he has not responded.

I can understand why. No politician likes to address the possibility of increasing taxes. Or, discuss the possibility of reduced government services.

The email was based on the research material presented to the Shawnee Smoking Task Force. A copy of this research is available at:

Eventually something will have to be taxed to replace the lost revenue generated by decreasing cigarette sales. My questions basically pertained to State of Kansas taxes. Local sales taxes are also affectd. Additionally the federal government is considering increasing the cigarette excise tax 61 cents a pack to a total of $1. Eventually this golden egg laying goose will disappear, and then the feds (and the state) will also have to tax other items or reduce services.

So, as a current state senator and candidate for congress, I think Mr Jordan needs to answer these questions. What taxes will he support raising, or establishing if not existing? What services would he consider reducing or eliminating?

The original email from 8/26/07 is quoted below (I felt it unnecessary to post the 9/15/07 follow up, but it is available):

Dear Senator Jordan,

Allow me to "re-introduce" myself. We chatted briefly at the reception for the new Shawnee Magazine.

First, let me wish you the best in your campaign for the US Congress.

There is an item that we started to discuss and I would like to get your input. This relates to the state excise tax on cigarettes. According to the KDOR annual report, there was a spike in receipts of this tax, but that was due to an increase in the tax in 2003. Until that time, receipts were dropping. Also, since 2000 and until 2006 the actual number of packs of cigarettes in Kansas declined each year, to the point where the figure for 2006 was over 55 million less packs than in 2000. At 79¢ per pack that is alot of money. To verify this all one has to do is to divide the monies collected by the amount of the excise tax in effect at the time.

The KDOR annual reports for 2005 & 2006 can be located on line as follows:

As this trend continues it would seem that something has to be done to replace the monies that will no longer be supplied by this excise tax. I see the choices as follow:

1. Increase the excise tax again (until such point that the number of packs sold become negligible)
2. Increase existing taxes in other areas
3. Create taxes where none currently exist (such as an excise tax on computers ond associated peripherals and supplies). This would be more equitable as it would impact more people and spread it out more evenly.
4. Maybe something I haven't thought of?

Also, since you are running for the US Congress it would be nice to know your thoughts on the attempts to increase the federal excise tax on cigarettes from 39¢ to $1 per pack.
So there is no misunderstanding as to my intentions, I plan on posting this email together with your response on my blog located at

Ray Erlichman
Shawnee, KS