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Kansas gets personal with taxes
Eight states currently have the umbrella policy, which combines practitioners in different fields.
TOPEKA, KAN.-The Kansas Veterinary Medical Association (KVMA) anticipates a bill mandating veterinary licensing to be reintroduced by the Kansas Department of Revenue.
If passed, the bill would permit the Kansas Department of Revenue to revoke veterinarians' licenses if they are delinquent with their taxes.
Marsh elected treasurer
"What is so disturbing about this is that the license would be taken away automatically," says Gary Reser, CAE, vice president KVMA. "It is a bad piece of legislation."
A move to establish a mega-regulatory agency is another concern of the KVMA, Reser says. This legislative body would be moved along with 19 other regulatory agencies.
"KVMA wants the board to stay solo," Reser says. "There is concern that if we are lumped together in one group, then insurance prices for veterinarians will soar,"
Eight states currently have the umbrella policy, which combines practitioners in different medical fields. There are 31 states that are somewhere in-between and 19 that stand alone, according to Ron Allen, Texas Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners.
"I don't think its very good business for the licensees or the consumers," Allen says.
It's hard for licensees and consumers to have one place to go to handle all of the questions and problems considering umbrella agencies often do not have a policy person to talk with, Allen says.
"There is a board in Texas that makes rules, can change vaccine protocols, continuing education hours needed, etc. This process is easier when there aren't layers to go through before getting the go ahead," Allen adds.
Consolidation of government agencies is a common trend that is generally initiated with the Sunset Review Process.
"I worked in the Sunset Commission before my current job, and it's not necessarily less expensive to the licensee" Allen says.
The bill was poorly conceived, Reser says. Kansas remains in a budget crunch, and the board already cut expenses.
"The board would be responsible for revoking licenses, and it puts them in tax collecting mode," Reser adds.
He says there are already under served areas of the state. Though in his opinion professionals do not shirk their tax-paying duties more than anyone else, if veterinarians lose their license in one of these rural areas, it will make the existing problem worse.
"If the Department of Revenue makes a mistake, what then?" Reser says. "There is no appeals process.