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Brownback proposing to eliminate popular income tax deductions

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TOPEKA, KS (KCTV) -

A tax deduction Kansans look forward to every year could be going away.

If anyone owns a home in Kansas or are looking to buy, they can use the interest paid on their  mortgage as a deduction at tax time. But Republican Gov. Sam Brownback wants to get rid of that.

Brownback is proposing to eliminate two popular income tax deductions for homeowners, for the interest on their mortgages and the property taxes on their houses.

Homeowners say that is the wrong way to go about balancing the budget.

Brett Buxton decided he was done with apartment living after he got married and was expecting a child.

"It was time to get the American dream and get a house," Buxton said.

So last year, that was exactly what he did by buying a property in Leawood.

Buxton, along with 345,000 other Kansans, plan to deduct the interest on their mortgage payments this tax season.

"That little nest egg at the end of the year with that tax return is certainly something I'm looking forward to," he said.

But now there is a chance that may go away as part of a tax proposal in the state Legislature.

"That is a concern of mine as a homeowner. You want to have those tax breaks. It's not easy owning a home," Buxton said.

Brownback's administration told the The Lawrence Journal World the deductions help more affluent people who itemize deduction on their taxes.

Realtor Cory Ward disagrees.

"People can recuperate some of that fixed cost that went toward the mortgage. So at the end of the year, they look at it as a tool to help create a little bit of income," Ward said.

However, Ward isn't sold on the tax plan.

"It's a bit of a rash decision, and I'm not sure it's been fully examined," he said.

The Kansas Senate postponed debate Wednesday and a possible vote on Brownback's plan. The Senate committee could take up the issue next week.

Ward says it is possible that some potential homeowners would choose to live in Missouri in order to get that deduction.

Brownback's administration was not available for comment when KCTV5 called them Wednesday.

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