Late into the session a bill to exempt private health clubs from local property taxes was passed by the Senate. The bill was chiefly sponsored by the Genesis Health Clubs in Wichita. The proponents contend that they are at a competitive disadvantage to the YMCA and that they should not have to pay property tax as compensation.
The bill was never considered in the House yet there was an attempt to include the Senate version in a conference committee report. The House and Senate conferees decided that there was not enough support in the House to pass the conference report so it was left out of their deliberations.
There was considerable criticism of the way the bill was passed so late into the session when deadlines for bill consideration had passed. Others were critical that Genesis had contributed over $40,000 to political candidates this year, including most of the committee members in the Senate that originally passed the bill. Others also noted that due to the tax bill passed last year the owners no longer have to pay income taxes on their business earnings.