KC Bishop Finn Announces Opposition To Jackson Co. Medical Research Tax
October 16, 2013

Kansas City’s Roman Catholic Bishop Robert Finn is the latest Kansas City official to come out against the Jackson County Medical Research Tax on the November 5 ballot.

The Kansas City Diocese released a letter signed by Finn, former Bishop Raymond Boland and a number of priests announcing their opposition to the tax proposal.

Boosters say the half-cent tax increase would generate $800 million over 20 years. The money would be used to attract cutting edge medical researchers to several Jackson County Hospitals (see previous posts).

In Finn’s set he says he object to the tax increase on three grounds.

He said a sales tax is regressive and is not based on any ability to pay, so it hits the working poor the hardest.

Finn says another problem is that the County is asking taxpayers to fund a national goal when basic needs in the city are not being met.

Finn adds there is nothing in the ballot language that prevents what he calls, “embryonic-destructive research”, and so he objects to the plan on that grounds.

This is the second top Kansas City figure in as many days to announce his stance on the issue.

Tuesday, Kansas City Mayor Sly James’ office released a statement says the Mayor finds the goals of the plan worthy, but he is not taking a stand on the issue.

Boosters had hoped Mayor James would support the tax increase question.

Earlier this week, Jackson County Legislator James Tindall endorsed the Research Tax. Tindall is also a Bishop in the Metropolitan Spiritual Churches of Christ.