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Counties battling state over mortgage fee

Loss of fee could force property tax hikes

 The counties of Kansas are again finding themselves at odds with state lawmakers in Topeka as a bill that would eliminate the mortgage registration fee is winding its way through the Senate.
These fees are money collected by county registers of deeds for each mortgage transaction and they have become an important funding source for counties. County officials worry that the loss of this revenue would force the increase of property taxes to make up the difference.
“The state is clearly trying to take away money from our budget,” said Barton County Commissioner Jennifer Schartz. “That’s not fair. Our ...

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