WESTWOOD, Kan. — The ongoing debate over Kansas’ food sales tax now has a new snag as local governments could also be forced to stop collecting the tax along with the state.

That language has been added to a Kansas bill originally intended to accelerate the timeline ending the state food tax.

But there’s already been pushback to the proposal, including a letter from the Johnson and Wyandotte Counties Council of Mayors.

According to their letter, if the plan moves forward, cities will likely have to cut services or increase property taxes. They acknowledge that every city is different but that these would likely be common issues.

“I think this was a little bit unexpected because the discussion at all times had really only been about at the state level,” said Westwood Mayor David Waters, who is also the chairperson of the mayors council.

“A city like Westwood, frankly, a lot of our sales tax comes from those types of food uses — restaurants and grocery stores and such. That would impact our ability, to lose that revenue, that could wipe out potentially 30% of our local revenue,” Waters said.

Andrea Clark, director of food system planning for KC Healthy Kids, has been supportive of removing the state food sales tax and improving food affordability. But she also said removing the local food sales tax hasn’t been studied and has a lot of unknowns.

“For our coalition, we’re remaining neutral on that part of the legislation and think that local governments know best,” Clark said.

“And we know over the last couple of years, the state has had record-setting revenues,” Clark added. “And we know the state can afford to eliminate the sales tax on food. Local government are each unique and different.”

Cities also share concerns about what they feel amounts to a power grab.

“This is removing local control from our local cities, our ability to manage our financial affairs,” Waters said.

Kansas Senate President Ty Masterson, who is supportive of the legislation, sent FOX4 a statement saying that lawmakers must match campaign rhetoric by taking food taxes to “true zero.”

“To alleviate any unanticipated impact on local budgets and ensure Kansans’ property taxes do not go up, we have drafted SB 309, which creates the Kansans FIRST Fund – an acronym for ‘Fixing Instant Revenue Shock for Taxpayers’ – which would set aside $220 million in funds to hold local communities harmless,” Masterson’s statement said.

Under the plan, jurisdictions will need to prove their revenue loss and abide by the “Truth in Taxation Law,” also helping keep the property tax burden in check, according to his statement.