Strange but true: according to the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS), Kansas appears to be the only state in the nation that helpfully explains the method by which people with phony social security numbers can receive state income tax refunds.
On February 29, 2016, the Kansas Department of Revenue published a document that reads in part, “The Department has identified a number of cases where a return has been filed using … a Social Security number that does not belong to the taxpayer. In these cases the Department has disallowed any credit for withholding tax claimed by the taxpayer.”
So far so good, but things quickly head south. A taxpayer with a phony ID can get the money withheld by providing “a written statement from the employer which indicates the total amount of Kansas income tax withheld and the Social security number under which the employer remitted the tax.”
CIS sees this as something of a double standard: “A knowing employer of an illegal can preserve a tax benefit for his illegal workers (thus lessening pressure on him to raise wages) while the unknowing (and perhaps innocent) employer of other illegals gets no such indirect benefit.”
Kansas media have done a great job slandering the Brownback administration over the last several years. CIS, which has no reason to pile on, speaks casually about the state’s allegedly “beleaguered schools” and a budget “in tatters.”
Yet while overstating the state’s financial problems, the media deliberately understate some of the sources of those problems such as the “number of cases” in which workers, likely illegal, have appropriated social security numbers that do not belong to them.
If these workers can get phony SSNs, there is little to prevent them from getting all the benefits that come with legal residence, quite possibly the ballot as well.
“One commits a federal crime when one uses an illicit SSN and Kansas overlooks it — but only if the employer is in on the conspiracy,” opines CIS. “Perhaps if this information is picked up by the media in Kansas either the governor or the state legislature might take corrective action.”
Stranger things have happened.