A proposal to help the Cancer Center at the Kansas University Medical Center gain national status was at the center of a legislative squabble today.
Gov. Kathleen Sebelius earmarked $5 million annually in her budget proposal to assist KU in getting a federal cancer center designation within five years.
But a group of lawmakers in the House Appropriations Committee sought to delay that recommendation, saying they wanted to see specific legislation on the matter before voting on the funds.
"We don't want to put the cart before the horse," Rep. Brenda Landwehr, R-Wichita, said.
But other committee members said the legislation could easily be worked on at the same time that the full appropriations bill advanced. And they said pulling the funds out of the committee's budget recommendation would be interpreted by private donors to the Cancer Center that the state was backing off its commitment to the facility.
A motion by Rep. Sharon Schwartz, R-Washington, to remove the cancer funding from the committee's appropriations bill was defeated on a non-record vote, that appeared to be 11 against the motion and 10 for it.