Topeka An effort Tuesday to delete several of Gov. Kathleen Sebelius' proposed funding increases for higher education was blocked, at least for now.
Several Republicans on the House Appropriations committee sought to erase some of the funding increases proposed by the Democratic governor for the fiscal year that starts July 1.
State Rep. Joe McLeland, R-Wichita and chairman of the education budget subcommittee, cited "the financial situation of the state" in keeping spending to current levels.
But Democrats protested. "We feel the cost savings to the state of these reductions does not justify the harm they will cause," Rep. Tom Sawyer, D-Wichita, said.
An alliance of Democrats and some Republicans managed to delay several funding decisions until the wrap-up session in April after legislators get a new report on the state revenue picture.
Those items to be decided later include:
¢ A Sebelius proposal to increase scholarships to financially needy students from $15.7 million per year to $18.7 million.
¢ $1 million to set up a science, technology, education or math scholarship program.
¢ A proposed subcommittee cut of $2 million to KAN-ED, the broadband network that connects schools, libraries and hospitals.
The committee also rejected a subcommittee proposal to cut Sebelius' recommended $250,000 increase for scholarships to those who have served in the military.