Archive for Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Budget impasse appears over; state employees to receive paychecks

Gov. Kathleen Sebelius on Tuesday signed a deficit reduction bill that Republican legislative leaders wanted, and those GOP leaders dropped their objections to inter-government borrowing to pay state workers on time this week.

February 17, 2009, 2:38 p.m. Updated February 17, 2009, 8:07 p.m.

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— State elected leaders Tuesday appeared to end a tense standoff that had held up Kansas income tax refunds and threatened to delay paychecks to state employees.

Gov. Kathleen Sebelius signed a deficit reduction bill that Republican legislative leaders wanted, and those GOP leaders dropped their objections to inter-government borrowing to pay state workers on time this week.

The whirlwind action capped a day of finger-pointing and maneuvering as Kansas’ fiscal problems erupted and leaped onto the national stage.

After a merry-go-round of news conferences and angry press statements, the bottom line is that Sebelius, a Democrat, signed a bill that reduces current fiscal year spending by $300 million, but also reduces the size of a Republican proposal to cut public schools.

Meanwhile, Republican leaders, who control the Legislature, dropped their objection to borrowing funds within state government, which will ensure that approximately 42,000 state employees get their paychecks as scheduled on Friday.

Sebelius called a meeting for 2 p.m. today of the State Finance Council to approve $225 million in what are called certificates of indebtedness to pay off state debts.

She said of the Republican leaders: “Hopefully, they’ll have a full night’s sleep and wake up in the morning with a happy face and come and get our finances running again so we can pay our bills.”

House Speaker Mike O’Neal, R-Hutchinson, and Senate President Steve Morris, R-Hugoton, said they were ready to settle the state’s cash-flow problems.

“It’s good the governor has signed the budget bill. We can now move forward,” Morris said.

O’Neal said, “Bottom line for me is that we are in the black now,” referring to the budget bill.

High drama

The day started with Sebelius hammering Republicans for refusing to approve the almost routine certificates of indebtedness on Monday.

She said the GOP inaction jeopardized state employee paychecks, Medicaid payments and an upcoming public school payment. The state had already suspended income tax refunds. The certificates are frequently used by the state in low cash-flow periods before tax returns start filling up state coffers.

But Morris and O’Neal said they couldn’t approve the certificates of indebtedness because without approval of the budget rescission bill, the state ledger would be out of balance. Sebelius called that nonsense, saying the state’s budget problems and cash-flow situation were unrelated.

Senate Democratic Leader Anthony Hensley of Topeka said the action by O’Neal and Morris amounted to blackmail and irresponsibly angered thousands of state employees who were worried about getting paid.

Line-item vetoes

But by the end of the day, Sebelius announced she would be holding a news conference to sign the budget and schedule a State Finance Council meeting.

“We are in very difficult economic times in this state. Unfortunately, this session has been marred with partisan divide instead of collaboration and cooperation. There have already been too many personal attacks. Hopefully that stops today,” she said.

Sebelius signed the budget bill less than five hours after it hit her desk.

But she applied several line-item vetoes. She vetoed a $32 million cut in state aid to public schools that would have reduced spending by $66 per pupil, and a cut to special education.

“I believe that with so much of the school year already behind us, the cuts proposed to public schools are too deep,” Sebelius said.

Instead, Sebelius approved a cut through her allotment authority that will result in a $33 per pupil reduction in spending.

Sebelius said she was directing budget director Duane Goossen to go forward with processing paychecks for state workers. And if all goes according to plan in today’s finance council meeting, the state would resume issuing checks to Kansans who are entitled to income tax refunds.

Sebelius also vetoed a $2.9 million appropriation to the Wichita Center for Graduate Medical Education and asked the Kansas Board of Regents to make a funding recommendation.

Comments

situveux1 6 years, 5 months ago

Why did she cancel the first meeting on Monday? Why is she waiting until the last minute to balance the checkbook? I'm so sick of her playing games.

Adrienne Sanders 6 years, 5 months ago

I don't understand what she's going to talk about at a press conference if nothing's going to be discussed/ potentially resolved until tomorrow afternoon.

mom_of_three 6 years, 5 months ago

She cancelled the meeting on Monday because she had not received the budget proposal, which they were meeting about.

Bob_Keeshan 6 years, 5 months ago

She canceled the meeting on Monday because the GOP refused to attend.

situveux has a proud history of posting flat out lies.

Sigmund 6 years, 5 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

Sigmund 6 years, 5 months ago

Cut the f'ing budget Kathy and then move to DC. How f'ing simple can we make it?

trinity 6 years, 5 months ago

so ok, will the wednesday meeting happen in time to process state paychecks??? that is all i want to know!

womanwarrior 6 years, 5 months ago

Wimps. We won't raise your taxes, but we'll let your local school board do it. We want the governor to share the blame for deeply cutting schools.
Stand your ground, gov. The blame needs to go to the wimpy legislatures, not the governor. And she is doing her job, but the legislature refuses to do theirs. They have enough votes to override their anti-education budget, they need to take the blame for it, if they think it's such a great budget. The governor is against this budget, and so are a lot of other people, except those people who hate schools and don't want to pay taxes. Go live in the wilderness with your kids, and home school them.

Sigmund 6 years, 5 months ago

Gov. Kathy wants the credit when she increases funding for schools and baby foxes and windmills but wants the evil republicans to be blamed when budget cuts have to be made to pay for them. She can either sign the current budget, or propose her own with alternate cuts. She doesn't want to do either so here we sit. Here is hoping the republicans don't cave and Gov. Kathy signs the budget.

GardenMomma 6 years, 5 months ago

Holding employees' paychecks hostage in order to get the Governor to do what you want is as asinine as it gets.

I thought that blackmail was illegal in this country.

justthefacts 6 years, 5 months ago

It's political black mail, or chicken, on BOTH sides of the aisle. And they are using the people of Kansas and its employees as weapons against each other. For shame on both sides!

Daniel Kennamore 6 years, 5 months ago

and will these republican's paychecks still be issued while I, a student who literally will have no other option but to use CC debt to pay for the next two weeks of my life, get the shaft?

llama726 6 years, 5 months ago

So a State Job isn't a "proper job?" I guess when you send your son or daughter to the dorms at KU, the security they hire is not worth it since it's not a proper job.

Hey lawrenceguy genius... Take a look at the classifieds. There ain't much out there for a student, is there?

llama726 6 years, 5 months ago

Also, that advice (get a new job) is really helpful when the guy found out what, two days ago he might not get paid? You start a new job and get paid in two weeks or less, buddy.

Daniel Kennamore 6 years, 5 months ago

Great advice lawrenceguy40,

What, pray tell, is a 'proper' job?

BTW, I'm graduating this year and was considering staying in Kansas...but after this debacle there is no way I'm going to be working (and paying taxes) in a state where legislators play politics with people's already earned money.

vega 6 years, 5 months ago

Lawrenceguy40 - do I understand you correctly when you say teacher, firefighter, policemen jobs are not proper jobs? Or jobs funded by federal or state tax are not proper jobs? Can you define a proper job please.

womanwarrior 6 years, 5 months ago

"She can either sign the current budget, or propose her own with alternate cuts."

She did. She had a budget that would have worked, with only $22/student cut in school budget. The Republicans wanted $88, but was finally talked down to $66 by moderate Republicans. They even tried to say she wasn't cutting the budget at all. Apparently they didn't get a good eduction in the old days when education wasn't being funded. They can't even do math, they can only play wimp politics.

Centerville 6 years, 5 months ago

The Republicans did not 'refuse to attend'. Hawver has corrected that error in his report. She has a budget bill. She's known what is in it for weeks. She wants to make false claims to obtain short=term borrowing and Kansas is short=term borrowed out. She's the one who started the paychecks for ransom talk and she's depending upon you to fall for it.

justthefacts 6 years, 5 months ago

Not that i agree with EITHER side (they are BOTH engaging in black mail), but just in the interests of fairness (we like fairness, don't we) here is what the GOP is saying about why they're taking this stance: http://kansastrunkline.blogspot.com/

Here are the key points and important information you need to know about the Kansas budget crisis.

The governor has all the tools necessary TODAY to make payroll for state employees this Friday if she and the Department of Revenue decide to do so. She can do that by signing House Sub. for Sub. SB 23, (the bill is expected to be on her desk later today) or by issuing allotments by Executive Order. What the Governor did yesterday was ask the legislature to break the law by illegally issuing certificates of indebtedness. Rather then withholding tax refunds or paychecks from hard working Kansans, the Governor should simply use her power to make the allotments, consistent with House Sub. for Sub. SB 23, to cut state spending. The Governor called a meeting of the State Finance Council to consider the issuance of a certificate of indebtedness. When it became apparent that the action of the State Finance Council would violate state law, the Governor agreed to postpone the meeting. The Governor asked the Legislature to be complicit in breaking state law by approving certificates of indebtedness outside of the parameters set in statute. Kansas law requires the Director of the Budget to certify that money will be present at the end of the year to pay off certificates of indebtedness, and there is no evidence that will be the case. Other Points of Interest

The Governor knew since November the state would face these cash flow issues but has refused to make allotments ahead of time. The Governor has sole power to call a State Finance Council Meeting and waited until the last minute to do so, rather then making the hard decisions. We are already at an unprecedented amount of certificates of indebtedness ($550 million). The Governor wants to increase that to $775 million without having the money to pay it off. The decision was made, by the Governor, to halt income tax refunds last week due to insufficient funds, and then asked for more indebtedness knowing full well that the revenues are not available to pay off that debt. The State Finance Council cannot issue more certificates if the funds will not materialize by the end of the year. Without the revised 2009 budget bill, there is no way that they can legally issue a certificate knowing full well that the money will not be available to retire the debt.

womanwarrior 6 years, 5 months ago

Good for the governor. She's used the line item veto. The wimpy legislators had to be sued before to properly fund education. Teachers are jumping through hoops, so the kids can pass the state assessments, and the Republicans can't stand it. They have been wanting to destroy the schools for a long time. They thought if they throw enough roadblocks in front of the schools the schools couldn't do it, but guess what, teachers made sure students could pass the tests. Can't say they improved education, but the Republicans wanted accountability, they got it. Now pay for it, wimps.

bevy 6 years, 5 months ago

I will believe it's over when the money goes into my bank account. Until then I reserve judgement.

Budgets_Smudgets 6 years, 5 months ago

This was all drama without actors or scenery.

Before everyone engages on legislator-beating, you need to remember the Governor's budget recommendations were defective even when made.....She had not made enough reductions. Subsequent state tax collections have reinforced this.

Even she admitted as much just a couple of weeks ago, when indicating the scope of the current year readjustments was within range. (She could have, yet did not, adjust her own recommendations, however)

So whether you are an education supporter or one who believes some adjustments can be made, both the Governor and Legislature believe reductions reductions below the Governor's original recommendations for the current year must be made.

So after the Legislature enacted their current year budget bill last week, and because of the timeliness of the need to proceed with the next years budget, the Governor could have easily indicated her course of action. But she didn't until this afternoon.

Instead we had this silly theatre.

The Governor is as much to blame as the legislators. The headlines about peoples paychecks being in jeopardy is pure hocum. Pure brinkmanship. But it hooked a lot of you suckers into buying tickets to the show.

NOW, we have a current years budget, which (even according to the Governor) does not make enough substantial reductions in the current year. If you were the legislature, doesn't that make next year's cuts deeper? Get out the Band-Aids.

Or, I guess you could all be praying for federal stimulus money, which makes this all the more just kabuki theater.

Daniel Kennamore 6 years, 5 months ago

Lawrenceguy40, you are an idiot.

I work at one of the archives on campus making barely above minimum wage. The job exists because the archiving is required by state law...if you have a problem with my job, take it up with the republican controlled legislature.

jayhawklawrence 6 years, 5 months ago

The Republicans status quo and history is to try and underfund schools and dump the cost onto the local communities. They do this because they are ideologues with no common sense.

Score:

Republicans: 0

Sebelius: 1

Again.

Sigmund 6 years, 5 months ago

Sigmund (Anonymous) says… "Gov. Kathy wants the credit when she increases funding for schools and baby foxes and windmills but wants the evil republicans to be blamed when budget cuts have to be made to pay for them. She can either sign the current budget, or propose her own with alternate cuts. She doesn't want to do either so here we sit. Here is hoping the republicans don't cave and Gov. Kathy signs the budget."

Props to the republicans forcing a minimum of fiscal responsibility upon the State of Kansas. Now Gov. Kathy is free to leave for DC, with the US the only loser in the deal. Still a win-win-win-lose is a pretty good outcome.

jayhawklawrence 6 years, 5 months ago

Kansas has the lowest state minimum wage law on the books. - Wikipedia.

The Kansas Republicans only know how to do one thing.

Kick the little guy when he is down.

Christine Pennewell Davis 6 years, 5 months ago

so I guess the playground fighting is over? who's dad won?

BadLlama 6 years, 5 months ago

lawrenceguy40: I'm a public school teacher. I hope I don't educate your kids. I can't believe you think what I do isn't a real job. Or what other state employees do for that matter.

We're facing a 4% budget reduction in my district, which means many certified teachers and classified employees will lose their jobs, and that's with the $66 per student cut. I can't imagine what would happen if the republicans have their way and cut 10-18% of our budget. Devastating, in a word.

Centerville 6 years, 5 months ago

She finally signed the budget bill after getting her trolls in the press to make up a big tizzy. She is acting like a drunken fool. If she'd had her way, we would have been $1 billion in debt by the time she left Kansas.

Bruce Janssen 6 years, 5 months ago

justthefacts, i'm calling you out. You're a GOP hack in sheep's clothing. This is about politics. The Republicans cannot bear the thought of a Democratic U.S. senator, and they will do everything they can to drive Sebelius' negatives up. The winner of the Republican Senate primary next year will be damaged goods, but if Sebelius is less-attractive to voters, the GOP still wins. The budget battle will only be the first act in this play. In the replay of the coal plant fight, the Republicans will again try to portray Sebelius and the evil witch of the East, giving the good people of the West the fuzzy end of the lollipop. Republicans fear that Sebelius might run pretty well in Moran's district if Tiahrt wins. But they have two sessions to beat her up. I hope none of you were counting on good government to occur the next couple of years. Like I said, this is just the first act.

oohmgrover 6 years, 5 months ago

"toe (Anonymous) says…

Now watch the school board pass the costs onto the local taxpayer. I would actually pay more if I could get a web cam in each room and administrator's office to watch how my money is spent."

Well, you could easily contact someone at your local school and I think they would be happy to let you come in and observe. The school districts are continually audited and continually come out as being fiscally responsible. And the local taxpayer can only pay so much with the current caps on local fundraising, which occur because the districts in places that don't support education never get the tax increases passed and then suffer because of it.

MyName 6 years, 5 months ago

@lawrenceguy40

A proper job is one where your clients choose to pay you because they value your services.

I see, so by your definition, "prostitute", "drug dealer" and "bookie" are proper jobs while, "firefighter", "police officer" and "teacher" and "librarian" are not. Do you see something wrong with this picture?

The reason why we don't have private security or fire services is because these services are too valuable to only be available to people who have money. Same with education or knowledge. Granted, if you have money, you can supplement these services, but we need people to put out fires and keep order throughout an entire city (or state), not just in the parts with money.

KS 6 years, 5 months ago

Kathy blinked. Good going legislature. Sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do. That's politics.

somebodynew 6 years, 5 months ago

@lawrenceguy40

dannylandulf was waaayyy to nice to you - you are so muce more than an idiot. You are just a d**b f.

mdfraz 6 years, 5 months ago

Well said, Myname. I am generally for less govt. intrustion and control, but Sigmund apparently just wants to sit in his house, all alone, and take care of everything himself, the rest of the world be damned.

There are a lot of things that govt. does b/c private companies can't make money doing it. And if Sigmund thinks every job that state govt. does can be done better by private enterprise, I encourage him to start a business so he can impress the hell out of all the "clients" in Kansas. There are some things that could be done by private companies, but to basically say that there are no tasks that must be carried out by govt. is just idiotic.

Wanna prove me wrong Sigmund? Go for it. You and your buddies can start new companies to take care of things for us. Just make sure that even those poor people aren't left out of the police and fire protection. And with as successful as so many companies have been lately (to the tune of a $700+ billion bailout), what happens to all those essential services when companies fail?

greenworld 6 years, 5 months ago

Is all this legal in regards to someone not getting paid? I mean just show up to work and work for free. lmao

greenworld 6 years, 5 months ago

Hey Obama said things will get worse before they get better and everybody is going to have to take hits to get things back where they need to be.lmao...Yeah tell that to these greedy hungry people that fly million dollar airplanes and still think it's okay to give mortgage loans to people up to 400k-500k that have no credit. So basically what all this is boiling down to is the non-financially responsible person is getting off the hook and it is penalizing the ones that are trying to be responsible that do have credit. So the whole thing with no income tax return is cracking me up. They dont want to give you money back that is yours but the first to want to make you pay if you owe anything. WIn/win or lose/lose....lose/lose

lounger 6 years, 5 months ago

the Republicans should be ashamed! This is peoples lively hood here!!!

Godot 6 years, 5 months ago

Once again Sebelius makes Kansas the laughing stock of the country in order to make a partisan point, and bring attention to herself. I agree whole heartedly with Budgets-Smudgets. This did not have to happen. Pure Theatre, Sebelius style.

situveux1 6 years, 5 months ago

Poor Kathy. Looks like she finally had to cut the budget. Reality may take a while, but it comes around eventually.

oohmgrover 6 years, 5 months ago

If I can ever get a job as a teacher in this state, I will love sitting back and putting in a video every day and living off of your hard earned dime.

Oh, wait, no, I'll be working my ass off, staying late, and then taking work home most every night so that I can educate your children to the best of my ability even though it will leave me very underpaid for the amount of work I will put in. Thanks for the gratitude :)

oohmgrover 6 years, 5 months ago

It is a bit hard to not whine when Kansas legislative leaders are showing that they don't care about us. We go into this because we believe in the students, and it hurts when no one else apparently cares.

oohmgrover 6 years, 5 months ago

To clarify, when no one else shows that they care about the students and getting them the best possible, well-rounded education that they deserve.

geekyhost 6 years, 5 months ago

So in other words, Sebelius did exactly what she was going to do with the budget proposal anyway. She signed it with the line item veto on the education cuts. Good for her. And now the Republicans will claim some sort of victory for "forcing" her to sign something she was going to sign anyway. Good for them. Now they can both point their fingers at each other when anything goes wrong. Politics as usual.

geekyhost 6 years, 5 months ago

Bowhunter99. I'm so sorry you were never loved by a teacher. Well, you weren't loved enough to be taught grammar and spelling, anyway.

notajayhawk 6 years, 5 months ago

womanwarrior (Anonymous) says…

"The wimpy legislators had to be sued before to properly fund education. Teachers are jumping through hoops, so the kids can pass the state assessments, and the Republicans can't stand it"

Since warriorwoman is an expert on education in addition to her vast knowledge of what the state can expect in revenues between now and the end of the fiscal year, perhaps she can point to any evidence - any at all, ww - that demonstrates a link between school spending and test scores.


oohmgrover (Anonymous) says…

"To clarify, when no one else shows that they care about the students and getting them the best possible, well-rounded education that they deserve."

Same challenge as the one to wimpwoman, and I'll even cut you a break - find any evidence that school spending (and/or teacher salaries) is directly related to any objective measure of educational performance.

pace 6 years, 5 months ago

She should of stuck it to them, they should be held responsible for their lousy attitude to education, their spendthrift ways and kiss off the citizens attitude is tiresome. Instead, she takes responsibility for giving Kansas a better education program and they get to act like they were tough. I am so sick of state legislature never putting Kansans first, just putting their rather sick agenda and egos first. They should be fighting to put Kansans to work and to pay Kansans for the work the have done rather than threatening to not pay. It isn't their money or their paycheck, it was a cheap hostage situation. I would of had some respect if it was their money, their utility and mortgage payments at risk rather than their employees money.

notajayhawk 6 years, 5 months ago

'Wah wah wah, I'm a state employee and I might not get my paycheck on time. Wah wah wah.' Welcome to the real world. In the 35+ years I've been employed, I have seen quite a few companies with occasional cash flow problems, especially in bad economic times. Friends, relatives, acquaintances, clients, all have told me from time to time of incidences where their paychecks didn't come through on time, or bounced, or whatever. My own company isn't so blatant, but they play the occasional game - they won't do direct deposit (for a company with 400 or so employees that's unusual) and every once in a while they have a 'computer problem' and the checks can't be handed out until a couple of hours late on Friday - oddly enough right around when they can't be deposited on that day's business. And here's a news flash - I used to be a state employee in another state, and they played those same games, too ('Oh, the paychecks are being FedEx'd and haven't gotten here yet' - when someone could have driven to the state capital and picked them up in 2 hours).

All you fine state employees are portraying yourselves as these great and noble folk forgoing the financial benefits of the private sector (without mentioning that the benefits and pension provisions of the public sector approach or exceed the difference), yet you're somehow above having to deal with the mundane realities the rest of us have to put up with. Wah. Deal with it. In the real world, when the money's not there, it's not there, and you can't run to the legislature and cry 'But, but, but, you have to borrow the money to pay me now and soak the taxpayers to make up the difference, or my 15 special-needs children will starve to death before I make it home tomorrow from educating your children while fighting a wildfire and generally keeping the world safe for truth, justice, and the American way!'

Thank the lord that we live in a state where the rest of the state outside Lawrence is still made up of people who had the common sense to elect a Republican legislature who will stand up to the governor's BS. Of course the media will try again to portray the Republicans as the evil mean folks who were trying to keep from paying the state employees for their sweat and toil, and the governor as the wise and benevolent queen who banished the evildoers from the kingdom. And for a college town, there's no shortage of people stupid enough to have swallowed that hook, line, and sinker. Thankfully, your votes don't amount to much in state politics.

mdfraz 6 years, 5 months ago

It's no wonder people don't like Republicans when you have arrogant jerks like Sigmund, lawrenceguy and notajayhawk stumping for your point of view. I am generally in agreement with what Republicans do (smaller govt., lower taxes, etc.), and I don't know who's to blame for the recent fiasco, but notajayhawk, the state of Kansas has a debt, and they should be required to pay it. Pure and simple. The same would be true of a private employer. If their workers do the work and don't get paid, the company gets sued. It's called unjust enrichment. If the state cuts optional spending, that's fine, but if people go to work for the state (apparently in jobs that aren't necessary in your eyes), then the state owes them their pay. If they cut the jobs, that will suck, but at least the state isn't benefiting from the work of those people w/o paying them for it.
All I'm asking for personally is what is OWED to me; not a handout or a welfare payment. Just what I've worked for and earned, including my tax refund.

oohmgrover 6 years, 5 months ago

"oohmgrover (Anonymous) says…

“To clarify, when no one else shows that they care about the students and getting them the best possible, well-rounded education that they deserve.”

Same challenge as the one to wimpwoman, and I'll even cut you a break - find any evidence that school spending (and/or teacher salaries) is directly related to any objective measure of educational performance."

Fine, that is a worthy question. Let me quote this for you:

The Kansas Legislature did a Post Audit in 2006, and found the following:

"We found a strong association between the amounts districts spend and the outcomes they achieve. In the cost function results, a 1.0% increase in district performance outcomes was associated with a 0.83% increase in spending—almost a one-to-one relationship. This means that, all other things being equal, districts that spent more had better student performance. The results were statistically significant beyond the 0.01 level, which means we can be more than 99% confident there is a relationship between spending and outcomes."

You can see much more here where I got this information:

http://www.kslegislature.org/postaudit/audits_perform/05pa19a.pdf

VTHawk 6 years, 5 months ago

mdfraz: There was never a question as to whether the employees would be paid or not, the question was when exactly. The best leverage that the 'Pubs had to force this issue to a close was delaying paying state employees.

63BC 6 years, 5 months ago

"hopefully they'll wake up in the morning with a happy face..."?---Gov. Sebelius

Does that strike anyone else as patronizing?

darthvedder 6 years, 5 months ago

Everyone involved in this sad and threatening behavior, Republican or Democrat, needs to GTFO ASAP

CarterFaucheaux 6 years, 5 months ago

“hopefully they'll wake up in the morning with a happy face…”?–Gov. Sebelius

Does that strike anyone else as patronizing?


it's hard not to be patronizing when you're dealing with adults who are acting like children

Sigmund 6 years, 5 months ago

mdfraz (Anonymous) says… "arrogant jerks like Sigmund, lawrenceguy and notajayhawk stumping for your point of view."

No, your the jerk!

logrithmic (Anonymous) says… "It would be nice if instead of both sides insulting each other, if they would instead make some proposals that might help solve the problem."

OK, here is something non insulting. Let those that earn their own keep, keep more of what they earn. We could call it a "The Bipartisan Stimulus Tax Relief For the Productive Workers of 2009 Act."

Then we could then reduce welfare payments and the size of Government. We could call it "The End of Big Government and Paperwork Reduction Act of 2009."

God Bless!

Meatwad 6 years, 5 months ago

It's unconscionable that our government representatives in Kansas (not the ones from Lawrence) refuse to pass a cigarette tax!

notajayhawk 6 years, 5 months ago

mdfraz (Anonymous) says…

"If their workers do the work and don't get paid, the company gets sued. It's called unjust enrichment."

Well, first of all, frazzled, nobody said you weren't going to get paid. They said you'd get paid when they were sure the money would be there to do so.

But it's good to have such a reknowned legal expert present (speaking of arrogance), so let me ask you a few legal questions - what's it called when that employer pays his employees with checks that his bank account doesn't have the money to cover? And what would it be called when the legislature approves a transfer of funds when every revenue projection says the money won't be there to pay it back unless the budget cuts are approved?

"...if people go to work for the state (apparently in jobs that aren't necessary in your eyes), then the state owes them their pay. If they cut the jobs, that will suck, but at least the state isn't benefiting from the work of those people w/o paying them for it."

Thanks for reminding me, I meant to suggest that very thing, I don't know how I forgot it. What a wonderful suggestion, I'm glad we're thinking along the same lines. Every state employee who says they can't wait a few days for their paycheck should be immediately paid for all work performed, not just for the last pay period but right up through today. Then laid off. That way they won't have to be inconvenienced that way again in the future. Again, sorry I forgot to bring that up, I'm glad you suggested it, fraz.

And, um, I don't recall saying your job or any other state employee's wasn't necessary. I said they are holding themselves up as somehow being above the economic realities faced by millions of people in the private sector. Again, since you brought up arrogance, what makes you so special that the state should go into debt that they can't pay back, soaking me and the rest of the taxpayers to make up the difference, so you don't have to wait a couple of days for your tax refund? (Not too sure how it works in Kansas, but I'd be surprised if the state is obligated to pay refunds until a certain number of days past the end of the filing period, just like the fed.)

notajayhawk 6 years, 5 months ago


Sorry, oohm. A 'B+' for effort, but no cookie.

Besides the fact that the Kansas legislature isn't exactly the last word in respected scientific research ...

Besides the fact that as an educator, you should know that correlation can't demonstrate causation (the passage you quoted is worded in such a way as to suggest that increased preformance leads to higher spending, not the other way around) ...

Did you read the study you linked to? Did you look at the methodology? Did you understand that the entire purpose of the report was to find an estimate of what the state should fund per student, and the outcomes based approach merely analyzed how much was spent in those districts that had high performance to come up with a suggested figure for the legislature? And, as such, they omitted sources of spending other than that from the state (e.g. federal funding)?

I suggest you try these sources:

http://eric.ed.gov/ERICDocs/data/ericdocs2sql/content_storage_01/0000019b/80/13/c7/6c.pdf

"A small but statistically significant NEGATIVE correlation [emphasis mine] existed between spending and achievement in every subject in every grade level, with the exception of grade 11, where there was no significant correlation between the variables."

That study was from 1993, but knowing that for the past 16 years hasn't kept lots of folks from throwing more money at the problem.

Or something more recent:

http://www.sacbee.com/education/story/829672.html

“The most important aspect of the school spending reports, however, is that they underscore the truism that there's very little correlation between the amount of money a state spends on public education and how its students fare in academic tests, dropout rates and other measures of educational performance.”

“California is second from the bottom, for example, in fourth-grade reading scores on national achievement tests, ahead only of Washington, D.C. But Washington is very near the top in per-pupil income and spending at $18,332 in revenue and $13,446 in spending. Conversely, many states nearer the bottom in per-pupil spending, including Utah, outrank California in test scores and other measures.”

http://govpro.com/issue_20020101/gov_imp_29042/

“A key finding of the report shows there is no immediate evident correlation between conventional measures of education inputs, such as expenditures per pupil and teacher salaries, and educational outputs, such as average scores on standardized tests.”

“Spending per pupil in constant dollars has increased 22.6 percent nationwide over the past twenty years, says the Report Card on American Education: A State-By-State Analysis. Yet 74 percent of public school eighth graders taking the NAEP mathematics exam in 2000 performed below the “proficiency” level, and 35 percent performed below the “basic” level.”

trinity 6 years, 5 months ago

i think the prospect of a payday with no pay warrants a bit of anxiety and certainly questioning whether or not action on wednesday would have resulted in normally scheduled and received pay for services already rendered.

now that the kids in topeka have made a decision i have "relaxed". and that post hit me way wrong-it's early, i've not had enough coffee, didn't sleep well last night (not due to the budget stuff) so i'm grumpy. shoulda known better than to read ljw comments at this hour.

KS 6 years, 5 months ago

Whew! Now that this is over, next week Hussein will nominate her for HHS. After all, she got her state budget in order. Goodbye Kathy!

BrianR 6 years, 5 months ago

"Once again Sebelius makes Kansas the laughing stock of the country in order to make a partisan point, and bring attention to herself."

That is a very amusing statement since the exact opposite actually happened. The Repug Legislature made Kansas the laughingstock of the country in order to make a partisan point, and bring attention to themselves.

notajayhawk 6 years, 5 months ago

Yes, BrianR, those wicked, evil Republicans, imagine the audacity of insisting action was taken to ensure we had the money to cover the checks before writing them, while the brilliant and benevolent governor only wanted to do what was right by borrowing more money she couldn't pay back. If you're looking for repugnant partisan laughingstock material, just keep reading your own post.

Jeanne Cunningham 6 years, 5 months ago

Yes, we will get paid - we would always have been paid, but possibly late. However, now that the budget bill has been signed - as is - those of us who work at KU MAY need to wonder if these paychecks will be our last. It included (as I understand it) about a 10% cut to higher education funding. Pretty ironic to me, as I said before, "after this latest display by the Republican 'leadership', it's clear to me that Kansas certainly does NOT need LESS education..."

And, to those who believe that people who work in government jobs are slackers - don't forget that policemen, firemen and the military are ALL "government" employees, too. Stereotyping often contains many flaws. If you or your child is benefitting from a good education at KU, you may have a different perspective and evaluation of those who work here. If you are on the outside, you may just be uneducated, so therefore don't have the best information on which to make a good judgement. Or maybe you're just jealous...?

Bob_Keeshan 6 years, 5 months ago

It is patently false to assert that the budget bill had anything to do with initiating a common cash management tool.

The State of Kansas could have a $1 billion budget surplus and these certificates would have been necessary.

Tying the two together is not only a political lie, it is the worst type. It is the kind of blatant falsehood you spread even though you are fully aware you are lying.

beawolf 6 years, 5 months ago

Noyajayhawk,

Didi you bother to read the story? Nothing changed. The certificates of indebtedness to pay off state debts still needs to go through. It was blackmail, pure and simple. Budget director Duane Goossen stated the state had the resources to absorb the certificates, yet the Republican/Obstructionists (all economic experts, I'm sure) still decided to hold a gun to their constituents heads.

Big mistake. Kansas had a nice democratic swing in 2008 and Obama's popularity is 60+%. Almost 100,000 voters switched parties. 2010 will be very interesting.

feeble 6 years, 5 months ago

So, can we go back to pointing and laughing at California?

mdfraz 6 years, 5 months ago

Well, notajayhawk, the money WAS there, it was just being held up, so no, if the state would have chosen to free up the money the checks would not have bounced.

And to say that a state worker, who wants to get paid for the work they have already done, is acting as though they are above "economic realities" is just foolish. I did not get the email yesterday explaining that checks would be a few days late; all I knew from watching the news (and I probably should have known better) was that the state said not only could they not pay tax refunds, but that they wouldn't be able to make payroll on Friday. There was no talk that I saw that would indicate it would only be for a couple of days. There was no time frame at all, other than however long it took for the kids in the Capitol to work things out. And if you read my post, I said that if the state wanted/needed to make pay cuts or layoffs in order to get through these problems, that would suck, but it sometimes has to happen. My gripe was not paying people what they were already rightfully owed.

And soaking you and "the rest of the taxpayers"........gosh, I'm a tax paying member of society as well. Why should the state go into debt to pay its obligations? Because they owe them. Does the state give a damn, if someone doesn't pay their taxes on time, if that person has to go into debt to pay the penalties and interest? Do they say, "Well, it's ok, we won't burden you with that, just forget what you owe."?

If you don't like the way the state officials (Republicans or Democrats) run things, go to Topeka and protest. Write or call your representative. Run for office yourself. Get a petition going. Bashing state employees who simply want to get paid for the work they've done isn't going to accomplish much.

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