Archive for Friday, April 30, 2010

Budget plan likely to include sales tax increase

April 30, 2010


— A tax package that probably includes an increase in the state sales tax will be unveiled today as legislators try to close a $500 million budget gap.

The Senate Ways and Means Committee fine-tuned its spending plan Thursday.

“We have to know what the ending number is out of this legislation,” said Chairman Jay Emler, R-Lindsborg.

The committee has before it a long list of ways to generate more revenue, including dedicating all of a 1-cent increase in the state sales tax to the state’s all-purpose general fund, instead of diverting a portion of it for highways, and moving up the starting time of an increase from July 1 to June 1. The state sales tax rate is now 5.3 cents per dollar.

The Legislature this week started its wrap-up session facing an estimated $500 million revenue shortfall.

Over the past year, nearly $1 billion in state spending has been cut.

The Ways and Means Committee considered several budget adjustments that could reduce the need for taxes by nearly $280 million.

But several committee members questioned whether some of the proposals were realistic.

For example, one proposal involved hiring a private company to contain Medicaid expenses by $40 million.

Several committee members said they doubted that much could be found because the state already has several agencies and offices watching Medicaid expenditures.


barrypenders 8 years ago

Poser says that “at a certain point, you’ve made enough money.”

Papa Poser says this 'Eloquent' comment to save us from ourselves. Money is 'Evil'.

Ayn Rand does't know what she is talking about.

Stimulus, Sacrifice For The State, and Posercare live unprecedented

Darwin bless us

anonyname 8 years ago

How about instead of spewing random comments that have little if any relevance to the financial problems facing our state, you suggest some solutions? You obviously spend lots of time thinking about what you perceive as problems, so I'm sure you've got some ideas of how to fix our budget.

grimpeur 8 years ago

Gas tax. 'Nother quarter at least.

headdoctor 8 years ago

Guess the Legislators are like everyone else anymore. Their foresight only extends to about an inch in front of their nose. No back up plan what so ever. With a sales tax increase they might make up some but what happens if the economy stays the same or gets worse. The gap even for the current year is still getting bigger every month.

I don't suppose it ever occurred to them they should have been working on this instead of being so concerned about who was doing what or who. As usual, they will come up with something that will effect everyone else more than them or their buddies.

anonyname 8 years ago

And if our legislature had only been on the ball, Kansas would be swimming in budget surpluses while the rest of the country is still feeling the effects of the housing and financial meltdowns. They could have easily prepared for this, right? Please share with us where they should have been finding the funds to counteract the drops in income from property tax, sales tax, and income tax.

headdoctor 8 years ago

Fail. I guess trolling isn't one of your strong suits along with reading comprehension. Better luck next time.

anonyname 8 years ago

You stated that the legislature "should have been working on this." It is fair and reasonable to ask you what approaches you would have suggested, especially since you express a lack of confidence in what may be done. My point is that Kansas has been slammed by a financial crisis few saw coming, and revenues are way down. "(s)tate revenue in the first nine months of the current fiscal year trails official forecasts by $93 million." (source: The fact that many other states are having similar problems shows is not uniquely our problem.

I read your frustrations, and asked you to propose a solution for the concerns you voiced. If you choose to see that as a fail, I suppose you're welcome to.

bruno2 8 years ago

Happily, here you go Anon: They could have saved for a rainy day when things were going well. Instead the elephants that run our legislature passed large tax cuts for their rich buddies. For an example of how it could have been done look no further than Montana and their Democrat Governor (yes, Democrat). They are in fine shape (and are one of only two states with a budget SURPLUS right now) because they prudently did what most folks do with their household budget, save for a rainy day, not give expensive gifts to your buddies thinking times will always be good!

anonyname 8 years ago

bruno2, I saw headdoctor's original post as "no new taxes no new taxes no new taxes" and responded as such. I completely support budgeting well along with not having past or further tax cuts for the rich (unlike most in this thread, it seems). Your logic should be applied to the national situation as well - Montana's approach would not have our federal government in the situation it's in.

anonyname 8 years ago

lawrenceguy40, are you willing to not drive on any public roads? They're funded by taxes. Are you willing to pull your children, if you have any, out of public schools? They're funded by taxes. Even if you have no children, are you willing to help teach in a private school or help someone pay for a private school? Then we can avoid paying for public schools. Are you willing to see the massive loss of college graduates ready for new jobs? The universities are paid in part with public funds. Are you OK with having no police to protect your family if needed? OK to use a garden hose if your house catches fire? Wouldn't want to pay police or firefighters with public money, that's for sure. Would you prefer to dig yourself a well or just have you and your family drink water straight from the river? Again, those services are funded by tax money.

I am NOT saying we should raise taxes indiscriminately. I am sure there are plenty of places where tax money is being spent irresponsibly. I'm simply trying to make the point that your knee-jerk reaction, in a dream world where it were enacted, would do absolutely no good.

anonyname 8 years ago

Nope, absolutely none whatsoever...unless you bother to read the news. It seems fair to assume you read at least parts of the Journal-World. A brief and simple search found these, easily disproving your point:

"Budget legislation on its way to governor’s desk"

"Citing budget cuts, state suspends hotel safety and sanitation inspections"

anonyname 8 years ago

Entitlement programs like Medicare and Medicaid, signed into law by that loony liberal LBJ? (Oops, sorry, he was a Republican.) Cleaning up welfare? Major welfare reform was signed into law by that right-wing hero Clinton. (Hmmm...not a Republican...odd.)

"Those who demand the most from the system are the ones that put in the least," you say. If you think you can find a way for people earning less than the federal poverty level to fund even the minimal level of government services you find ideal while those earning as much as members of Congress or more contribute only the same percentage of their total income, you must be smoking some of whatever barrypenders is on.

anonyname 8 years ago

Of course the fall of the markets had everything to do with events after November 4, 2008, and had absolutely no relation whatsoever to anything prior to that day.

remember_username 8 years ago

A conversation with you must sound really weird.

ConcernedCynic 8 years ago

Why do you guys even respond to post by people like barrypenders, lg40, healthcare_mootcher, etc.? These people are so irrational and unwilling to listen or even understand logic that arguing with them is like pissing in the wind (a self-defeating act). Furthermore, you are partially legitimizing their irrationality by acknowledging there diarrhea.

anonyname 8 years ago

When you swear off any claims for current or future Social Security or Medicare (since you so strongly hate entitlement programs) and can find a way to justify your implications that anyone who disagrees with you is automatically on welfare, you might have your arguments start to gain some possible respect.

ConcernedCynic 8 years ago

Actually, I made ~70K last year… I guess I’m a hypocrite, ‘cus I’m responding to post.

jafs 8 years ago

Social programs are in fact a miniscule percentage of the overall budget.

Defense spending is a much larger portion.

anonyname 8 years ago

Let's hope Darwinian selection continues!

anonyname 8 years ago

barrypenders: GE had a 2009 pretax income of $10.3 Billion. Amount the IRS received: zero (in fact, a $1.1 Billion credit against future years). Your thoughts? Oh - before you try to blame this on Obama, note that this kind of situation has been the case for many years, and got much worse during the previous president's administration.

Robert Marble 8 years ago

haha I forgot you Kansas people have sales to be you.

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