Archive for Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Statehouse Live: SRS Secretary Siedlecki will request funding for Lawrence office in budget recommendation

October 19, 2011


— Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services Secretary Robert Siedlecki Jr. said Wednesday that he would ask Gov. Sam Brownback and the Legislature to fund office expenses for the SRS Lawrence in the next fiscal year, which starts July 1, 2012.

“I am happy that an effort to restore our SRS office funding is under way,” said Lawrence Mayor Aron Cromwell. “The funding help given by the city and county could only be a temporary stop-gap, and the continuous operation of the SRS office here in Lawrence is vital to the most vulnerable of our citizens.”

Douglas County Commissioner Jim Flory said, “We intend to actively support this budget request in order to eliminate any financial obligation of the city or county after July 1, 2012.”

Last summer, Siedlecki proposed closing nine SRS offices, including the one in Lawrence. He said the closures were needed to comply with a mandated budget cut.

But Lawrence officials protested, saying the closure would disrupt necessary services to thousands of people and create havoc in the community.

The city and county agreed to pay SRS $450,000 over two years — which equals the amount of rent and overhead expenses — to keep the office open. Four other cities approved similar agreements.

Under those agreements, Siedlecki vowed to make a good-faith effort to get adequate state funding in fiscal years after July 1, 2013. In a committee meeting last week, Siedlecki said he would be glad to work with the Legislature to start the process of getting that funding.

But when asked if he had requested that funding in his budget proposal submitted to his boss, Brownback, Siedlecki said he hadn’t.

But apparently that has changed. Siedlecki said in his final budget recommendation to Brownback, he would include a request for funds to operate the five locally financed SRS offices. Those other offices are in Fort Scott, McPherson, Pratt and Marysville.

“During the course of negotiations over this agreement, we have developed a good working relationship with Douglas County and city of Lawrence officials that should stand us in good stead going forward,” Siedlecki said.

The announcement was made shortly after the formal signing of the payment agreement with Lawrence officials.


Glenn Reed 6 years, 6 months ago

Good Working Relationship: Pay protection money, and "things" don't happen to your store front. Y'know, "things."

chootspa 6 years, 6 months ago

He'd rather not have as many angry protesters when he starts his campaign for other really bad ideas to "help poverty" in Kansas.

Jan Rolls 6 years, 6 months ago

First I won't then I will. He reminds me of the football player who ran the wrong way for a touchdown for the other team. He doesn't know which way he is going. Saw where he and sam the sham got their marriage proposal turned down by the feds. Now he says is going to try and find state money to fund it. Cut arts, education, etc and that is his prority? What a jerk but that's what you get when you hire someone that doesn't know what he is doing. On top of that he is a hyprocrite trying to promote marriage when he is a divorced father of two.

Evan Ridenour 6 years, 6 months ago

Too many legislators were asking questions about this. He knew he had to back down.

plainspeaking 6 years, 6 months ago

"Siedlecki said in his final budget recommendation to Brownback, he would include a request for funds to operate the five locally financed SRS offices."

This does not mean that the governor will accept Siedlecki's recommendation; the guv can easily cut it before submitting his proposed budget to the legislature.

LHS56 6 years, 6 months ago

As I understand Siedlecki stated near the end of his interview that now he believes he will be able to safely visit Lawrence. In my opinion that was never a problem. We, in Lawrence, have help for those with a learning disability or, more to the point, those without caring for those in need. He needs to spend a week at the SRS office working with a case worker to have a better understanding of the clients. He only adds to the number of campers in South Park. Perhaps the campers need to move to Brownie's home and protest his administration for the lack of caring for the people of Kansas.

chootspa 6 years, 6 months ago

I doubt it would help. Sociopaths are simply incapable of empathy. Not that I know for sure either he or the gov are sociopaths. I'm just guessing.

blindrabbit 6 years, 6 months ago

Wait till the snow flies; he'll get his Florida keister out of here. What a two faced snake.

Richard Heckler 6 years, 6 months ago

Sounds like lip service to quell the the those that are making noise. I say don't count on it until Lawrence,Kansas has the tax dollars in town for this purpose.

Until then continue the loud reprisal. These RINO's are good at manipulating the taxpayers into believing lies.

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