Archive for Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Kansas budget director outlines Brownback’s proposals for closing deficit

Sen. Marci Francisco, D-Lawrence, left, listens to Kansas budget director Shawn Sullivan during a joint meeting of the House and Senate budget committees, Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2016, at the statehouse in Topeka.

Sen. Marci Francisco, D-Lawrence, left, listens to Kansas budget director Shawn Sullivan during a joint meeting of the House and Senate budget committees, Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2016, at the statehouse in Topeka.

January 13, 2016, 9:41 a.m. Updated January 13, 2016, 11:57 a.m.

Advertisement

— The latest on Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback's plan to close the state's projected budget deficit (all times local):

11:35 p.m.

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback's budget proposals do not include a pay increase for uniformed corrections officers at state prisons.

The proposals outlined by Brownback budget director Shawn Sullivan on Wednesday also did not include a proposal from the Kansas Highway Patrol for filling vacant trooper positions.

Sullivan said neither the patrol nor the Department of Corrections made a formal request to Brownback's staff to include such proposals in his budget recommendations. But he said the administration will work with legislators.

Turnover among uniformed officers at prisons has risen to nearly 30 percent with pay starting at $13.61 an hour. Before retiring in December, former Corrections Secretary Ray Roberts said officers needed a pay increase.

The patrol's plan would boost the state's vehicle title fee to finance trooper positions.


10:15 a.m.

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback wants to divert an additional $25 million in transportation funds to general government programs to help balance the state's next budget.

Brownback budget director Shawn Sullivan outlined the proposal Wednesday during a joint meeting of the House and Senate budget committees. The measure would be in addition to a $50 million diversion late last year.

The governor's budget said efficiencies within the state Department of Transportation would prevent the latest proposal from affecting major projects. Also, KDOT last month issued $400 million in bonds for highway projects.

The state faces a projected deficit of $190 million in its budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1. Governors and legislators have repeatedly diverted highway funds to general government programs in the past to help cover budget shortfalls.


9:55 a.m.

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback is proposing to raise $25 million to help close a budget shortfall by selling off the assets of an agency set up to nurture emerging biosciences companies.

Brownback's proposal Wednesday follows a decision by the Kansas Bioscience Authority's board last month to rely on private-sector support for its investments in companies.

The governor's budget said partnering with experienced investors will increase the state's biosciences industry.

The state created the authority in 2005 and dedicated tax revenues to its investments, but the annual amount declined to $7 million. Brownback proposed reducing the amount to $2 million during the current budget year and eliminating it altogether during the fiscal year beginning July 1.

The state faces a projected $190 million deficit for the next fiscal year.


9:35 a.m.

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback's proposal to use nearly $51 million in tobacco settlement funds doesn't strip state dollars from children's programs that have been financed with those dollars.

The proposals outlined by Brownback budget director Shawn Sullivan on Wednesday show that $44 million worth of children's programs are still financed, but with general tax dollars.

The state faces a projected $190 million deficit in the state budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1. Sullivan presented Brownback's recommendations to a joint meeting of the House and Senate budget committees.

His proposals call for diverting $51 million from the Children's Initiatives Fund to general government programs. The children's fund is supported by revenues from a settlement of lawsuits by states against tobacco companies in the 1990s.


9:20 a.m.

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback is proposing to use nearly $51 million in tobacco settlement funds normally set aside for children's programs to help balance the state budget.

Brownback budget director Shawn Sullivan on Wednesday outlined the Republican governor's proposals for eliminating a projected $190 million deficit in the state budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1. He presented Brownback's recommendations to a joint meeting of the House and Senate budget committees.

His proposals call for diverting $51 million from the Children's Initiatives Fund to general government programs. The children's fund is supported by revenues from a settlement of lawsuits by states against tobacco companies in the 1990s.

It wasn't immediately clear from a summary provided by the governor's office what happens to the programs financed from the fund.


4 a.m.

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback is preparing to release the details of his plan for balancing the next state budget.

Brownback budget director Shawn Sullivan was outlining the governor's proposals Wednesday morning during a joint meeting of the House Appropriations and Senate Ways and Means committees.

The state has a projected deficit of $190 million in its $15.8 billion budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1.

The Republican governor didn't mention the shortfall in his State of the State address Tuesday evening and faced criticism from Democrats for the omission. But top Republicans in the GOP-dominated Legislature said they've known a budget-balancing plan was coming.

Comments

Lynn Grant 1 year, 4 months ago

Somehow I don't really think that the Children's Initiatives Fund was intended to plug the holes in the General Fund caused by Sam's reckless policies. True also, for many of the funds getting robbed. Borrow money to shore up KDOT? No, just a pass through to pay other bills. Craziness!

Joe Blackford II 1 year, 4 months ago

"The governor's budget said" my numbers don't add up.

Re: the talking budget. Is a picture available? I'm guessing it always wears sweater vests.

Kevin Millikan 1 year, 4 months ago

Humm.. my state is adding services.. Well, you get what you vote for.. enjoy!

Randolf Fellows 1 year, 4 months ago

This really is reverse Robin Hood. Brownie has already done the give to the rich part. He gave away money the state did not have. Now he has to rob from everyone who is not rich to cover the costs. Even with recent downgrades, it seems like bond ratings for our state are still unrealistically generous. Brownie is using the same repeated borrowing and looting tactics that corrupt CEO's use to cook the books at troubled companies. He is creating such a fragile financial structure at all levels that ratings organizations (however beholden they are to those who employee their services) will have no choice but to rate Kansas bonds as junk.

Lawrence Freeman 1 year, 4 months ago

From Forbe's. "

No 7 Kansas Percent of people moving out compared to people moving in: 58.2%

I'm willing to bet that we move up in the ranks this year.

Barb Gordon 1 year, 4 months ago

Number 6 in United Van Lines survey. I'm sure we can do better next year.

Rob Shaffer 1 year, 4 months ago

Kansas is deep in the budget toilet about to get flushed while Brownback flounders about like a fish out of water. Meanwhile Kansas engages in an imaginary marijuana war with Colorado and cuts budgets for education. The state police and other law enforcement agencies can't keep officers since Colorado pays an average of $10,000 more per year for the same job. Are all Kansas politicians off the deep end? Why not embrace the sane Colorado model of marijuana legalization and rake in over a 100 million a year as Colorado currently does Then as the capstone the Kansas social service system is holding a group of kids hostage from their parents. Those of us who live outside of Kansas can only scratch our heads in disbelief of what is happening to your state.

Kansas holds children of Colorado veteran who uses medical marijuana http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_29381231/kansas-holds-children-of-colorado-veteran-who-uses-medical-marijuana

Commenting has been disabled for this item.