Archive for Sunday, January 14, 2018

Editorial: KU right to seek restoration of cuts

Properly funding the university is an investment in the state’s future, and lawmakers would be wise to backtrack on cuts made in 2016.

January 14, 2018


University of Kansas officials should not be surprised that Gov. Sam Brownback’s budget for 2018 did not restore funding cuts implemented at the end of the 2016 legislative session.

Disappointed? Yes. But surprised? Absolutely not, given Brownback’s disregard for higher education in general and KU specifically.

At the end of the 2016 legislative session, the governor ordered nearly $100 million in cuts above and beyond those included in the budget bill. The new cuts hit funding for Medicaid and higher education especially hard.

The cuts amounted to a 4 percent reduction for most colleges and universities, but in a deal with legislators, Brownback singled out KU and Kansas State to shoulder larger cuts than the state’s other Regents universities.

For KU’s Lawrence campus, the additional cuts equated to $7 million. The KU Medical Center took a $3.7 million cut, bringing the total cut for the KU system to $10.7 million. Kansas State endured a $5.2 million cut. The cuts were about 5.1 percent lower than the funding lawmakers initially approved in adopting the 2016 budget.

KU and the Board of Regents have made it a legislative priority to have the funding restored, but Brownback’s budget proposal, unveiled last week, included $600 million over five years for K-12 education but no restoration of funding for higher education.

Reggie Robinson, KU’s vice chancellor for public affairs, said the loss of funding has a real impact.

“In recent years, cuts to our state appropriation have affected all aspects of our mission — including our ability to educate students, serve Kansas communities, and make discoveries that change lives and grow the economy,” Robinson said.

Perhaps most importantly, the cuts have forced KU to continue to increase tuition. Since the cuts, KU raised tuition 5 percent for the 2016-17 year and 2.5 percent for 2017-18. Such tuition hikes weigh heavily on Kansas families at a time when postsecondary education is almost a requirement for success.

Last summer, the Kansas Department of Education reported that within the next couple of years, 71 percent of the state’s jobs will require postsecondary education. But only 46 percent of the state’s high school graduates were enrolled in postsecondary programs two years after graduating high school. KU is a critical component in helping the state close that gap.

KU has endured $46 million in state funding cuts since 2008, Robinson said. It is reasonable for the university to seek restoration of the 2016 cuts and such an investment — in KU as well as the state’s other colleges and universities — would benefit the state as a whole.

If Brownback can’t see that, perhaps there are lawmakers who can.


Steve Jacob 4 months, 1 week ago

Hard for KU to get any pity when they build over $200M worth of buildings that the state is on the hook for if things go belly up, like the mass exit at Missouri.

Richard Heckler 4 months, 1 week ago

Reinstate Public Education and Higher Education Taxes

Defunding/Dismantling Public Education Team

VOTERS should have learned a lesson which is the republican party has been subverted by radical right wingers = extremely unfortunate.

VOTERS MUST STOP STOP voting for a republican party that is no longer republican. Vote democrat in future elections which is a fiscally smart choice. Why?

Bipartisan Endorsements When Possible

=== Get informed -

=== MainPAC

=== See how the extremists pick their candidates in our survey comparison

It is the GOP led by libertarian right wing politicians that has effectively rendered Kansas bankrupt. And operates is a massive veil of secrecy that denies other elected officials information on tax breaks as well as who receives tax breaks and how many dollars.

ALEC = those pretending to be republicans.

Richard Heckler 4 months, 1 week ago

Time to reward Kansas taxpayers for the pain and suffering extended to them by the Brownback administration guided by ALEC leadership.

Reinstating public school funding with my tax dollars should not require a lot of thinking. It does however require a ton of ethical stamina.

Cut all corporate welfare spending that should be allocated to public education and higher education!

Then cut sales taxes on the following:

--- school supplies from kindergarten – college graduation

--- groceries

--- all healthcare related purchases

Reinstate all of the mortgage interest deduction.

NOT Republican Brownback people will continue to follow the ALEC agenda which is waging war against Medicaid, the large middle class, Women, public education, Social Security Insurance, Medicare and voting rights.

VOTERS MUST STOP STOP STOP voting for a republican party that is no longer republican. We need transparency and ethics = stop supporting massive deception.

Richard Heckler 4 months, 1 week ago

Kansas might want to consider dropping corporate subsidies and other preferential corporate tax dollar polices.

Instead move $100,000,000 tax dollars into an ongoing fund that will subsidize college educations for students that come from lower income households say households that are at $60,000 or less. Annually reimburse the fund keeping it at $100,000,000.

This will pay back by way of new student spending in the respective community a higher education institution is located. This keeps Kansas tax dollars in the state thus generating local economic growth. It also keeps theses tax dollars available for local public education budgets and such.

A wise investment in our state.


Bob Smith 4 months, 1 week ago

No need to shout, Richard. We've seen all your material hundreds of times by now.

Josh Berg 4 months, 1 week ago

I beg to differ Bob, not once have I ever read the crap that Richard posts

Bob Summers 4 months, 1 week ago

People with the condition cannot manage other people's money prudently.

They always need more.

Look what they did to Detroit.

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