NotAGolfer (Gina Becker)


Comment history

Report: Kansas tax collections $11M less than expected in March

As Margaret Thatcher said, "I always cheer up immensely if an attack is particularly wounding because I think, well, if they attack one personally, it means they have not a single political argument left."

March 31, 2015 at 11:12 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Report: Kansas tax collections $11M less than expected in March

I see. You have Koch-derangement syndrome, which prevents you from thinking objectively about data. Liberal pundits have successfully rallied you all into a frenzy over the common enemy--the libertarian, pro-choice, pro-gay marriage, very charitable Koch brothers.

March 31, 2015 at 10:28 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Report: Kansas tax collections $11M less than expected in March

Philip, Do you have data that contradicts the data I cited from that site? I've seen many "rebuttals" like yours, attacking the KPI while refusing to consider the data, but I've never seen anyone show data that contradicts this table, which the KPI has been updating quarterly over the past year. The KPI cites the Bureau of Labor Statistics for the data.

What's misleading is for journalists to act as if the fact that "Kansas is lagging other states in private sector job growth!" is something newsworthy, when it's not new at all. It's been the status quo for many years. The potential news is that we're lagging less since the tax cuts, even outperforming some of our neighboring states in 2014. But as I said, it's really too early to judge one way or the other.

March 31, 2015 at 9:57 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Report: Kansas tax collections $11M less than expected in March

Steve, The data is on the Kansas Policy Institute Website. From 1998 to 2012, Kansas' private sector job growth was only 15% of that all non-income taxing states, and only 61% of that of our peers (all income-taxing states). Since 2012, our private sector job growth has improved to 54% of non-income taxing, and 88% of all income-taxing. So we're still lagging, but we are improving relative to other states. Of course, this is after only 2 years under the new tax structure, which is hardly enough time to draw any conclusions on its success or failure (even if we do suppose to isolate their effects from the effects of other variables).

As the data on this page also show, in terms of actual private sector job growth rates, Kansas actually outperformed Missouri, Nebraska, and Oklahoma in 2014, and the same for the Kansas side of Kansas City vs. the Missouri side. Again, this is after only 2 years of tax cuts, so it's difficult to conclude anything, but it's not bad news. It should also be noted that Kansas has a very low unemployment rate, which likely affects growth potential somewhat negatively.

Brownback was foolishly optimistic by saying that his tax cuts would be a "shot of adrenaline," expecting tax revenue via economic growth to offset cuts almost immediately. So now they are scrambling to find cuts to balance the budget, and taking from other funds (like admins often do). I don't think we necessarily have to "pay back" the "DOT Bank," though, since it is actually an agency, not a bank. We should fund DOT projects based on a cost-needs analysis each year, I think, and adapt budgets each year. Just because a set of projects were approved one year doesn't mean they are necessary, urgent, or in the best interest of the state. There are always tradeoffs with things like tax cuts for the sake of taking less money from Kansans, and tax cuts as incentives for longer term growth, and more pressing needs in other departments.

As noted above, the KPERS funding was a big reason for the SEC downgrade, and most of that problem was caused by the previous administration, which grossly underfunded KPERS and lied to the SEC about it. The Republicans have made some reforms to shore this up, but are now slowing our progress toward full funding, unfortunately.

I'm against the cigarette and liquor taxes, which seem cowardly, targeting "sins". I'd rather see either an increase in the sales tax, with exemptions for food, or a slight increase in the income tax, just enough to make the budget balance. It wouldn't take much at all to do so.

March 31, 2015 at 8:49 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Report: Kansas tax collections $11M less than expected in March

If the Democratic Administration before Brownback hadn't underfunded KPERS by so much, while hiding data and lying to the SEC about it, then we wouldn't have such a hole to dig out of. The Republicans made good reforms on KPERS, putting it on a sustainable path, but they are now unfortunately slowing the progress down with the new bonds.

March 31, 2015 at 8:11 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Report: Kansas tax collections $11M less than expected in March

A couple of points::

Income tax rates were cut, and income tax revenues are above expectations.

Kansas has trailed the nation for decades in terms of private sector job growth, but since the tax cuts were implemented, our standing has actually improved among the states on these terms. This is after only a couple of years with the new tax rates, so you can't make conclusions on the "experiment" yet, as some on both sides claim, but one can be cautiously optimistic.

March 31, 2015 at 7:44 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Democrats best at tapping rich for political cash

Big Government advocates always cater to Big Business. When you give government power, that power WILL be sold to businesses with money. This is the problem with big government policies. Only freedom (a freer market) will hold businesses accountable and root out corruption.

December 30, 2014 at 11:52 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Kansas has lower private-sector job growth than U.S. as a whole

I'm too libertarian to ever work for Brownback. I didn't think I'd agree with him on much he'd do. Turns out, though, he's making some changes I think will have positive effects on our economy. He just needs to make sure he paces it so the budget balances as he's implementing them, tweaking the "roadmap" as needed.

November 26, 2014 at 8:49 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Kansas has lower private-sector job growth than U.S. as a whole

So one big factor in the domestic migration balance is that Kansas has a high birth rate (6th in the nation). If we had a lower birth rate, and the same job growth, there would likely be less net domestic migration out of the state.

Luckily, Brownback is making changes that are improving our job growth relative to other states. As Dave Trabert pointed out elsewhere in the comments on this article, Kansas' job growth used to be (from 1998 to 2012) only 63% of its income-taxing peers; since then, it has grown to 92% of its income-taxing peers. Hopefully, with time and further tax cuts, we will start ranking up there with the no-income-taxing states.

November 26, 2014 at 8:42 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Kansas has lower private-sector job growth than U.S. as a whole

No, I'm saying a few anecdotes aren't all the data.

November 24, 2014 at 8:43 p.m. ( | suggest removal )