Home / US / Kansas House Adopts Budget Bill, Refuses Trigger Tied to School Funding – News – The Topeka Capital Journal

Kansas House Adopts Budget Bill, Refuses Trigger Tied to School Funding – News – The Topeka Capital Journal

On Friday, Parliament voted to present a draft budget after deleting a provision that would have expended most of the planned budget increases in the event of an unfavorable court ruling on school funding.

Representatives return on Saturday morning with plans to pass a tax bill and an $ 80 million blunder in public school legislation that was passed earlier this month

Legislators are facing the political consequences of the special session that is required if the Kansas Supreme Court declared a new school funding law to be unconstitutional, still cautious. The Legislature responded to the Supreme Court's mandate to provide adequate and equitable funding by adopting a plan to introduce some $ 525 million over the next five years.

If the court is not satisfied, the legislature may have to offset additional funds with a tax increase or budget cuts. Rep. Brenda Landwehr, R-Wichita, has inserted the budget trigger to make adjustments during a special session as improvements. Their idea was to restart the household and distribute the remaining money after the dust has settled in the process.

She defended the proposal in a Friday morning with house republicans and called him a "humane" approach to government agencies. He counts on the money allocated to them.

"This is far more responsible because it tells all these agencies that they are very, very careful with their budgets," Landwehr said

House opened the debate on Friday afternoon, a Republican from Buhler, Rep. Steven Becker , introduced an amendment to remove the possible funding freeze. Landwehr's proposal would give the Supreme Courts the power to make budget cuts, he said.

Becker referred to the placement of the Judicial Building south of the Statehouse and asked which side of the street the stock exchange stands on and how long the wallets last.

"We do the hard work," said Becker. "Either cut or raise taxes or find the budget solutions over here, not over there."

Landwehr warned lawmakers to take into account the political recruiters who will be flowing into their districts, pointing out the cuts they have to make to balance escalating school funding costs. She scolded lawmakers who laughed as she spoke.

"How many of you will be willing to sit there and take this postcard representing representative so-cut mental health, prestigious care cut and cared for so caring and representative, so cut off the money from the weak and old people, representatives and no more paid the KPERS for our state employees, "said Landwehr. It's not funny, I was there, people, you think the postcards are funny, they're not funny, these are serious things we're talking about. "

Representatives voted 71

-53 to eliminate the proposal of the Landwehr.

They discussed several changes to the spending package of more than $ 16 billion in six hours before approving the bill in the first round. It includes salary increases for judicial staff and the restoration of $ 12 million for state university budgets.

Proposals during the debate included a failed attempt by Brett Parker, D-Overland Park, to expand Medicaid in Kansas.

Proponents of Kancare's eligibility for support say that it will result in federal funding matching up, easing budget pressures on medical providers, and ensuring the supply of those who need them

Rep. Dan Hawkins, R-Wichita, said the enrollment exceeded expectations in other states that extended Medicaid, and he warned the federal government to cut its funds if necessary.

Legislators should "try," said MP Diana Dierks, R-Salina, and let people know that they are ready to stretch their necks.

"I stand here today to say, let's vote, let's happen, let's see what happens," Dierks said.

Their remarks invited a comparison with similar arguments for tax cuts of 2012, which turned out to be a catastrophe for the state budget.

"This is a very bad language in terms of legislation," said Troy Waymaster of R-Bunker Hill. "We've heard that before, and usually the consequences were not great."

The expansion attempt failed in a vote from 56 to 66.

Rep. Brandon Whipple, D-Wichita, secured support for a change that protected state employees from confidentiality agreements that suppress sexual harassment or abuse. Representatives rejected another Whipple measure aimed at closing the gender pay gap by requiring agencies to disclose the salary range of employees to applicants.

Rep. Chuck Weber, R-Wichita, was approved for an amendment prohibiting the use of state funds for research on fetal tissue, and Blake Carpenter, R-Derby, was able to add an addendum to the cost of concealed carry-ons. Licenses to Pass $ 50 to $ 82.50

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