Here is the text of a letter Gov. Kathleen Sebelius sent to state employees on Wednesday. It was provided through Wichita State University.
February 17, 2009 Colleagues, This is a difficult time for Kansas families, seniors and many others who are dealing each day with the economic challenges presented by the recession. As a state employee, I know that you are already dealing with the challenges of more limited resources in your agency.
Last week, I called a meeting of the State Finance Council to approve moving money from one account to another so the State can pay its bills, including State Employee payroll, on time. This routine budget action has been approved every year for the last ten years. And we told legislative leaders in December, when they cut my request in half, that we would need a certificate by mid-February. Yesterday, legislative leadership told me they would not approve this transfer until I sign the 2009 budget bill. The problem is – the bill has not been delivered to my desk, so I have nothing to sign. As a result of this action, State Employee payroll, which is due Friday, is now in jeopardy. I want to assure you that I am and always have been an advocate for state employees. I know the important work you do each day benefits countless people across this great state. I will continue to be an advocate for you and for numerous other groups affected by this irresponsible action. I hope this will be resolved quickly and I will continue to do everything I can to ensure a responsible, timely solution to this situation. In the mean time, I hope that we can all continue to provide the best service possible to the Kansans that rely on us each day. Sincerely, //s// Kathleen Sebelius Governor