Daily Archives: April 14, 2013

Extended sales tax or draconian budget cuts?

“We should swallow hard and extend the sales tax,” concluded Kansas City Star columnist Steve Rose, urging the House to go along with the Senate and Gov. Sam Brownback. The 2012 tax plan won’t be repealed, Rose wrote, and extending the sales-tax hike beyond its June 30 sunset date is the only way to avoid draconian budget cuts to K-12 schools, higher education and social programs as state revenue ebbs. “It is appropriate to feel sympathy for those who would like to see the governor pay the price for his irresponsible income tax cuts. And sympathies abound for those who were viciously attacked for supporting the sales-tax hike in the first place,” Rose wrote. “But let’s not shoot ourselves in the foot while aiming at Brownback.”

So they said

“I don’t know what we’ve done to Mother Nature, but she sure hasn’t been very kind to us.” – Sen. Pat Roberts (in photo), R-Kan., in a Senate floor speech about strengthening crop insurance
“What Republicans need to do is get off their rear ends and go out, outside of Washington, and talk about what they’re for.” – Rep. Tim Huelskamp, R-Fowler, in a radio interview in which he also dismissed party outreach to “the so-called Hispanic voter”
“We all find ways to entertain ourselves late at night.” – Senate Majority Leader Terry Bruce, R-Hutchinson, on the House’s 0-120 vote against the Senate tax plan and its extension of the higher sales-tax rate
“It’s just craziness to think that accounting maneuvers would fool the court and turn an apple into an orange.” – John Robb, an attorney for school districts in their lawsuit against the state, on a House-passed bill that would newly count a portion of local-option budget funding as base state aid
“I would like to see the highest-paid person in every school be a teacher.” – Rep. Ron Highland, R-Wamego, saying districts can use money more wisely

Honored to share name with USS Wichita

Never mind that Wichita is a long way from an ocean. It was a proud moment to learn last week that a U.S. Navy warship will again bear the city’s name and safeguard the nation’s liberty around the world. Lockheed Martin’s construction of the new USS Wichita should begin in the next couple of years in Wisconsin, according to the office of Rep. Mike Pompeo, R-Wichita. The littoral combat ship, a kind of fast and maneuverable craft designed for combat close to shorelines, will be the third Navy ship named after Wichita and the first since 1993. As Sen. Jerry Moran, R-Kan., said: “Two great ships have already carried Wichita’s namesake, and its re-selection is a real honor for the city and for Kansas.”

Brownback puts spotlight on child-abuse prevention

Good for Gov. Sam Brownback for participating in a recent event on the state Capitol lawn that drew attention to child-abuse prevention. The state received 64,000 calls last year reporting child abuse, the Topeka Capital-Journal reported. “One child being abused is too many,” Brownback said. “We simply can’t afford to ignore this problem in our homes, offices, schools and neighborhood.”