Daily Archives: July 14, 2013

School funding not even close to what is required

State lawmakers shouldn’t pat themselves on the back for not cutting state funding to schools this fiscal year and for approving a small increase next fiscal year. The two-year funding is $1.23 billion less than the statutory amount. In other words, it’s not even close to what is required by the state’s own laws and statutes. The Kansas State Department of Education calculated that state funding is $574 million less than the requirement for this fiscal year and $656.7 million less next fiscal year. The State Board of Education voted last week to ask Gov. Sam Brownback to seek the full statutory amount for 2015, the Topeka Capital-Journal reported. The Kansas Supreme Court, which is expected to rule on a school-funding lawsuit by the end of this year, will likely make a similar demand. Will Brownback and state lawmakers agree? Or will they pass more tax cuts?

So they said

“They’re at the end of their rope. Let’s just hope it’s not a hanging rope.” – Sen. Pat Roberts (in photo), R-Kan., before GOP House leaders stripped food stamps out of the farm bill and passed its agricultural provisions

“That’s probably Joe Biden calling me right now, saying he agrees with me.” – Roberts again, on the Senate floor Thursday, as his phone rang during his speech blasting Democrats’ anti-filibuster strategy

“I have some lengthy remarks to make in respect to the sustainable-development Agenda 21 progression here in our country.” – Sedgwick County Commissioner Richard Ranzau, starting a 10-minute speech at Wednesday’s meeting warning “there’s no issue more important than stopping this particular agenda”

“I just would like to say I enjoy a crunchy locust from time to time.” – County Commission Chairman Jim Skelton, about Ranzau’s reference to the U.N.-related promotion of insects as a sustainable food source

Keep speaking out about I/DD care

Parents and other advocates for Kansans with developmental and intellectual disabilities made clear that they do not want long-term care services included in the state’s privatized KanCare system. But the Brownback administration and the Legislature wouldn’t listen. Now the state is required to hold public hearings as part of its petition to the federal government to allow the change. One hearing is scheduled at 2 p.m. Monday at Wichita State University’s Hughes Metropolitan Complex, 29th Street North and Oliver. Written comments can be submitted until July 29 to KanCare@kdheks.gov or to Rita Haverkamp, KDHE-DHCF, 900 S.W. Jackson, Room 900, Topeka, KS 66612. If advocates continue to speak out, maybe someone will listen.