Gov. Sam Brownback likes to talk about how the state’s cash reserves were virtually zero when he came into office in 2011, and how they have since been built back up (in large part because of spending cuts to public education and an increase in the statewide sales tax). But because of massive tax cuts Brownback pushed through and various spending obligations, those reserves could disappear soon. The Kansas Legislative Research Department estimates that the state’s ending balance will shrink by half by the end of next fiscal year and could be gone the year after that – and that’s without factoring in any court-ordered increase in school funding. Brownback has faith that his tax cuts will generate enough growth to prevent this shortfall, but that hasn’t happened yet.
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