As Kansas confronts a disastrous budget, the danger of tax increases is large. As reported by David Klepper in Shortfall means painful budget cuts for Kansas, “Because of declining tax revenue, Kansas faces a $1 billion deficit in next year’s budget, on top of a more than $140 million shortfall in the current budget year.”
Right now, state officials and politicians are talking about spending cuts as a way to meet the challenge. It seems to me, however, that cutting spending the amount that is required will be politically impossible, as state spending has so many constituents. Also, Kansas spending has been growing rapidly in recent years. Calls to merely slow down the rate of growth are resisted strenuously.
On the KPTS public affairs television program Kansas Week a few weeks ago, Martin Hawver mentioned that it’s sometimes possible to raise revenues in the first year of a two-year term. That’s what Kansas is heading into this January as a new legislature takes office. Citizens in Kansas need to keep informed during the upcoming legislative session so that proposals for tax increases may be opposed.