Kansas legislature

Articles about the Kansas legislature, both the House of Representatives and the Senate.

Kansas school spending

Kansas school spending

Kansas school district spending, updated through 2020 and adjusted for inflation. What is the trend in Kansas school spending? This visualization presents several tables and illustrations of spending data. It is presented separately for each district, with a special district "State Totals - 999" being the sum of all districts. (more…)
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Historic buildings bill on tap

Historic buildings bill on tap

A bill designed to protect two buildings in downtown Wichita has a legislative hearing this week. Last year a citizen group gathered signatures on a petition that would prevent the City of Wichita from disposing of two downtown buildings without an approving vote of a majority of citizens. Based on having the required number of valid signatures, the petition was certified as valid. But the city sued to have the petition thrown out, contending the petition went beyond what Kansas law allows as the subject of municipal petitions. A judge agreed with the city. Now the group has a bill…
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Say no to special tax treatment, again

Say no to special tax treatment, again

In Kansas, a company seeks to avoid paying property taxes, again. In a bill presented in the Kansas Legislature, the owner of health clubs seeks to avoid paying property taxes. The same company and its owner have tried this before. In 2014, I explained how granting this exemption was a bad idea. What has changed since then? This exemption is still a bad idea for reasons of public policy. Additionally, Brandon Steven, the owner of the health clubs, plead guilty to a gambling charge and forfeited one million dollars in earnings. The companies also owe a lot of the tax…
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Kansas school spending, through 2020

Kansas school spending, through 2020

Charts of Kansas school spending presented in different forms. Recently Kansas State Department of Education released spending figures for the 2020 school year, that is, the school year starting in 2019 and ending in 2020. One of the most important charts shows state spending per-pupil, adjusted for inflation. It shows the total of state and local spending, which is useful because in 2015 the state made a change in the way revenue is allocated between state and local sources. It also shows base state aid per pupil, which is an important number as it is the starting point for the…
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Kansas general fund spending and receipts

Kansas general fund spending and receipts

The Kansas budget is volatile, with rising spending and a large deficit. Figures from Kansas financial reports show that state spending has risen. Based on that and shifts in revenue flows, deficits are large. The following tables and charts show actual data through fiscal year 2019. Figures for 2020 are revised estimates, and for 2021, the figures are from the approved budget. The primary source of data is Kansas Comparison Report: The FY 2021 Governor’s Budget Report with Legislative Authorizations. [2. Kansas Division of the Budget, Kansas Comparison Reports. Available at https://budget.kansas.gov/comparison-reports/.] The revised estimate of receipts is $826.9 million…
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