Kansas budget

Stephen Koranda / Kansas News Service/File photo

TOPEKA — Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly on Tuesday denounced a Republican plan for cutting Kansas income taxes as “unthinkable” during the COVID-19 pandemic and proposed an alternative that would pay for its relief by taxing online music, movies and streaming services.

Lancerenok / flickr Creative Commons

OVERLAND PARK — Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly on Monday proposed that Kansas should legalize marijuana for medical purposes and use the revenues to expand Medicaid health care for low-income residents, a top priority that the GOP-controlled Legislature has blocked over cost concerns.

TOPEKA, Kansas — Fights between Republican lawmakers and the Democratic governor — over new taxes and her power to shut down businesses in a pandemic — threaten calls on both sides for political unity.

Meanwhile, conservatives in the Legislature push ahead quickly to amend the Kansas Constitution to declare it contains no right to abortion.

Celia Llopis-Jepsen / Kansas News Service/File photo

TOPEKA — Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly outlined a proposed annual budget Wednesday that includes a tax increase and two other major initiatives likely to be rejected by the Republican-controlled Kansas Legislature.

LAWRENCE, Kansas — Cottonwood Incorporated in Lawrence helps about 75 people with intellectual and developmental disabilities with jobs, assembling things like cargo straps for the federal government and medical kits.

When the day is done, Cottonwood takes them back to their homes in the community. Ettie Brightwell stood outside the building in August, telling people goodbye. Brightwell, Cottonwood’s community relations and development director, even stopped one man to tie his shoe before he boarded a van.

Loading...

This story is part of an NPR nationwide analysis of states' revenue and budgets during the pandemic.

Stephen Koranda / Kansas News Service/File photo

Kansas' Democratic governor is locked in a new partisan dispute with the Republican-controlled Legislature over her plan to largely paper over a massive budget shortfall tied to the coronavirus pandemic with short-term accounting moves.

Republican legislative leaders argued Friday that measures outlined by Gov. Laura Kelly's budget director to balance the next budget merely push most of the state’s financial problems off a year — and back into the Legislature’s lap. The plan avoids cuts for public schools, social services and highway projects.

LAWRENCE, Kansas — When Kansas lawmakers left for an early spring break in mid-March, the state was projected to have a healthy savings account of nearly $1 billion in reserves come June. They passed an $8 billion budget as the coronavirus pandemic was just beginning, not knowing whether they’d even come back to Topeka.

Stephen Koranda / KPR/File photo

Kansas on Monday slashed its projections for what it expects to collect in taxes by nearly $1.37 billion to reflect the economic damage associated with the coronavirus pandemic.

Tracy O, flickr Creative Commons

The coronavirus pandemic has yet to fully hit the Kansas state budget, with tax collections falling only $8.6 million short of expectations in March.

Pages