twitter FB

Welcome!

 

Dear Friends:

Kansas Financial Woes

The Latest from Facebook

You probably have been reading or hearing about the financial struggle we are having in Kansas currently. With so many different numbers floating around I thought it best to send out a brief summary of the facts.

 

This past week the consensus revenue report projections were released showing a significant revenue deficit relative to anticipated spending in the 2015, 2016, and 2017 budgets. Below are listed current expenditures for each year less revenues. These numbers do not include the governor's proposed KDOT transfers, revenue "adjustments", or possible tax adjustments for FY 2016 and 2017. In other words, this is a look at total expenditures less total revenues, without including any funds transfers or other one-time sources of money.

 

FY 2015

Expenditures: $6,253.3 billion
Revenues: $5,925.7 billion
Deficit: $327.6 million

 

FY 2016

Expenditures: $6,520.2 billion
Revenues: $5,713.4 billion
Deficit: $806.8 million

 

FY 2017

Expenditures: $6,562.8 billion
Revenues: $5,774.1 billion
Deficit: $788.7 million

 


Where's the money?


So here's the thing: You will hear various figures thrown out for how much revenue the state must generate to balance the budget, anywhere from $131 million to over $700 million. While it is true that some portion of the deficits will be filled with some sort of one-time money, obviously that is by definition not sustainable. The actual numbers reveal a structural imbalance between expenditures and revenues that is in the neighborhood of $800 million per year!

Kansas, we have a problem! Government figureheads who have been stating that "we have a spending problem" are backtracking on that ideology. Solving this issue requires 63 House votes, 21 Senate votes, and the lack of a veto from the Governor on a budget bill and whatever else it takes to finance that bill. Cutting our way out does not seem likely. A combination of one-time monies accompanied by various tax increases may be the solution. But let's remember what caused this budget crisis: the income tax changes from 2012.

The following data shows the money Kansas would have taken in had those changes not been put in place:

(333,771 entities reported income exempted by the non-wage piece)

......................Total Indiv Inc Tax Changes........................ Non-Wage Exemption

($ in millions)

FY 13 .......................... ($249.2) ...................................................... ($25.0)

FY 14 .......................... ($733.1) .................................................... ($215.0)

FY 15 .......................... ($885.9) .................................................... ($220.0)

FY 16 .......................... ($998.6) .................................................... ($225.0)

FY 17 ....................... ($1,099.2) .................................................... ($230.0)

FY 18 ....................... ($1,262.6) .................................................... ($235.0)

FY 2019 ................... ($1,567.8) .................................................... ($240.0)

7-yr total.................. ($6,796.3) ................................................. ($1,390.0)

 

As you can see by all of this data, the crisis we now see is due directly to the income tax policy changes. I voted NO for these income tax changes because of my belief in a balanced tax structure. I still believe that our state revenues should be based on a balanced approach between income, sales, and property taxes. The thought of funding our budget by numerous new taxes, shifting money from funds such as the Department of Transportation, and borrowing literally billions of bonding dollars to help fund our State General Fund goes completely against my understanding of sound fiscal policy.

The people who put the State of Kansas in this financial quagmire need to find and VOTE for a stable solution to this historic self-induced financial crisis. I am ready for that process to move forward beginning Wednesday, April 29.

If you would like to follow our progress, become my FB friend at Representative Barbara Bollier where I will be posting our progress both with news articles and my own summations. I will be sending out –e-news updates as needed as well. Feel free to contact me with comments. My job is to represent you, my constituents!

Sincerely,

Rep. Barbara Bollier
State Representative, District 21
Kansas House of Representatives
785-296-7686 (Topeka Office)