Goossen: What Does Financial Health Look Like?

By Duane Goossen November 4, 2015 Kansas is in a perpetual budget crisis! In October, general fund revenue fell below estimates — again. The October results mean that Kansas will not have enough money to cover expenses in the approved FY 2016 budget. Without more revenue, Kansans face mid-fiscal year cuts to an already beleaguered … Read More

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ClayGoossen: What Does Financial Health Look Like?

Goossen: The status of the general fund

By Duane Goossen October 22, 2015 Three months into Fiscal Year 2016 the general fund’s fragile balance has evaporated.   The FY 2016 budget is at high risk for mid-fiscal year cuts.  If revenue continues to fall below expectations, the governor and lawmakers will have no choice but to take action to either quickly increase revenue … Read More

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ClayGoossen: The status of the general fund

It’s Like Déjà Vu All Over Again

October 15, 2015 The late baseball icon Yogi Berra once said “It’s like déjà vu all over again”, playing on the French phrase meaning “already seen”. While he wasn’t prophetic and referring to shrinking state revenues at the time, as much could be said about monthly collections in Kansas following the unprecedented tax policy changes … Read More

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ClayIt’s Like Déjà Vu All Over Again

Goossen: Block Grants Are a Bad Recipe…Part Two

By Duane Goossen September 30, 2015 Kansas school districts face a multi-year decline in classroom funding while statewide enrollment grows, and while costs for supplies, utilities, student transportation, and salaries rise. An important accounting of this trend can be found in the table “Major Categories of State Aid for K-12 Education in Kansas” in the … Read More

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ClayGoossen: Block Grants Are a Bad Recipe…Part Two

McKay: The state of Kansas isn’t a charity

By Annie McKay September 22, 2015 This weekend I had the distinct pleasure of participating in Bike MS (Multiple Sclerosis). As I pedaled for 166.8 miles in and around the region – yes, the .8 matters – taking in the sights and sounds on what was a perfect Fall weekend, I thought a lot about … Read More

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ClayMcKay: The state of Kansas isn’t a charity

Goossen: Block grants are a bad recipe

By Duane Goossen September 16, 2015 Unsurprisingly, 16 school districts applied to the State Finance Council for “extraordinary needs” funding in August to help cover growing enrollments.  Under the new block grant system, that’s the only way to get additional funds.  However, the Finance Council granted only a fraction of each request.  The districts were … Read More

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ClayGoossen: Block grants are a bad recipe

Goossen: Another Bad Revenue Month

By Duane Goossen September 4, 2015 August general fund tax collections were startlingly bad, down $30 million (6.8%) from expectations. August was not a one-month outlier. Tax collections have missed expectations every month since the last official consensus revenue estimate. Anemic tax collections spell trouble for Kansas finances. Lawmakers based the FY 2016 budget on … Read More

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ClayGoossen: Another Bad Revenue Month

The Revenue Estimates Aren’t the Problem

September 2, 2015 Long before the failed tax-cut policy of the recent past, Kansas made a wise financial decision by twice-yearly working out a reasonable estimate of how much revenue the state expects to take in. It’s not hard to see how that would help to better plan for meeting public needs and assessing the … Read More

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ClayThe Revenue Estimates Aren’t the Problem

Goossen: Record borrowing indicates financial instability

By Duane Goossen August 21, 2015 Question: What does the State of Kansas do when bills must be paid but the bank account is empty? Answer: Borrow.  Get a payday loan and promise to repay when more revenue comes in. On July 1, the first day of fiscal year 2016, Kansas took out a payday … Read More

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ClayGoossen: Record borrowing indicates financial instability

Goossen: Scraping by in Summer

By Duane Goossen August 6, 2015 Three recent events provide further evidence that Kansas is just scraping by financially.  July general fund revenue was below expectations, the governor cut $63 million out of the current budget, and the state’s pension bonds received a low rating. July revenue fell $4 million below expectations.  While $4 million … Read More

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ClayGoossen: Scraping by in Summer