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"It will take a long time to wade through the 139-page ruling, but even a cursory examination makes it clear that the three-judge panel didn’t let the facts get in the way of their decision. Instead, they made what amounts to a political decision that says the Legislature must increase funding by at least $548 million to meet the Rose standards even though school districts don’t know how to measure those standards." http://kansaspolicy.org/KPIBlog/124008.aspx


Kansas school funding decision ignores facts in arriving at a political decision
www.kansaspolicy.org
Today’s ruling on Gannon v. State of Kansas in which the Shawnee County District Court declared school funding to be unconstitutionally low ignores a long list of facts that disprove school districts’ contentions.  The three-judge panel ma
Wed, 31 Dec 2014 17:14:11 +0000
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KPI president Dave Trabert on today's ruling in the on-going school finance litigation, "This ruling willfully ignores a long list of facts that disprove school districts' contentions. The judges may even have ignored the State Supreme Court's order that adequacy is to be determined on whether outcomes - as defined by the Rose capacities - are being met. The judges essentially dusted off their original decision that was rejected by the Supreme Court and added some new legal jargon attempting to justify their original action in arriving at what is little more than a political decision."

Stay tuned for more analysis...
Tue, 30 Dec 2014 20:26:35 +0000
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Gov't can provide quality service while saving taxpayers money.


A plan for balancing the Kansas state budget

Kansas Policy Institute President Dave Trabert presents KPI's plan to balance the state's budget without service reductions or tax increases. Trabert spoke a...
Thu, 18 Dec 2014 17:34:52 +0000
Last Refreshed 1/28/2015 7:01:21 AM
Commentary
Sales Tax About Politics Not Economics Or Education
By: Dave Trabert
December 20, 2011
Word Count: 239

Earlier this month, much was written of State Senator Carolyn McGinn's proposal to end last year's sale tax increase early. The primary justification for that tax increase was to give more money to schools. According to the Kansas Department of Education, state aid to schools went up $94 million last year, from $2.868 billion to $2.962 billion. KSDE also reports that districts' operating carryover cash balance (total less capital and debt) increased by $85 million, from $775 million to $860 million. (Districts also reported $8 million carryover in their Activity funds, which wasn't reported previously).

90% of increased state aid was used to increase cash reserves. The tax increase clearly wasn't needed. Even worse, it cost jobs. Legislators were given two independent academic studies, from KU and WSU that said increasing the sales tax would cost a few thousand private sector jobs, mostly in jobs that wouldn't be created. Sure enough, Kansas has the worse private sector job creation in the country this year and is the only state whose average annual private sector employment (through October) is below its 2010 average.

The sales tax implementation was driven by politics, not sound economic principles. It certainly didn't get to Kansas students as most of it was put into the bank. Sadly, that is too often the case in Kansas and in Washington - politics being put before providing an effective education and allowing more Kansans to find good paying jobs.