Update Legislative Issues March 23, 2011
I. Budget issues - Both the House Appropriations Committee and Senate Ways and Means Committee have agreed upon their 2011 and 2012 budget proposals. Now each will bring their proposal to their full chamber to debate and take a vote. These debates could happen as early as next week, March 28 - April 1 or they may wait until after spring recess, April 18 or April 27.
The House' proposal has many additional cuts to state agencies, the HS is recommending an additional 5% cut to SRS, excluding caseloads and HCBS. While excluding HCBS from cuts is very good news, that leaves an approximate of $10M to be cut from SRS programs.
The Senate proposal maintains current funding for most SRS programs.
II. We also discussed the Town Hall meetings now being scheduled during the legislative recess (April 6 - 18). These are being co-sponsored by Kansans for Quality Communities and the Big Tent Coalition. Below are the scheduled locations. More specifics will come to you as dates and times are secured. We suggest stories from consumers on the waiting lists, teachers, state employees and seniors on how the budget cuts have impacted their lives. More specific updates on budgets and talking points will be forthcoming.
1. KNEA will convene Wichita (Mark Desetti)
2. KOSE will convene Hutchinson (Jane Carter)
3. Big Tent will convene Topeka (Jane Rhys)
4. ACMHCK will convene Garden City (Sheli Sweeney) April 14 Garden City at Area Mental Health.
5. InterHab will convene Greater KC (Tom Laing) (Mary Carter)
6. SKIL will convene Parsons - April 12, 4:00 - 6:00 pm Parsons High School (Shari Coatney and Bill Cochran)
7. Interhab will convene Hays - ( Tom Laing)