KASB Education Daily Roundup for Mon. Feb. 4

Pensions, concurrent enrollment and mental health were before the Legislature on Monday. The Kansas Senate advanced a bill to make a $115 million payment to the Kansas Public Employees Retirement System. A final Senate vote is expected Tuesday. State Sen. Rick Billinger, R-Goodland, urged passage of SB 9, saying the state had promised to make the payment and had enough revenue now. Some Democrats said it would be better to wait for legislators to make decisions on state spending before committing the funds to KPERS. If approved, the measure, which would go toward the public school group of KPERS, would then be [...]

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KASB’s Daily Education Roundup for Thur. Jan. 31

On Thursday, a Senate committee approved a tax cut that could reduce revenue by more than $420 million over three years and the House and Senate education committees heard from children and parent advocates. Here is a link to a more detailed story about SB 22, which was approved by the Senate Select Committee on Federal Tax Code Implementation. KASB, in written testimony here, expressed serious concerns with the legislation because of the impact it could have on school funding. KASB urges education leaders to speak with their senators about the measure, which may be voted on next week in [...]

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KASB’s Daily Education Roundup for Thur. Jan. 17

Gov. Laura Kelly on Wednesday made it clear early in her first State of the State address — “My No. 1 priority will always be public schools.” Kelly's budget details on K-12 funding were to be released this morning. KASB Live will review those recommendations and other education issues at 11:30 a.m. today. Here is a link to the broadcast. Kelly, a Democrat facing a Republican-dominated Legislature, focused much of her speech on public education, urging the Legislature to quickly resolve the Gannon school finance case. “The days of doing the bare minimum to fund our schools are over. It stops [...]

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KASB Live at 11:30 a.m. today to review governor’s budget, first week of session

KASB Live will review Gov. Laura Kelly’s school funding proposal and other issues during a webinar at 11:30 a.m today. Here is a link to join the broadcast. In her State of the State address on Wednesday, Kelly called for providing the necessary funding to resolve the Gannon lawsuit. During the first week of the session, bills were introduced to shift the date for school boards to elect officers (Senate Bill 7), make a one-time payment of $115 million to the Kansas Public Employees Retirement System (SB 9) and reduce taxes (SB 13). These issues and a look forward at what [...]

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Legislative leaders may push rewind on funding formula

Multiple media reports on Monday indicated Kansas Republican legislative leaders may want to rewrite the 2018 K-12 funding formula that was conditionally accepted by the Kansas Supreme Court. The Court said the 2018 law was structurally sound and would fix inequities identified in the Gannon school funding lawsuit if inflationary adjustments were added in Fiscal Years 2019-2023. In recent days, lawyers for the plaintiffs indicated they would settle the case if lawmakers added the inflation adjustments, which are estimated at roughly $360 million. Speaker of the Kansas House Ron Ryckman and Senate Majority Leader Jim Denning indicated Monday they didn’t [...]

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With higher revenue forecast, legislators review budget issues

Following last Friday’s release of new official revenue estimates, leaders of the Legislature’s budget committees yesterday received a briefing on issues they will face in the 2019 session.  The new estimates project the state general fund will take in $300 million more than expected in the current fiscal year ending June 30, 2019, and result in an ending balance of over $900 million or 12.6 percent.  However, commitments the Legislature has already made could whittle the ending balance down to $308 million dollar by 2021, with expenditures exceeding revenues by the same amount. In addition, state agencies have submitted requests for [...]

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KPERS update available on KASB video, podcast

In a new KASB Live segment, Alan Conroy, executive director of the Kansas Public Employees Retirement System, provides an update on the improving fiscal health of the pension plan that serves employees for schools and state and local governments. Here is a link to the video and here is a link to the podcast.

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KPERS in stronger position

A combination of Kansas legislative investments and market growth have helped move the Kansas Public Employees Retirement System (KPERS) into a much stronger position and out of the bottom third ranking of state funded pensions.  At the Joint Committee meeting on Pensions Monday, KPERS Executive Director Alan Conroy reported that through a combination of a strong market year, additional investments from the Legislature and the benefits of the pension obligation bonds issued in 2004 and 2015 the State/School Funded Ratio Projection is higher than it was projected to be back in 2008.  Original projections had the fund crossing the 60 percent [...]

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State revenues end year $318 million higher than expected

State general fund tax revenues for Fiscal Year 2018, which ended June 30, were $317.8 million higher than the official estimates released in April, according to the Kansas Department of Revenue. Based on an updated report from the Kansas Division of Budget, the increased revenue should result in an FY 2018 ending balance of $765.5 million, or 11.4 percent of approved expenditures of $6.691 billion. Under a provision in the state budget bill, if actual State General Fund revenues are above consensus estimates, then up to $56.0 million must be transferred from the State General Fund to the KPERS Trust Fund [...]

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SBR: 2018 session in the books, work continues on school finance

By Leah Fliter lfliter@kasb.org The 2018 Kansas Legislative Session saw legislators repairing the state budget and adding more funds to public schools after adverse court rulings. KASB commended legislators for their work in a statement: After restoring a more balanced tax system last year, state revenues and economic growth have been much stronger than expected. Over the past two years, the Legislature has begun to make investments in public education to stop falling behind inflation and other states and to reverse the decline in measures of student success. CLICK HERE to download the full issue. “The Legislature also began restoring funding for higher education, [...]

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