Monday, September 27

Kansas governor highlights 2013 legislative session

From the office of Kansas Governor Sam Brownback.

Topeka — Kansas Governor Sam Brownback issued the following statement regarding the completion of the 2013 Legislative Session.

“I began the 2013 Legislative Session reflecting about the long tradition our state has of being bold in doing what was right, even if much of the nation took another way. The work accomplished these last few months affirms our state is leading the way.

“I will sign a pro-growth tax reform bill that continues our efforts to reduce the tax burden on all Kansans. The legislation builds on last year’s historic tax cuts and further reduces state income rates and cuts the state’s sales tax rate. It includes $110 million in tax relief for our working poor and expands the successful Rural Opportunity Zones from 50 counties to 72 so more counties can attract new residents and grow their populations.

“We continued our efforts to reverse the trend of an expanding government by moving the Kansas Turnpike Authority under the direction of the Secretary of the Kansas Department of Transportation. By bringing these two large organizations together under the direction of the Secretary, we will serve the public better and more efficiently.

“We reformed how judges for the Kansas Court of Appeals are appointed. Known as the federal process, this important step towards reforming our system of judicial selection will restore public confidence in our judiciary and give all Kansans an equal voice, whether directly or indirectly through elected representatives, in choosing our judicial leaders.

“And soon, I will carefully review and consider a two-year budget bill that increases funding for our K-12 schools and tech education, funds core services, keeps state spending within the state’s means and leaves a healthy ending balance. A two-year budget will give agencies and schools the ability to plan ahead.

“Under the leadership of House Speaker Ray Merrick and Senate President Susan Wagle, the 2013 Legislature worked hard on behalf of their constituents and accomplished a great deal. This session will forever be remembered as the one that turned the state around the corner on the road to prosperity.”