TOPEKA | Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback is cutting $50 million from schools and will ask the Legislature to transfer nearly that much to cover increased costs in health and human services caseloads.
The school funding reduction makes up the lion’s share of $56.5 million in total cuts announced late Friday.
Brownback, a Republican, said the reductions are necessary to meet the constitutional requirement that the state budget be in balance when the fiscal year ends in June.
“I wish we didn’t have to do this,” he said. “It’s been difficult, but it’s something we need to do.”
The cut in base state aid to education will reduce the state’s annual school spending per pupil by $22, from $4,012 to $3,990, according to Sherriene Jones-Sontag, the governor’s spokeswoman.
“I am somewhat surprised that the governor hit education so hard,” said Cindy Neighbor, a member of the Shawnee Mission school board.
The announcement was made with only a few months left in the academic year.
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