Brownback's tax policy fiasco

Taxes are on our minds this time of year. So it’s a fitting occasion to check some of the disastrous results of what Gov. Brownback has called his fiscal “experiment.”'


Brownback’s reckless approach to tax policy leaves the state budget awash in red ink.

According estimates from the Kansas Legislative Research Department, beginning this year revenues will slip below expenditures by many tens of millions of dollars — and stay there. Without new revenues or drastic spending cuts, the state’s reserves will be consumed by 2017 and the resulting shortfalls would surpass $1 billion in five years.

Brownback promised “a shot of adrenaline” to the Kansas economy.

But the patient languishes.

Even according to his own advisers, the Kansas economy lags those of other states in the region and the nation as a whole in key measures, including growth in new businesses, private sector employment, gross domestic product, population, and per-capita income.

You may have heard some in the administration trying to put a positive spin on the advisers’ report. In a column for the Wichita Eagle, H. Edward Flentje, Wichita State University professor of urban and public affairs, cuts through the administration’s spin.

According to Flentje, “Their work brings to mind the Ministry of Truth in George Orwell’s novel ‘1984’.”
Read more here.




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