Kansas Lawmakers Move To Tighten Budget-Making Rules

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

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Sunday, January 20, 2013

Conservative Republicans who want to slim down state government are preparing to rewrite the GOP-dominated Kansas Legislature's internal rules.

They hope to make it harder for more liberal colleagues to slip extra dollars to agencies and programs during budget debates.

A version of the new rule could be in place for both chambers within days, thanks to Republican supermajorities. It's known as "pay-go," short for "pay as you go."

The rule would apply when either the full Senate or House is debating the budget. It says that a lawmaker who wants to boost spending for a particular agency or program must propose offsetting cuts elsewhere. Once a proposed spending plan clears committee, the total amount of spending can't be increased.

Critics say the rule will stifle debate.

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