For the next fiscal year, the new projection was $5.8 billion in revenues — short of the nearly $6.2 billion that legislative researchers had been assuming in their unofficial forecasts. The projected shortfall of $436 million is about 7 percent, and higher than the $282 million gap estimated unofficially.
The new revenue projection for the fiscal year beginning in July 2016 is a little less than $5.9 billion — again, short of the nearly $6.4 billion legislative researchers had assumed. But the new forecast assumes that spending by that time will be in line with the lower revenues.
The projections also assume Kansas will continue to see modest economic growth, said Raney Gilliland, director of the nonpartisan Kansas Legislative Research Department.During the governor’s race, Democratic challenger Paul Davis argued the tax cuts championed by Brownback were wrecking the state’s finances. Senate Minority Leader Anthony Hensley, a Topeka Democrat, predicted the state will have to cut spending on schools and social services and divert money from highway projects.
“There is absolutely no good way out of this,” Hensley said. “You can’t find enough efficiencies or growth to make up these devastating numbers.”