Volume 41 - Issue 22 - June 2, 2022
State of Kansas
Office of the Governor
Message from the Governor Regarding House Bill 2510
House Bill 2510 represents additional progress toward fulfilling many of the priorities that I set forth in January and that have been made possible only through our bipartisan work together over the past four years. Building on House Substitute for Substitute for Senate Bill 267, this bill provides additional investments in higher education, economic development, mental health, senior services, and veterans while leaving sufficient funding to provide over $1 billion in tax relief to Kansans through the legislation that I have signed to cut property taxes and axe the state’s sales tax on groceries.
Some of the key investments in this legislation include improved access to mental healthcare, increased funding for senior nutrition, expanded training opportunities to prevent child abuse, and measures that build on our successful work to reduce the number of children who enter the foster care system. This bill includes additional investments in our regional universities and community and technical colleges, which are critical to our efforts to expand our workforce in the state of Kansas. And this budget ensures that all state employees will receive a pay increase of at least 5% this year in recognition of their service to the state.
Finally, due to our strong economic growth and unprecedented ending balances, this budget will allow us to pay off over $1 billion in debt over the next year.
Therefore, pursuant to Article 2, Section 14(b) of the Constitution of the State of Kansas, I hereby return House Bill 2510 with my signature, except for the item enumerated below.
State Board of Regents – Proviso Allowing Universities to Raise Tuition
- Section 36(b) has been vetoed in its entirety.
In my initial budget, I recommended $45.7 million in operating grant funding to higher education with the understanding that universities would freeze tuition. In addition to that, I allocated $23.9 million in funding for salaries. While the original operating grant funding has been reduced to an increase of $37.5 million in the final passed budget, overall, higher education in the state of Kansas is set to receive $1 billion this fiscal year. This is a historic investment that I am proud to support by approving the additional higher education funding included in HB 2510.
As a result of this significant infusion of new funding, I believe that the Regents institutions will be able to continue to hold tuition flat, making college more affordable for Kansans of all backgrounds. This is especially important if we, as a state, are going to provide the workforce needed to fully actualize the benefits and opportunities of our recent economic growth.
Dated May 16, 2022.
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