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KDOT Secretary Asks Lawmakers to Keep Sales Tax Road Funding Intact

KDOT Secretary Mike King. (Photo by Stephen Koranda)

Kansas Secretary of Transportation Mike King is urging lawmakers to keep their hands off one of KDOT’s funding sources. The state sales tax includes four-tenths of a percent that goes to highway projects. King told a legislative committee today (TUE) that routing that money away from KDOT would impact transportation projects planned for the state.

“We would cut projects if that four-tenths is taken away, and we would cut projects in this calendar year because of that,” says King.

Governor Sam Brownback is proposing to divert hundreds of millions of dollars from the state highway fund in the next two years to help close a budget gap. King says that won’t impact projects already announced, but he says KDOT will delay nearly $300 million in future projects.

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(VERSION TWO)

Kansas Secretary of Transportation Mike King is asking lawmakers not to touch one of KDOT’s funding sources. Lawmakers will be looking for ways to fill a budget gap, and the money could be attractive. As KPR’s Stephen Koranda reports, four-tenths of a percent of the state sales tax goes to KDOT for road projects.

(SCRIPT)
Secretary King says the sales tax funding is a steady source of income, which is important when they’re borrowing money.

“The people that are loaning us money, they want to see what are your assets, what’s your cash and what’s your salary look like. Our salary has included this four-tenths,” says King.

King says diverting that sales tax money away from KDOT would impact construction projects.

“You take that four-tenths away from us and you take our borrowing ability away from us. We would cut projects then, and we would cut projects in this calendar year,” says King.

Governor Sam Brownback hasn’t proposed taking the sales tax money, but he’s asking to divert other dollars from the state highway fund.

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