DALLAS - Kansas lawmakers will open their session on Jan. 15 with a slight increase in general revenues thanks to changes in the state income tax laws passed in 2013, according to the Kansas Legislative Research Department.
The revised estimate of $5.857 billion would be 7.6% below final fiscal year 2013 receipts.
The initial estimate for fiscal year 2015 is $5.917 billion, which is $60.6 million, or 1%, above the fiscal 2014 figure.
"Factors influencing this forecast in addition to the state of the economy include the phasing in of various provisions of the new income tax law as well as a net change of $46.8 million in transfers out of the state general fund," according to the report.
"Although the U.S. economy is continuing its recovery from the Great Recession, the forecasted rate of growth remains slow," the report said. "The impact of reduced federal spending as a result of sequestration and additional uncertainty from ongoing policy stalemates in Washington have combined to provide a drag on growth. The current assumption is that modest growth will continue in the national and state economies during the forecast period."
Republican Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback led the Republican-controlled legislature in passing tax cuts for nearly 200,000 businesses and individual income taxpayers during the 2012 and 2013 sessions, promising a "shot of adrenaline" to the state's economy. Brownback said his goal was to set the state on a path toward eliminating income taxes over time and attracting new residents and businesses.
Brownback has acknowledged that the results of the tax measures has been muted, but said he's encouraged that "things are working."
For the upcoming session, lawmakers are not expected to launch any new tax measures, members of the House and Senate have said.