Lawmakers move to protect $280 million for roads

TOPEKA, Kansas (AP) – Some Kansas lawmakers want to keep some money from being transferred away from transportation projects amid the state budget crunch.

Gov. Sam Brownback has recommended transferring $724 million from transportation projects to the state’s main budget during fiscal years 2016 and 2017 to fill projected budget shortfalls. A House budget panel voted Thursday to reinstate about $280 million of that funding.

Republican Rep. Russell Jennings of Lakin says he proposed the amendment because the state has too often diverted money from infrastructure to cover budget holes elsewhere. He suggested the state raise revenues in other ways.

The House Appropriations Committee will review the committee’s budget recommendations Tuesday.

Republican Rep. J. R. Claeys of Salina said that if the move passed, it could force education cuts.

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