TOPEKA — Rep. Steve Brunk has proposed a constitutional amendment that would set spending and tax collection limits for the state.
House Concurrent Resolution 5019 would restrict state budget growth to the rate of inflation plus the growth rate of the state's population in a given year. Lawmakers would have to achieve a two-thirds majority vote in both chambers to exceed the spending limit or raise taxes, Brunk, R-Bel Aire, said Monday.
State spending has increased four times faster than the rate of inflation over the past four decades, Brunk said.
"We can't continue doing this anymore," he said.
The resolution would also establish a rainy day fund set at 7 percent of the state general fund. Once that fund was filled, an Emergency Reserve Fund would be created that would equal 3 percent of state coffers.
The money would give the state accounts to tap into during hard times or to cover the costs from natural disasters, he said.
Brunk's proposal also would establish automatic tax rebates when the state collects more money than it spends. It also bars the state from imposing unfunded mandates on local government, he said.
If both chambers approve the resolution by a two-thirds majority, the issue would then go before Kansas voters. Changes to the Kansas constitution require voter approval.