It was remarkable how swiftly and decisively the Legislature acted Tuesday to try to cut the state’s losses from the Brownback administration’s botched and now-canceled deal to build a new Capitol power plant and demolish the Docking State Office Building. Just as striking was the explanation of the only “no” vote on the bill in either chamber, by Rep. Henry Helgerson, D-Eastborough: “Six years ago the state spent $2 million refurbishing the Docking power plant. Then the Republican governor and Republican Legislature decided to remove the state agencies from the building and tear it down. Now the governor enters into a lease purchase for a new power plant at a cost of $20 million without a statutory cost/benefit analysis. This spending of tens of millions of dollars by the administration and the lack of good fiscal oversight by the Legislature is a symptom of the greater economic mismanagement and incompetence that has plagued the state budget over the last five years.” – Rhonda Holman
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