Kelly targets highways, Medicaid expansion

By

State News

January 16, 2020 - 10:23 AM

Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly and Senate Majority Leader Jim Denning announce a Medicaid expansion compromise in January. Unfortunately, Senate President Susan Wagle never held discussion on the issue, dooming its chances. Photo by KANSAS NEWS SERVICE/STPEHN KORANDA/KCUR.ORG

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly on Wednesday called for a new program to improve the state’s roads and bridges, urged state lawmakers to approve a bipartisan Medicaid expansion plan and warned she is likely to veto the income tax cuts that Republicans are pursuing.

The Democratic governor provided the outlines of her agenda for the GOP-controlled Legislature’s annual 90-day session during her State of the State address. But her second address since taking office a year ago was often a look back on her first year in office and a Republican predecessor’s tax-cutting experiment that was followed by persistent budget woes.

Kelly promised her own tax cuts but signaled they would be modest initiatives to ease the burden of the state’s sales tax on groceries for low-income families and to provide state aid to cities and counties in hopes that they’ll decrease their property taxes. She also emphasized her support for a new trade agreement with Canada and Mexico approved by the U.S. House, and she urged the U.S. Senate to pass it.

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