The move was part of the normal procedure for preparing for final budget negotiations. However, some House members took the opportunity to criticize the Senate for cutting more than $3 million from the state’s tourism budget. State Rep. Don Ruzicka (R, Mount Vernon) urged House Budget Chairman Ryan Silvey (R, Kansas City) to try to get the cut restored.
“Boy, without that $3.2 (million), we’re gonna hurt," Ruzicka said. "We’re gonna be (cut more) next year if we don’t have that money in this year.”
Silvey responded, "Sure...again, we’ll do what we can, but without tax amnesty out of the Senate, I hesitate to make any commitments."
Specific tourism cuts include $100,000 from the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in Kansas City, which is half of the state’s allotment to the facility.
The House also rejected the Senate’s restoration of $28 million for pensions to the blind in the Department of Social Services budget. House members did approve one appropriations bill: the budget for the Board of Fund Commissioners, which handles the state’s debt. That bill now goes to Governor Jay Nixon (D).