May 12, 2010 12:00AM
After many weeks of struggle, the Kansas House and Senate sent a budget to Gov. Mark Parkinson Tuesday that includes a one-cent sales tax increase intended to plug the state's budget deficit and prevent further cuts to education and social services.
PSU President Steve Scott said the budget legislation was positive news for Pittsburg State.
"We applaud the Kansas Legislature and Gov. Mark Parkinson for making the difficult choices necessary to avoid further devastating cuts to higher education, which is at the heart of the economic recovery for Kansas," Scott said. "We are especially grateful to our local legislators who have fought to keep our state's system of higher education strong and open doors of opportunity for its citizens.
"Although we are pleased with today's action because it does not require additional cuts to higher education, we are also aware that we still face serious challenges. Over the past year, Pittsburg State University has taken dramatic action to bridge a $5.1 million budget gap at the same time that enrollment has increased. The difficult work of fulfilling our educational mission with sharply lower state aid continues.
"These are difficult times for every segment of our economy, but we have good reason to be optimistic. PSU, its students, faculty and staff, and its graduates will all play a role in bringing the Kansas economy back from recession."