(The Center Square) - Kansas Governor Laura Kelly Thursday said her administration is requesting $460 million from the state's projected budget surplus go towards providing one-time tax rebates of $250 to Kansans who filed tax returns last year.
Kelly requested the additional funding via a Governor's Budget Amendment to the proposed budget. The governor previously requested a $250 rebate, but that proposal that was rejected by lawmakers.
"We've worked hard to get Kansas' budget back on track after years of mismanagement," Kelly said in a statement. "Our strong economic growth would not be possible without the hard work of Kansas taxpayers, and I want to return this money to the people who earned it."
The tax rebate proposal comes after the Consensus Revenue Estimating Group, which is comprised of academics and state economists, released a report on Wednesday showing that the state is expected to have a $2.7 billion budget surplus by July and a $3.1 billion surplus within the next 12 months.
Kelly has previously cited the budget surplus as her motivation for eliminating the state's 6.5 percent sales tax on food as Kansas families continue to face inflated prices.
"The state can make an immediate and direct impact to help Kansas families pay their bills and save for the future," the governor added.
Kansas' inflation rate hit 8.6 percent in March, according to the latest figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That represents a month-over-month increase of 1.3 percent and is the highest rate recorded in the state in nearly 40 years.
Food at home, a category that tracks the prices consumers pay at grocery stores, was one of the driving factors behind the state's increasing inflation, rising 1.8 percent in March.
"Right now, when we are all experiencing the impact of rising costs at the pump and the grocery store, the state can make an immediate and direct impact to help Kansas families pay their bills and save for the future," Kelly said.