Kansas Gambling Regulators to Lay Off and Reduce Hours

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The Kansas Racing and Gaming Commission is cutting staff because plans for expanded gambling in the state didn't develop as expected as the economy faltered.

The commission said today it will lay off 11 employees and reduce hours for another 10 workers, effective Feb. 7. The reductions come while all state agencies are looking for ways to cut spending in response to sagging state revenues.

Those affected include enforcement agents, financial investigators, auditors and information technology and administrative staff. Most were hired last year in anticipation of increased gambling.

The changes will result in a 48 percent reduction in the $3 million annual payroll, saving more than $55,000 for each two-week pay period. Economists project the state will end the current budget year on June 30 with a $141 billion deficit unless cuts are made by legislators after their session convenes Monday.