Republicans Vow to Hold Down State Spending

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A commitment to hold down state spending brought more than a dozen Republicans to the Capitol on Wednesday.

Their goal to be more responsible with Kansas tax dollars.

Republican Kasha Kelley,Arkansas City, said " We are here today to talk about the commitment that many of us our making to holding down the spending of the state budget this year.

After spending forced a budget increase of 9.6 percent last year the Kansas House Republicans said they want to limit the 2007 fiscal year budget to a 4.5 percent increase.

Republicans said they will work hard to limit new spending and stay within a budget.

"At this point in time we are trying to be accountable on the tax cuts and we are trying to keep spending down," said Arlen Sigfried, District 15.

Republicans admitted state spending has increased 1500 percent since 1970.

House Democratic leader Dennis McKinney says he agrees with the goal of holding down spending.

But he says lawmakers need to be responsible about it .. and keep in mind some unavoidable costs.

"Part of the reason for increases in the budget is increases in health care ... it's the fastest growing area ... we've also built more prisons and prisons are expensive, so we need to keep public safety and realize there are people we need to help take care of," McKinney said.

McKinney says improving the health care system needs to be part of budget discussions. Republicans also mentioned health care overhaul.