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Kan. Gov. vetoes $50 million funding for KU pharmacy expansion


TOPEKA, Kan. Last week, the Kansas legislature approved a $50 million expansion at the Kansas University School of Pharmacy, according to published reports.

The funding was to be used to finance construction of a new pharmacy building on the university’s campus and to add a pharmacy school to the university’s School of Medicine. This would have increased the number of students admitted into the program from 105 to about 190 per year.

This was though until yesterday, when Gov. Kathleen Sebelius vetoed the provision that called for the expansion.

Sebelius said she supported construction of a new pharmacy building on KU’s West Campus in Lawrence and expanding the pharmacy building in Wichita. But she disagreed with how the legislature went about funding the project.

Under the legislative measure, one-third of the gambling revenue would have gone to infrastructure improvements, such as the KU pharmacy expansion; one-third to reduce state debt; and one-third for property tax relief. Sebelius said that the money from gambling revenue should be more flexible for use in more “important and pressing needs of the state.”

The legislature returns to session on April 30. The pharmacy project has enjoyed wide support, so an attempt to override the veto is possible. That would required two-thirds’ majorities—at least 84 votes in the 125-member House and 27 votes in the 40-member Senate.

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