- Associated Press - Tuesday, July 28, 2015

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) - Gov. Sam Brownback doesn’t plan to be present when his administration outlines $50 million in spending cuts to help Kansas avert a budget deficit.

Brownback spokeswoman Eileen Hawley confirmed Tuesday that the Republican governor won’t be in his office. Budget director Shawn Sullivan will outline the cuts during a news conference planned for Friday.

Hawley declined to discuss the governor’s planned whereabouts.

Kansas Senate Democratic Leader Anthony Hensley of Topeka called Brownback’s not being present “a cowardly way out.”

GOP legislators counted on Brownback’s administration making the cuts under a plan to balance the state’s $15.4 billion budget that also increased sales and cigarette taxes this month.

The state’s budget problems arose after lawmakers cut income taxes in 2012 and 2013 at Brownback’s urging to stimulate the economy.

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