Archive for Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Sen. Holland says it’s time to abolish KTEC

March 18, 2009

TOPEKA — A Lawrence-area lawmaker said Tuesday that a state economic development agency has outlived its usefulness and needs to be abolished.

State Sen. Tom Holland, D-Baldwin City, has introduced legislation to move the functions of the Kansas Technology Enterprise Corp. into the Kansas Department of Commerce and state universities.

KTEC, established in 1986 to promote technology-based development, provided a good foundation, but has recently succumbed to high costs and little accountability to lawmakers, Holland said.

“With the state facing an unprecedented budget deficit, it is more important than ever that we look for better ways to reduce overhead costs while delivering critical investments in our state’s economy,” Holland said.

Tracy Taylor, KTEC president and chief executive officer, has been making the rounds to various legislative committees this session to defend the agency.

He says KTEC’s mission is important, especially during the current recession.

Holland also criticized the agency for failing to respond to his request for information about its expenditures. KTEC’s board chairwoman, Linda Reinhardt, told Holland in a letter that the agency doesn’t have some of the information and that KTEC has complied with his request as much as it can.

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