AP: State explains increased employment numbers

4/30/2013

TOPEKA (AP) — An increase in the number of state employees during fiscal year 2013 can be explained largely by reorganization of some agencies and more student employees at universities, officials with some of the agencies said.

TOPEKA (AP) — An increase in the number of state employees during fiscal year 2013 can be explained largely by reorganization of some agencies and more student employees at universities, officials with some of the agencies said.

The Kansas Department of Administration's Office of Personnel Services said the state had a total of 69,974 regular and temporary employees in fiscal year 2013, an increase of 143 from fiscal 2012, The Topeka Capital-Journal reported last week.

The largest cuts were in the Kansas Department for Children and Families, which had 348 fewer employees. The Kansas Department of Revenue had 134 fewer employees and the Kansas Department of Labor employed 97 fewer people.

Those numbers include 125 employees who were transferred from DCF to the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services under an executive order from Gov. Sam Brownback, said Angela de Rocha, a spokeswoman for both agencies.

The Department of Revenue's numbers were unusual and came after a large numbers of retirements and other short-term occurrences, spokeswoman Jeannine Koranda said.

Three state universities reported a large increase in employees: Wichita State University had 291 more employees; Kansas State University increased 285; and The University of Kansas Medical Center added 228 jobs.

Most of those jobs are students, graduate assistants or nonstudent workers doing temporary work as part of federal grants or contracts, said Andy Tompkins, president and CEO of the Kansas Board of Regents.

For example, The University of Kansas Medical Center had 141 temporary employees working as "standardized patients" to present a variety of medical situations to allow students to practice their diagnostic skills.

More were needed than in the past because of increased student enrollment, said Donna Peck, a medical center spokeswoman.

The state report found the state cut 937 regular positions but added 1,080 temporary positions in fiscal 2013.

Out of 1,080 new temporary positions, only 103 included benefits. Student positions at the state's universities account for many of the temporary positions without benefits, the Capital-Journal reported.

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