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Archive for Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Statehouse Live: Brownback defends closure of Lawrence SRS office; local lawmaker says decision wasn’t data driven

In a six-month progress report on his administration at the Statehouse Wednesday, July 6, 2011, Gov. Sam Brownback answered questions about the closing of an SRS office in Lawrence.

July 6, 2011, 12:22 p.m. Updated July 6, 2011, 4:57 p.m.

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Gov. Sam Brownback provides a progress report on his first six months in office Wednesday, July 6, 2011, at the Statehouse in Topeka. Brownback was joined by Cabinet secretaries and executive directors of state agencies and programs.

Gov. Sam Brownback provides a progress report on his first six months in office Wednesday, July 6, 2011, at the Statehouse in Topeka. Brownback was joined by Cabinet secretaries and executive directors of state agencies and programs.

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— Gov. Sam Brownback on Wednesday said Lawrence’s location was a key factor in his administration’s decision to shut down the Lawrence office of the Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services.

“Lawrence, in particular, has a proximity to several major SRS offices on four-lane roads,” Brownback said.

House Democratic Leader Paul Davis of Lawrence said Brownback’s reasoning was off-base.

“I’m not sure he has a very good understanding of the kind of clientele the local SRS office has,” Davis said. “Not a lot of them have access to transportation that can go to Topeka, Ottawa or Kansas City.”

SRS Secretary Robert Siedlecki Jr. added that another major reason was that closing the Lawrence SRS office would produce significant savings — $300,000 — in the agency’s attempt to cut $1 million in administrative costs that was ordered by the Legislature.

“We definitely had to make some tough choices,” Siedlecki said.

Again, Davis disagreed with Siedlecki. Davis said he believes the closure of the Lawrence office wasn’t “data driven.” And while Siedlecki says the cuts were needed to satisfy a legislative mandate, Davis said, “I didn’t see SRS vigorously opposing potential cuts in front of the Legislature. I generally viewed their posture as being accepting of additional cuts.”

SRS changes

On Friday, SRS announced it was restructuring its offices by merging six regions into four and closing nine offices, in an effort to comply with a legislative mandate to cut costs.

The Lawrence office was by far the largest on the closure list. Public outcry over the decision has been intense from social service advocates and law enforcement officials who say it will diminish access to needed SRS services. A meeting is being set up by local leaders for next week in Lawrence on the issue.

SRS provides a variety of services for low-income children and families and people with disabilities. SRS officials have said that the office’s 87 employees would be reassigned to other offices.

During a Statehouse news conference Wednesday that Brownback called to highlight his first six months in office, the governor, flanked by nearly two dozen cabinet secretaries and other top administration officials, was asked about plans to close the SRS office in Lawrence.

Brownback said he hoped SRS clients would be able to access services on the Internet. He said if the Lawrence office hadn’t been closed, four or five others would have had to take its place on the closure list.

Siedlecki also said state Rep. Tom Sloan, R-Lawrence, asked if Siedlecki could send a couple of SRS employees to Lawrence a couple of days per week if free office space could be made available. Siedlecki said he would consider that.

Brownback’s agenda

Brownback, a Republican who took office in January, said that the state has made economic progress in the past six months and was on the right track after several years of recession.

But questions at the news conference focused on the possibility of more budget cuts to Medicaid, the state-federally funded health insurance program that serves mostly low-income children, pregnant women, elderly people and people with disabilities.

Brownback said that he is not ruling out a cut to payments to health care providers under Medicaid, but that he was waiting to see what recommendations would come from a series of meetings on Medicaid.

Brownback was also asked about his anti-abortion agenda — four bills that took effect July 1 increased regulations on abortion. Two of those bills are tied up in court challenges.

While supportive of the measures, Brownback said the abortion issue hasn’t deflected his attention from trying to improve the state’s economy.

“It hasn’t taken my eye off the ball,” he said.

The governor said his administration has created 3,163 jobs since taking office, and the state budget is improving.

“Our unemployment rate is ticking down, and our state revenues are growing,” he said.

Democrats disputed the claim, saying most of the job gains cited by Brownback had been in the works before he took office.

Instead they pointed to Brownback’s record cuts to public schools, killing the Kansas Arts Commission, and laying off hundreds of state employees.

“Brownback needs to stay focused on jobs and the economy instead of promoting an extreme, partisan agenda,” said Kansas Democratic Party Chairwoman Joan Wagnon.

Comments

thinkaboutit 2 years, 9 months ago

Hey sam the no back bone! What kind of jobs have you created and where? I know that you have cut jobs on the state level. But those jobs were never filled and you just took them off the books! Your are just another republican full of BS.

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verity 2 years, 9 months ago

Maybe this has been posted before---

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cSfYJ2X_7XU

At 7 p.m. Monday July 11 local Lawrence Legislators will be holding a Public Forum at:

Plymouth Congregational Church 925 Vermont Street Lawrence, KS 66044

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coleja 2 years, 9 months ago

Brownback is a clown and he is ass backwards. He's not interested in helping the poor or middle class succeed. He doesn't care about the welfare of the people he's more interested in making headlines and passing bogus legislation.

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goodcountrypeople 2 years, 9 months ago

Notice the extraordinary( and confident) remark Brownback made about the close proximity of several offices to Lawrence via 4-lane roads? He really doesn't get. it Sort of like Katrina--when officials assumed everyone worth saving had the ability to get in their own cars and evacuate themselves. Brownback clearly doesn't recognize that non-drivers exist--especially among those of limited means.

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Floyd Craig 2 years, 9 months ago

brownback looks evil and his BOY will agree with him so he wont loose his job what a snow job and u guys buy it ????? I sure dont

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verity 2 years, 9 months ago

Why even bother looking for any sense in what Brownback is doing in this or anything else. This is all about his agenda---to serve the Kochs and God (maybe the same thing?).

What he probably doesn't realize is that as soon as he is in no position to serve the Kochs (these kind of people are so full of their self-importance, they rarely do), they will no longer have any use for him. When he is used up, they will throw him away like dirty toilet paper.

Like what Cait said on another thread, I feel like I'm living in an Orwell novel. I thought Brownback would be bad, but I never thought he would be cruel and have no heart.

He will N E V E R be persuaded to do the sensible, economically feasible thing. That is so not what this is about.

We need to plan ahead to the next election.

Educate

Make sure voters are registered and have the proper documentation

Make sure voters can get to the polls

Vote out the people who are doing this

But, most importantly, we need to find good people to run and then support them. Brownback won because he really didn't have any competition---not to say Tom Holland wouldn't have been a good governor, but he just couldn't compete with the money and name recognition.

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dogsandcats 2 years, 9 months ago

What good are four lane roads if someone doesn't have access to transportation? What a crock.

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toe 2 years, 9 months ago

Brownback is doing a good job. Reasonable actions based on dwindling resources.

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jackbinkelman 2 years, 9 months ago

To the contents of this report... Bull, Bull and Bull.

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Ray March 2 years, 9 months ago

Brownback is horrible.

He's the George W. Bush of Kansas Governors.

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justajoke 2 years, 9 months ago

So now you will relocate workers to Wyandotte, Johnson and Shawnee County... Well with that being said where will the files be stored at? Shawnee is not part of the KC Metro Region therefore they have a different set of private contractors. Have we talked to all the contractors involved and will we ( the bobbleheads) be re writing these and paying more money?? Also what is the SW to do when they have to drive from Wy to Dg county to remove a child?? Are they to just sit in the car with the kid for 4 hours while we wait on KVC or TFI to pick them up. Surely we wouldn't drive them back to Wyandotte and the back to Lawrence for a placement would we?? Sure try toting and infant around for that many hours.. Just another item they didn't think about.. Good job bobble head Rob

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nut_case 2 years, 9 months ago

To know why the Lawrence office was closed, you only have to look at the poll numbers. Lawrence is a liberal/socialist 'tax and spend' island in an otherwise fairly nice state. By closing the office in Lawrence, sure you make a few libbies mad, but it's not like you are going to vote 'more' democrat.

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allofyousuck 2 years, 9 months ago

That's Bull everyone of the offices "in proximity" to Lawrence have those same four lane road's to travel to get to Lawrence's office and when they say that it was not data driven and Siedlecki gets up there and the second thing to come out of his mouth is the amount of case loads that they were looking at. hypocrite's aren't there two SRS's in topeka and in some other surrounding area's

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Bob_Keeshan 2 years, 9 months ago

Fact - Il Marrone's administration claims none of the Lawrence employees are being laid off.

Fact - any savings from closing the Lawrence office comes from operating costs of the building.

Fact - SRS operates two separate offices in Topeka

Still looking for a reason why Topeka gets two offices, why Manhattan/Junction City get two offices, why Crawford County gets two offices, but Douglas County gets none.

Close one of the two SRS offices in Topeka and gain the operating savings.

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tomatogrower 2 years, 9 months ago

Hopefully there will be groups in Lawrence that will help to set up shuttles to the SRS offices for the poor and that the librarians will be trained to help people access the SRS site. But - what I'm most worried about is investigations into child abuse. The SRS work with the police on these matters. I'm all for raising a tax here to pay for at least 2 officers who are specially trained to work on these cases. Brownback wants to make Lawrence an unlivable community? We'll show him that we are a real community, that will pull together to help our needy. Vote Reputlican so we won't be "punished"? Never.

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Thats_messed_up 2 years, 9 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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ThomasWitt 2 years, 9 months ago

Someone should show Brownback and his henchmen that four-lane road that leaves Kansas.

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kernal 2 years, 9 months ago

So that's what the Brownback evil eye looks like. That look will surely make babies cry when he campaigns for the Presidency, 'cause it sure is making some adults cry.

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lilygrace 2 years, 9 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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sad_lawrencian 2 years, 9 months ago

From Wikipedia: "Fascism is an authoritarian nationalist political ideology. Fascists advocate the creation of a totalitarian single-party state that seeks...mass mobilization of a nation through indoctrination...and family policy, including eugenics.

"Fascists seek to purge forces, ideas, and systems deemed to be the cause of decadence and degeneration and produce their nation's rebirth. Fascists believe that a nation requires [a] singular collective identity. Fascist governments forbid and suppress opposition to the state."

This sounds a lot like what Brownback is doing. "Fascists advocate the creation of a totalitarian single-party state"...a theocracy, perhaps?

"Fascists seek to purge forces [and] ideas...and produce their nation's rebirth." Sounds like Brownback to me. If he has his way, Kansas will be a Christian State where most, if not all, social services will be privatized, and Christianity will be the State religion. Public social services, divorce, abortion, will all be outlawed, in favor of theocratic law. People who are not married will not have access to services.

In essence, we will all be forced to become Christians, and be forced to live our lives and conduct our business in a manner dictated by Governor Brownback. Never mind that theocratic government is in violation of the First Amendment of the United States Constitution, which reads, in part, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."

For further reading, please see:

http://web.archive.org/web/20060207014424/http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/story/9178374/gods_senator/

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heath 2 years, 9 months ago

Only we the people can change this. Unfortunately, we're stuck with Brownback for a few more years. In the mean time, we can flood his office with phone calls, letters, emails, etc. and respectfully express our dissatisfaction. At the mid-term elections, we can elect legislatures who will stand up to the governor. Then during this last two years in office, he'll at least have to compromise a bit to get things done. Finally, at the next election vote him out!

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swan_diver 2 years, 9 months ago

Brownback and his secret police and security details should be watching their backs. There is a growing population of folks out there with nothing left to lose, who can and will act out. This phenomenon is sweeping the nation. Hateful and arrogant pseudo-politicians like our new phony-Christian Kansas governor will soon be paying steep personal prices for their frontal assault on what's left of America's social net. An eye for an eye, they said.

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JayhawkFan1985 2 years, 9 months ago

One thing the Brownback Administration could do that might make sense would be to "co-locate" state offices in cities. Why is SRS's office on 15th Street on the east side of Lawrence when the Driver's License Bureau and Highway Patrol offices are located at Tanger Mall? I think that KDHE has an office just off 23rd Street behind Carlos Okelley's. Surely, there are other state offices in Lawrence. While we're on the topic, shouldn't state offices be located in downtowns where they are close to transit routes and other services? Having said all that, this is but the first of the shocks Lawrence will feel under the Brownback Administration. Redistricting by the Legislature won't treat Lawrence well. Why not close KU? After all, the state has universities in Emporia, Pittsburg, Wichita, Hays and Manhattan. Finally, if Lawrence is required to donate free office space to the State of Kansas, I think all other cities that have SRS offices should do the same.

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Doppleganger 2 years, 9 months ago

Take the T if it's so important. They are empty, wasting fuel aimlessly driving around. If the big wigs cared so much for the hapless. Point the driver towards one.

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Bob_Keeshan 2 years, 9 months ago

Maybe what SRS should really be explaining is why the Topeka office remains open.

That makes two SRS offices in Topeka, none in Lawrence.

That makes a lot of sense.

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Bob Forer 2 years, 9 months ago

"Lawrence, in particular, has a proximity to several major SRS offices on four-lane roads"

What the hell does four lane roads have to do with it? I would guess that perhaps 99 percent of the highways in Kansas are only two lane. Is he suggesting that your typical SRS client cannot navigate a two lane road, or that the 2 lane roads in Kansas are inadquate? Moreover, the four lane road(s) he is talking about is I-70, which requires a somewhat hefty toll if you are living on a few hundred dollars a month.

Nonsense. Utter nonsense.

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makief 2 years, 9 months ago

If you have 3 SRS offices , 1 in Topeka, 1 in Overland Park and 1 in Lawrence, wouldn't it make more sense to keep the one in the middle open, especially if this is the largest one? Do you think poor, mentally handicapped people have the ability to drive to these offices out of state or use the computer to ask questions, or even have the money to get out of town? Not ALL the computer programs are perfect or user friendly either. Why didn't Topeka give the money to SRS to keep the offices open instead of giving it to Sedgwick Co. , the money that they had from Planned Parenthood. Wouldn't that have made more sense as well? Stupid me, I'm talking about the government making sense! Like increasing the speed limit to 75 mph when we are trying to save gas, and people's lives, or putting a coal plant in KS for better health, I expect.!

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ENGWOOD 2 years, 9 months ago

Here we go again, The Looney Liberals of Lawrence whining and crying when it makes it Inconvenient for them or hits them in the pocketbook. But They would sure like everyone to bend to their belief when they stick their nose into the business of other areas of the State. Thanks Sammy!!!!!!!!!!!

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k67 2 years, 9 months ago

LJ World - please find out how much money will be spent: on penalties for canceling the lease on the buildings early, for notifying clients of their new caseworkers, for the time spent entering that information into SRS' computer systems, for all of the notifications to the public that the building is closing, for moving all of the equipment and furniture in the buildings to their new locations, for any building or computer modifications in the buildings where all of these staff will be going, for installing computers and phones and whatever else they need in their new offices, and any other closure-related expenditures? Surely, this was calculated when determining that $300,000 would be saved? Also, by when will we realize those cost savings?

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Linda Endicott 2 years, 9 months ago

Ottawa used to have a Social Security office...now we don't...have to go to Lawrence... Ottawa used to have an unemployment office...now we don't...have to go to Lawrence...

Those places are needed also for the elderly, poor, and disabled, and if you have no car here, you have no access to them...yeah, you can access unemployment online...but have you priced a good computer lately? Not likely that someone on SSI or receiving Medicaid is going to be able to afford one...

Cuts have been coming right and left for a few years now, and apparently no one is safe from them...

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justajoke 2 years, 9 months ago

Remember this will save the State and Taxpayers a lot of money. 1- no more money being spent on leasing two offices. 2- wait-- now we will need to make room and assemble new offices in the surrounding counties for the 87 workers being displaced. and hire movers... 3. Now we need to buy more State Cars for the 12 Social Workers to drive to and from investigations. And some of those workers serve 3 counties. 4. Or we will pay much more in travel reimbursement and overtime.. 5. We will need to pay for new business cards for all Lawrence Workers. 6. We will probably need to add Laptops in this too so they can be used in different locations in case a child might need to be removed . 7. I quit.. I am pretty sure this isn't going to save the Statevany money.. The list goes on and on...

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JM Andy 2 years, 9 months ago

This tyrant needs to be stopped. Can the Nat'l Dems help us? Grassroots movement? Something needs to be done before he does anymore damage to our state.

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Catalano 2 years, 9 months ago

Okay, here's a question no one has asked: Schwada owns the buildings that house SRS. He wanted a two-year lease from a company that opted to move JoCo awhile back (sorry, can't remember the name of the company, but it was a big brouhaha as we were losing good jobs and the lease was part of the story). Is Sam going to pay the rent on these buildings until the leases are up? Will someone please investigate this? How long are the leases, for how much, and will they be paid after SRS exits?

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justajoke 2 years, 9 months ago

I am sure a lot of folks could find the SRS office if it was located at the bottom of the sea but remember our elderly and disabled population and the transportation they rely on. I know a lot use the T-lift and I haven't ever seem, Shawnee, Johnson or Franklin County on the drop off list...

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irvan moore 2 years, 9 months ago

not data driven? does that mean uninformed and not studied?

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lunacydetector 2 years, 9 months ago

SRS doesn't want to pay rent where they're at anymore....they want the county or city to give them a building for free...the county or city won't, so the SRS office leaves lawrence.

news at 11

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meggers 2 years, 9 months ago

The fact that Brownback is using the number of highway lanes in a pathetic attempt to justify this decision confirms what many of us already suspected: a) this about politics and b) Sam thinks the people of Kansas are complete idiots.

I sincerely hope the Journal World is pursuing a Freedom of Information request to get the caseload numbers. If the state doesn't cooperate in a timely fashion, perhaps some of the recently fired SRS administrators might be willing to shed some light on the matter.

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Alceste 2 years, 9 months ago

Rich!! Siedlecki is a much larger puppet with a most limited vocabulary than I had initially thought. He's a little man. Very little, parroting the same "remarks" over and over. Something of a hot head, too, eh? Work on that polishing, Bobby.....

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LogicMan 2 years, 9 months ago

When life gives you lemons -

Would the soon to be closed SRS office make for a good homeless shelter?

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SilverShadow 2 years, 9 months ago

Summation of what Brownback said. "HA, HA. Kansas, I have totally screwed you.

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Cant_have_it_both_ways 2 years, 9 months ago

If the SRS was located at the bottom of the ocean... many of you would figure out a way to get there.

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justajoke 2 years, 9 months ago

Both Brownie and his Sidekick are cowards. Neither one of them care about the vulnerable population in Lawrence. Sidekick is a hypocrite that dosnt even see his own kids except when he gets let loose by Brownie for a few minutes when puppet shows aren't in session. The staff at SRS have been threatened not to talk to the LJ World about caseload counts but if we are talking about saving money, close the Johnson County SRS and that population can travel between Wyandotte, Douglas, and Franklin County.. The caseload is the same in the 3 bigger office per worker.. Oh but wait the majority of people there are Republicans???

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cowboy 2 years, 9 months ago

This is a reason for a press conference ? A questionable 3000 job gain. I could probably spend 3 minutes on Google and dispute this . This was the sorriest attempt at good PR that I have ever seen. Gee , let me toot my own horn for a half hour. Brownback has no clue what the heck is going on , he has to call in a flunkie to answer the simplest questions.

This reformed born again clown is trying to right the ship on the backs of the most vulnerable citizens of Kansas. KNI , women in need of health care , medicaid , uninsured , and pretty much anyone in eastern Kansas.

If saving admin costs is truly the answer we could cut a quick few million just by asking these a$$hats to stay home and not bother coming to work and screwing things up.

I'd like to see signs up at the city limits " Brownback not welcome here"

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Lawrence_Pilot 2 years, 9 months ago

The Chief Republican Extremist (or "Chief Redneck") wants to shut a key state office (that mainly affects people who don't vote...and never vote Republican) in one of the two counties which usually votes Democratic? I'm shocked! Shocked, I tell you. Not.

I've said all along: This and his severe cuts at KU are payback for Douglas Co. voting blue in nearly every election. "Let's give those Lawrence Hippies a taste of GOP Justice! Those Commies have been asking for it since 1853." Expect more over the next 7.5 years (yes, the Chief Redneck will be re-elected.)

If Brownback and his ilk had been in control in the 1800s, Kansas would have been a Slave State. (And, if you're poor or an immigrant, it is today!)

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LH3867 2 years, 9 months ago

Old Soldier - my thoughts exactly!! Bobble head Siedlecki!

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OldSoldier 2 years, 9 months ago

Notice in the video how Side-kickie's head bobs up and down when BB is speaking. Rather like a puppet, do you think?

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Lana Christie-Hayes 2 years, 9 months ago

There's no reason that most of my comments (with the exception of possibly one very short one) should have been deleted. What's up LJW??

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dpowers 2 years, 9 months ago

Center-right in the picture. That sure does look like David Koch!

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dpowers 2 years, 9 months ago

I am sure that the "gentleman" standing on the right side of the camer shot is one of the Koch brothers. Does any one else think it is?

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LH3867 2 years, 9 months ago

As ususal polictical BS. I don't believe a word that comes out of Siedliecki's mouth. He is a Brownback puppet. He has his Harvard credentials but no sense whatsoever. He has proven himself to be nothing but a liar. He doesn't care about Kansas and the taxpayers. God forbid if you need SRS services because they are going to destroy them and never look back. He just thinks his next stop is Washington on the heels of Brownback. Good luck with that Rob. This administration is a joke. This voter thinks you better start praying to the real God. Not the power God you worship. What time is those prayer meetings at the Capital and are they open to the public? Transparency? What a joke.

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lunacydetector 2 years, 9 months ago

we have an $18 million dollar library that will be coming online that will have 100 apple computers, we have freenet, free for the needy, they'll have people in town a couple of days a week if lawrence or the county has the heart to provide space....why can't the school district give the state one of their closed down schools? perhaps our local officials were contacted and they were not receptive.

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goodcountrypeople 2 years, 9 months ago

Not to mention Brownback and his posses of sexist, rightwing old boys are obviously completely clueless when it comes to ethnic sensitivity.

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goodcountrypeople 2 years, 9 months ago

Look at that group off out-of-touch men on the video-- a bunch of corrupt old boys! So sexist, classist, and politically unaware!

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goodcountrypeople 2 years, 9 months ago

Look at that group off out-of-touch men on the video-- a bunch of corrupt old boys! So sexist, classist, and politically unaware!

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JohnSickels 2 years, 9 months ago

I called Brownback's office and lit into the poor guy answering the phone, though I apologized to him and said it wasn't against him personally. I mentioned that Brownback's "four lane road" comment was insulting, and that the city feels like it is being punished for not being Republican enough.

He told me they are getting lots of calls about this, almost all of them negative, and that people are really angry. He said he is passing it up the ladder.

I don't know if that is true or not, but I did what I could. Also wrote letters to all my representatives.

Call Brownback, folks. Write letters. Talk to your friends and neighbors. Get angry, stay angry, but get organized and SAY SOMETHING.

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ksangel1 2 years, 9 months ago

When do "we the people" start insisting enough is enough and proclaim we're not going to take anymore so called "government policies" that only benefit rich republicans? When do we stand up and say "NO MORE"? When do we go back to the founding fathers of a government created by the people and for the people? How much further can we be crushed by gangster politics and corporate policies?

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goodcountrypeople 2 years, 9 months ago

From the Urban Dictionary:

Brownbackistan

a pseudo-Christian fascist state where the arts are not publicly funded, women's reproductive rights are relentlessly attacked, public school funding is drastically cut, voter suppression laws make it nearly impossible for new voters to register to vote, and social services are turned over to evangelical "Christian" groups, all done with the backing of the Koch brothers.

Brownbackistan is a place where civil responsibility takes a back seat to religious intolerance and corporate greed.

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Brownbackistan&defid=5913664

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lsense 2 years, 9 months ago

For anyone who hasn't read this already, it's a great read:

http://web.archive.org/web/20060207014424/http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/story/9178374/gods_senator/

It shows just how big of a religious nutjob Brownback is, and what else we can expect from him in the near future. It also shows that the people who voted for him are either religious nutjobs themselves, or uneducated voters. :-)

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PaladKik 2 years, 9 months ago

Lawrence doesn't need SRS. There are lots of intellectuals in the area that can provide the necessary guidence and leadership through osmosis.

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Shelley Bock 2 years, 9 months ago

Sometime in the past, the idea of closing Lawrence SRS was kicked around by the administrators. Obviously, wiser minds prevailed.

From a political viewpoint, I have the feeling Brownback is "playing" Douglas County. Putting it on the list of closures so he can comeback with a change to make it appear that he "understands the needs of the community" by saving the office from closing.

There was one comment from Siedlecki that seems to suggest another possibility. He indicated that there would be a chance of sending personel to Lawrence if free space was provided. Free space means a contribution from the City, County or other entity. Maybe a church so the poor can be saved at the same time? Brownback would be satisfying his goals that way.

I don't believe that SRS has properly evaluated how much time is spent by workers in court or investigating child-in-need-of-care matters. In addition to all of the time on the roadway, their overall effectiveness will be diminished. This is a ridiculous decision, but one which is typical of this governor and only the beginning of many to come.

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Richard Heckler 2 years, 9 months ago

There is likely a fair number of senior citizens that do not drive nor own a computer.

Then there are others who cannot afford either.

Four lane roads require cars and high dollar gasoline.

Brownback is unreasonable and out of touch.

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sad_lawrencian 2 years, 9 months ago

I, too, have serious misgivings about what the governor and his administration are doing. However, calling the governor names on this forum (like "Der Fuhrer", etc.) is counterproductive. Seriously, people. We need to be civil, and some of you could learn to use spell check before you post this stuff. Brownback's policies won't be changed if we all look like raving idiots.

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Aimee Polson 2 years, 9 months ago

Goodland (Sherman County) - serves 10,449 and can be merged with Colby in Thomas County. Ottawa (Franklin County) - serves 26,513 and can be merged with Douglas and Miami counties. Barton serves 27,511 and can be merged with Pawnee, Reno, or Ellis counties. Cherokee serves 21,451 and can be merged with Labette or Crawford counties.

Not to pick on those four, but just looking at the map along with populations and surrounding SRS centers. Barton, Cherokee, and Franklin all serve single counties. Sherman covers three counties.

Those four centers combined reach a total population of about 86,000 (compared to Douglas County's 112,000) and they are all within one county of a service center. Of course, we don't know the case loads of any of these centers because SRS is electing not to share that information.

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lsense 2 years, 9 months ago

'Brownback said it was reasonable to close the Lawrence office because of its proximity to other SRS offices in other towns that were accessible by "four-lane roads."'

That's all he's got? Like I said before, he doesn't have to answer to taxpayers. He only answers to God.

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Jan Rolls 2 years, 9 months ago

They are just a bunch of lousy bums that could care less about anyone that isn't rich and can contribute to their campaign. Someone ought to sue them.

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defenestrator 2 years, 9 months ago

Sam does not really care about what happens after birth. After that, you're on your own.

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Deb Stavin 2 years, 9 months ago

Wouldn't it have made more sense to send some of the Lawrence SRS staff to other towns on a weekly basis, rather than the other way around?

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angel4dennis 2 years, 9 months ago

This just ticks me off. How can he close down yet another business that is so badly needed around here? Newsflash- not everyone can get around to use a computer, not everyone knows HOW to use a computer, people don't have cars or the gas money to get to a more accessible building when this one CLEARLY IS ACCESSIBLE to Douglas county residents, and even more children are going to suffer because people can't get to another building to get help. So heads up Brownback, what businesses are you closing down next? The Missions?

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Lana Christie-Hayes 2 years, 9 months ago

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Fred Whitehead Jr. 2 years, 9 months ago

Kansans knew (or should have known) that this guy was a religious nut and out to establish a theocracy in Kansas and the country. There should be no surprises to the electorate who fawn and scrape to these slick Republican Terrorist Party members. He was a lousy senator and is a lousy governer. Lawrence is a hotbed of liberal thinking and should not receive any state benefits according to our facist governer. End of story.

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riverdrifter 2 years, 9 months ago

"...Siedlecki agreed to talk to a Journal-World reporter after Brownback's news conference, but then left without doing the interview."

Tells you all you need to know.

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Bruce Bertsch 2 years, 9 months ago

Brownback to Kansans in need..."I don't care." The insidious result will be a savings as those in need are unable to request services. Note that nowhere does Der Fuhrer speak of better serving those in need.

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average 2 years, 9 months ago

Hmm. Seems like there are 4-lane roads between:

Goodland and Colby Newton and Wichita Manhattan and Junction City Leavenworth and KCK

At least he tried to come up with something. We'll see if Siedlecki can do any better.

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autie 2 years, 9 months ago

Did anybody tell Brownshirt and Sid Lick that the people that use SRS service are mostly poverty stricken and don't own cars (if they do they are broke down and without gas)? Did anybody tell them that many don't have the skill set required to go to the lieberry and use the computer? I guess they can just eat cake.

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