Archive for Sunday, February 12, 2012

Capitol Briefing: Immigration; Kan-ed; Redistricting; Snow removal

February 12, 2012


Quote of the week

“It’s really unique, the legislative process, as you well know. It’s one of those that gets into your bloodstream … or you run screaming from the building.”

— Alan Conroy, in remarks to legislators as he was leaving as director of Kansas Legislative Research Department, where he has worked since 1983, to become executive director of the Kansas Public Employees Retirement System.

Immigration debate returns to Kansas

Bills dealing with illegal immigration, including one almost identical to Arizona’s Senate Bill 1070, which was drafted by Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach and has drawn national attention, will be considered this week.

House Bills 2492, 2576, 2577 and 2578 will be heard before the House Federal and State Affairs Committee at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, Thursday and Friday in Room 346-South in the Statehouse.

HB 2578 would require: “Upon any lawful stop, detention, or arrest made by a state, county or city law enforcement officer of this state in the enforcement of any state law or ordinance of a city or county of this state, where reasonable suspicion exists that the person is an alien and is unlawfully present in the United States, a reasonable attempt shall be made, when practicable, to determine the citizenship and immigration status of the person, except if the determination may hinder or obstruct an investigation.”

SB 1070 has essentially the same language and critics of the law say it will result in racial profiling. That part of the law has been blocked in federal court and appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, which will hear oral arguments in the case in April.

Audit finds potential savings in Kan-ed

A state audit says there are significant savings that could be realized in Kan-ed, a broadband technology network for schools, libraries and hospitals.

Last year, Kan-ed was under fire from some legislators, who said the network had overreached its mission. Kan-ed funding was cut from $10 million to $6 million.

Now, a report from Legislative Post Audit says more could be cut.

The audit says 57 percent of Kan-ed network connections could be replaced with less expensive commercial Internet connections or disconnected completely. That would save $2 million per year, the audit says.

The audit also found that Kan-ed spent $2.4 million on databases and software services in the last fiscal year, but providing content was not part of Kan-ed’s mission under state law.

Several legislative committees have been reviewing the audit to determine what to do next.

Redistricting rumor surfaces

Probably no subject more than redistricting produces questions about the political motives of elected officials who are drawing the boundaries that determine which voters will reside in which districts.

Senate Democratic Leader Anthony Hensley, D-Topeka, said a rumor behind a congressional redistricting plan that would have split Topeka between the 1st and 2nd U.S. House districts was that Gov. Sam Brownback’s Chief of Staff David Kensinger, who resides in Topeka, wanted to run in the Republican Party primary against U.S. Rep. Tim Huelskamp, who represents the 1st. Kensinger said there was no truth to the rumor. That proposed map failed in a Senate vote.

Managing snow and ice costly

Although there hasn’t been much snow this winter, the Kansas Department of Transportation devotes a lot of resources to clearing roadways.

During an average winter, KDOT uses 4 million gallons of salt brine, 103,000 tons of salt and 574 snow plows on the state’s 10,000-mile system. Acting Transportation Secretary Barbara Rankin says keeping traffic moving is an essential part of the economy. On a typical February weekday, more than $175 million in goods and commuters earning $30 million in daily wages, are on Kansas roads.

A report called “Managing Snow and Ice” is on KDOT’s website at

What’s next:

3:30 p.m. Tuesday: Hearing on House Bill 2260, which would prohibit government from substantially burdening a person’s exercise of religion, before House Judiciary Committee, Room 346-South, Capitol.


deec 6 years, 4 months ago

HB 2260 is the theocrats hard at work repressing everyone else as usual. It would essentially nullify all local ordinances preventing discrimination based on sexual preference, and would allow anyone to disregard pretty much any law or ordinance they claimed violates their religious freedom. Included are allowances to sue with relief including (1) Injunctive relief; (2) protective order; (3) writ of mandamus or prohibition; (4) declaratory relief; (5) actual damages; or (6) costs and attorney fees determined by the court. There's also, of course, a clause to placate the pro-birthers: "Nothing in this act shall be construed to:...protect actions or decisions to end the life of any child, born or unborn."

question4u 6 years, 4 months ago

HB 2578: "... where reasonable suspicion exists that the person is an alien..."

Rep. Connie O'Brien claims to be able to recognize an alien by "that olive complexion." That kind of racist idiocy is built into HB 2578.

Justice demands that laws apply equally to all, regardless of skin color. Evidently there are plenty of people in the Kansas House who are not interested in justice. Who needs justice when ignorant stereotypes will do? After all, it's not as though traffic cops will call in Virgil Peck and his helicopters full of sharpshooters every time a citizen with an "olive complexion" is stopped for a burnt out tail light – at least not until Connie, Virgil or some other dim bulb thinks of that amendment.

"...indivisible, with liberty and justice for all (who don't have that olive complexion)."

Michael LoBurgio 6 years, 4 months ago

Kobach anti-immigrant law has done wonders in alabama!

Alabama allowed itself to be used as a guinea pig on illegal immigration so that a Kansas lawyer could build his political career

It has embarrassed the governor, discouraged industry, scared legal immigrants and, according to a recent report, been a drag on the state economy it was supposed to help.

In return, what have we gotten for playing the guinea pig?

Crops rotting in the field, a net loss to the economy, higher racial tensions and a PR black eye, to boot.

Does any of this matter to an up-and-coming politician in Kansas?

Sure doesn’t sound like it. Anyway, it’s just part of Mr. Kobach’s Alabama experiment.

Take the ba out of kobach and you get a KOCH!

alexjandra 6 years, 4 months ago

Correct! As an adult you have a choice...but what about those undocumented children who don't have a choice and brought here by there parents? Kick them out too? You might as well be sending your own children to a foreign country they do not know. How would they fare?

voevoda 6 years, 4 months ago

It costs more to deport illegal aliens than they cost the economy. That's because we're a nation of laws and due process. I personally would like to keep it that way.

jhawkinsf 6 years, 4 months ago

Compare Alabama with California. California, with a burgeoning population, fueled by large numbers of illegal immigrants, is going broke. A state of 35,000,000 can't pay it's bills. Schools, infrastructure, everything, going to heck. Ten of thousands are on streets every day looking for "under the table" work. Hospital emergency rooms full with people who are seeking basic care. English is a foreign language. Sanctuary cities that provide taxpayer supported services to all, whether they are legal or not. Immigration status cannot even be asked, making it difficult to even determine who is getting what. The rule of law has become a joke as prisons are overflowing.
Whatever problems exist in Alabama, they pale in comparison to those in California.

Michael LoBurgio 6 years, 4 months ago

Presence of CPAC panelist "Jared Taylor White supremacists" raises troubling issues for GOP

Memo to the GOP: White supremacists no longer announce themselves by marching hooded and torching crosses.

On Saturday, Vandervoort sat alongside Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach for a CPAC immigration panel. Republican U.S. Rep. David Rivera of Florida was also present

Read more here:

Taylor proclaimed immigration the “greatest threat to whites today.” He wrote that one step is changing attitudes “at the right levels” and getting rid of “anti-white policies.”

Taylor is not talking about illegal versus legal immigration. He worries about too many minorities, period.

Reasonable people can express differing views about immigration, crime and class issues entwined with race without spewing eugenics ideology.

Flap Doodle 6 years, 4 months ago

It should be both unprofitable and unpleasant to be in America illegally. People who hire illegal aliens need to be facing significant jail time.

Armstrong 6 years, 4 months ago

Or any other here I L L E G A L L Y. Now that we've cleared that up

Paul R Getto 6 years, 4 months ago

+1 Snap: I tend to agree and am willing to see food prices skyrocket if this is done. It is, however, the only way to make the 'progress' some want. The problem: Many of the screamers are also large contributors to politicians of both parties and they really do not want "anything done." Be bad for biddness, you know...

usnsnp 6 years, 4 months ago

Why would a foreign company want build a plant in a state where their managment team could be stopped and asked for their papers just because of the color of their skin. This occured in Alabama and the Governor had to apologise to the company.

lawslady 6 years, 4 months ago

On the Kan-Ed matter - the reason the legislators originally allowed public funding for internet connectivity for public schools etc was that (a)it was cost prohibitive to get it through the commercial carriers and (b) some commerecial carriers didn't even offer it in the more rural areas. So the public option was created in order to provide internet to schools etc. The main opponents to it were, have been, and still are the commercial carriers like AT&T and Sprint. If you take away the Kan-Ed option and just tell schools etc. to get their internet through the commercial carriers, how long will it be before those money making machines hike their prices up (again)? The public will end up paying more over all than Kan-Ed costs. Free market sounds good, till you remember that these companies are only in it to make a profit (nothing wrong with that) and the schools etc. are non-profit. So expect the costs to rise. And someone will have to pay the extra $ or we can have our schools etc. go back to not offering internet to students.

Brittanicus 6 years, 4 months ago


Cannot explain why President Obama and his minions have quietly begun to erode the enforcement laws of the 1986 Immigration reform and Control act (IRCA)? Audited ICE raids are well down and now he's given preferential treatment to people who not entered America illegally. Once here they have to locate a job and that acquiring an Americans Social Security number. If ID theft is classified as a felony, how come foreigners are now pardoned, when any other U.S. criminal would be facing a judge and prison? A similar circumstance has arisen for notorious Sanctuary cities like Los Angeles and San Francisco, Denver, Houston, New York that that city officials are ignoring ICE and allowing illegal aliens to thrive? Why haven’t these elected individuals been arrested and held accountable? Then we have the savage intimidation of Arizona, Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, Utah and South Carolina whose purpose is to implement immigration policing laws, to cut back on the debt of UNFUNDED MANDATES inherited from U.S. courts, and forced on all 50 states, that we must supply welfare resources, including health care, education to K-12 for illegal alien offspring.


As further detrimental to the taxpayers the law says a child born in the US, gets instant recognition as a citizen, therefore the taxpayer must pay for everything. EVERYTHING! In the majority of cases the female US pregnant mothers is denied and are coerced into paying fees, when hunted down by bill collectors. With Obamacare gathering momentum millions of more desperate migrants and immigrants will invade this country looking for that free ride. Certainly under this administrations cavalier socialist philosophy, there is a pending opportunity to pass a new blanket amnesty. Whether its 11 million people according to our defective government statistics or more believable 20 to 30 million persons already here; the price tag is in the Trillions to complete such an obnoxious venture? Once accomplished”Chain Migration" will intensify, adding even more people to the original permanent residency approvals.

Brittanicus 6 years, 4 months ago

People don't have any idea of the implication of both Republican and Democratic platform on illegal immigration. It's not just jobs and futures society becoming Balkanized? It's not just about language, which has caused wars around the world? The major fear should be is OVERPOPULATION? The Southwest already suffers from a scarcity of drinking water? Then there are the serious energy issues, because of the spread of concrete sidewalks? Overpopulation, traffic overcrowding, urban sprawl, pollution, environmental damage, water, oil, gas, energy diminishing resources, contagious diseases, lack of affordable housing, depressed wages of US citizens, an underground economy caused by illegal aliens, fraudulent documents, identity theft, Sanctuary cities, predatory businesses tax evasion, soaring nationwide crime rate growth , increased taxpayer burdens, $40 + billions of Dollars wired across the borders and overseas, overcrowded schools, uneducated legal children, overcrowded prisons, insufficient health care for legal residents, but free health care for illegal immigrants and paying out Child Tax Credits for children of illegal aliens, who by ersatz are given citizenship. Then recently revealed $10 billion dollars that is returned to foreign nationals using IRS issued ITIN numbers or stolen Social Security numbers.

Seek out your politician either by phone at 202-224-3121, or go their office in person. Insist that they are–OUT–if they vote for any kind of AMNESTY or that they disguise a Comprehensive Immigration Reform. Tell them E-Verify must be made permanent, to start “ATTRITION” process by enforcement procedure for every illegal worker in America? Find out what you do for this Representative Republic, that this administration wants to alter into a Socialist nation. We cannot afford overpopulation growth, we are broke and our corrupt politicians are pandering to illegal immigrant open-border fanatics? The Obama administration is very silent on their push for another blanket amnesty, which will surely commence if he is reelected.

A bill, newly introduced by Senator Robert Menendez (D–NJ) a Comprehensive Immigration Reform package, granting legal permanent residence status to the nearly 11 million illegal immigrants (more like 20 to 30 million) already for reading in the United States Congress. Additionally, the bill’s language also fully incorporates the DREAM Act and the Agricultural Jobs Act (Agjob), providing two further avenues to amnesty for illegal immigrants. This country already under a current strain of rapid spending by the Democrats will speed us into oblivion and insolvency.

Our future shows summary promise in Congress, should voters demand a nationwide mandatory process, called "The Legal Workforce Act." With easy access through any computer any person can be identified through federal data bases.

Brittanicus 6 years, 4 months ago

With 9 percent unemployment, thousands of illegal aliens unable to claim a job once processed then thousands of Americans can be hired.

It is precisely the same with 'Birthright Citizenship Act' Smuggling babies by foreign women onto these shores, is by far the most expensive deficit engineered by the Liberal activist judges, using an inept 14th Amendment that needs to be revised. Without it 400.000 pregnant illegal alien females yearly will keep turning up in our overcrowded emergency rooms, gaining the free ticket that’s available under the present law.

NOTHING WILL PREVENT THIS TRAVESTY, UNTIL AMERICANS WAKE UP AND CUT OFF BENEFITS FROM PEOPLE WHO ARE UNLAWFUL ENTRANTS. America has also become a dumping ground of human criminal garbage of every poor country in the world. In the last 10 years criminal activity involving illegal migrants and immigrants has escalated, and one of the prevalent crimes is drunken driving and hit and runs; bring human animals that prey on our unsuspected victims. In California this is a daily occurrence of “hit and Runs” spiraling out of control. The Secretary of Homeland Security says the border is secured, then why are drug cartels taking over land adjacent to the Mexican border fence?

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