State Government

Kansas faces future budget woes even with a revenue surplus

TOPEKA — Kansas' tax collections have beaten expectations nearly every month for the past two years and the state expects to end June with close to $1 billion in cash reserves, but the budget problems that followed a former governor's notorious tax-cutting experiment aren't necessarily a ...

Kansas Supreme Court strikes down cap in injury cases

Story updated at 4:48 p.m. Friday TOPEKA — The Kansas Supreme Court on Friday ruled that the state's cap on damages for noneconomic injuries in personal injury lawsuits is unconstitutional. The court ruled 4-2 that capping damages an injured person is able to recover in a lawsuit violates ...

Lawrence business wins Governor’s Exporter of the Year award

A Lawrence company that designs, manufactures and sells laboratory research equipment for use in the field of neuroscience was recently awarded the Governor’s Exporter of the Year award. Pinnacle Technology Inc., 2721 Oregon St., received the award from Team Kansas and the Kansas Department ...

Kansas Supreme Court finds new K-12 education funding law constitutional

Updated at 5:31 p.m. Friday The Kansas Supreme Court ruled Friday that the state’s newest education funding plan is constitutional, seemingly bringing an end to an almost decade-long fight over the adequacy of K-12 funding. But the justices are refusing to relinquish jurisdiction over the ...

USDA research relocation expected to bring 550 jobs to Kansas City area

Story updated at 2:19 p.m. Thursday TOPEKA — The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced Thursday that it will relocate two research agencies' headquarters to the Kansas City area, delighting Kansas and Missouri officials but intensifying critics' fears that research will suffer and be less ...

State: Rhododendrons bought at Kansas Walmarts should be destroyed

TOPEKA — The state is asking anyone who bought a rhododendron plant at Walmart stores in Kansas since April to destroy them. The Kansas Department of Agriculture reported Friday that confirmed cases of the Sudden Oak Death disease have been found in rhododendrons sold at 60 Walmarts in ...

Top GOP lawmakers hold up nearly $10M for Kansas prisons

TOPEKA — Top Republican legislators on Wednesday blocked nearly $10 million that Kansas corrections officials argue they need to deal with prison overcrowding and said lawmakers might reject Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly's choice to be the prison system's next leader. The actions by Republican ...

Kansas GOP leaders say new food assistance policy breaks state law

TOPEKA — Top Republican legislators on Tuesday accused Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly’s administration of breaking Kansas law with a new policy that makes it easier for adults who are not working to keep receiving food assistance. Kansas House Majority Leader Dan Hawkins demanded in a letter ...

Kansas collected $77M more in taxes in May than anticipated

TOPEKA — Kansas reports it collected $77 million more in taxes than expected in May. The state Department of Revenue said Monday that Kansas collected $563 million in taxes last month when it anticipated $486 million. The surplus was 15.9%. Tax collections for the budget year that began in ...

Kansas commission reduces insurance rates for some state employees

Story updated at 5:21 p.m. Monday TOPEKA — A Kansas commission voted Monday to give state employees a break on health insurance rates after they endured years of significant increases. The Kansas Employees Health Care Commission voted unanimously to either reduce state employees' rates 6% ...

May health code inspections: 3 found out of compliance in Douglas County

Three organizations in Douglas County failed state health code inspections in May. Each month, I take a look at inspection results and list every place either listed out of compliance or with 10 or more code violations. Full reports are available online at agriculture.ks.gov. There, you can ...

Newspaper: Ex-Kansas commerce chief linked to data transfer

TOPEKA — A former state commerce secretary whose conduct is being reviewed by the Kansas Bureau of Investigation participated in transferring state data to a private company with ties to him while in office, according to a newspaper report. The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that it used ...

Kansas’ next prison chief rebuked by judge in Idaho lawsuit

Wichita — Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly’s choice to be the next head of the state prison system was criticized by an Idaho judge earlier this year for giving “disingenuous” testimony as a top corrections official there in a lawsuit over access to execution records. Kelly’s office has said ...

Brownback to be honored with Gandhi award for work as religious freedom envoy

WASHINGTON — Former Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback will be honored for his work as U.S. ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom. The Kansas City Star reports that the Hindu American Foundation plans to give Brownback its Mahatma Gandhi Award for Advancing Pluralism. The ...

Governor views 30-plus miles of Kansas tornado damage

Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly took a flight tour Thursday over the path of an EF-4 tornado that left nearly 32 miles of destruction in Douglas and Leavenworth counties. Kelly described feeling “incredibly overwhelmed” seeing the devastation in full from the air. “It just keeps going on and ...

Kansas Senate confirms Kelly nominee to Court of Appeals

TOPEKA — The Kansas Senate has confirmed Gov. Laura Kelly's nomination of a Kansas City-area attorney to the state's second-highest court. The vote Wednesday was 37-1 for Sarah Warner of Lenexa to be Court of Appeals judge. The Democratic governor submitted Warner's name to the ...