State Government

Kansas abortion ruling prompts new legal attack on death penalty

TOPEKA — A recent Kansas Supreme Court ruling declaring that the state constitution protects access to abortion opened the door to a new legal attack on the death penalty. Attorneys for five of the 10 men on death row in Kansas argue that the abortion decision means the state's courts can ...

Kansas grapples with growing number of abandoned wells

EUDORA — Kansas residents and environmentalists are calling on oil and gas regulators to address the growing number of abandoned wells over the past five years. The state is home to 22,000 deserted oil and gas wells, with more than 19,000 of those residing in a 32-county area in eastern ...

Kansas to allow transgender residents to change birth certificates

TOPEKA — Kansas will allow transgender people to change their birth certificates so the documents reflect their gender identities under a legal settlement that Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly's young administration and LGBTQ-rights advocates announced Monday. The agreement ends a federal lawsuit ...

Jan Meyers, Kansas’ 1st GOP congresswoman, dies at age 90

TOPEKA — Longtime Rep. Jan Meyers, the first Republican woman elected to the U.S. House from Kansas, has died at the age of 90. Meyers died Friday at a nursing home where she was living. The cause of death was not announced. Meyers, of Overland Park, represented the state's 3rd ...

Kansas parks tabulating economic losses from floods

HUTCHINSON — This spring’s heavy rain and flooding will cause significant economic losses at many of the state’s 28 parks, both from damage and from closures and refunds to disappointed campers, state parks officials said. Brad Loveless, secretary of the Kansas Department of Wildlife, ...

President Trump OKs disaster funds for more than half of Kansas

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump has approved a disaster declaration covering more than half of the Kansas' 105 counties. The federal assistance approved Thursday will provide service and funds to help recovery from severe weather that began on April 28 and included tornadoes and ...

Ex-Senate leader to help lead Kansas governor’s tax study

TOPEKA — Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly is giving a key role in a study of Kansas tax laws to a former Republican state Senate leader who was ousted after conflicts with one of her GOP predecessors over tax cuts. Kelly announced Thursday that former Senate President Steve Morris will serve as ...

ACLU attacks restrictions on protests in Kansas Statehouse

Story updated at 3:23 p.m. Wednesday TOPEKA — The American Civil Liberties Union asked a federal judge Wednesday to make it easier to protest inside the Kansas Statehouse, as some members of the Republican-controlled Legislature worry that liberal demonstrators have become increasingly ...

Tuition for in-state undergrads will not increase at Regents universities in Kansas

Updated at 5 p.m. Wednesday Tuition for in-state undergraduate students at Kansas universities will not increase next school year. The Kansas Board of Regents gave final approval to tuition rate proposals for the 2019-2020 school year during its regular meeting on Wednesday, forcing all of ...

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 ...