State Government

Kansas prisons get more money; provisions worry officials

TOPEKA — A plan for fixing problems in the troubled Kansas prison system that could have created bipartisan harmony has instead inspired finger pointing and prompted complaints that the Republican-controlled Legislature botched pieces of the next state budget. Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly and ...

Real ID process presents problems for some Kansas residents

TOPEKA — The process of obtaining a new Real ID is creating headaches for some Kansas residents. Vietnam War veteran Armando Fleming is among several Kansas residents who have left driver's license offices empty-handed after learning that the documents they brought to verify their identity ...

Republicans push tax relief through Kansas Legislature

TOPEKA — Republican legislators have pushed a tax relief proposal through the Kansas Legislature, ignoring predictions from Gov. Laura Kelly's fellow Democrats that she will veto it, just as she did with a larger plan. The House voted 83-41 late Saturday night to approve a bill designed to ...

Kansas House passes budget, thwarting efforts to expand Medicaid

Story updated at 12:17 a.m. Sunday TOPEKA — Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly's effort to expand Medicaid in Kansas this year died Saturday when enough moderate Republicans bowed to the wishes of the GOP-controlled Legislature's conservative leaders and ended an impasse that had tied up the state ...

Kansas House rejects budget twice as part of Medicaid expansion fight

Story updated at 11:02 p.m. Friday Topeka — Kansas lawmakers who support expanding Medicaid blocked passage of the next state budget twice on Friday in a high-stakes standoff designed to force the Legislature’s conservative Republican leaders to allow an expansion plan backed by Democratic ...

Republicans in Kansas Legislature revive tax relief legislation

TOPEKA — Republican legislators in Kansas revived tax relief legislation Thursday night without assurances that Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly would accept a new, smaller plan for helping individuals and businesses who are paying more in state income taxes because of changes in federal tax ...

Kansas conservatives put off fight to overturn abortion-rights ruling

TOPEKA — Abortion opponents are waiting until next year to try to overturn a Kansas Supreme Court decision protecting abortion rights, signaling they may not have enough support yet to push the necessary state constitutional amendment through the Legislature. Top Republicans in the ...

Kansas House fails on second attempt to override governor’s veto of abortion bill

TOPEKA — The Kansas House has voted again to uphold Gov. Laura Kelly's veto of a bill requiring abortion providers to tell patients that a medication abortion can be stopped once it has been started. The vote Thursday in the Republican-controlled House was 83-41 to reconsider a vote ...

Kansas lawmakers approve bill saying child not ‘aggressor’ in abuse cases

Story updated at 3:22 p.m. Thursday TOPEKA — A bill approved by the Kansas Legislature is designed to prevent judges from lowering sentences for child sex offenders if they think the victims were willing participants in the crime. The Kansas Senate on Wednesday approved the bill, which was ...

April health code inspections: 6 found out of compliance

Several organizations in Douglas County failed state health code inspections in April. 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 ...

Kansas collected $81M more in taxes than expected in April

TOPEKA — Kansas is reporting that it collected $81 million more in taxes in April than anticipated even after officials issued a more optimistic fiscal forecast during the month. The state Department of Revenue's report Wednesday came as Republican legislators attempted to revive a tax ...

Kansas lawmaker calls for hearing on anti-discrimination bill before session ends

As the Kansas Legislature returned to the Statehouse to begin its veto session on Wednesday, an openly gay lawmaker called on his colleagues to begin working on a bill that would protect the LGBTQ community from discrimination. Rep. Brandon Woodard, D-Lenexa, who is one of two openly LGBTQ ...

Kansas lawmakers fail to override governor’s abortion ‘reversal’ veto

Story updated at 4:31 p.m. Wednesday TOPEKA — Republican lawmakers in Kansas narrowly failed Wednesday to override Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly's veto of a bill requiring abortion providers to tell patients about a disputed treatment to stop a medication abortion after it's been started. It ...

Kansas governor seeking more money for prisons

TOPEKA — Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly is seeking $35 million to improve corrections officer salaries and inmate health care and to transfer inmates out of overcrowded state prisons. Kelly on Tuesday submitted an amended budget proposal for the spending year that begins July 1 for lawmakers to ...

Medicaid expansion backers in Kansas may hold budget hostage

Story updated at 8:33 p.m. Wednesday TOPEKA — Advocates for expanding Medicaid in Kansas are looking to block passage of the state's next annual budget to force an expansion plan through the Republican-controlled Legislature over conservative leaders' objections. Legislators reconvened ...

Kansas governor nominates Lawrence attorney as appeals court judge amid lawsuit

Story updated at 12:43 p.m. Tuesday TOPEKA — Kansas' governor nominated a new judge Tuesday to the state's second-highest court, despite a lawsuit over whether she has the authority to fill the vacancy after withdrawing her first nominee over his past political tweets. Democratic Gov. Laura ...

Study: Kansas juvenile arrests drop as changes get underway

TOPEKA — Fewer juveniles have been arrested and held in the Kansas juvenile justice system while the state has been investing in alternatives to incarceration, according to a recent study. The Pew Charitable Trusts found that the number of juvenile arrests in Kansas fell by 29% between 2015 ...