State and Region

Most Kansas counties’ websites lagging behind on cybersecurity

Topeka — When it comes to cybersecurity, most Kansas counties are behind. Overall, only eight county websites end in .gov, a domain extension that’s only given to governments. Most of Kansas’ 105 counties, including Douglas County, have websites ending in .org or .com. And 60 ...

Kansas business groups mobilize to stop local bans on plastic bags, straws

TOPEKA — Kansas business groups have mobilized to snuff out a budding movement among a few cities to ban single-use plastic bags and straws, frustrating environmentalists who can't get the Republican-controlled Legislature to tackle climate issues. The GOP-led House commerce committee on ...

As climate changes, activists struggle for Kansas’ attention

TOPEKA — Environmentalists are struggling to get lawmakers to even discuss climate change as a serious issue in Kansas, where some leaders of the Republican-controlled Legislature question the widespread scientific consensus that human activity is dangerously warming the planet. States such ...

Kansas Statehouse in Topeka, February 2014.

Audit shows IT security problems across Kansas agencies

TOPEKA — The Kansas Legislature’s auditing division says state agencies have significant information technology security weaknesses and haven't made progress since previous reports showed the same problems. The Topeka Capital Journal reports that more than half of 19 state agencies studied ...

Federal judge in Kansas who was reprimanded for sexual harassment resigns

Kansas City, Kan. — A federal judge in Kansas who was publicly reprimanded for sexually harassing female employees and having an extramarital affair with an offender resigned on Tuesday, saying he could no longer effectively serve on the court. U.S. District Judge Carlos Murguia, who was ...

Kansas lawmakers take aim at rising medical costs, surprise bills

TOPEKA — A flurry of proposals in the Kansas Statehouse this session take aim at rising medical costs, including one that may be the state’s first attempt to rein in “surprise bills.” Republican Sen. Richard Hilderbrand has introduced two price-transparency proposals and Democratic ...

Nursing home company banned from Kansas for 10 years

Iola — A Georgia nursing home company has been banned from working in Kansas for 10 years and fined $100,000 for failing to protect patient and employee records, Attorney General Derek Schmidt said Friday. An Allen County District Court judge approved the consent judgment against AltaCare ...

Publisher of Kansas City Star, Miami Herald files for bankruptcy

The publisher of the Miami Herald, The Kansas City Star and dozens of other newspapers across the country is filing for bankruptcy protection. McClatchy Co.'s 30 newsrooms, including The Charlotte Observer, The News and Observer in Raleigh, and The Star-Telegram in Fort Worth, will continue to ...

Texas AG asks U.S. Supreme Court to overturn California travel ban

Houston — The Texas attorney general has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn a California law prohibiting state employees from taking taxpayer-funded business trips to expos or conferences in Texas. Attorney General Ken Paxton asked the high court to reverse the ban on Monday, the ...

Wichita State’s New President: ‘We Have To Be More Entrepreneurial’

WICHITA — Nervous liberal arts professors. Stagnant enrollment. Costs rising faster than state funding. These are the challenges Kansas’ universities must decide how to handle. And the man making those decisions for Wichita State University is its new president, Jay Golden. Golden ...

Kansas professors earn thousands less than faculty at similar colleges

Wichita — Faculty at state colleges in Kansas find themselves armed with fresh ammunition in their ongoing plea for more pay. New state data show most Kansas universities pay their instructors significantly less than similar universities in other states. While a dollar goes far in Kansas, ...

Disabled workers in Kansas struggling to find employment

MCCONNELL AIR FORCE BASE — Nikki Heiman was excited to learn that the state was sending a job counselor to work with her son, Trenton, a high school student with Down syndrome. But that excitement fizzled when Heiman learned the specialist could only meet with Trenton once a month — and ...

New restrictions may prevent refugees from relocating in Kansas

Garden City — Rohingya refugees have made southwest Kansas home, but now a pipeline for family reunification could get cut off. Myanmar is one of the latest countries where refugees face a new ban on immigrant visas. The country’s Rohingya Muslim minorities have been fleeing genocide since ...

Hedge fund pushes Kansas utility toward wind, solar

Topeka — Curtis Sneden remembers what impatient investors did to Topeka-based Payless Shoes: pressure for profits now and the bankruptcy that followed. Now the president of the Greater Topeka Chamber of Commerce looks at regional utility giant Evergy and worries what might come of pressure ...