State and Region

More health insurance options in Kansas for next year

TOPEKA — Kansas residents using the federal marketplace for individual health insurance will see more options than ever for 2020, and some plans are less expensive than 2019. KCUR reports that the downside for 2020 is that for the second year in a row, consumers must foot the full bill for ...

Armed man at Missouri Walmart pleads guilty to lesser charge

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) — A man who caused panic at a Missouri Walmart when he walked inside wearing body armor and carrying loaded weapons in what he described as an effort to test his right to bear arms pleaded guilty to making a false report Friday after initially being charged with a more ...

Kansas Statehouse in Topeka

Kansas anti-abortion groups divided over ‘personhood amendment’

Topeka (AP) — Abortion opponents who support a constitutional amendment to ban abortions in Kansas are meeting resistance from other anti-abortion groups that are pushing a different approach. Two legislative committees have recommended lawmakers consider the issue during the 2020 ...

Garden Variety: Emerald ash borer infestation expands in Kansas

Last week, the Kansas Department of Agriculture announced that they had confirmed the presence of emerald ash borer in Spring Hill. The finding of this invasive exotic pest will lead to expansion of a federal quarantine and is a reminder to area residents with ash trees on their property to ...

Wichita State University names East Carolina administrator as next president

WICHITA — A vice chancellor at East Carolina University experienced in building research campuses will become the new president of Wichita State University. The Kansas Board of Regents announced Thursday that Jay Golden will assume the job in January. He replaces John Bardo, who led the ...

USDA picks Missouri office building as its Kansas City site

WICHITA — The U.S. Department of Agriculture is renting permanent office space for two of its research agencies in downtown Kansas City, Missouri, despite the union concerns that relocation from the nation's capital has left the agencies critically understaffed and lacking vital ...

Kansas legislative committee OKs steps toward medical marijuana

TOPEKA — A Kansas legislative special committee on Wednesday approved two early, tentative steps toward considering a medical marijuana bill in a state where earlier attempts to consider the issue went nowhere in the face of strong opposition. The Special Committee on Federal and State ...

New Jersey senator wants review of Pompeo visits to Kansas

WASHINGTON — A Democratic senator from New Jersey is questioning whether Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's trips to Kansas violate federal election laws. Sen. Robert Menendez sent a letter Tuesday to the independent U.S. Office of Special Counsel seeking a review of Pompeo's four trips to ...

Kansas Statehouse in Topeka, February 2014.

Want to weigh in on tax reform? Governor’s council seeking public input

Gov. Laura Kelly’s Council on Tax Reform will take public comments at its Nov. 14 meeting in Topeka. Anyone interested in addressing the council must be added to the meeting agenda, according to a news release from the governor's office. To be added to the agenda, email Cory Sheedy at ...

Kobach acknowledges he failed to properly supervise staff during court proceedings

Story updated at 3:15 p.m. Monday TOPEKA — Former Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach acknowledged that he failed to properly supervise his staff while representing himself in that role during federal court proceedings in a voter registration lawsuit, according to a diversion agreement ...

Those pushing a higher vaping age in Kansas worry big tobacco will water down rules

Editor’s note: The Kansas Health Institute receives funding from the Kansas Health Foundation, a financial supporter of the Kansas News Service. TOPEKA, Kan. — Cigarettes are so yesterday. Or yesteryear. That’s why that old-fashioned, combustible path to a nicotine buzz wasn’t the ...

Missouri mayor wants to retire hand-operated tornado siren

With a tornado bearing down on the small Missouri town of Sparta, the lone warning siren stayed silent because a downed tree kept the mayor from getting downtown to flip the switch that activates it. Most tornado sirens are activated remotely by computer, but not Sparta’s. The old siren is ...

Critics say Kansas needs to change its payday loan rules

Topeka — Maria Galvan used to make about $25,000 a year. She didn’t qualify for welfare, but she still had trouble meeting her basic needs. “I would just be working just to be poor and broke,” she said. “It would be so frustrating.” When things got bad, the single mother and ...

Riyadh, Seoul … Wichita? Pompeo seeks refuge in home state

WASHINGTON — Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's schedule usually reads like a list of foreign capitals. But America's top diplomat has been finding ways to swing through his home state of Kansas this year, feeding speculation about a potential Senate run and offering something of a refuge from ...

GOP plan for Medicaid expansion in Kansas gets committee approval

Story updated at 1:36 p.m. Thursday TOPEKA — A Republican-dominated Senate committee has endorsed a plan for expanding government-funded health care for poor and working-class Kansans, despite concerns that it raises tobacco taxes and doesn't have a work requirement for participants. The ...

Survey: Low pay is Kansas state employees’ biggest concern

Topeka — A survey of the state of Kansas’ 8,000 executive branch employees shows that the biggest concern for most of them is low pay and poor benefits. The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that while 65% of respondents from 14 Cabinet agencies are satisfied with their jobs, three in five ...

Douglas County District Court judge to sit with Kansas Supreme Court

Douglas County District Court Judge Kay Huff will sit with the Kansas Supreme Court for four cases next week, the state announced Wednesday. Huff, who oversees criminal and civil cases in Douglas County, will join the court Tuesday, Oct. 29, to hear oral arguments, deliberate and help draft ...