Allison Kite

Allison Kite

Allison Kite is a data reporter for The Missouri Independent and Kansas Reflector, with a focus on the environment and agriculture. A graduate of the University of Kansas, she’s covered state government in both Topeka and Jefferson City, and most recently was City Hall reporter for The Kansas City Star.

Kansas senators pass sweeping 4.75% flat income tax

By: - February 23, 2023

The richest Kansans would receive thousands of dollars in income tax cuts while the poorest residents would save just a few under a bill Kansas senators passed Thursday. After a debate that turned bitter when a Democratic senator proposed a graduated income tax system, the Kansas Senate voted 22-17 for a 4.75% flat income tax […]

Kansas voters, including people using this Lawrence polling station, cast ballots Tuesday in races for U.S. House and U.S. Senate. For the first time, Lawrence residents are part of the 1st District stretching to the Colorado border. The shift devised by the GOP-led Legislature was to dilute influence of left-leaning Lawrence in congressional contests. (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

Kansas House, Senate pass bills on ballot boxes, three-day grace period for advance ballots

By: and - February 23, 2023

TOPEKA — Election legislation meant to shore up public trust and transparency passed out of the Kansas House and Senate on Thursday, despite concerns that the bills would have a chilling effect on voters. House and Senate lawmakers passed bills ending the three-day grace period for advance ballot collection 77-45, following Wednesday’s debate on the […]

Barb Wasinger

Kansas House and Senate both pass legislation targeting transgender youth

By: and - February 23, 2023

TOPEKA —  The Kansas House passed parental rights legislation and a controversial transgender student athlete sports bill following months of debate and pushback from public education officials and advocates. The transgender student athlete bill has been debated for the past three years, although education officials have said the bill’s scope is extremely narrow. Only two […]

Kansas House committee advances bills to conserve water in Ogallala Aquifer

By: - February 16, 2023

Members of a Kansas House committee on Thursday passed legislation meant to push officials in western Kansas to come up with ideas to conserve water in the disappearing Ogallala Aquifer. The legislation — along with a bill dedicating sales tax revenue to fund water projects — passed the House Water Committee on a voice vote with […]

Audit finds western Kansas keeps losing water, despite local efforts

By: - February 15, 2023

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Local agencies in western Kansas have had decades to slow the decline of the Ogallala Aquifer, but most areas had less water last year than they did a decade ago, according to an audit released Wednesday. The audit, which evaluated groundwater management districts, or GMDs, was released as a staggering drought and […]

A center-pivot irrigation system is viewed in a field

House bill calls for western Kansas to create plans to save the Ogallala Aquifer

By: - February 9, 2023

TOPEKA — For half a century, groundwater managers in western Kansas have been charged with slowing the decline of the Ogallala Aquifer. Fifty years later, parts of the aquifer are nearing crisis, and legislators want action. “We’re here today so that we don’t become what the Colorado River Valley or Central California looks like,” said […]

Oil covers a swath of Bill Pannbacker's pasture near Washington, Kansas

Keystone pipeline owner blames Kansas spill on faulty weld, estimates $480M remediation cost

By: - February 9, 2023

TOPEKA — The Keystone oil pipeline’s massive spill in northern Kansas was likely caused by a faulty welding job, the company that owns the pipeline said Thursday. Federal regulators in December ordered Canada-based TC Energy to investigate the cause of the spill in Washington County, which dumped oil onto adjacent farmland and into Mill Creek. […]

After past poison pill bills, Kansas Senate considers wind energy compromise

By: - January 26, 2023

After a bevy of legislation seemingly meant to bring wind energy development to a halt, Kansas senators are considering a bill that could appease rural neighbors annoyed by turbines.  For years, the plains of Kansas has been among the largest sources of wind energy in the United States. Both Democratic and Republican lawmakers have lauded […]

A center-pivot irrigation system is viewed in a field

Kansas legislators renew efforts to save Ogallala Aquifer

By: - January 17, 2023

TOPEKA — Saving the Ogallala Aquifer could mean economic trade-offs in the short-term, the chairman of the Kansas House Water Committee said Tuesday. But the state can make progress and still maintain the farming economy of western Kansas, said Rep. Jim Minnix, R-Scott City.  “If I were a banker … looking at the value of […]

Evergy blames renewable plans, inflation for $1 billion rise in infrastructure plans

By: - January 10, 2023

Kansas’ largest electric utility says inflation and plans to add more renewable energy are to blame for the ever-rising estimated cost of its infrastructure investments. Evergy’s plan, which outlines investments in the grid and energy production, is more than $1 billion higher than the one it filed in 2021, which was $1 billion higher than […]

Oil covers parts of Bill Pannbacker's pasture following a rupture on the Keystone oil pipeline.

New order puts Keystone pipeline cleanup under EPA oversight

By: - January 9, 2023

Owners of the Keystone oil pipeline must complete their cleanup of a massive spill in northern Kansas under oversight of the federal government, the Environmental Protection Agency announced Monday. The EPA and TC Energy, which operates the Keystone pipeline, signed a cleanup agreement last week, according to a news release from the EPA. It requires […]

Kansas Gov. Kelly calls for ‘civility and kindness’ in second inaugural speech

By: and - January 9, 2023

It’s time to turn down the volume and reject the divisive politics of Washington, D.C., Gov. Laura Kelly said Monday. Instead, she said, Kansas leaders should be “guided by civility and kindness, even when we disagree.”  “Perhaps, especially when we disagree,” Kelly said. Kelly, a Democrat, took the oath of office and began her second […]