Author

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.

‘Nonrenewable resource’: As western Kansas dries up, Legislature revisits water policy

By: - January 9, 2022

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — For the better part of a decade, the drinking water supply for a small southwest Kansas town was almost constantly contaminated with unsafe levels of radium, a radioactive element that can cause cancer. The city of Lakin found unsafe levels of uranium in its water in 2007, said Mike Heinitz, the […]

The Johnson County Commission voted Monday to adopt solar farm regulations that include a maximum size of 2,000 acres and a 2-mile setback from city boundaries. (Photo by Sirisak Boakaew/Getty Images)

Evergy announces plan for large solar farm near coal plant in Kansas City

By: - January 5, 2022

Evergy will build a 10-megawatt solar farm near its coal-fired power plant in northeast Kansas City, the company announced on Wednesday.  The electric utility serves 1.6 million customers in Kansas and Missouri. Half of the energy produced at the solar farm will go to serve that entire base. The other half will be reserved for […]

Evergy proposes energy efficiency programs designed to save customers $42M

By: - December 20, 2021

Evergy customers in Kansas could soon get discounts and rebates to upgrade their homes to be more energy efficient.  The electric utility, which serves 1.2 million customers in Kansas and Missouri, filed a plan with Kansas regulators last week to invest in a host of energy efficiency programs for business and residential customers.  The plan, […]

‘Ball of rolling fire and smoke’: Wildfires rip through north-central Kansas

By: - December 20, 2021

PARADISE — There’s almost nothing left of Deb Maupin’s home near Paradise in north-central Kansas — a bench on the front porch with nothing behind it but the concrete of the basement, now full of ash, scorched appliances where the kitchen was. Hers is one of more than a dozen families who lost their homes to […]

Tiny Kansas town of Alma sued by natural gas supplier over $172K charge from February cold snap

By: - December 16, 2021

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A tiny town in Kansas’ Flint Hills is being sued by its natural gas supplier for failing to pay more than $170,000 in charges from the extreme cold snap that gripped the Midwest 10 months ago. Bluemark Energy, an Oklahoma-based natural gas marketer, filed suit against Alma — population 802 — […]

Kansas National Guard deploys helicopters to wildfires burning in Kansas

By: - December 16, 2021

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Kansas National Guard will deploy helicopters in an effort to put out wildfires in several counties in central and western Kansas, several state departments said in a news release Thursday. Gov. Laura Kelly declared a state of disaster emergency last week because of the risk of fire. According to the […]

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt, a Republican candidate for governor, issued a nonbinding legal opinion saying the Legislature had authority to delay preparations to rebid the $4 billion contracts with KanCare providers until 2024 rather than 2023.. (Noah Taborda/Kansas Reflector)

Kansas AG’s natural gas well presents possible conflict of interest as he investigates industry

By: - December 14, 2021

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt has a financial interest in the sale of natural gas, prompting calls for him to disclose more information about his earnings as he investigates gas companies for potential price gouging during February’s severe freeze. Schmidt, the state’s top law enforcement official, is investigating whether companies raised natural gas prices, which […]

‘Americans always rebuild’: Biden promotes infrastructure investments in Kansas City speech

By: - December 8, 2021

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — President Joe Biden on Wednesday visited the Kansas City Area Transportation Authority to tout the $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill he signed into law last month, expected to bring billions in spending on roads and bridges, clean water, public transportation, high speed internet and more to Kansas and Missouri. The president said […]

‘Statesman,’ ‘hero,’ ‘favorite son’: Well wishes pour out after death of Sen. Bob Dole

By: - December 5, 2021

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Reverence for U.S. Sen. Bob Dole’s service as a soldier in World War II, a longtime senator and fixture in Washington, D.C., was evident Sunday morning following the announcement of his death. In the hours after the Elizabeth Dole Foundation announced Dole, 98, had died following a battle with lung cancer, […]

Evergy building in downtown Topeka

Consumer advocates fear hedge funds’ influence could mean more spending, rate hikes at Evergy

By: - November 24, 2021

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Four of the five members on Evergy’s finance committee, tasked with recommending management and investment decisions to the board of directors, were selected by activist hedge funds that critics worry are asserting undue influence over the electric utility. That involvement, consumer advocates say, could drive up rates for Evergy’s 1.6 million […]

Douglas County hires nonprofit to establish indigent defense office for misdemeanors

By: - November 18, 2021

LAWRENCE — Douglas County will hire a Lawrence nonprofit to establish a public defender office for those facing misdemeanors in district court, replacing a panel of attorneys who are currently appointed to handle a host of cases. In Kansas, a state board pays for indigent defense for those accused of felonies who can’t afford a layer. […]

Free legal service for $400? Douglas County Commission considers competing public defender ideas

By: - November 17, 2021

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A for-profit consortium of lawyers would charge low-income residents $400 for public defense services that are currently free under a proposal before the Douglas County Commission. The commission is evaluating two proposals meant to establish a public defender, or indigent defense, office to handle misdemeanor cases — one by a nonprofit […]