Business

Ryan Vincent, executive director of the Kansas House Resources Corp., said the agency has assisted 7,800 Kansas households struggling financially in the COVID-19 pandemic by granting $41.5 million in rental, utilities and internet assistance. (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

Rental housing program delivers $41.5 million in aid to struggling Kansas households

BY: - September 25, 2021

TOPEKA — Olathe residents Sheryl and Gary Evert were among thousands of Kansans struggling to pay their rent during the COVID-19 pandemic. They eventually sought assistance under the Kansas Emergency Rental Assistance program authorized by Congress and financed through federal coronavirus relief legislation. Under KERA, the Kansas Housing Resource Corporation, or KHRC, has granted $41.5 […]

Advocates, experts recommend reforms to inadequate Kansas payday loan system

BY: - September 24, 2021

TOPEKA — A consumer finance expert is recommending Kansas make payday loan reforms that could save consumers more than $25 million per year while still maintaining credit access. These loans have come under fire in states across the country, with some going as far as to ban them. Data suggests that while the majority of […]

OPINION

Audio Astra: Calculating public harm from tax break, deep freeze

BY: - September 24, 2021

Audio Astra reviews recent audio reporting on Kansas news, including podcasts and radio stories. Eric Thomas directs the Kansas Scholastic Press Association and teaches visual journalism and photojournalism at the University of Kansas. How does the government calculate what we each owe? Whether it’s a decision by a utility regulatory board or a court decision about property […]

KS gas utility won’t release invoices detailing winter prices, but some data is already available

BY: - September 23, 2021

Kansas’ largest natural gas utility has resisted releasing records about what suppliers charged it during the historic cold snap in February that saw prices rise by more than 200 times. But according to a new filing, it has already disclosed much of that information.  In February, when temperatures in Kansas City plunged below 15 degrees […]

Evergy scales back plans to add solar power by 2024, will keep Lawrence plant partially open

BY: - September 23, 2021

Evergy will keep open part of its Lawrence coal plant to run occasionally on natural gas despite earlier plans to shutter it completely and fall short of earlier pledges to add massive amounts of solar power to the electric grid, the utility revealed in regulatory filings this week.  Earlier this year, Evergy filed its “integrated […]

Sen. Mark Steffen, a Republican, said he was working to force a special legislative session to consider bills blocking mask and vaccine mandates for COVID-19 and to open up use of off-label medications during the pandemic. He spoke Monday at the Freedom Revival in the Heartland at City Center Church in Lenexa. (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

Kansas foes of COVID-19 vaccinations push for political protection from mandates

BY: - September 21, 2021

Conservatives, Republicans come together at Lenexa church revival to consider how best to advance an anti-vaccination agenda in state's political process.

Attorney: More public disclosure needed in historic natural gas price proceedings

BY: - September 20, 2021

State regulators’ refusal to dig deeper into the causes of a historic spike in natural gas prices this winter effectively shuts down the investigation, an attorney says.  Prices for the largest natural gas pipeline serving Kansas rose to about 200 times their normal price this winter during a severe cold snap that pushed the electrical […]

OPINION

From alcohol to pain-relieving pot, Prohibition runs deep in Kansas

BY: - September 19, 2021

Amy Reid is serious about medical marijuana. She’s a Wichita registered nurse and president of the Kansas Cannabis Coalition. She describes herself as a cannabis navigator for her patients, and she is all business when it comes to advocating for medical weed. I couldn’t help but chuckle when she told me the name of a […]

As child care options dwindle, Kansas advocates seek funding to address staffing shortages

BY: - September 15, 2021

TOPEKA — Lack of accessible child care often pushes Kansas families to leave their children with overworked or unlicensed caregivers. Amid a growing workforce shortage exacerbated by the pandemic, child care advocates say there is an immediate need for long-term solutions. Throughout the last decade, the number of family child care providers across Kansas has […]

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt joined a dozen other attorneys general in support of a lawsuit challenging a federal law limiting direct and indirect use of COVID-19 stimulus funding to reduce state taxes. (Noah Taborda/Kansas Reflector)

AG says winter natural gas price spikes ‘appear to violate Kansas law,’ seeks help for investigation

BY: - September 13, 2021

The Kansas Attorney General’s Office is seeking outside legal help to investigate huge spikes in natural gas prices this winter, signaling the state could consider suing over the disaster. Attorney General Derek Schmidt’s office announced in a news release Monday that it planned to hire a law firm with expertise in the natural gas market […]

Inside Mission Control: Hospital capacity in Kansas at its worst with latest COVID-19 surge

BY: - September 10, 2021

TOPEKA — Richard Watson says the latest surge in COVID-19 infections has stressed Kansas hospital capacity to new extremes, nearing the point where doctors have “brutal conversations” about which patients they take care of. Watson’s company makes the Mission Control software Kansas hospitals use to find available bed space for acute care patients. He said […]

Kansas regulators opt against subpoena in investigation of natural gas price spikes

BY: - September 9, 2021

Kansas energy regulators will not issue a subpoena in what attorneys representing large-scale natural gas customers hoped would be an investigation into potential price-gouging during a devastating February storm. The Kansas Corporation Commission decided unanimously on Thursday not to subpoena S&P Global Platts Gas Daily, denying a motion from industrial groups alleging “overwhelming circumstantial evidence […]