Immigration agency cuts of 800 Kansas City jobs expected to trigger backlogs, delays nationwide

BY: - September 10, 2020

WASHINGTON — Members of Congress from the Kansas City region scored a victory last month when a federal immigration agency backed off plans that would have led to thousands of layoffs of government employees in the metro area. But their relief was short lived, as the agency now intends to furlough 800 of its local […]

Lee Norman, secretary of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, said Monday growth of COVID-19 across Kansas affirmed the necessity of people to adhere to recommendations to wear a mask and maintain social distancing. (Sherman Smith/Kansas Reflector)

Kansas names businesses, schools, churches, long-term care facilities with COVID-19 outbreaks

BY: - September 9, 2020

TOPEKA — The Kansas Department of Health and Environment on Wednesday released for the first time the names and places associated with active outbreaks of COVID-19 across the state. The list includes seven Greek houses at Kansas State University, plus eight other universities and colleges, more than two-dozen long-term care facilities, nine private businesses, four […]

Former Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, who also served in the Obama administration's Cabinet, is subject of a new Washburn University and KTWU documentary "Red State/blue Governor: Kansas' Kathleen Sebelius." (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Former HHS secretary Kathleen Sebelius: ‘God help us’ with vaccine rollout

BY: - September 8, 2020

Former HHS secretary Kathleen Sebelius has reservations about Trump administration's ability to deliver COVID-19 vaccine to the nation.

Senate Vice President Jeff Longbine, left, says differences of opinion about legalizing sports gambling in Kansas would have likely blocked completion of a bill in the 2020 session. Here the Emporia Republican chats during a special legislative session in June. (Nick Krug/Kansas Reflector)

Feuding over who controls, profits from sports betting in Kansas stalls legislation

BY: - September 6, 2020

Rival lobbyists, business interests and activists clash to cause the Kansas Legislature to fumble bills to legalize sports betting in the state.

State Sen. Dennis Pyle, a Hiawatha Republican, says he's disappointed a study on tax-funded lobbying conducted by the Legislative Division of Post Audit elicited responses from only 25% of 3,800 agencies surveyed. The audit revealed government agencies performing lobbying gathering $5 million in fees and dues in fiscal year 2019. (Sherman Smith/Kansas Reflector)

Kansas audit peels away thin layers of publicly financed lobbying

BY: - September 5, 2020

TOPEKA — School districts, cities and counties in Kansas each invested about $250,000 last year in public tax dollars for deployment of registered lobbyists to influence the state’s political process. Sixty-three of the state’s 550 registered lobbyists reported receiving public funding from state agencies, local governments or associations tied to government activities. This cadre of […]

Cancellation of the Kansas State Fair created an estimated $2.3 million revenue shortfall that fair officials want to be filled through a state or federal bailout. Some livestock events are being held, but the Pronto Pup, regarded as a banquet on a stick, won't be available until the fair in September 2021. (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

Kansas State Fair outlines $2.3 million revenue shortfall, requests budget bailout

BY: - September 4, 2020

TOPEKA — Cancelling commercial aspects of the Kansas State Fair compelled the organization to halt building renovations, impose staffing cuts and set in motion a plan to raid its charitable foundation to cover an estimated $2.3 million revenue shortfall. David Tobias, interim general manager of the state fair, said the state fair could avoid some […]

Gov. Laura Kelly declined to accept demands of Republican legislators to insert language into the statewide COVID-19 disaster declartion that she wouldn't close businesses in the next 30 days in response to the pandemic. Kelly is asking the State Finance Council to approve a 30-day extension of the disaster declaration. (Sherman Smith/Kansas Reflector)

Kansas enters race for Space Command headquarters

BY: - September 4, 2020

TOPEKA — Gov. Laura Kelly announced Friday she would make a strong push to land the new U.S. Space Command in Kansas. The governor’s office said four Kansas communities have submitted proposals to become the home for headquarters of the U.S. Space Command, which is responsible for military operations in space. The cities are Derby, […]

The Republican majority on the State Finance Council voted down Thursday a plan endorsed by Gov. Laura Kelly, to seek $300 in weekly supplemental federal unemployment benefit that would be matched by $100 weekly paid by the state. Kansas will apply for the $300 weekly benefit from FEMA. (Sherman Smith/Kansas Reflector)

GOP blocks Gov. Laura Kelly’s request for a $400 weekly surge in jobless benefits

BY: - September 3, 2020

Gov. Laura Kelly says state Department of Labor will apply for $300 in weekly supplemental jobless benefits paid by the federal government.

Republican Tracey Mann, campaigning for the 1st District congressional race against Democrat Kali Barnett, says the United States must learned how to coexist with COVID-19 because trillions of federal dollars, business shutdowns and vaccine research may all fall short. (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

U.S. House, Senate candidates dive into desires and jitters of COVID-19 response

BY: - September 3, 2020

TOPEKA — Democratic congressional candidate Kali Barnett is convinced Congress must pass a new COVID-19 stimulus bill for struggling businesses and the millions of unemployed people despite cringeworthy accumulation of trillions of dollars in federal debt. “Right now it is incredibly important that we take care of our working Americans,” said Barnett, who is running […]

The Kansas Legislature's auditors say industrial hemp remains a risky crop but growing expertise and development of markets for the plants fiber, grain and floral parts could generate more than $20 million annually in revenue within several years. (Submitted/Kansas Reflector)

Legislature’s auditors assess economic prospects of Kansas’ fledgling hemp crop

BY: - September 2, 2020

Value of Kansas' hemp crop in 2019 was modest, while Kansas State University is studying potential of using hemp flowers as cattle feed.

White House orders suspension of residential evictions

BY: - September 1, 2020

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration announced on Tuesday it would temporarily halt residential evictions to curb the spread of COVID-19 infections. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin disclosed during a congressional hearing that the executive order would be issued. It runs through Dec. 31. “I think you’ll be quite pleased with the impact that it will have,” […]

Gov. Laura Kelly said Monday during a news conference at the Capitol that counties can use federal COVID-19 aid to buy more drop boxes to handle anticipated flood of advance voting in the November election. (Sherman Smith/Kansas Reflector)

Gov. Laura Kelly urges counties to buy more advance ballot drop boxes for November election

BY: - August 31, 2020

Gov. Laura Kelly says federal COVID-19 aid can be used by counties to add advance voting drop boxes to avoid lines at polling stations in November.