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Environmentalists Concerned About Bills in KS Legislature

RieberMoti Rieber (left) speaking to reporters. (Photo by Stephen Koranda)Environmentalists are already raising concerns about bills that could come up in the next Kansas legislative session. They’re worried about model bills they say are coming from the American Legislative Exchange Council, known as ALEC. KPR’s Stephen Koranda reports.

ALEC calls itself an organization that advocates for limited government and free markets. But critics, like Rabbi Moti Rieber, with the group Kansas Interfaith Power and Light, say ALEC is backed by corporate interests. And, Rieber says the bills the group produces might not be a good fit for Kansas.
     “It’s a cookie-cutter approach, so one policy will not suffice for every state in the union. California has different interests. Even Nebraska and Kansas have different interests. So we think that Kansas legislators should develop Kansas solutions,” says Rieber
Specifically, Rieber is concerned about bills affecting environmental policy, like one that would roll back the state’s renewable energy standards. Kansas lawmakers who are members of ALEC have said the organization gives legislators a chance to meet with officials from other states and learn what they’re doing. This summer, the spokesperson for House Speaker Ray Merrick pointed out that any proposals that come from ALEC, or any other group, must still go through the normal legislative process.

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