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Headlines for Saturday, July 9, 2016

Governor Brownback Declares Emergency After Tornado

EUREKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas Governor Sam Brownback has signed a state of disaster emergency declaration for Greenwood County after a tornado demolished homes in Eureka.  Brownback's office said in a release yesterday (FRI) that the emergency declaration allows the state to use its resources and personnel in response to the tornado that hit the small town of Eureka late Thursday night. No serious injuries were reported. The governor's office says the tornado damaged about 50 homes and businesses and left scores without power throughout the county. The office says the state Division of Emergency Management will coordinate assistance to assess the damage from the tornado and manage debris removal.


Overland Park Police Investigate Officer's Facebook Post

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (AP) — A suburban Kansas City police officer has been fired after officials confirmed he made a Facebook post that appears to threaten a child. Overland Park, Kansas, Police Chief Francis Donchez Jr. says the department began investigating after being notified of the post yesterday (FRI) morning.  He says the officer was terminated immediately after the department determined he had written the post. The Kansas City Star reports the comments were made on the page of a woman who had posted a picture of a small child. The post said: "We'll see how much her life matters soon. Better be careful leaving your info open where she can be found :) Hold her close tonight it'll be the last time." Donchez says information from the personnel probe has prompted a criminal investigation.


Decline in Number of Concealed Carry Applications in Kansas

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The state attorney general says there was a recent "steep decline" in Kansas in the number of applications for concealed carry permits. Attorney General Derek Schmidt said Thursday in a release that between July 1, 2015, and June 30, 2016, the Concealed Carry Licensing Unit received 5,874 applications. The Kansas City Star reports that's a decrease of more than 40 percent from the more than 9,800 applications filed the previous fiscal year. The number of applications surged after a legislative change in 2015 that allowed eligible Kansans to carry concealed without a license. More than 93,000 Kansans have active concealed carry licenses. Kansas licenses are currently recognized in 37 states.


Kansas to Close Juvenile Correctional Facility

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The Kansas Department of Corrections has announced plans to close a juvenile correctional facility in western Kansas. The department said Thursday it will close the Larned juvenile facility during the next year because of dropping inmate populations. The agency says the monthly average number of prisoners has fallen by 30 percent since 2010. The Topeka Capital-Journal reports the closure will leave a Topeka facility as the only location in Kansas for juveniles. The Larned facility only houses male inmates, while Topeka houses both male and female prisoners. KDOC says current inmates won't be moved and that a large number will age out of the Larned juvenile facility. The department also says it will work on job placement for the 140 full-time workers at the Larned facility.


OSHA Investigating Injuries at Kansas Wind Farm

PRATT, Kan. (AP) — A federal workplace safety agency says it's investigating two recent injuries at a southern Kansas wind farm. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration said in a release yesterday (FRI) that it's investigating injuries involving workers at the Ninnescah Wind Farm in Pratt County. OSHA says a preliminary report shows a 26-year-old employee of Blattner Energy was struck in the head by a bolt while he was working on a wind turbine at the site near Pratt on Wednesday. Blattner Energy Inc., which is based in Avon, Minnesota, didn't immediately respond to a call seeking comment yesterday (FRI). Another man was also injured earlier this month when he fell 120 feet while working on a wind turbine at the site. OSHA says he was employed by another company working at the site.


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