Kansas House Veteran Kinzer Not Running Again
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — One of the Kansas Legislature's leading social conservatives isn't seeking re-election this year. Olathe Republican and state House member Lance Kinzer announced on his website Friday that he would not seek a sixth, two-year term. Kinzer is the House Judiciary Committee's chairman. He has been among the Legislature's most vocal opponents of abortion and gay rights. In recent years, he's helped draft new abortion restrictions. He's backed what supporters call religious freedom measures to protect individuals and groups who have moral objections to gay marriage and same-sex relationships. He also authored an unsuccessful bill to ban local governments from establishing domestic partner registries. Kinzer was first elected to the House in 2004. In his statement, Kinzer said he first decided in December 2012 not to run again.
GOP Kansas State Senator Files for Insurance Post
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A veteran Republican legislator has filed to run for Kansas insurance commissioner and joined an already crowded field of candidates. Senator Clark Shultz of Lindsborg filed the necessary paperwork Friday for a spot on the state's August 5th primary ballot. Five Republicans and one Democrat are running to replace three-term Republican incumbent Sandy Praeger. She is not seeking re-election. Shultz was appointed to the Senate earlier this year to fill a vacancy after he served 17 years in the House, including nine years as its Insurance Committee chairman. The other GOP candidates are Eudora health consulting company director Beverly Gossage, El Dorado insurance agent David Powell, Leawood accountant Ken Selzer and Johnson County Commissioner John Toplikar of Olathe. The Democratic candidate is Overland Park businessman Dennis Anderson.
Kansas Democrats Find State Treasurer Candidate
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas Democrats have found a candidate for state treasurer. She is former Harper County Treasurer and ex-Department of Revenue official Carmen Alldritt of Topeka. Alldritt filed for the office Friday and her action filled out the Democrats' ticket for statewide offices. Alldritt is only challenger so far for Republican incumbent Ron Estes. He is seeking his second, four-year term as state treasurer. Alldritt is a business development consultant, but she was the treasurer in Harper County in south-central Kansas for 15 years, starting with her election in 1988. She served as the Department of Revenue's director of vehicles for seven years, starting in 2003. She oversaw the division handling driver licensing and vehicle registrations. The candidate filing deadline is noon Monday.
Kansas Businessman Still Fighting $42M Tax Bill
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A prominent southeast Kansas businessman and his wife are locked in a dispute over a $42 million tax bill and questions over which state they resided in nearly a decade ago. For the past two years, Gene Bicknell has fought the tax bill that was levied based on where he lived at the time of the 2006 sale of National Pizza Company — the nation's largest Pizza Hut franchise holder. He argues he was a Florida resident. But the Kansas Department of Revenue disagrees, citing its definition of domicile imposed around the time of the sale. Bicknell, formerly of Pittsburg, lost a ruling from the Kansas Court of Appeals in March, but a petition for review by the Kansas Supreme Court is pending.
Trial for Kansas Bondsman Delayed for 6th Time
HUTCHINSON, Kan. (AP) — The trial for a Kansas bail bondsman accused of coercing several women he bailed out of jail to have sex with him has been pushed back for a sixth time. The Hutchinson News reports 67-year-old Dwight Jurgens was granted another continuance Friday, nine days after he suffered a major heart attack. Jurgens is facing 10 counts, including human trafficking, criminal sodomy and rape. He is accused of using his influence to coerce women he bailed out of Reno County Jail to have sex with him between February 2010 and September 2012. Jurgens posted $100,000 bond after he was arrested. The Hutchinson man was scheduled to go on trial June 3, but his doctor has advised a six-week delay to give him time to heal.