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Headlines for Sunday, January 3, 2015

Huelskamp Style Attracts New Admirers and Detractors

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) _ Kansas congressman Tim Huelskamp believes his political fortunes shifted when the U.S. House named a new speaker.  He's picked up some clout among fellow Republicans but doesn't plan to tone down the firebrand conservatism that has made him a tea party favorite.  But his combative style still irritates enough Republicans back in his 1st District of western and central Kansas, that two opponents are running against him in this year's GOP primary.  His opponents have stated that he simply can't work well with others.  


More Rain Leads to Fewer Water Violations
 HUTCHINSON, Kan. (AP) _ A state official says abundant rainfall last year helped reduce the number of water use violators in Kansas. The Hutchinson News reports that Kansas Department of Agriculture data show 10 Kansas irrigators were fined in 2015 for tampering with their water meter or falsifying their water use report. About 20 other water users were fined for overpumping their water rights for the second or third time.   Some other cases are still being completed by state officials.  Lane Letourneau, water appropriations manager for the state, says the rain helped people implement better water management strategies.  He also credited a program that allows irrigators to use more water during drought years and bank water during wet ones.  


 No Growth in 2016 for the "Coalition of Innovative School Districts"

 TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) _ A Kansas program that waives state laws and regulations for participating schools is not expected to grow in size this year.The Topeka Capital-Journal reports no school districts applied to join the Coalition of Innovative School Districts in 2016.  The Legislature created the Coalition of Innovative School Districts in 2013 as a deregulation program meant to remove barriers to better school performance.   The coalition includes six districts of the state's 286 public school districts. The Kansas National Education Association, says the program doesn't address the real obstacle to innovation in Kansas schools, which they says is insufficient state funding.  

Police Investigate Robbery in Wichita Hotel 
 WICHITA, Kan. (AP) _ Wichita police are investigating after a 19-year-old woman reported being robbed at gunpoint inside her hotel room. The Wichita Eagle reports the robbery was reported early Saturday at a west Wichita hotel.  Wichita police Sergeant Joe Kennedy says the victim told police she answered the door to two men who were acquaintances of an acquaintance of hers. He says shortly after they were let into the room, the two men pulled out handguns and demanded money.  After the robbery, the two men got into an SUV and left. No injuries were reported.  



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