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Regional Headlines for Sunday, March 10, 2013


Another Winter Storm Hits Western Kansas

GOODLAND, Kan. (AP) -- A winter storm was edging into western Kansas last night (SAT), forcing the closure of a stretch of Interstate 70 near the Colorado border. The Kansas Department of Transportation says a 17-mile stretch of the interstate from Goodland into Colorado was closed Saturday evening because of the winter weather and because of limited hotel accommodations. The National Weather Service issued a winter weather advisory for late Saturday through Sunday morning for western Kansas, which was expected to see light snow and high winds up to 40 miles per hour, creating low visibility. 


Kansas Lawmakers Weigh Repeal of Corporate Ag Limits

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) Kansas lawmakers have begun weighing efforts to roll back the state's decades-old limits on corporate involvement in farming. The Senate Natural Resources Committee heard testimony Friday on legislation proposed by Governor Sam Brownback's administration with backing from some of the state's biggest agricultural interests. Proponents contend allowing out-of-state ownership of farms would create jobs and help to expand the Kansas economy. The president of the Kansas Pork Association testified the existing laws are causing many corporate interests to avoid Kansas. Tim Stroda told the committee that out-of-state companies are put off by the requirement to get approval from county commissions to set up swine and dairy operations. But Donn Teske, president of the Kansas Farmers Union, testified that allowing large corporate operations would put many family farms out of business. 


Kansas Budget Director Offered To Resign

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) -- Governor Sam Brownback's budget director says he offered his resignation after supplying Brownback an incorrect figure that led the Republican governor to make erroneous claims about state spending under his Democratic predecessor. Budget Director Steve Anderson said Friday that he offered his resignation last month after the $2 billion error on a spreadsheet found its way into a chart the governor used to claim credit for spending cuts that never happened. Anderson says he felt he needed to take responsibility because it came from his department. He says he offered his resignation to Brownback, but the governor said Anderson was "not getting off that easy." Anderson says he'll remain as budget director as long as Brownback wants him there. 


David Barton To Speak At Kansas Prayer Breakfast

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) -- An evangelical minister who emphasizes the Christian roots of the U-S will be the featured speaker at the 52nd annual Kansas Prayer Breakfast. David Barton will speak at the gathering scheduled for March 27th in Topeka. Barton is founder of the Texas-based Wallbuilders organization, an evangelical Christian group that supports a biblical view of U-S history. Last year, the publisher Thomas Nelson withdrew Barton's book, "The Jefferson Lies," citing historical errors. The book challenged the belief that Jefferson was largely secular and promoted the separation of church and state. At his presentation at this month's Kansas Prayer Breakfast, Barton plans to speak on the history of prayer as practiced by early U-S leaders. 


Salina Women Want Students to Run 'Marathons'

SALINA, Kan. (AP) -- Two Salina women are working to get schoolchildren involved in running and would like to see more of them run a full marathon, even if it takes several weeks to finish. Dana Kossow and Louise Comfort have been so successful with their School Marathon program in Salina over the years that they're hoping to get elementary school students nationwide to participate. The Salina Journal reports that in the program, children begin running an average of one mile a day for several weeks, and that by the end of about six weeks each child will have run 26,2 miles. The women have also created the nonprofit School Marathon Foundation along with a website. Their goal is to promote habits for healthy living by educating children on the benefits of staying active. 


Group Receives $406K for Andover Children

ANDOVER, Kan. (AP) -- A child advocacy group has been awarded a major challenge grant for building a new children's home in south-central Kansas. The J.E. and L.E. Mabee Foundation, a Delaware-based nonprofit, is providing $406,000 in a challenge grant to the Sunlight Children's Advocacy and Rights Foundation. The foundation needs to raise about $480,000 more by January 2014 to secure this grant. The foundation has been trying to raise $2.5 million to build Sunshine Children's Home in Andover for children from Butler, Elk and Greenwood counties who have been temporarily removed from their homes because of abuse or neglect. Children in those counties are now taken to Wichita for placement. The foundation has received about $1.8 million in gifts, pledges and in-kind donations for the home.


Ventura Impressive in First Start for Royals

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) -- Johnny Giavotella and Brett Hayes each drove in four runs, Yordano Ventura pitched three hitless innings and the Kansas City Royals beat the San Francisco Giants 13-2 Saturday. Billy Butler and David Lough each added three hits. The Royals finished with 20 hits in Scottsdale, Arizona yesterday, including nine against Giants starter Yusmeiro Petit over less than two innings. Ventura, considered the Royals' top pitching prospect, made his first start of the spring and fourth appearance overall. He got this chance when Wade Davis was scratched with shoulder soreness, and extended his hitless streak to five innings. He walked two and struck out three. Giants reliever Javier Lopez made his spring debut, allowing a run on three hits in one inning. He struck out two. 


Kansas and Kansas State Share Big 12 Regular Season Conference Title

The Kansas and Kansas State men's basketball teams lost the last of their season games yesterday (SAT) to tie for the regular season Big 12 Conference Title with a league record of 14-4. Kansas State lost to Oklahoma State 76-70 and Kansas lost to Baylor 81-58. KU will go into the Big 12 Tournament later this week as the number one seed and K-State as the number two seed. The Big 12 Tournament starts on Wednesday - KU and K-State will play the winners of Wednesday's games on Thursday. 

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