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Statehouse

KPR opened its first full-time Statehouse Bureau in Topeka in January of 1978. Ever since, KPR's Statehouse Bureau, which is often called the KPR-Network, has provided gavel-to-gavel coverage of the legislature, executive and judicial branches of Kansas government and other stories of statewide interest. KPR is the only broadcast outlet in the state that maintains a full-time, year-round bureau at the Capitol.

New Online System Will Better Track Meth Ingredient

Kansas is now taking part in a multi-state online system aimed at better tracking medication used to make methamphetamine. Attorney General Derek Schmidt and members of the Kansas Board of Pharmacy announced the new controls today (MON). Pharmacies will now link to an online system to see if buyers have purchased the legal limit of pseudoephedrine (sue-doh-eh-FEHD-rin), a key ingredient in meth. Kansas already limits the sale of the medication, but Schmidt says this will strengthen the law.



If the customer has already purchased the maximum amount allowed, the system will tell the pharmacy not to complete the sale. The medication is already kept behind the counter and pharmacies keep records tracking who buys it. The new online system will replace those paper records.

KS Dem Party Chair Pushing Against Tax Cuts

In two weeks, lawmakers will be considering a state budget that cuts education and other state spending in an effort to eliminate a budget deficit. The proposals would cut around 230 dollars per student in state funding for education. Joan Wagnon chairs the Kansas Democratic Party. She's concerned over the level of cuts to education.



Lawmakers have also been considering tax cuts as a way to bolster the state's economy. Wagnon hopes lawmakers won't focus on reducing taxes. She believes that would hurt state revenues as the economy rebounds, meaning fewer dollars the state can put back into schools. One tax proposal would lower the income and corporate tax rates in Kansas. Leaders in the House believe tax cuts will help the state budget by growing the economy in Kansas. Lawmakers will resume budget talks when they return to the Statehouse during the last week of April.

Head of KS Dem Party Urging Lawmakers to Skip Tax Cuts

In two weeks, lawmakers will be considering a state budget that cuts education and other state spending in an effort to eliminate a budget deficit. The proposals would cut around 230 dollars per student in state funding for education. Lawmakers have also been considering tax cuts as a way to bolster the state's economy. Joan Wagnon is the Chair of the Kansas Democratic Party. She hopes lawmakers won't focus on tax cuts. Wagnon believes that would hurt state revenues as the economy rebounds, meaning fewer dollars the state can put back into schools.



One tax proposal would lower the income and corporate taxes in Kansas. Leaders in the House believe tax cuts will help the state budget by growing the economy in Kansas. Lawmakers will resume budget negotiations and discussions on tax issues when they return to the Statehouse during the last week of April.

Brownback: Fetal Pain Bill Cutoff Could Be Lowered

A bill signed into law by Governor Sam Brownback will bar abortions after 21 weeks of development, but that could change. The legislation bans abortions after that time, saying that is when a fetus can feel pain. Brownback says in the future, the 21-week limit could be lowered by lawmakers.



The abortion ban does contain an exception for the health of the mother. Opponents of the fetal pain law have said there is not any scientific consensus on whether a fetus can feel pain at 22 weeks of development. The new law will take effect July 1st.

Gov Signs Abortion Restriction Bills

Governor Sam Brownback has signed into law a bill requiring both parents to consent to an abortion for a girl under 18. The bill would only require one parent in some cases, such as divorced parents. Current law only requires that parents be notified. Last week Brownback signed legislation barring abortions after 21 weeks of development, stating that is when a fetus can feel pain. That bill does contain an exception for cases where the mother’s health is in danger. Brownback has called on lawmakers to send him legislation creating what he calls a culture of life.



Opponents of the bills have pointed to conflicting evidence on whether a fetus can feel pain at the 22nd week of development. They have also said that getting both parents to consent to a minor’s abortion could be impossible in an abusive household. The new abortion restrictions will take effect July 1st.

Gov Signs Fetal Pain Abortion Bill, Parental Consent Bill

Governor Sam Brownback today (TUE) signed a bill requiring both parents to consent to an abortion for a girl under 18. The bill would only require one parent in some cases, such as divorced parents. Current law only requires that parents be notified. Last week Brownback signed into law legislation barring abortions at 22 weeks of development, stating that is when a fetus can feel pain. That bill does contain an exception for cases where the mother’s health is in danger. At the start of the legislative session, Brownback called on lawmakers to send him bills creating what he calls a culture of life.



Opponents of the bills have pointed to conflicting evidence on whether a fetus can feel pain at the 22nd week of development. They have also said that getting both parents to consent to a minor’s abortion could be impossible in an abusive household. The new abortion restrictions will take effect July 1st.

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