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KPR Web Operations Monday, October 31st, 2011

Searchers have recovered the bodies of three more people killed in Saturday's grain elevator blast in Atchison. Six people died in the explosion at the Bartlett Grain Company. Two others were hurt. Atchison City Manager Trey Cocking spoke earlier today (MON) at a news conference outside the damaged facility. One of the dead recovered today (MON) has been identified as 21-year-old Curtis Field. The other two were grain inspectors, including 34-year-old Travis Keil (KYLE) of Topeka. While no one has yet publicly speculated on a cause for the explosion, it's generally acknowledged that work at...

KPR Web Operations Sunday, October 30th, 2011

It's Halloween... the annual high-water mark for spooky stories and terrifying tales. But have you ever wondered why so many scary stories -- from classic literature to horror to science fiction to music -- have so many elements in common? University of Kansas professor John Tibbetts has given a lot of thought to that question. He's now compiled a series of interviews and conversations with authors, artists and filmmakers who have used what scholars often call "the Gothic impulse," which employes a specific set of components to generate a creepy atmosphere. KPR's Laura Lorson spoke with...

KPR Web Operations Friday, October 28th, 2011

Walk into any store in October, and it's obvious: Americans love Halloween. Beyond costumes and candy, people want to experience the paranormal. And increasingly, the tourism industry is catering to that. KPR news intern Justine Greve (Greeve) looks at some Kansas towns and businesses that have discovered something special: digging up ghosts can be profitable. KPR News intern Justine Greve (Greeve) is a graduate of Baker University. She's now a graduate student in American Studies at the University of Kansas.

Bryan Thompson Friday, October 28th, 2011

First cantaloupe, and now sandwiches are posing the threat of Listeria. The Kansas Department of Agriculture says sandwiches possibly tainted with the deadly bacteria have been widely distributed in Kansas. More from KPR’s Bryan Thompson.

Stephen Koranda Thursday, October 27th, 2011

A report presented to lawmakers says the state could eliminate some tax-supported internet services in order to save money. As KPR’s Stephen Koranda tells us, a legislative committee is looking for savings in the Kan-ed program.

Bryan Thompson Thursday, October 27th, 2011

The final new rules for facilities that provide abortions in Kansas are too much like the original ones. That’s according to the few places in the state practicing the procedure. Attorneys with two providers have announced they plan to challenge the new rules before they take effect in mid-November. Bonnie Scott Jones, a lawyer with the coming case, says amendments the state recently made to the licensing regulations still discriminate. A federal judge temporarily enjoined the state’s temporary rules this summer, amid legal challenges by the two abortion providers now planning to challenge...

Stephen Koranda Thursday, October 27th, 2011

Employers in Topeka will be looking for more than 100 workers at a job fair today (FRI). The Salvation Army is sponsoring the event. Organizer Rich Christie says employers are ready to hire – and a wide range of jobs are available.Christie says Washburn Tech will also be on hand to tell job seekers about education opportunities. The fair runs from 10am to noon… and again from 1pm to 3pm at the Salvation Army offices in northeast Topeka.The Salvation Army offices are located at 1320 SE 6th street in Topeka.

Stephen Koranda Thursday, October 27th, 2011

A report presented to Kansas lawmakers today (THUR) says the state could eliminate some tax-supported internet services to save cash. The Kan-ed program provides internet and video to around 450 facilities, including schools, libraries and hospitals. Cort Buffington is with the organization that oversees Kan-ed. He says around 25 percent of the services are underutilized. But, he adds, those services could still be crucial for the users.The report says around half the sites using Kan-ed could be switched to private internet service as a way to save money. A legislative committee is looking...

Bryan Thompson Thursday, October 27th, 2011

Kansas is making its permanent abortion licensing rules public today (THUR) by posting them in the state register. They take effect in mid-November. Unlike temporary rules issued in June, these new ones don’t have strict physical requirements for rooms... but they still, among other things, specify wait-times for patients. Miranda Steele, with the state health department, says the state took suggestions for about three months before issuing the permanent rules. For the time being, a federal judge has blocked the temporary rules, in response to legal challenges from abortion providers who say...

Bryan Thompson Thursday, October 27th, 2011

Kansas is officially posting finalized licensing rules for abortion providers in the state. The new rules are more lenient than temporary ones, which a judge has blocked. But as KCUR’s Elana [AH-LAH-NAH] Gordon reports, abortion providers are still likely to find them problematic.

Bryan Thompson Thursday, October 27th, 2011

When Youthville announced the closing of its psychiatric residential treatment facility in Newton this week, the agency said it was because state budget restraints had led to a reduction in referrals. As Kansas Public Radio’s Bryan Thompson reports, the man who heads the Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services takes issue with that claim. Optional Tag: Stay tuned for Bryan's interview with SRS Secretary Rob Siedlecki coming up a little bit later on Morning Edition.

Stephen Koranda Wednesday, October 26th, 2011

The National Endowment for the Arts has again denied Kansas federal matching funds for arts programs. This week the NEA told the Kansas Arts Commission that the state cannot use donated private funds to get federal matching money. As KPR’s Stephen Koranda reports, that decision comes just days before the state was set to reapply for federal funding.

Stephen Koranda Wednesday, October 26th, 2011

The National Endowment for the Arts has again refused to send Kansas federal matching funds for arts programs. After the state cut funding for the arts, the NEA said Kansas was no longer eligible for matching money, but they encouraged the state to reapply. Members of the Kansas Arts Commission had been preparing an application to submit before the end of the month. At a meeting today (WED), Commissioner Sandra Hartley, of Paola, said the NEA could have told them earlier.Governor Sam Brownback vetoed state funding for the Arts Commission earlier this year. He wants private donations, not...

Bryan Thompson Wednesday, October 26th, 2011

One of the largest, nonprofit child welfare agencies in Kansas is ending its residential psychiatric services in Newton. As Kansas Public Radio’s Bryan Thompson explains, it’s because of dwindling referrals to the program. Optional tag: Bryan will have more later this morning on the bigger picture around these closings.

KPR Web Operations Wednesday, October 26th, 2011

Someone pulled a switcheroo in the football trophy case at Kansas State University. In place of the Governor's Cup, which was awarded last weekend after the win over the Kansas Jayhawks, there's a different trophy... one from eight years ago. KPR's Greg Echlin explains.

Stephen Koranda Tuesday, October 25th, 2011

Kansas Secretary of Transportation Deb Miller will step down to take a job in the private sector. She'll take a position with Cambridge Systematics, a Massachusetts company that provides transportation consulting. KPR's Stephen Koranda has more on her decision to leave the Kansas Department of Transportation.

Stephen Koranda Tuesday, October 25th, 2011

Kansas Secretary of Transportation Deb Miller says she'll step down to take a job in the private sector. Miller is the first woman to lead the Kansas Department of Transportation and was the only Cabinet holdover after Governor Brownback, a Republican, took office in January. Miller has been transportation secretary since 2003 and served under three governors. She says she's taking a job with a transportation planning and policy company.Miller says she stayed on as transportation secretary in the Brownback administration to help kick off the 10-year transportation plan passed by the...

Stephen Koranda Tuesday, October 25th, 2011

Interstate 70 through downtown Topeka remains shut down because of a fatal crash that caused a hazardous spill. A truck driver is dead after his tanker overturned and spilled roofing tar shortly before 5am. KDOT's Kim Qualls says the truck also took out the support for an overhead sign, which fell and blocked some lanes. She says replacing the sign could take some time.Transportation officials are diverting traffic, but they recommend motorists try to avoid the area. Interstate 70 near Manhattan was also closed overnight because of an attempted suicide. A man stopped on the interstate and...

Bryan Thompson Tuesday, October 25th, 2011

Kansas Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger warned lawmakers yesterday (MON) about the risk of not complying with a key feature of the federal health reform law. But as Jim McLean of the KHI News Service reports, it’s a risk they appear willing to take.

Stephen Koranda Monday, October 24th, 2011

News that American troops will leave Iraq by the end of the year is welcomed by members of the Kansas National Guard who just returned from the region. Members of the 778th Transportation Company headquartered in Kansas City were welcomed home at a ceremony in Salina, including Specialist Kendrick Hill.The company logged 86 million miles hauling heavy equipment from Iraq to Kuwait, where the equipment will be housed.

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