Kansas Lawmakers Find Little Consensus on Taxes
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas is expected to increase taxes to close a budget shortfall, but Republicans who control the Legislature don't yet agree on the outlines of a plan.Republican Governor Sam Brownback wants to protect major income tax cuts he pushed legislators to enact in 2012 and 2013 to help stimulate the economy. He's proposing to slow down future income tax cuts and is pushing to increase tobacco and alcohol taxes. He also has said he's open to raising the state's sales tax.But at least a few GOP legislators contend the state must rethink a personal income tax break for business owners — sparking a radio ad campaign by a group representing small businesses to counter such an effortLawmakers also could consider raising the state's gasoline tax.
Judge Orders Kansas Sperm Donor to Undergo Genetic Testing
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A Kansas judge has ordered genetic testing to determine whether a man who donated sperm to a lesbian couple is the biological father of their 5-year-old daughter. The Topeka Capital-Journal reports William Marotta of Topeka answered a Craigslist ad seeking a sperm donor in 2009. He didn't intend to be the child's father and signed a contract waiving parental rights and responsibilities while agreeing to donate sperm to Jennifer Schreiner and Angela Bauer. The state began seeking to have Marotta declared the father in late 2012 so he could be forced to pay child support after the couple split up and Schreiner sought state health insurance for the child. Shawnee County District Judge Mary Mattivi said on Friday that Marotta was more than a simple sperm donor.
Texas Town Prays for Local Dairy Linked to Listeria
BRENHAM, Texas (AP) — More than 200 people gathered to offer prayers and support for Blue Bell Creameries as the more than a century-old company works to resume operations after a series of listeria illnesses linked to its ice cream prompted the company to recall all of its products. Residents, pastors and local leaders gathered Saturday in the town square in Blue Bell's hometown of Brenham, Texas, for the nearly hour-long prayer vigil. Many wore shirts and paper hats with the company's name on it. Some of the shirts said "I Get Cranky Without My Blue Bell." The company has temporarily closed its plants in Texas, Oklahoma and Alabama through at least next week so it can conduct intensive cleaning and employee training.
7 Players from Royals, White Sox Punished by MLB for Brawl
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Seven members of the Kansas City Royals and Chicago White Sox have been fined and six have been suspended by Major League Baseball for their roles in a brawl this week.Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura was suspended seven games, fellow starter Edinson Volquez suspended five games, and outfielder Lorenzo Cain and reliever Kelvin Herrerasuspended two games apiece for taking part in the benches-clearing fight Thursday night. White Sox pitchers Chris Sale and Jeff Samardzija were suspended five games.All six players were fined an undisclosed amount Saturday, along with White Sox catcher Tyler Flowers. The Royals-White Sox game on Saturday was rained out, meaning all suspensions will begin Sunday unless a player chooses to appeal.
Team Routs White Purple Team in K-State Spring Game
KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — Kansas State coach Bill Snyder has been on the sidelines for enough spring games to know the difference between a crisp showing and a sloppy one.The Wildcat's game Saturday, which was moved to Sporting Park in suburban Kansas City due to renovations at Bill Snyder Family Stadium, fell into the latter category. When the fans leave early," Snyder said, "that tells you that we were not very good."The first-team purple squad came away with a 55-24 win, but the Wildcats collectively turned the ball over four times and had several miscues on special teams that led to easy scores."We'll somehow, someway become as good as we can, "Snyder said. "We just didn't play well."
Jayhawks Lose Quarterback Cummings in Annual Spring Game
LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — David Beaty's first spring game as coach at Kansas could have gone better.Senior quarterback Michael Cummings, who is fighting for the starting job, had to be helped off the field early in the second quarter after hurting his knee. Even though he was wearing a red jersey to prevent getting hit, Cummings was tackled by senior safety Michael Glatczak. I'm not sure exactly what happened there," said Beaty, who was hired last fall to replace the fired Charlie Weis. "I was blocked on that deal. I've heard conflicting stories." Cummings had thrown for 43 yards before leaving the game, which the blue team made up mostly of first-team players won 20-7 over a white team comprised primarily of backups.Beaty said that Glatczak may have been blocked into Cummings, and that it was too early to tell the extent of the injury. Cummings was still being evaluated after the game.