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Your local and regional news for Northeastern Kansas and the surrounding communities, brought to you by the KPR news staff.

Financial Literacy Requirement Nixed by KS Board of Ed

A push for mandatory financial literacy courses has fallen flat at the Kansas Board of Education. Board member Walt Chappell had hoped to make personal finance classes a requirement for graduation...but his colleagues say that now is not the time.

The Board will be reviewing graduation requirements next year, and some board members say additional mandated courses shouldn't be considered until then.

Survey: KS Efforts in Cancer Prevention Are Lackluster

The state of Kansas - and half the other states in the country - are failing when it comes to cancer prevention and treatment efforts. That's the finding in a survey carried out by the American Cancer Society. Christopher Masoner is the state public affairs director for the society. He says one of the state's most glaring deficiencies is the Kansas tobacco tax, which he says is too low.

While Masoner praises the Kansas Legislature for passing the ban on smoking in most public places, he is scolding the state for its inadequate screening for breast and cervical cancer among low-income women. He is also concerned about insurance coverage of colorectal cancer screenings, and worries that the state has not allocated enough money for tobacco use prevention programs.

State of KS Receives Low Grade on Cancer Society Report Card

The American Cancer Society is giving the state of Kansas a D for its efforts to prevent and treat cancer. Christopher Masoner, the public affairs director for the Kansas branch of the Society, says the only good thing lawmakers have done is passage of the statewide smoking ban in 2010. He says there are several areas where Kansas has come up short.

Masoner says that tobacco taxes in Kansas are the 16th-lowest in the nation. The Annual Cancer Compliance Report is available online at

Tex Winter Named to Basketball Hall of Fame

Some say he should have received the honor years ago. But the wait is finally over. Former Kansas State coach Tex Winter is headed to the Basketball Hall of Fame. Winter is part of this year's class being honored at the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts. The induction ceremonies will take place this weekend. Kansas Public Radio's Greg Echlin has more.

KS State Fair Competition Entry Deadline Looms

It's time to start thinking about that blue ribbon you might win at this year's Kansas State Fair. Fair officials say that online registration is now available for anyone wanting to enter the dozens of competitive categories offered...from baking to canning to knitting, and just about everything in between. Fair spokesperson Lori Mulch-Hart says there's even a way to get your pet in on the action.

Online registration for the competitive events can be completed at The entry deadline is next Monday, August 15th. This year's fair will run from September 9th through 18th at the fairgrounds in Hutchinson.

Air Conditioners Targeted by Thieves

There's been an increase in thefts of commercial and window air conditioning units in Topeka this summer. Police Captain Jerry Stanley says there have been several in the last two weeks. He says the thieves seem to be actually dismantling the large commercial units sitting on office rooftops:

In one case, five large units were taken and another was damaged at one office building in the 5900 block of southwest 28th Street. Police say that while thieves may be targeting the valuable copper inside commercial air conditioning units, the thieves aren't passing window units by, either. Stanley says he suspects the window units are being kept intact... either for resale, or for personal use.

Spike in Topeka Air Conditioner Thefts

There has been an increase in rooftop burglaries in Topeka, as thieves are now targeting large commercial air conditioning units. Topeka Police Captain Jerry Stanley says catching the culprits won't be easy:

Five large air conditioning units were taken from one office building at 28th and Wanamaker. Stanley says the air conditioning units are being dismantled and their copper likely sold to salvage yards in Lawrence or Kansas City. Stanley says that window air conditioner thefts are ALSO on the rise...he says that those are usually stolen intact and then resold.


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