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Teen Tanning Ban, Concealed Carry Change Among Laws Going Into Effect

A batch of new laws passed by Kansas lawmakers during the last legislative session go into effect tomorrow, July 1.
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City officials will unveil the new crest of a combat ship named the USS Wichita on Saturday at noon. KMUW’s Aileen LeBlanc reports that the vessel is the third ship named for the city.

The commander and crew of the USS Wichita will also be at the ceremony, which will take place at the Wichita Art Museum. The ship, which is being built in Milwaukee, is among seven named by the secretary of the navy after small American cities and counties that embody American values.

Stephen Koranda / KPR/File photo

Kansas tax collections were more than $30 million short in June, the final month of the fiscal year. That grew the state’s budget deficit to more than $75 million and prompted Gov. Sam Brownback’s administration to take steps to erase the shortfall.

Budget Director Shawn Sullivan says it’s difficult to cut budgets at the end of the fiscal year. Instead, the state is moving funds, including delaying part of a payment to school districts. Democratic State Sen. Laura Kelly says that’s worked in the past, but moving the payment is risky when tax collections have been so inconsistent.

John Russell, flickr Creative Commons

A new law allows the Kansas Department of Transportation to erect highway signs as memorials to the victims of drunk driving.

The Kyle Thornburg and Kylie Jobe Believe Act, named after a young couple who lost their lives in 2011 on I-70, requires the secretary of transportation to design a memorial sign containing the names and ages of victims of drugs or alcohol accidents.

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More than 3 million people in Kansas and the region are expected to travel this July Fourth weekend—most of them by car.

It will be the highest number of Independence Day travelers since 2007, according to Triple A. Across the country, nearly 43 million people are set to travel this weekend.

Jennifer Haugh with AAA says low travel costs are a factor: Airline tickets are low and hotels prices are down, and in Kansas, gas is the cheapest it’s been since 2005.

Elle Moxley / KCUR

Kansans who register to vote using a federal form at the Department of Motor Vehicles will have to provide proof of citizenship as a lawsuit plays out, a judge ruled Wednesday.

The League of Women Voters and other civil rights groups had sought a preliminary injunction to block such rules in Kansas, Alabama and Georgia.

Stephen Koranda / KPR/File photo

Kansas wraps up the fiscal year today with tax revenue numbers for June. The state is expected to come up short, with some reports saying tax collections could miss the mark by more than $30 million.

The 4th of July is right around the corner, and in honor of the patriotic holiday, the KMUW Movie Club came together to talk about their favorite films with "America" in the title.  

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More than 25,000 voters in 60 Sedgwick County voting precincts will be affected by several changes to polling places.

Announcements were sent out today informing people that their polling place has moved since the last election. Officials say to watch for an envelope marked “Official Election Material.”

Heartland Health Monitor / File photo

Kansas hospitals are trying to stop more than $56 million in Medicaid cuts set to take effect tomorrow.

The Kansas Hospital Association is urging federal officials to stop Gov. Sam Brownback from implementing $56.4 million in Medicaid cuts set to take effect Friday.

Brownback ordered the cuts in May to cover shortfalls in the fiscal year 2017 budget approved by the Legislature. The hospital association is asking the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to immediately intervene to stop the cuts, which include a 4 percent reduction in provider payments.

eltpics / flickr Creative Commons

Officials with the Wichita Fire Department will be on the lookout for any illegal fireworks over the 4th of July weekend.

 

According to the city, on average, 45 people are injured by fireworks in the Wichita area each year, including children as young as 10 months old. 

City officials stress the danger of firing off small explosives, especially ones that are illegal, such as Roman candles and mortars.

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Commentary

Crowson: Ralph Stanley's Legacy

We’re all used to the well-intended but slightly threadbare cliché: “Just take comfort in the wonderful memories. As long as you have those, that loved one isn’t really gone.” But sometimes, those old words of comfort ring true. For enthusiasts of bluegrass and old-time mountain music, dealing with the recent loss of Ralph Stanley, that phrase gives particular comfort.
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KMUW Music

Sunday July 3rd
This Sunday on Soulsations catch acclaimed a cappella group Naturally 7.  The talented septet, who use only their voices as instruments, are called the "Architects of Vocal Play".  Naturally 7 will open for Motown legend Diana Ross at the Hollywood Bowl mid July.

Check out their video Wall of Sound!

Saturday, July 2nd
Zoo Tunes is a compilation of performances from the Sedgwick County Zoo Summer Concert Series.  This show includes bayou-blues queen Marcia Ball, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, A Roomful of Blues and more.  Great shows, great crowds – check it out! 

Courtesy Jason Powell

Bassist Ricky Phillips joined the band Styx in 2003. He says that coming into what many see as a simple pop band changed his playing and made him a better musician. KMUW's Jedd Beaudoin recently spoke with Phillips and has more.

Monday 6.27.16

The National Endowment for the Arts has just announced the 2017 NEA Jazz Masters – an annual award recognizing some of the best living jazz musicians. The upcoming year’s honorees include singer Dee Dee Bridgewater, bassist Dave Holland, pianist Dick Hyman, and organist Dr. Lonnie Smith. This special edition of Night Train features music from all four artists – along with music from past NEA Jazz Masters including June featured artist Chick Corea, Miles Davis, Wayne Shorter, Gary Burton, George Coleman, and Benny Golson.

Monday, June 27

Global Village marks the birthday of one of the great Bollywood music directors, R.D. Burman, who revolutionized the music in Indian films with his adventurous use of rock, Latin, Arabic and other influences. We also continue our June Silk Road feature with music from another Silk Road Ensemble member, Galician bagpiper Cristina Pato; feature music from bassist Dave Holland – who was just named as an NEA Jazz Master for 2017; and highlight new music from Spanish Afrobeat band, the Alma Afrobeat Ensemble and the Cocek! Brass Band.

Noteworthy

Courtesy Jason Powell

Bassist Ricky Phillips Finds His Voice With Styx

Bassist Ricky Phillips joined the band Styx in 2003. He says that coming into what many see as a simple pop band changed his playing and made him a better musician. KMUW's Jedd Beaudoin recently spoke with Phillips and has more.
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