Aileen LeBlanc

News Director

Aileen LeBlanc is a journalist, producer and director whose work in television, film and public radio has earned more than 60 regional and national awards.

She is producer/director of the documentaries Dayton Codebreakers (nominated for 3 regional Emmys) and Who’s Minding the Planet? (nominated for a Regional Emmy). Her latest film, Take Us Home, about Ethiopian Jews, is now in the festival circuit and has won the World Cinema Documentary Film Editing Award from the Amsterdam Film Festival and Award of Merit from the Lucerne International Film Festival. The film has screened at the Pan African Film Festival and the Studio City Festival in LA and the Sheba Festival in New York. Other official selections include Denver, Philadelphia, Louisville, Palm Beach and Detroit.

LeBlanc’s work on other films includes the Oscar-nominated documentary “The Last Truck” and the Emmy-winning “Lion in the House.”

LeBlanc’s career in journalism includes two news director positions at WYSO and WHQR. Her national work has been featured on NPR, Voice of America, BBC, Monitor Radio, Pacifica and the CBC.

She was honored by the Dayton League of Women Voters with a “Making Democracy Work Award.” She was given the first place prize in documentary from Public Radio News Directors Inc. for a piece on loving and caring for a partner with Alzheimer's.

Ways to Connect

Ken Hawkins, Creative Commons

A settlement has been reached in a claim against e-book publishers and Apple Inc. Kansas consumers will be able to receive refund checks or account credits.

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt on Monday released information about the price-fixing case against Apple. Kansas and 32 other states sued Apple for its participation in a conspiracy with publishers to charge more for electronic books than the market rate.

Apple appealed the case, but when the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear it, the settlement became final.

Wikipedia

The Kansas Bureau of Investigation is warning Kansans of a growing threat from a synthetic opioid that may have caused a number of overdose deaths in the past month.

The drug's name is U-47700 and was derived by the pharmaceutical firm Upjohn in the 1970s. The drug can be as potent as ten times that of a similar dose of morphine. The drug is not controlled in Kansas.

Stephen Koranda / KPR

Gov. Sam Brownback is looking to shuffle funds within the state government to cover a projected shortfall.

Brownback spokeswoman Eileen Hawley told the Associated Press that since it is very hard to make cuts at this late date, it is more likely that money will be diverted from dozens of special funds into the state's main account.

Revenues for the state fell short $74 million in May. When the fiscal year ends on the last day of this month, Kansas is projected to have a $45 million dollar deficit.

Wade Morgen / flick Creative Commons

The U.S. Attorney's office has unsealed a federal indictment that accuses 13 people of using stolen identities to spend or access more than $3.5 million of other people’s money and credit.

Twelve of the 13 people accused in the indictment are from Kansas. Seven of them are from Wichita.

The indictment goes back to 2013 and spells out the details of the alleged acts: stealing mail from blue mail collection boxes, from residents and even from post office mailrooms in the Wichita area.

Kansas Department of Labor

The latest jobs report for Kansas is a mixed bag.

Kansas’ unemployment rate fell slightly for the second month in a row, but the state Department of Labor says job growth has stalled.

According to a report released Friday, the unemployment rate for April was 3.8 percent, down from March's rate of 3.9 percent. It’s also down from April of last year, which was 4.2 percent.

Locally, Sedgwick County’s unemployment rate dropped sharply, from 4.6 in March to 3.9 in April.

Jimmy Everson, DVM, flickr Creative Commons

Kansas' state universities are calling for tuition increases of up to 5 percent, at least for now.

The schools submitted their tuition proposals Wednesday to the governing Kansas Board of Regents. But those came before Gov. Sam Brownback signed a budget bill Wednesday afternoon that cuts higher education funding by 4 percent, 1 percent more than the universities had expected.

Stephen Koranda / KPR

Update from the AP:

The Obama administration is telling public schools that they must allow transgender students to use bathrooms and locker rooms consistent with their gender identity.

The directive is in formal guidance being sent to school districts Friday by the departments of Education and Justice.

The letter does not impose any new legal requirements, but federal officials say the guidance is meant to clarify school districts’ obligations to provide students with nondiscriminatory environments.

youtube.com

A jury ruled today in the civil trial of anti-abortion activist Angel Dillard. Dillard was accused of threatening the life of a doctor who was planning on performing abortions.

The jury sided with Dillard, agreeing with her attorneys that the letter she sent Dr. Mila Means was free speech and not a "true threat." Means was training to perform abortions two years after Dr. George Tiller was murdered in his church in Wichita in 2009. Tiller was one of very few doctors in the nation who performed late-term abortions.

http://credoaction.com

An advocacy group is sending a letter to the U.S. Elections Assistance Inspector General to ask her to look into actions by the EAC's new executive director.

More than 116,000 people have signed an online petition urging the inspector general to investigate what it calls voter suppression at a federal government agency entrusted with making voting more accessible.

The progressive advocacy group CREDO Action said it planned to deliver petition signatures Wednesday to the U.S. Election Assistance Commission's Inspector General Patricia Layfield.

youtube.com

A woman was in civil court today under a charge that she threatened a Wichita doctor who was at the time training to perform abortions.

Angel Dillard sent a letter to Dr. Mila Means in 2011 saying, in part, that, "They know where you shop, who your friends are, what you drive, where you live," and, "You will be checking under your car everyday [sic] because maybe today is the day someone places an explosive under it."

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