Associated Press

The Associated Press is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering, supplying a steady stream of news to its members, international subscribers and commercial customers. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, it's a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members.

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Weather
11:30 am
Tue April 29, 2014

State Dept. Of Revenue To Help Tornado Victims Replace Crucial Documents

The Kansas Department of Revenue is taking steps to help residents replace critical documents lost in Sunday’s tornadoes.

The agency is waiving fees on replacement driver’s licenses, vehicle titles and vehicle registrations for residents of Cherokee, Bourbon and Linn counties.

An executive order signed Monday by Governor Sam Brownback also waives the fees for replacement birth certificates and marriage licenses issued by the state health department.

Dozens of buildings were destroyed and 25 people were injured Sunday in the Cherokee County town Baxter Springs.

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Government
11:25 am
Tue April 29, 2014

Legislative Oversight Committee To Review KanCare System

A Kansas legislative oversight committee is holding a daylong hearing to review the state’s KanCare system that provides Medicaid to poor, elderly and disabled Kansans.

The committee meeting this morning includes a discussion of the state’s waiting lists for people seeking home and community-based services, as well as recent estimates for demand for those services over the next 18 months.

Kansas privatized the program in 2013 to reduce the growth of health care costs, which are shared by state and federal sources.

Government
11:04 am
Tue April 29, 2014

Gov. Brownback's Former Chief Of Staff Maybe Involved In FBI Probe

The FBI is examining whether Governor Sam Brownback’s former chief of staff and a lobbying and consulting firm he helped found are trading on their ties to the governor to benefit themselves and others financially.

A person familiar with the inquiry told The Associated Press the FBI has been looking for several months into the activities of Brownback's confidante David Kensinger and his Topeka firm, Parallel Strategies. Kensinger and two former Brownback staffers formed last year.

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Education
10:56 am
Mon April 28, 2014

New Washburn Communication Policy Draws Criticism

A newspaper report suggests that faculty members at Washburn University must now alert the school’s administration before they talk to public officials or members of the media.

Academic affairs vice president Randy Pembrook says the policy developed earlier this month was intended only for the university’s deans, and as a way to keep track of their statements or presentations on subjects related to the university.

Weather
10:35 am
Mon April 28, 2014

Tornado Destroys Dozens Of Homes And Businesses In Baxter Springs

Twenty-five people were injured and dozens of homes and businesses were destroyed by a tornado in Baxter Springs around 6pm on Sunday.

Southeast Kansas Incident Management Team spokeswoman Kari West says one person died, but it was not clear whether the death was related to the storm.

Cherokee County emergency manager Jason Allison says the tornado was roughly two- to three-blocks wide, and cut diagonally through the southeastern town of about 42 hundred people.

Allison says 60 to 70 homes were destroyed, as well as 20 to 25 businesses.

Government
12:39 pm
Fri April 25, 2014

Two Senior Citizens Drop Lawsuit Challenging Kansas' Voter Citizenship Law

Two elderly Kansas men have dropped their lawsuit challenging a new state law that requires voters to show photo ID at the polls.

Attorney Jim Lawing said on Thursday Arthur Spry and Charles Hamner asked to have the case dismissed because it would not be heard before this year’s elections.

U.S. District Judge Kathryn Vratil in Kansas City has granted their request for a dismissal.

The judge was still considering whether the case should be heard in federal court or state court, as the two men had wanted.

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Business
10:23 am
Thu April 24, 2014

Newton City-County Airport To House New ABI Chemical Facility

A Wichita-based aerospace company has chosen to move north to Newton with its chemical subsidiary.

Aviation Business International will house its ABI Chemicals division in a 20,000-square-foot facility at the Newton City-County Airport.

The ABI Group of Companies supplies products to airlines worldwide, including Delta, Air France and British Airways.

The new plant will produce next-generation coatings used in aerospace manufacturing processes. The coatings are being developed in conjunction with Wichita State University’s National Institute for Aviation Research.

Education
10:17 am
Thu April 24, 2014

Anti-Tenure Law Protesters Greet Gov. Brownback At Fossil Bill Signing

While on his trip in Western Kansas Wednesday, Governor Brownback was met by teachers protesting a new state law eliminating tenure.

Brownback traveled Wednesday to the Sternberg Museum of Natural History in Hays to re-enact his previous signing of a bill naming two official state fossils.

Outside the museum, about 25 teachers and retired teachers protested the anti-tenure law.

The tenure repeal was part of a school funding bill Brownback signed Monday to meet a Kansas Supreme Court mandate to boost aid to poor districts. It will take effect in July.

Government
9:49 am
Wed April 23, 2014

Lawmakers Consider Giving State Workers A Pay Raise, But At A Price

Kansas lawmakers are considering proposals to give state workers a modest pay increase...and end their guaranteed longevity bonuses.

The Senate Ways and Means Committee reviewed budget issues on Tuesday that lawmakers will face when they wrap up their work for the year next week.

The committee took no action.

Governor Sam Brownback has proposed a 1.5 percent pay raise for employees in the civil service. It would be the first across-the-board pay raise since 2009.

The Senate committee and its House counterpart have alternative proposals.

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Politics
11:19 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Bob Dole: The U.S. Should Send Weapons To Ukraine

Former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole visited Overland Park yesterday to kick off a three-day homecoming tour.

At a reception on Monday, the 90-year-old Republican Party icon said the U.S. should send weapons, including tanks, to Ukraine to help it resist Russia’s moves on its territory.

Dole says it would send Russian President Vladimir Putin a strong message.

He says Putin considers President Barack Obama to be a weak leader.

The former Senator says he’d not only send tanks and other weapons to Ukraine but put a missile defense system in Poland.

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