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Kansas Bureau Of Investigation

Law enforcement agencies are facing a sharp increase in violent crimes in Kansas, as the state Bureau of Investigation deals with a shortage of agents to support local departments.

The Topeka Capital-Journal reports the bureau provided data Tuesday on violent-crime rates to the Joint Committee on Kansas Security.

Bloomsberries, flickr Creative Commons

The man accused of walking into a tax office in Wichita and shooting a state tax agent has pleaded not guilty to attempted first-degree murder.

Fifty-two-year-old Ricky Wirths waived his right to a preliminary hearing and entered the plea Tuesday. Investigators say Wirths went to the Kansas Department of Revenue office Sept. 19 and shot Cortney Holloway several times.

Wirths, of Wichita, owed nearly $400,000 in outstanding tax warrants and Holloway was working on the case. The day of the shooting, agents had gone to Wirths' home to seize assets.

Stephen Koranda / KPR/File photo

Kansas is reporting that it collected $57 million more in taxes than anticipated in September.

It was the fourth consecutive month that tax collections have exceeded projections from the state's official fiscal forecast.

The state Department of Revenue said Monday that nearly $603 million in taxes was collected last month. That was 10.5 percent more than the official estimate of $545 million.

Since the fiscal year began July 1, the state has collected $73 million more than anticipated, with tax collections of $1.5 billion exceeding expectations by 5.1 percent.

Bloomsberries, flickr Creative Commons

Three men accused of conspiring to bomb a Kansas mosque and an apartment complex housing Somali refugees also allegedly discussed killing the refugees' white landlord because he rented to Muslims, a move prosecutors say was meant to ensure the attack fully conveyed their anti-Muslim message.

File photo

Four of six members of Kansas' congressional delegation are supporting a proposed federal tax code being developed by House and Senate Republicans.

U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts, and Reps. Lynn Jenkins, Roger Marshall and Ron Estes all said Wednesday they support legislation that would reduce the corporate income tax rate from 35 to 20 percent. It also would reduce the top individual income tax rate from 39 percent to 35 percent.

Matt Davis / flickr Creative Commons

Saline County commissioners are supporting an effort to bring a Tyson chicken plant to Cloud County and Concordia.

The commission on Tuesday signed a letter in support of the $300 million project. The Salina Journal reports the letter says the plant would benefit the entire region because Tyson will invest $100 million to help farmers and ranchers raise poultry.

MICHAEL COGHLAN / CREATIVE COMMONS-FLICKR

Officers at the El Dorado Correctional Facility will continue working 12-hour shifts for another 90 days under an emergency status declared earlier this year.

The state corrections department says the extended shifts are due to a staffing shortage.

The department says it’s working to hire and train more staff at the prison.

Three inmate-led disturbances were reported in May and June at the El Dorado prison.

Critics have said the unrest was caused in part because the state shifted some inmates from Lansing Correctional Facility to El Dorado.

kansasregents.org

The Kansas Board of Regents has voted to accept staff recommendations that members excuse or monitor themselves when engaging in potential conflicts of interest.

The Topeka Capital-Journal reports four board members on Thursday acknowledged their significant financial ties to higher education institutions, necessitating recusals to avoid a conflict of interest.

https://www.ksrevenue.org

The Kansas Department of Revenue is conducting a security review after an employee was shot multiple times at the agency's taxation office in west Wichita.  

Tex Texin / flickr Creative Commons

Updated at 4:25 p.m.

The Kansas Department of Revenue says the man accused of shooting a seizure agent at its office in Wichita has two tax warrants totaling almost $400,000 related to his construction business.

Police have identified the suspect as 51-year-old Ricky Wirths of Wichita. He is accused of shooting Cortney Holloway at the office in Wichita on Tuesday afternoon. Holloway is in stable condition.

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