Sean Sandefur

Reporter

A graduate of Webster University in St. Louis, Mo., Sean joined KMUW in January of 2014.

He often covers the intersection of government and citizenry. His story about chemical contamination in a west Wichita neighborhood won a national Society of Professional Journalists award for investigative journalism. His coverage of Wichita's "No Ferguson Here" movement won a regional Edward R. Murrow Award for hard news.

Sean also has experience in television, completing an internship at KTTC-TV in Rochester, Minn., where he covered massive flood damage as a multimedia journalist.

Outside of work, Sean has an addiction to baseball and has a cat named after his literary hero, Huckleberry Finn.

Ways to Connect

Sean Sandefur / KMUW

Members of the Wichita City Council and Sedgwick County Commission met Tuesday morning to discuss the location of a new, shared law enforcement training center. The current facility is housed in a former elementary school, and city officials say the space is too small and outdated.

Sean Sandefur / KMUW

Gov. Sam Brownback has until Thursday to sign a budget passed by the Kansas Legislature two weeks ago. He'll need to find nearly $200 million in savings in order for the budget to be balanced. One of the options on the table is to cut a portion of spending to the University of Kansas and Kansas State. KMUW's Sean Sandefur sat down with Wichita State President John Bardo to talk funding higher education. 

Sean Sandefur / KMUW

Kansas has enacted a sales tax exemption for farmers and ranchers who are rebuilding fences damaged by massive wildfires that burned through hundreds of square miles earlier this year.

Any purchases made in 2016 that are used to rebuild fences damaged by wildfires will be exempt from sales taxes under a bill signed by Gov. Sam Brownback Wednesday.

Elana Gordon / KCUR

Kansas has delayed cutting off Medicaid funding for Planned Parenthood facilities in the state and has postponed any action against the organization until June 7.

Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri spokeswoman Bonyen Lee-Gilmore said Wednesday that the state sought another extension to prepare for the first hearing in a federal lawsuit challenging the cutoff and that the delays are sign of how the state's decision is "all political."

"Clearly, there's no public health emergency at play," she said.

ronhays / Flickr

Lots of rainfall and average temperatures throughout Kansas means the state’s winter wheat crops are doing well.

According to the latest report from the National Agricultural Statistics Service, 90 percent of Kansas’ winter wheat is rated either fair, good or excellent. The majority of crops are also more mature when compared to last year.

okpolicy.org

The Wichita chapter of the Society for Professional Journalists is hosting a talk Tuesday night about the Kansas budget and the state’s tax policy.

The event will feature Annie McKay, executive director of the Kansas Center for Economic Growth and the incoming president and CEO of Kansas Action for Children. KCEG describes itself as nonpartisan and was created in 2013 to educate Kansans about the state’s economic policies.

Doug Kerr / Flickr Creative Commons

The outlook of $2.1 billion worth of highway revenue bonds in Kansas has changed from stable to negative, according to a report from the bond rating service Moody’s Investors Service.

Steven Depolo / flickr Creative Commons

An organization that wants to lift the 3.2 alcohol limit for grocery stores and gas stations thinks they’ve got a plan that may help provide millions of dollars for the cash-strapped Kansas Legislature.

The group wants to push through legislation allowing grocery stores to buy full liquor licenses directly from the state, and for convenience stores like Quik Trip to purchase licenses to sell full-strength beer.

Jessica Lucas, a spokesperson for Uncork Kansas, says the plan would generate about $40 million, with some licenses going for as much as $200,000.

wichita.edu

Wichita State University held an entrepreneurship conference on Thursday at the Hyatt Regency downtown. The event featured several speakers who outlined the data behind startup businesses both large and small.

weather.gov

The American Red Cross is prepared for the possibility of severe weather this afternoon. As KMUW’s Sean Sandefur reports, the state has 700 volunteers who handle disasters.

Twenty-five years ago an F5 tornado ripped through Andover and Haysville, killing 17 people. Today there is a threat of another massive spring storm.

Michelle Jantz, director of the Midway Kansas Red Cross, says her organization has hundreds of volunteers ready to respond to disasters in Kansas and throughout the Kansas/Nebraska and Southwest Iowa region.

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