Stephen Koranda

Statehouse Reporter

Stephen Koranda reports on the Kansas Legislature, state government and everything else for Kansas Public Radio. He previously worked in Mississippi and Iowa, where he covered stories ranging from hurricanes to state executions. 

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Stephen Koranda

One of the Democrats on the president’s Commission on Election Integrity is suing the group and Republican Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach. Kobach is vice chair of the controversial panel, created by President Trump to study election issues.

Maine Secretary of State Matt Dunlap says he hasn’t been receiving information about what the group’s doing.

“Secretary Dunlap has been, and continues to be, blocked from receiving commission documents necessary to carry out his responsibilities,” the lawsuit says.

Stephen Koranda, File Photo / Kansas Public Radio

After wrestling to balance the budget for years, Kansas lawmakers bit the bullet this spring and agreed to undo many of Gov. Sam Brownback’s signature 2012 tax cuts.

Stephen Koranda / KPR/File photo

The deadline to register to vote in Sedgwick County for next month's general election is on Tuesday.

Stephen Koranda / Kansas News Service

Kansas lawmakers considered tighter rules on payday lending during a committee meeting Wednesday, but they ultimately decided not to recommend more regulations for the short-term loans.

Office of the Governor / Facebook

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback said Tuesday that he is issuing a single pardon and denying 72 other requests for clemency made to his office.

The action comes as Brownback prepares for a likely departure to join the administration of President Donald Trump.

In a statement, Brownback said he is pardoning Mark Schmitt, who was convicted of felony theft in 1994 over a false insurance claim of about $1,500. The Prisoner Review Board had recommended clemency.

Stephen Koranda

An advocacy group for Kansans over 60 will continue to push for Medicaid expansion. 

The Silver Haired Legislature targeted expanding Medicaid as a goal for the next Kansas legislative session.

Don Woodard, one of the group’s leaders, says there are thousands of Kansans between the ages of 60 and 65 who fall into a coverage gap. They aren’t old enough to qualify for Medicare, but they make too much to qualify for Medicaid right now.

Stephen Koranda / KPR/File photo

Newly unsealed documents show Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach had proposed changes to federal voting law when meeting with then President-elect Donald Trump. The ACLU wanted to disclose the documents in a lawsuit over Kansas voting rules.

Kansas Department of Corrections

Proposals to rebuild part of the prison at Lansing could prompt a new debate over the Kansas death penalty. Plans for the prison include closing the facility that houses the state’s death chamber.

Kansas hasn’t executed anyone since the death penalty was reinstated in the 1990s. At a committee meeting Thursday, Republican Sen. Carolyn McGinn said instead of building a new death chamber, legislators might want to consider eliminating the death penalty.

U.S. senators considering Gov. Sam Brownback’s nomination as ambassador for international religious freedom peppered him Wednesday with questions, including some about his actions as Kansas governor.

Stephen Koranda / Kansas News Service

The American Civil Liberties Union launched a national voting rights campaign during a Sunday night event in Lawrence that was broadcast online throughout the country. It was the start of a grassroots effort, called Let People Vote, which the ACLU says is a chance to go on the offensive.

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