Stephen Koranda

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. 

Kansas lawmakers are continuing to study issues with a state software system. A legislative panel will be hearing details about problems at a meeting later today.

The state has spent more than $14 million on the software system for the Legislature.

At a meeting last month, Senate President Susan Wagle said problems continue when drafting bills and amendments, which caused delays during the last legislative session.

via Paul Davis' Facebook profile

The Kansas Republican Party is calling for Paul Davis to withdraw from a lawsuit over voter registration.

Davis, a former Democratic candidate for governor, is challenging a rule that cancels incomplete voter registrations after 90 days. He’s also challenging the underlying proof of citizenship requirement in Kansas law that has put thousands of voter registrations on hold.

Stephen Koranda

County election officials in Kansas are beginning to implement a new rule that cancels incomplete voter registrations after 90 days. The rule faces a legal challenge, but a court last week declined to put it on hold. The secretary of state’s office recommends registrations that have now been incomplete for more than 90 days be canceled.

Stephen Koranda file photo

Kansas is only three months into a new fiscal year and already tax collections have come in below estimates in each of the three months.

Stephen Koranda / KPR

Some Kansas lawmakers are considering their options for fighting federal regulations on carbon emissions while at the same time allowing the state to develop a plan to meet those rules.

Stephen Koranda / KPR

A lawsuit is targeting Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach over a new rule he put in place that will cancel incomplete voter registrations. The suit also asks a federal court to overturn the Kansas requirement that voters supply documents proving their citizenship.

More than 30,000 Kansas voter registrations have been put on hold because they don’t include the citizenship documents. Kobach’s new rule would cancel those incomplete registrations once they are 90 days old.

Stephen Koranda

Gov. Sam Brownback has proclaimed October as “Zombie Preparedness Month.” That not-so-serious name is aimed at getting people to think about a serious topic.

Brownback stood next to 15-year-old Faith Tucking, who was decked out in bloody zombie makeup, as he signed the proclamation Wednesday. The idea behind “Zombie Preparedness Month” in Kansas is an eye-catching way to think about emergencies. The supplies needed to survive a zombie attack will actually benefit you in other emergencies.

Certain health insurance options for state workers in Kansas will more than double in cost next year.

Rebecca Proctor with the Kansas Organization of State Employees says employees on the lower end of the pay scale often choose a plan with cheaper premiums and a higher deductible. Those plans will see the largest increase, with one option jumping from $50 per paycheck to more than $130.

Stephen Koranda file photo

It’s not easy for the board that organizes legal defense for poor Kansans charged with crimes. As KPR’s Stephen Koranda reports, in some areas they’re running low on attorneys willing to work for what they can pay.

It can be hard to find attorneys willing to work on high-level defense cases for $65 per hour--that’s according to Patricia Scalia, director of the Kansas State Board of Indigents’ Defense Services. She says they’re already sometimes seeking attorneys who don’t live near the defendants, requiring a lot of travel.

David / Flickr / Creative Commons

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt’s office is preparing for arguments before the U.S. Supreme Court next month. As KPR’s Stephen Koranda reports, the justices will consider death sentences that were overturned by the Kansas Supreme Court.