Stephen Koranda

Contributing 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. 

Stephen Koranda

The State Finance Council Monday approved the sale of a historic building across the street from the Kansas Statehouse.

A committee in the U.S. Senate will consider legislation co-sponsored by Senator Jerry Moran and aimed at using tax credits to increase donations to food banks. The legislation would expand tax credits for businesses that donate food.

The credit is only allowed for certain businesses, but has been temporarily expanded to other businesses until the end of this year. The bill would make that expansion permanent, and make farmers eligible to use the credit.

Voter registration applications for more than 12,000 people in Kansas are on hold because of missing documents that could prove U.S. citizenship. A law that took effect this year requires people who register to vote for the first time in Kansas to prove their citizenship.

Secretary of State Kris Kobach says he's considering a rule that could allow those voters to cast ballots in certain elections.

The Kansas Legislative Division of Post Audit will not be analyzing the costs of the state death penalty, at least for now.

A Kansas legislative committee Monday criticized proposed changes to state regulations on tattooing and piercing.

Kansas Senators Jerry Moran and Pat Roberts say funding for a federal lab to be built in Manhattan has passed an important hurdle.

A state board Tuesday rejected a proposed change to a law requiring Kansans to present proof of citizenship when registering to vote for the first time.

A national advocacy organization says Kansas is one of only a handful of states that cut funding for higher education this year.

The National Endowment for the Arts has made a preliminary decision saying Kansas is once again eligible to receive federal matching funds for arts programs. That decision was revealed during a meeting of the state's arts agency Friday.

When Governor Sam Brownback vetoed state arts funding in 2011, Kansas lost federal matching dollars. With some arts funding restored, the NEA says Kansas could be eligible for up to $560,000 in matching funds this fiscal year.

Peter Jasso, director of the Creative Arts Industries Commission, called the decision great news.

Stephen Koranda

State regulators took public comments last night on a proposed Westar Energy rate increase.

Westar is asking to raise rates by 2 percent and to shift more electricity costs from large customers to residential users and small businesses. The company said the cost shift is necessary because larger business customers are paying more than their fair share.

About 80 people showed up in Topeka for the hearing, and many of them lined up to blast the proposal.

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