Top Morning News 11.01.12

Nov 1, 2012

Kansas taxes fall short of October expectations; Survey of the Midwest predicts economic slump; Westar Energy crews help out in superstorm recovery.

KS Taxes $37M Short Of Expectations In October

A new report says Kansas collected $37 million less in taxes than anticipated in October, but officials think the shortfall will be temporary.

The Department of Revenue said Wednesday the state took in almost $477 million during the month. That's about 7 percent less than the $514 million officials had expected.

Revenue Department spokesperson Jeanine Koranda says most of the shortfall was due to October having only two collection periods. There were three in October of last year. Koranda says officials expect tax collections to bounce back in November.

Survey Suggests Economic Slump Looming In Midwest

A monthly economic index report suggests an economic slump over the next three to six months for nine Midwest and Plains states, including Kansas.

The Mid-America Business Conditions index dropped to 46.5 last month from 50.4 in September. Creighton University economist Ernie Goss oversees the survey, and he says "growth in the regional economy is definitely moving lower."

Westar Crews Help Restore Power On East Coast

Crews from Westar Energy are helping restore the power in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania, after Hurricane Sandy left damage and widespread power outages in its wake.


Working For Small Biz May Be Hazardous To Your Health

A new report from a healthcare think tank says workers at small firms are far more likely to lack health insurance -- and miss out on needed health care -- than their peers at bigger companies.


Officials: 3 KS Inmates Tried To Hang Selves

Officials at a Kansas prison say three inmates in a segregation unit tried to hang themselves simultaneously.

The incident happened Tuesday afternoon in the administrative segregation unit at Hutchinson Medical Center. Prison officials released a statement Tuesday night saying only that four inmates had suffered some kind of medical emergency.

More details were released Wednesday. Officials said a corrections officer made the discovery around 3 p.m. Tuesday and called for help to remove the inmates from the cell. One was treated at the prison clinic. The other two were transferred to a Wichita hospital.

A fourth inmate was taken to the prison clinic with chest pains. He was later returned to the prison unit.