Top Morning News 3.22.13
Senate approves $14B budget; Bill would allow open carry anywhere in Kansas; Committee authorizes bonds to pay KPERS debt.
Kansas Senate Approves $14B Budget
The Kansas Senate has given final approval to a $14 billion budget for the next fiscal year.
Thursday's 24-16 vote sends the measure to the House, which approved its own budget bill Wednesday. Negotiators from the two chambers are expected to begin meeting next week to work out a final version.
Both bills generally follow spending recommendations laid out by Gov. Sam Brownback. Each would spend about $6 billion in general state revenues and $8 billion from federal funds and other sources.
Bill Would Allow Open Carry Anywhere In Kansas
Lawmakers are considering a bill that would prevent local governments from barring openly carried firearms.
Work Stops On Bill To Change Teacher Bargaining Law
Kansas lawmakers have dropped their pursuit of a proposal to narrow the topics permitted in contract negotiations between teachers and school districts.
House Commerce Committee Chairman Marvin Kleeb says his committee won't vote this year on a bill regarding teacher bargaining rights.
The measure would reduce the issues that teachers' groups could negotiate with local school boards. Teachers could still bargain on matters like pay and sick leave, but no longer on how they are evaluated.
Kleeb says groups representing teachers, administrators and school boards will try to work out a compromise for legislators to consider next year.
Committee Authorizes Bonds To Pay KPERS Debt
A state House committee has voted to authorize $1.5 billion dollars in bonds to bolster the state pension system for teachers and state government workers.