Top Morning News 4.4.13
Lawmakers need more time for income tax deal; Additions could be made to anti-aboriton bill; Three men arrested in synthetic marijuana scheme.
Kansas Tax Deal On Hold
Negotiators for the Kansas House and Senate say agreement on a plan for more cuts in income taxes is unlikely until May.
Lawmakers Adding To Sweeping Anti-Abortion Measure
State lawmakers are expanding a sweeping anti-abortion bill by adding language making it illegal to end a pregnancy solely because of the gender of the fetus.
House and Senate negotiators agreed Wednesday on the final, compromised version of the anti-abortion bill. Both chambers could vote on their compromise Thursday.
The Senate previously approved a separate bill banning sex-selection abortions. The House has not, but it has a solid anti-abortion majority.
The compromise measure would block tax breaks for abortion providers and prohibit their involvement in public school sex education classes. It also spells out in more detail which information doctors must provide to patients before performing abortions.
Plan Stalls For $1.5M In Bonds For Pension Plan
Legislation authorizing $1.5 billion dollars in bonds to bolster the Kansas pension system for teachers and government workers has stalled in the state Senate.
A leading backer of the measure, House Pensions Committee Chairman Steve Johnson, says the measure is now "dead in the water."
The House approved the bonding bill last month, but its pensions committee tabled a proposal for a new 401(k)-style public pension plan.
Health Club Bill Stalls In Committee
A bill that would exempt private health clubs and gyms from property taxes has stalled in committee.
Three Indicted In Synthetic Marijuana Scheme
A federal grand jury has indicted three Kansas men on charges that they operated a global sales and supply network for synthetic marijuana.
Wichita Officials To Hold Public Meetings On Drought
The city of Wichita wants to hear your ideas on how the area should respond to prolonged drought. Wichita is in the third year of drought, and it is unclear when it will end or how severe it will be.
Officials have scheduled six public meetings around the city from April 16-18 to hear how you're are affected by the drought. They're also interested in your ideas on how to extend the city's water supply. Public feedback will be presented later to the City Council.
Wichita gets about 60 percent of its water from Cheney Reservoir. Officials have predicted that if consumption remains unchanged and weather conditions don't improve, the reservoir won't be able to provide drinking water to the city by August 2015.