Derek Schmidt

Discussions about criminal conduct crossing the U.S. border with Mexico were held last week between attorneys general of several states and Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt.

Schmidt met with Mexico's federal attorney general and a member of the country's Supreme Court, along with other Mexican legal authorities.

Talking points included human trafficking, drug trafficking and other criminal conduct that affects the state of Kansas. The purpose was to identify cooperative efforts in combating such crimes.

Tulsa Topics, flickr Creative Commons

Recent regulations from the Environmental Protection Agency that would extend the organization’s power to protect water resources have been put on hold. A number of states, including Kansas, have asked the EPA to reconsider the new rules.

The "waters of the U.S." rules were announced back in May. They would significantly broaden the definition of what water sources the federal government can deem protected from pollution and development. The EPA says the regulations are necessary to ensure clean drinking water.

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A Kansas judge has issued an order that temporarily keeps Kansas court funding in place, but not everyone is satisfied.

Two laws are at the heart of the dispute: One law changes how chief judges are selected in district courts, while a second law says the judicial branch will lose all of its funding if the first law is struck down. It was struck down, but Attorney General Derek Schmidt obtained a court order to keep judicial funding in place until lawmakers are back in session next year.

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Funding for the entire Kansas court system has been in jeopardy. But Attorney General Derek Schmidt has now obtained a court order that prevents the judiciary from having its funding cut off, at least for a while.

First, some background: The Kansas Legislature passed a law that took power away from the Kansas Supreme Court by changing the way local chief judges are selected. The Supreme Court used to make those decisions but under this law, that power was transferred to local judges.

Stephen Koranda file photo

Funding for the entire Kansas judicial system is now in legal limbo.

A Shawnee County judge has struck down a law that changes the way chief judges are selected. But that law was tied to other legislation that said all funding for the judicial branch of government would be stripped away if the first law was struck down.

The Kansas Legislature passed a law that took administrative power away from the state supreme court.

Bryan Thompson / KHI News

The Kansas Attorney General has asked for a delay in implementing Environmental Protection Agency regulations affecting the energy industry.

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt has been appointed to a committee established by the national group for state attorneys general to study legal issues surrounding agriculture.

Schmidt's office said his membership was confirmed Tuesday for the new National Association of Attorneys General panel.

The Republican attorney general is a former chairman of the Kansas Senate Agriculture Committee and served in the Senate for 10 years before being elected to the statewide office in 2010.

Abigail Wilson file photo

The Kansas attorney general's office says legal disputes involving the state's gay marriage ban have cost taxpayers nearly $100,000 over the past 18 months.

The figures released Thursday cover expenses from three lawsuits but not staff time for Attorney General Derek Schmidt's employees.

Schmidt filed a petition in October with the Kansas Supreme Court to block county court clerks from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Kansas AG To Join Suit Against EPA Water Rule

Jun 30, 2015
Amy Mayer, Harvest Public Media

Fresh off a win in one multi-state lawsuit against the Environmental Protection Agency, Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt announced he will join another.

Schmidt’s office said Tuesday morning he was joining attorneys general from eight other states in fighting the “Waters of the U.S.” rule intended to expand the scope of the Clean Water Act to smaller tributaries.

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt has been elected by his colleagues in other states and U.S. territories as vice president of their national association.

Schmidt's office says the two-term Republican received the honor during the recent summer meeting of the National Association of Attorneys General in San Diego.

Schmidt previously has served as the group's Midwestern regional chairman, the co-chairman of its consumer protection committee and the vice chairman of its committee on combatting human trafficking.