drought

Environment
6:01 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Brownback Praises Wichita's Water Plan

The Wichita Public Works and Water Utility staff made a presentation of their drought plan Friday to Gov. Sam Brownback's Drought Response Team.

The presentation in Topeka was a condensed version of the plan they presented to the Wichita City Council last Tuesday.

Gov. Brownback praised the Wichita plan and says it's a model that should be shared with other communities in Kansas.

The plan includes alternatives for reducing water demand and increasing water supply to address both the current drought and future needs.

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News
5:40 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Top Morning News 3.04.13 (Updated)

 Updated: 9:00am

Senate President Wagle calls for further cuts to state budget; Gov. Brownback praises Wichita's water plan; Education is a hot topic at legislative forum; KS Cosmosphere build viewing room for space restoration work.

Kan. Senate Could Cut Gov's Budget

Leaders in the Kansas Senate say they'll pursue the budget cuts recommended by Gov. Sam Brownback. A Senate committee recently endorsed a plan that would cut income tax rates.

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Environment
6:47 am
Wed February 27, 2013

City Council Hears Drought Planning Options

Alan King, director of public works and utilities, addresses the Wichita City Council Tuesday about drought conditions.
Credit Carla Eckels / KMUW

More than one third of the state of Kansas is in severe drought, including Wichita.

Even though Wichita saw record snowfall in February, it wasn't enough to cure the severe drought problem.

Alan King of the City of Wichita public works department told the City Council that every foot of snow typically provides about an inch of rain, which he says does not represent a lot of rainfall.

The drought has been so severe that normal rainfall will not be enough.

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Environment
6:48 am
Thu February 7, 2013

How Close Is Kansas To Another Dust Bowl?

A huge dust storm moves across the High Plains during the Dust Bowl of the 1930s.
Credit USDAgov / Flickr

If Kansas' current drought continues through 2013, the severity of the water shortage may rival the bad years of the 1930s and '50s.

The drought is already causing problems and prompting Wichita city officials to think about water rationing.

The drought is bad by several measures. This year's winter wheat harvest will likely be well below normal, due to low rain during planting last fall.

For ranchers, there isn't as much grazing land, so they'll likely have to sell their cattle earlier at lower weights. And area rivers and streams are near record low levels.

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News
5:44 am
Tue January 29, 2013

Top Morning News 01.29.13

Kansas GOP names Wichitan as new chair; Task force presents school efficiency ideas to lawmakers; Continuing drought taking toll on Kansas wheat.

Kansas GOP Has New Chair

Kansas Republicans have picked Wichita's Kelly Arnold as the state GOP's new chair.

Kelly Arnold has been the GOP's vice chair for the past two years. He has been both executive director and chair of the Sedgwick County party.

Arnold will replace Amanda Adkins, who chaired the state party for four years.

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Environment
11:59 am
Mon January 21, 2013

Wichita Officials Consider Imposing Water Restrictions

Because two years of drought have lowered water levels at Cheney Reservoir, Wichita officials are thinking about bringing back water restrictions.

Wichita hasn't placed water restrictions on residents since the early 1990s. However, the continued drought has lowered water levels at Cheney reservoir by 40 percent. Wichita has been drawing up to 75 percent of its water from Cheney Reservoir since 1993. The rest comes from groundwater north of the city.

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News
5:48 am
Mon January 21, 2013

Top Morning News 01.21.13

Brownback moves to merge JJA and Department of Corrections; Lawmakers looking to make more tax cuts in 2013 session; City of Wichita to consider water usage.  

Brownback To Merge Juvenile, Adult Corrections

Governor Sam Brownback has submitted an executive order to merge the state's Juvenile Justice Authority with its adult Department of Corrections.

The order takes effect in July unless either the House or Senate reject it.

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News
5:22 am
Mon January 7, 2013

Top Morning News 01.07.12

Wichita City Council seat to be filled; Browback names member to Board of Healing Arts; Thousands no longer receive state benefits due to stricter policies.

Vacated Wichita City Council Seat To Be Filled This Week

Four candidates from District IV will be considered this week for the interim Wichita City Council seat. Michael O'Donnell vacated his seat when he was elected to serve in the state Senate.

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Environment
6:32 am
Wed December 26, 2012

Drought Blamed For Kansas Horse Disease

Credit modezero / Flickr

A bacterial disease more commonly seen in the dry Southwest is infecting a large number of horses in Kansas.

Veterinarians at Kansas State University blame the outbreak of pigeon fever on the persistent drought and this year's unusually hot summer.

Professor of equine medicine Laurie Beard says pigeon fever is painful for horses but not usually fatal. The disease causes muscles abscesses, most commonly in the pectoral muscles. That gives an infected horse a pigeon-like swollen chest. Pigeon fever is caused by bacteria found in soil.

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Weather
12:55 pm
Tue December 18, 2012

Emergency Planning Begins For Continuing Drought

While emergency management workers are preparing for snow and ice, state officials are urging water districts to update their plans for water conservation.

All Kansas counties are under a drought emergency, and the drought is predicted to last into 2013.

Kansas Water Office director Tracy Streeter says most of the state's public water supply systems already have conservation plans, but cities and rural water districts should update their drought plans based on their experiences this past year.

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