guns

Stephan Bisaha / Kansas News Service

For the past school year, guns have been allowed at public colleges in Kansas.

But the concealed nature of campus carry, alongside a year with no major gun-related incidents at Kansas universities, has meant most students and faculty haven’t really noticed the guns — or a difference.

Neil Conway, flickr Creative Commons

Younger people could carry guns even as local authorities gain new powers to take guns away in some situations. Police videos could become more available and people held in prison wrongfully could expect payments from the state.

On all those matters, Kansas lawmakers have advanced legislation. Those bills still need final approval from the Legislature — and the governor’s signature or a veto override — to become law. But they could soon be on the books.

stacey_newman / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Legislation designed to strengthen Kansas schools against gunmen passed in the House Wednesday, though some lawmakers argued the bill is more ploy than policy.

The measure would set aside $5 million for schools to upgrade infrastructure to slow or thwart a potential school shooter. The bill passed on a 119-5 vote and heads next to the Senate for consideration.

The bill won Democratic Rep. Jason Probst's vote, but not his support.

At school, Kansas students learn what to do in case a shooter attacks. Lock classroom doors. Turn out the lights. Huddle out of view from the window in the door.

In the Statehouse, lawmakers are searching for consensus on better ways to prevent, or cut short, school shootings. Arm teachers? Fortify schools? Train kids about guns?

On Tuesday, the feelings clashed in a committee hearing and on the floor of the Kansas House just days after gun control activists drew crowds to March for Our Lives protests in Kansas City, Wichita, Topeka and across the country.

Jim McLean / Kansas News Service

Even in the wake of national and local protests, students and others pushing for tighter gun laws say state and federal lawmakers from Kansas refuse to tackle even “common sense” firearm rules.

Thousands rallied across the state over the weekend. They called for stronger background checks. They pushed an assault weapons ban. And they pleaded for laws to extract guns from homes where suicide and domestic violence appear imminent.

Nadya Faulx / KMUW

Hundreds of students, teachers and supporters marched through downtown Wichita on Saturday to demand stricter gun laws.

Storem / flickr Creative Commons

Kansas legislators are debating a bill designed to keep guns out of the hands of fugitives and domestic abusers and could consider other gun issues.

The Senate planned to take a final vote Thursday on the measure. The bill would make it a felony under state law for anyone convicted of domestic violence to possess a firearm within five years of conviction. It would also be illegal for fugitives to possess guns.

But senators expected to take up other gun proposals as well during their debate.

Stephan Bisaha / KMUW

Students across Kansas joined their peers elsewhere in the country by walking out of school Wednesday and into the national debate over guns.

Jim McLean / Kansas News Service

Republicans in the Kansas House on Tuesday unveiled a plan they say will make schools safer.

File Photo / publicdomainpictures.net

Listening to news reports while driving to the Statehouse on the day after the deadly high school shooting in Florida, Kansas Sen. Barbara Bollier decided to redouble her efforts to put a “red flag” law on the books in Kansas.

She wants a system for temporarily confiscating guns from people deemed a risk to themselves or others.

“It’s not something that tramples on somebody’s rights,” said Bollier, a Mission Hills Republican. “It just puts a temporary hold on a situation until things calm down.”

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