Kansas Supreme Court

Stephen Koranda, File Photo / Kansas Public Radio

Estimates for Kansas tax collections were ratcheted down sharply yesterday. The state’s projected revenues dropped by a quarter-billion dollars over the next year-and-a-half. That leaves Kansas with a budget deficit. As KPR’s Stephen Koranda reports, Republican Gov. Sam Brownback is proposing plans for erasing the shortfall.

Jennifer Morrow / Flickr Creative Commons

The Kansas Supreme Court has agreed to review an appeals court ruling in January finding that the Kansas Constitution creates “a fundamental right to abortion.”

The high court’s decision was expected after the Kansas Court of Appeals upheld a trial judge’s decision to block Kansas’ so-called "dismemberment ban."

The 2015 ban was challenged by two Overland Park doctors who operate one of three abortion clinics in the state.

J. Stephen Conn, flickr Creative Commons

The Kansas Supreme Court has set a hearing for May 10 on a school funding plan aimed at reducing disparities between school districts.

Justices have threatened to close schools if the issue isn’t resolved by this summer. The date of the hearing might mean it isn’t fully settled by the time lawmakers want to end the session.

The so-called veto session starts the last week of April and traditionally lasts from a few days to a few weeks. Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt says a decision following the hearing could come quickly because justices seem to be working fast.

Alex Starr, flickr Creative Commons

The back-and-forth discussion about school funding in the state of Kansas has been, without a doubt, confusing. Last week, Gov. Sam Brownback signed a bill that lawmakers hope will fix a major problem in education financing. But how could that bill affect students in Wichita? And what does it mean for the future of education funding in Kansas?

Michael B. / flickr Creative Commons

Republican Gov. Sam Brownback signed a school aid bill Wednesday that Kansas lawmakers hope will satisfy the state Supreme Court's ruling to fix equity issues in education financing.

Stephen Koranda, File Photo / Kansas Public Radio

Much attention is being paid to the U.S. Supreme Court vacancy, but equally partisan battles are being waged for control of state courts around the nation.

In states where voters elect Supreme Court judges, millions of dollars are being spent to reshape the courts for years to come. Judicial watchdogs say spending by national groups overwhelmingly favors judges on the right of the political spectrum, and is mostly aimed at maintaining or improving the courts' responses to corporate interests while countering state-level spending by labor unions and other interest groups.

Stephen Koranda, File Photo / KPR

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback has until April 8 to act on a school funding plan approved by legislators in hopes of satisfying a recent state Supreme Court order.

The Republican-dominated Legislature delivered the bill to the GOP governor's office Tuesday. The state constitution gives Brownback 10 days to review the measure.

Lawmakers approved the bill last week to give the Supreme Court adequate time to review it.

Stephen Koranda, File Photo / Kansas Public Radio

Updated at 1:27 p.m:

The Kansas Senate has narrowly passed a bill that outlines a dozen of reasons state Supreme Court justices can be impeached. It includes terms like “discourteous conduct” and trying to usurp the power of the legislative or executive branches. Republican Senator Mitch Holmes says the bill clarifies the current impeachment powers in the Kansas Constitution.

Stephen Koranda / Kansas Public Radio

Kansas lawmakers will start work this week on a response to a school funding ruling from the Kansas Supreme Court. The decision says there are disparities between school districts and if they aren't fixed by this summer the court could close Kansas schools.

There are plans in both the House and Senate to comply with the ruling, but as KPR’s Stephen Koranda reports, the proposals could cost some districts money.

Stephen Koranda

Republican lawmakers in Kansas are weary of conflicts with a judiciary that has been pushing for more school spending, and they're beginning to act on a measure to expand the legal grounds for impeaching judges.

The move is part of an intensified effort in red states to reshape courts still dominated by moderate judges from earlier administrations.

A committee in the GOP-controlled Senate plans to vote Tuesday on a bill that would make "attempting to usurp the power" of the Legislature or the executive branch grounds for impeachment.

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