Michael O'Donnell

Nadya Faulx / KMUW/File photo

Updated Wednesday, 4:58 p.m.

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback's phone calls with Sedgwick County Commissioner Michael O'Donnell were among those intercepted by federal officials in 2015.

Deborah Shaar / KMUW

Sedgwick County commissioners elected their 2017 leaders at a meeting Wednesday morning.

Deborah Shaar / KMUW/File Photo

Sedgwick County will be holding a reception for outgoing Commissioner Karl Peterjohn Wednesday morning.

He’s one of two commissioners who lost re-elections in 2016.

Stephen Koranda / KPR/File photo

Legislators from south-central Kansas will hold a public forum Wednesday, less than a week before lawmakers convene for the 2017 session.

Deborah Shaar, file photo / KMUW

Two seats on the Sedgwick County Commission are up for election this year.

Lindsborg Police Department

A man involved in a racist incident at a rural Kansas college has been trying to gain a foothold in state politics.

The chalk outlines of bodies and messages including, “Make Lindsborg White Again,” that were scrawled on Bethany College sidewalks earlier this month rattled the campus and surrounding community.

A police report of the chalkings from Sept. 3 names Gabriel James Wilson as a suspect.

kslegislature.org

Republican Kansas Sen. Michael O’Donnell is running for a seat on the Sedgwick County commission instead of seeking re-election in the state Legislature.

O’Donnell announced Tuesday that he will seek the county's District 2 seat, which is currently held by Democrat Tim Norton. Norton says he intends to file for re-election.

O’Donnell has served in the Kansas Senate since 2013. Before that, he was on the Wichita City Council.

Bill Would Bar Public Health Department Accreditation

Feb 15, 2013

A Kansas Senate committee will hear testimony Monday on a bill that would prohibit public health agencies from pursuing accreditation.

The bill was introduced by Wichita Sen. Michael O’Donnell. The freshman Republican has not yet explained the rationale for the bill.

Michelle Ponce, who heads the Kansas Association of Local Health Departments, says accreditation is a voluntary process to implement and monitor quality improvement.

“We’re really baffled by this bill, to be quite honest," she says.

Four candidates from District IV will be considered this week for the interim Wichita City Council seat.

Michael O'Donnell vacated his seat on the city council when he was elected to serve in the Kansas State Senate this fall.

Candidates Joshua Blick, Jeff Blubaugh, Paul Gray and Stan Reeser were all nominated by the District IV Advisory Board. Three of the candidates were interviewed last week by the board at a public forum in south Wichita.

The District IV Advisory Board will conduct interviews for the interim Wichita City Council seat during a special meeting next week.

Two of the candidates are former city council members and one lost to the outgoing incumbent. The District IV seat in southwest Wichita will open on January 1 after council member Michael O'Donnell resigns on December 31. O'Donnell was elected to the Kansas State Senate in November.

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