Daily Archives: Sept. 24, 2013

Westar increase still stings

Well, a $3-a-month increase in residential electric bills is better than what Westar Energy wanted. And the new proposal, which still must be approved by the Kansas Corporation Commission, drops the bad idea of increasing rates on residential customers and small businesses so that Westar can cut rates on big businesses. But the increase still stings, especially when it is Westar’s 19th requested rate hike in the past four years.

GOP House should follow lead of governors

Talk show host Michael Medved can’t believe the House GOP is recklessly charging into a battle to defund Obamacare that it is sure to lose. “The GOP shouldn’t pursue noble defeat while standing on principle,” he wrote in the Wall Street Journal. “You build momentum for a movement by achieving legislative victories, not by racking up high-profile losses.” The GOP’s only hope comes from bold conservative governors, Medved said, mentioning Gov. Sam Brownback in a list of examples. GOP governors “have no choice but to face up to the grubby, imperfect business of governance,” Medved said. “If only those in Congress would follow their lead.”

Help for standoff victims slow in coming

It’s good to see the city of Wichita close to wrapping up 12 settlements for Southlake Village Apartments residents affected by the 32-hour police standoff in July. On Tuesday the Wichita City Council will consider a $25,500 settlement for Justin Zoucher, leaving only four claims likely to be approved by City Manager Robert Layton and City Attorney Gary Rebenstorf. The total $113,992 payout to the residents seems reasonable and necessary, considering the displacement and damage caused by the ordeal and law enforcement’s use of tear gas, a water cannon, controlled blasts and gunfire. It would have been better if City Hall had acted to help compensate these residents for their losses within days, rather than months.