Daily Archives: March 7, 2014

State must increase school funding

school-fundingThe state must significantly increase school funding to meet its constitutional obligations, but exactly how much and when is still uncertain. The Kansas Supreme Court ruled today that a three-judge panel needed to look at more than just cost studies to determine the adequacy of funding. The timing of that is unclear. But the court did rule that funding is not equitable and gave the Legislature until July 1 to fix that. How will lawmakers and Gov. Sam Brownback respond?

Open thread (March 7)


Managing Kansas House like herding kittens

humanesocietycatIs the goofiness in the Legislature this session partly due to the fact that half of the members of the Kansas House are freshmen? A recent newsletter by the Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce noted that past House speakers have referred to the task of managing the House as “herding cats.” But for House Speaker Ray Merrick, R-Stilwell, the Wichita chamber said, “it’s probably more a matter of getting his kittens to mature so he can move forward with the pro-growth business agenda he promised.”

Still no notice, penalty if lawmakers fail drug test

urinetestBecause it was imposing drug tests on welfare recipients, the Legislature agreed last year to require state lawmakers to get tested if there is “reasonable suspicion” of drug use. But the law has no penalty for lawmakers who fail the drug test, and privacy rules prevent the release of the name of any lawmaker who fails the test. In other words, the requirement is a joke. It should surprise no one that a bill proposed to dock the pay of lawmakers who test positive for substance abuse went nowhere this session.