Daily Archives: May 11, 2014

Open thread (May 11)

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Kansas in top 5 for units of government per capita

governmentIn an article headlined “Kansas Cuts Everywhere Except Its 3,800 Local Governments,” Bloomberg News noted that Kansas is in the top five states in per capita number of units of government, yet its 900-plus cities, 105 counties, 1,300 townships and 1,500 special-purpose districts have yet to be targeted for consolidation or elimination by the ruling conservative majority in Topeka. Why not? Gov. Sam Brownback said: “They know Bob that’s the county commissioner or is on the school district…. If you go to consolidate units of government, you just get everybody’s back up.” Former House Speaker Mike O’Neal, now president of the Kansas Chamber of Commerce, recalled that when he proposed consolidating local law enforcement and cutting school-district administrators, “All hell broke loose.”

O’Donnell is second most wined and dined

ODonnellState Sen. Michael O’Donnell, R-Wichita, received the facetious “Silver Spoon Award” from the website Kansas Watchdog for the amount of money lobbyists spent wining and dining him during the 2014 legislative session. O’Donnell racked up $451 in free food and drinks, second only to Sen. Julia Lynn, R-Olathe ($508). The average spent for all lawmakers was $123. Other area lawmakers in the top 10 were Sen. Terry Bruce, R-Hutchinson ($340), and Senate President Susan Wagle, R-Wichita ($332).

So they said

bbackmug“In my 2014 State of the State address which began this legislative session I asked what kind of state we would leave to our 3 millionth Kansan. I believe, through the hard work of this Legislature, we have met our commitment to leave her a state with a growing economy, responsible state government and a world-class education.” – Gov. Sam Brownback (in photo), in a session-ending statement

“Kansas is so red that Attila the Hun ought to be able to win an election in Kansas if he only had an ‘R’ listed after his name on the ballot.” – MSNBC host Rachel Maddow last week, noting Brownback’s surprisingly low approval ratings going into his re-election bid

“That’s just further evidence of the kind of dark money campaigning that goes on in Kansas politics these days.” – Rep. Don Hineman, R-Dighton, on a mailer opposing renewable energy standards