FSCC Rodeo Athlete’s Snow Skiing Injury is “Life Changing”
As a barrel racer, Baylee Oney knows how to navigate twists and turns. But in late December when her anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) was torn in a snow skiing accident, her life may have the biggest turn yet.
“The whole ordeal has been life-changing,” said Oney, 21, of Creighton, MO.
As a student and rodeo team member at Fort Scott Community College, Oney knew she had a challenging road ahead. She needed surgery, she needed to stay in school, and she needed to recover from a serious injury before rodeo season kicked into high gear.
Fortunately all those “needs” have fallen into place, plus she’s found her career calling through her physical therapy experience at Mercy Health for Life.
“I’ve never been a physical therapy patient before and this has opened my eyes to a whole new world where people help people in overcoming challenges,” Oney said. “All my life I’ve been physically active and have enjoyed working with people.”
“Through my therapy at Mercy Health for Life, I’ve personally experienced how being surrounded by encouraging, highly skilled and knowledgeable people is helping me recover and remain determined. The therapy team here has been so influential that I’ve been inspired to change my careers goals and become a physical therapy assistant.”
During Oney’s three months of physical therapy, she has been treated with the typical modalities used for ACL surgery rehab such as strengthening exercises, stretching, and Biodex testing, plus the Mercy therapy team has added aquatic therapy and Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization (IASTM), also known as the Graston technique.
“Baylee has benefitted from using aquatic therapy because water creates natural buoyancy that allows for therapy to be less stressful on her joints while increasing strength, flexibility, and range of motion,” explained Denny Gillard, Mercy Health for Life director and physical therapist.
“The Graston Technique is a soft-tissue massage that uses stainless steel instruments to break down scar tissue around the surgery site so Baylee has better mobility, plus her therapy is less painful and she can progress faster,” Gillard added. “The results are incredible.”
Oney is making excellent progress. She’s eager to get back on her horses and step into the next chapter of her life.
“I’ve learned that in a second, life can throw you a curve,” Oney said. “I’m not taking anything for granted. My experience has been great here at Mercy Health for Life, and I’m now focused on sharing the same with patients I’ll work with in the future.”
To learn more about Mercy Therapy Services, call 620-223-7073.
Mercy Hospital Fort Scott is an acute care hospital with 46 licensed beds, offering comprehensive medical, surgical, OB/GYN, pediatric, home care and hospice services. Inpatient care is provided with 24/7 physician coverage. In 2017, Mercy Hospital Fort Scott received The Leapfrog Group’s prestigious A rating. Mercy Clinic Fort Scott is located on hospital grounds as well as Mercy rural health clinics in Arma and Pleasanton.
TOPEKA – Governor Jeff Colyer, Attorney General Derek Schmidt, Kansas Department for Children and Families (DCF) Secretary Gina Meier-Hummel, Kansas Children Service League (KCSL) President Dona Booe, DCF Social Worker Tina Westbay and children from the Adventures in Early Learning Center participated in a “Pinwheels for Prevention” event today, at the State Capitol Building, Topeka. The event highlighted the dedication of Kansas social workers and emphasized a community-based approach to preventing child abuse.
Common indicators of child abuse include unexplainable bruises, welts, bite marks, burns or other injuries; head trauma; fractures; being frightened of a parent/caretaker; demonstrating behavioral extremes, demonstrating disorganized thinking, self-injuries; running away from home; and verbally reporting abuse.
“Planting pinwheels with these kids here today serves as a representation that every child deserves a happy, loving home,” said Governor Colyer. “But it also reminds us that we must keep moving forward, purposefully taking action to prevent these tragedies. We recently took another step in the right direction, as I signed a bill that requires EMS workers to also become mandated reporters.”
The Governor signed a proclamation to designate April as Child Abuse Prevention Month
“Child abuse is an unfortunate reality in Kansas, and it is a tragedy that is often exacerbated by drug abuse,” said Attorney General Derek Schmidt. “Together, we must address this issue head-on, especially when it impacts the young children in our state. I am grateful that Governor Colyer has assembled a task force dedicated to looking at solutions to solve opioid and other drug-related issues in Kansas.”
In Kansas, DCF received more than 67,000 reports of child abuse and/or neglect in FY 2017, and 584 children were removed from their home because of physical abuse as the primary reason for removal.
“If you see something, say something,” Secretary Gina Meier-Hummel said. “Whether we are a social worker, policeman, nurse, teacher, neighbor or friend, we all have a responsibility to report suspected abuse. Together, we can make a difference in preventing horrific tragedies from occurring.”
DCF Child Protection Specialist Tina Westbay also addressed the audience about her experience with child abuse as a social worker.
“We are here to help. We have a passion to protect children. It’s why we come to work every day,” said Westbay. “And until our state is free from child abuse, we will continue to do this work with diligence.”
To report suspected child abuse or neglect, contact the Kansas Protection Report Center (KPRC) at 1-800-922-5330. Every call is taken seriously and telephone lines are staffed 24 hours a day. In the event of an emergency, contact local law enforcement or call 911. To learn about other services offered to Kansas children and families, visit www.dcf.ks.gov. Additionally, KCSL has a free, statewide, anonymous parent helpline. Trained individuals work the hotline 24-hours a day to listen, offer support, answer questions and provide advice to help caretakers deal with the stress of parenthood. If you would like to contact the helpline, call 1-800-CHILDREN.
Now is the time to take hold of your future!
Enrollment at Fort Scott Community College is now open for summer and fall 2018. FSCC will be there with you to help your future begin now. Pursue an associate degree or certificate at Fort Scott Community College. For more information visit fortscott.edu or call 620-223-2700.
The Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) has begun a resurfacing project on U.S. 69 in Linn County. Work starts north of the U.S. 69/K-52 north junction and continues for six miles, ending south of the Linn-Miami county line.
Project activity includes milling at various locations; a 1-inch reflective crack interlayer (RCI) mix overlay on the driving lanes; and an overlay on exit and entrance ramps. Both north- and southbound traffic is reduced to one lane on the project. The speed limit is reduced to 60 miles an hour, with a driving lane width restriction of 12 feet. Weather permitting, the road work should be finished by late summer 2018.
KDOT awarded the $5.4 million construction contract to APAC Kansas Inc., Shears Division of Hutchinson. Troy Howard, a construction engineer at the KDOT Garnett office, reminds drivers to watch for the signs, slow down and “Give ‘Em a Brake!” at the work zone. Persons with questions may contact Howard at (785) 448-5446, or Priscilla Petersen, KDOT Southeast District public affairs manager, at (620) 902-6433.
State senator Richard Hilderbrand 13th district
communications from the state capitol
March 30, 2018 ∙ Week Twelve
Quote of the Week:
”If we ever forget that we’re one nation under God, then we will be one nation gone under.”
– Ronald Reagan
- In Kansas, there are 46,137,295 acres of farmland, which accounts for 88 percent of all Kansas land. More than 21 million acres in Kansas is harvested for crops and over 16 million acres is pasteurized for grazing animals (Kansas Department of Agriculture). http://agriculture.ks.gov/about-kda/kansas-agriculture
- From 2000 to 2015, Kansas soybean farmers have increased no-till acres planted by 41 percent (Kansas Soybean Association). http://kansassoybeans.org/
- According to unemployment insurance weekly review, weekly claims for the week for March 23rd are 24.9 percent less than last year (Kansas Department of Labor). http://www.dol.ks.gov/lmis/lmr.aspx
- Service Master DSI will move its headquarters to Shawnee. It is estimated this will generate 100 new jobs in the area with an average salary of $67,000 (Kansas Department of Commerce). https://www.kansascommerce.gov/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=1325
- Kansas is one of seven states with decreasing unemployment rates as of February 2018 (U.S. Department of Labor). https://www.bls.gov/news.release/laus.nr0.htm
April is Financial Literacy Month. Check out Financial Literacy for Kansans (https://kslib.info/1163/Financial-Literacy) for a list of trustworthy resources put together by the State Library of Kansas and organized by age group. Available from the State Library, Learning Express Library (https://www.learningexpresshub.com/productengine/LELIndex.html#/learningexpresslibrary/libraryhome?AuthToken=895C9A93-31CF-45C5-814C-A0788C14776D) has added a new facet to their tutorials. The Student Success Skills Center helps high school and college students develop health money habits including managing debt and investing for life. To get to those tutorials, click on the LE link above, and then click on Skills for Success. Universal Class (https://statelibraryofks.universalclass.com/geo-login-ks.htm) offers online courses such as Personal Finance 101, Investing 101, and Retirement Planning. Select “Finance” under the Areas of Study tab. Both resources require easy registration and self-supplied password to allow you to resume your work. Questions: firstname.lastname@example.org or 785-296-3296.
UNFAIR TRADE AND CONSUMER PROTECTION (HB 2580): House Bill 2580 eliminates consumer reporting agencies’ authority to charge certain fees related to consumer report security freezes. HB 2580 amends current law to allow a consumer to place a security freeze on the consumer’s consumer report by written request, sent by certified mail or regular mail, through a secure website if made available by a consumer reporting agency, or by telephone, if the consumer reporting agency does not have an available secure website. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
REPEALING RESTRICTIONS FOR KPERS INVESTMENTS WITH COMPANIES IN SUDAN (HB 2444): House Bill 2444 repeals requirements of the Kansas Public Employees Retirement System (KPERS) Board regarding new investments and divestment of current investments in companies with business operations in Sudan. The bill would also repeal the associated indemnification for the KPERS Board and its employees, research firms, and investment management. This bill passed the Senate 38-2.(I voted against this bill. While the genocide of Darfur is not completely addressed by the country of Sudan, we shouldn’t be investing with them.)
RAINY DAY FUND (HB 2419): House Bill 2419 concerns transfers to and expenditures from the budget stabilization fund. HB 2419 outlines that the rainy-day fund would earmark any excess revenue or over-projected estimates to be split in half, with 50 percent to pay off debt to the PMIB loan and the other 50 percent to be stored in a rainy-day fund for when projected revenues are short of projections. Historically, the legislature spends available money rather than set aside money to meet the statutory requirement of a seven percent remaining balance. This bill failed the Senate 21-19. (I voted against this bill. While the state continues to delay funds from KDOT, defer payments to KPERS, and have other financial burdens, it isn’t good financial stewardship to put money in a rainy day fund over paying off our current debt.)
AMENDING THE UNIFORM ANATOMICAL GIFT ACT(HB 2472): House Bill 2472 amends the uniform anatomical gift act to give drivers license applicants’ authorization to be listed as an organ, eye, and tissue donor in the Kansas donor registry. HB 2472 would require the word “Donor” be placed on the front of the driver’s license or identification card of an individual who provides authorization on an application for a driver’s license or an identification card to be listed in the Registry. The gift would become effective upon the death of the donor. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
HEALTH OCCUPATIONS CREDENTIALING FEE FUND (HB 2501): House Bill 2501 would create the Health Occupations Credentialing Fee Fund to be administered by the Secretary for Aging and Disability Services. Fees collected under provisions of the Adult Care Home Licensure Act, Dieticians Licensing Act, Operator Registration Act, and the act regulating speech-language pathologists and audiologists would be deposited into the fee fund instead of the State General Fund. This bill passed the Senate 39-1. ( I voted for this bill)
OMBUDSMAN LONG-TERM CARE PROGRAM (HB 2590): House Bill 2590 amends the state long-term care ombudsman program, activities, and access to certain records. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
NUCLEAR ENERGY DEVELOPMENT AND RADIATION CONTROL ACT (S Sub HB 2600): Senate Substitute for House Bill 2600 provides for the assessment of fees by the Department of Health and Environment for noncontiguous sites where radioactive material is stored or used. S Sub HB 2600 also directs the Secretary of Health and Environment to study and investigate maternal deaths in Kansas. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
WORKERS COMPENSATION DEATH BENEFITS (S Sub HB 2184): Senate Substitute for House Bill 2184 amends workers compensation death benefits. The act allows for an initial payment to be shared between the surviving spouse and the dependent children. This bill passed the Senate 35-5. (I voted for this bill)
INCREASED PENALTIES FOR FAKE POLICE CALLS (HB 2581): House Bill 2581 increases the criminal penalties for the crime of giving a false alarm in certain circumstances. The practice which is known as “swatting,” is when a person makes a call to the police with a false story of an ongoing crime in attempt to draw police officers to a particular address. Any false call for emergency help would be at least a misdemeanor, becoming a felony if the person uses a fake identity or electronically masks their identity. HB 2581 would make fake calls that result in death a felony comparable to second-degree murder. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
HUNTING GUIDES AND OUTFITTER REGISTRATION (SB 301): Senate Bill 301 requires hunting guides and outfitters to register with the Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism. This bill passed the Senate 31-9.( I voted against this bill. This bill will require any individual that is paid as a guide to register and pay a fee with the state.)
EXEMPTING DIVISION OF LEGISLATIVE POST AUDIT FROM PAYING MONUMENTAL BUILDING SURCHARGES (S Sub HB 2129): Senate Substitute for House Bill 2129 exempts the Division of Legislative Post Audit from paying any monumental building surcharge charged and collected by the Department of Administration or any other state agency that is levied against all state agency-leased square footage in Shawnee County. This bill would permit the Secretary of Administration to approve a new lease or renew or extend an existing lease without an energy audit being performed if the Secretary determines an energy audit is not economically feasible. This bill passed the Senate 33-7. (I voted against this bill. This would exclude the Division of Legislative Post Audit from the oversight of the legislative body)
INTEROPERABILITY ADVISORY COMMITTEE (Sub HB 2556): Substitute for House Bill 2556 establishes the state interoperability advisory committee. In 2007, the Statewide Interoperability Executive Committee was created by Executive Order to provide governance and guidance pertaining to the interoperability of public safety communications systems. The committee’s focus has been on radio frequency communications and data interoperability. HB 2556 would take the current statewide council and put it in statute. The bill would direct the committee to make recommendations to the Adjutant General’s Department (TAG). This bill passed the Senate 37-3. (I voted against this bill. This will add another function for our state government)
SPECIAL OLYMPICS, CHOOSE LIFE, WICHITA LICENSE PLATE (HB 2599): House Bill 2599 provides for the distinctive plates for Special Olympics, Choose Life, the Wichita city flag. The bill also authorizes special license plates for veterans of the Korean War, Operation Desert Storm, Operation Iraqi Freedom, and Operation Enduring Freedom. This bill passed the Senate 36-2.(I voted for this bill)
COMMERCIAL DRIVER’S LICENSE RENEWAL (HB 2511): House Bill 2511 would make commercial driver’s licenses renewable every five years. The bill would extend the period of time before expiration from four years to five years. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
RENEWAL OF DRIVER’S LICESNES; VISION REQUIREMENT (HB 2606): specifies vision test requirements for qualifying applicants for electronic online driver’s license renewal. The bill would waive the requirement currently that a driver’s license examiner administer an eyesight exam prior to the electronic online renewal of a driver’s license only under certain conditions. An applicant for an online renewal must be at least 21 years old but less than 50 years old and confirm under penalty of law that their vision meets requirements currently in law of 20/40 or better in at least one eye as tested by the driver’s license examiner, or 20/60 or better in at least one eye submitted in a vision report from an ophthalmologist or optometrist. The applicant must certify they have undergone an examination by a licensed ophthalmologist or a licensed optometrist within the previous year and must authorize the exchange of vision and medical information between the Division of Vehicles and the applicant’s ophthalmologist or optometrist. This bill passed the Senate 35-5.(I voted for this bill)
DESIGNATING SEDGWICK COUNTY AS URBAN AREA (HB 2597): House Bill 2597 designates Sedgwick County as an urban area, concerning nonprofit cemetery corporations in certain urban area counties. The designation would allow the Kansas Legislature to pass laws specific to those areas. Currently, Johnson, Wyandotte, Shawnee, and Greeley counties already have this designation. The designation only allows for a county to make a request for specific legislation. This bill passed the Senate 39-1.(I voted for this bill)
QUALIFICATIONS FOR LICENSING OF PROESSIONAL OCCUPATIONS (S Sub HB 2386): Senate Substitute for House Bill 2386 implements restrictions on requirements for licensing of professional occupations. S Sub HB 2386 would require any person, board, commission, or similar body that determines the qualifications of individuals for licensure, certification, or registration to revise their existing requirements to list the specific civil and criminal records that could disqualify an applicant from receiving a license, certification, or registration. The revision would occur within 180 days after the effective date of the bill. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
NURSE LICENSURE COMPACT (HB 2496): House Bill 2496 creates the Nurse Licensure Compact and amend the Kansas Nurse Practice Act to enable the Board of Nursing to carry out the provisions of the Compact and establish the duties of registered nurses (RNs) and licensed practical nurses (LPNs) under the Compact. The Compact allows RNs and LPNs to have one multi-state license, with the privilege to practice in the home state of Kansas and in other Compact states physically, electronically, and/or telephonically. This bill Passed the Senate 40-0.
THE CHILD CARE CRIMINAL BACKGROUND AND FINGERPRINTING FUND (HB 2639): House Bill 2639 requires local and state law enforcement officers and agencies to assist the Secretary of Health and Environment in taking and processing fingerprints of persons residing, working, or regularly volunteering in a child care facility and to release all records of adult convictions and nonconvictions and adult convictions or adjudications of another state or country to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment. KDHE would be required to adopt rules and regulations on January 1, 2019 to fix a fee for fingerprinting such persons as required to reimburse KDHE for the cost of fingerprinting. The bill would create the Child Care Criminal Background and Fingerprinting Fund in the State Treasury to be administered by the Secretary. All fingerprinting fees collected would be deposited in the Fund for use in paying local and state law enforcement officers and agencies for the processing of fingerprints and criminal history background checks. This bill passed the Senate 36-4. (I voted for this bill)
APPROPRIATION REVISIONS (Sub SB 269): Substitute Senate Bill 269 creates appropriation revisions for FY 2018 and FY 2019 for various state agencies.
In FY 2018, Sub. SB 269 recommends expenditures of $16.3 billion, including $6.7 billion from the State General Fund. The recommendation is an all funds reduction of $3.0 million and a State General Fund increase of $1.6 million from the Governor’s Recommendation for FY 2018.
Some key components for the FY 2018 appropriation revisions:
- Add $1.5 million, all from the State General Fund to fully fund the Technical Education Incentive for the Department of Education.
For FY 2019, Sub. SB 269 recommends expenditures of $16.8 billion, including $6.8 billion from the State General Fund. The recommendation is a reduction of $79.2 million, including $80.7 million from the State General Fund, from the Governor’s Recommendation for FY 2019. The bill also reduces State General Fund revenue by $11.7 million for FY 2019.
Some key components of the FY 2019 appropriation revisions:
- Add $22.1 million, including $10.0 million from the State General Fund, for an increase in nursing facility reimbursements rates.
- Add $4.7 million, including $2.1 million, from the State General Fund, to provide a salary adjustment to all employees who did not receive a salary adjustment as part of the 2017 Legislative Pay Plan.
- Add $5.5 million, including $3.3 million from the State General Fund, to increase payments for foster care kinship placements from an average of $3 per day to an average of $10 per day for the Department of Children and Families.
This bill passed the Senate 34-6. (I voted for this bill)
DEFENDANT’S COMPETENCY AND COMMITMENT FOR TREATMENT (HB 2549): House Bill 2549 creates judicial determinations of defendant’s competency and commitment for treatment. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
LEGISLATIVE TASK FORCE ON DYSLEXIA (Sub HB 2602): Substitute House Bill 2602 establishes the Legislative Task Force on Dyslexia and Other Reading Comprehension Impairments (Task Force), which would advise and make recommendations to the Governor, Legislature, and the Kansas State Board of Education regarding matters concerning the use of evidence-based practices for students with dyslexia and other reading comprehension impairments. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
RESCUING VULNERABLE PERSON OR ANIMAL FROM A VEHICLE (HB 2516): House Bill 2516 provides immunity from civil liability for damage to a motor vehicle for a person who enters the vehicle, by force or otherwise, to remove a vulnerable person or domestic animal if they are in imminent danger. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
SCRAP METAL THEFT REDUCTION ACT (SB 429): Senate Bill 429 delays certain provisions of the Scrap Metal Theft Reduction Act until January 1, 2020. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
QUALIFICATIONS FOR THE OFFICE OF SHERIFF (HB 2523): House Bill 2523 amends the statute setting forth the qualifications required of sheriffs. Specifically, the bill would narrow language disqualifying a person from holding the office of sheriff if the person has been convicted of a violation of any federal or state laws or city ordinances relating to gambling, liquor, or narcotics. The bill would disqualify only for a misdemeanor related to gambling, liquor, or narcotics within five years immediately proceeding election or appointment. HB 2523 would remove a specific 320-hour training requirement and clarify the training and testing required of sheriffs. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
SCHOOL TRANSPORTATION FUNDING (SB 352): Senate Bill 352 requires transportation funding for school districts from the state general fund, not the state highway fund; making and concerning appropriations for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2019. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
LOCAL OPTION BUDGET (SB 422): Senate Bill 422 requires a minimum local option budget and requires school boards to notify the state board of education of their intent to increase local option budget authority. Any resolution increasing a district’s local option budget adopted prior to July 1, 2017, that was not subsequently submitted to an approved by a majority of the district’s qualified electors, would expire June 30, 2018. Districts that desire to increase their local option budget authority for the next school year would submit written notice of such intent to the State Board of Education by March 1. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
REFERENCES RELATED TO KDADS AND DCF (S Sub HB 2028): Senate Substitute for House Bill 2028 updates statutory references related to the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services and the Kansas Department for Children and Families in accordance with 2-12 Executive Reorganization Order No. 41. The bill would make conforming and technical amendments to law. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
STATEWIDE BROADBAND EXPANSION PLANNING TASK FORCE (S Sub HB 2701): Senate Substitute for House Bill 2701 creates a broadband expansion planning task force. The purpose of this task force is to develop a group to evaluate and expand broadband throughout Kansas. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
ALLOWING CRIMINAL CASES TO BE STAYED DURING STATE APPEAL OF WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS (HB 2479): House Bill 2479 allows criminal cases to be stayed during state of appeal of writ of habeas corpus relief. HB 2479 creates procedures and limitations concerning contact with jurors following a criminal jury trial and clarifies grand jury proceedings. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
COUNTERFEIT CURRENCY, MISTREATMENT LAWS, AND DEFINING LAW ENFOCEMENT OFFICER (HB 2458): House Bill 2458 defines counterfeiting currency as anything intended to defraud through forging currency. Another element of this bill combines the two laws into one that deal with mistreatment of a dependent adult and elder person. HB 2458 also amends the definition of law enforcement officer to include uniformed or properly identified while on duty. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
GOLF CARTS ON CERTAIN STREETS AT NIGHT (HB 2486): House Bill 2486 allows golf carts to be driven on any public street or highway between sunset and sunrise if the golf cart has lights as required by law for motorcycles and has a properly mounted slow moving vehicle emblem. This bill passed the Senate 36-4.(I voted for this bill)
AMEND CERTAIN SALES TAXATION FOR MOTOR VEHICLES (SB 367): Senate Bill 367 amends current sales tax law that includes the value of a rebate from a manufacturer of a new vehicle to the potential buyer. Current law includes this amount to calculate sales tax liability. SB 367 requires the rebate to be paid directly to the retailer. This bill passed the Senate 38-0.
KANSAS RIGHT-TO-KNOW FEE FUND (HB 2577): House Bill 2577, as amended creates a maximum annual fee for the Right-To-Know Program that would only be used for the administration of the Program. Current law allows the fees to go into a general fund. The Program deals with hazardous substances. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
CONTROL AND ERADICATION OF NOXIOUS WEEDS (HB 2583): House Bill 2583 clarifies definitions for terms related to noxious weeds. This legislation allows the Secretary of Agriculture to declare an emergency for noxious weeds that can be potentially harmful because of a natural disaster. This bill passed the Senate 36-4.(I voted against this bill. This bill would transfer oversight from the legislative body to KDHE.)
HIGH-PERFORMANCE INCENTIVE PROGRAM TAX CREDIT (SB 430): Senate Bill 430 extends 50 percent of the unused High-Performance Incentive Program tax credits beyond the current carryforward limit, from 16 years to 25 years, for those taxpayers who initially claimed a HPIP credit prior to January 1, 2018. In any tax year after the 16th year, the amount of tax credits used by a taxpayer would be limited to 10 percent of the reduced amount. Taxpayers would be required annually to certify under oath to the Secretary of Commerce that they continue to meet HPIP requirements. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
QUALIFICATIONS FOR CANDIDATES SEEKING CERTAIN STATEWIDE OFFICES (HB 2539): House Bill 2539 would amend qualifications for certain state offices. This legislation would clarify require these positions to be a “qualified elector.” A qualified elector must be at least 30 years old when becoming a candidate for the office of the governor or lieutenant governor. Another provision is a candidate must be licensed to practice law in Kansas for the office of the attorney general.
The House’s original age requirement for the office of governor and lieutenant governor was 18 before the Senate changed it to 30. The final age requirement will be settled in conference. This bill passed the Senate 29-9. (I voted for this bill)
CORRUPT POLITICAL ADVERTISING (HB 2642): House Bill 2642 amends the “corrupt political advertising” statute. Currently, social media communication is exempt from the requirement to include “paid for” or “sponsored by” information if the limit of characters is 200. The amended bill increases that limit to 280 characters. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
KANSAS ADOPTION AND RELINQUISMENT ACT (HB 2481): House Bill 2481 provides several provisions to the Kansas Adoption and Relinquishment Act. Senator Molly Baumgardner (R-Louisburg) placed an amendment on the bill which protects faith-based adoption agencies. This bill passed the Senate 28-12. (I voted in favor of this bill)
KANSAS PET ANIMAL ACT (HB 2477): House Bill would create several changes to the Kansas Pet Animal Act pertaining to licensure of those providing temporary care of dogs or cats, maximum license fees, notice of inspections, requested inspections, no-contact inspections, failed inspections, and license renewal dates. This bill passed the Senate 34-6.(I voted in favor of this bill)
INCOME TAX REFUND FOR CERTAIN NATIVE AMERICAN VETERANS (Sub HB 2147): Substitute House Bill 2147 would create a process by which certain Native American military veterans would be able to apply for a refund of state personal income taxes improperly withheld from such veteran’s federal military income in the amount of income taxes paid plus interest. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
REMOVING ALCOHOL AS A SPECIAL FUEL (HB 2488): House Bill 2488 would remove the word “alcohol” from the definition of “special fuels” under the motor-fuel tax law. The bill clarifies how fuels are taxed. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
SALES TAX AUTHORITY FOR THOMAS COUNTY (HB 2492): House Bill 2492 increases the maximum local sales tax rate that can be imposed by Thomas Country from 1.5 percent to 1.75 percent, provided all taxes levied in excess of 1.00 percent remain earmarked for financing a courthouse, jail, law enforcement center, or other county administrative facility. An election would be required for an increase in the current Thomas County sales tax, which is 1.5 percent. This bill passed the Senate 38-2. (I voted against this bill. This bill is not uniform, and would give a select few counties the ability to raise their sales tax)
STATE FAIR CAPITAL IMPROVEMENTS FUND (SB 415): Senate Bill 415 creates a diversion of state sales tax receipts so that collections by the Kansas State Fair and retailers on the fairgrounds would be deposited into the State Fair Capital Improvements Fund, effective July 1, 2018. Current law allocates 83.8 percent of collections go to the State General Fund and 16.2 percent go to the State Highway Fund. This bill would repeal an existing statutory transfer from the State General Fund to the State Fair Capital Improvements Fund. This bill passed the Senate 40-0.
- 10:00 a.m. Session
- Hearing on: HB 2526, adding a ranking minority member to the joint committee on administrative rules and regulations and the state rules and regulations board and requiring agencies to report the impact regulations will have on business – [Senate Federal and State Affairs Committee, April 2 at 9:00 am]
- 10:00 a.m. Session
- 10:00 a.m. Session
- 10:00 a.m. Session
- 10:00 a.m. Session
Website – www.kslegislature.org. It is great for looking up bills, calendars, journals, as well as, the roster in each Chamber.
YouTube of Legislature – http://bit.ly/2CZj9O0 Did you know the legislature is now streaming its proceedings? The YouTube page has an archive of the sessions thus far – including the State of the State and the State of the Judiciary.
Committee Streaming – http://sg001-harmony.sliq.net/00287/Harmony/en/View/Calendar/ The Kansas Legislature is also streaming committees, with every committee room equipped with audio streaming technology.
Thank You for Engaging
Thank you for all your calls, emails, and letters regarding your thoughts and concerns about happenings in Kansas. Constituent correspondence helps inform my decision-making process and is taken into great consideration when I cast my vote in the Kansas Senate. I hope you’ll continue to engage with me on the issues that matter most to you, your family, and our community. If you are on Twitter or Facebook, I encourage you to follow along with the #ksleg hashtag for real-time updates on legislative happenings in Topeka.
Please know that I am fully committed to addressing the current issues in our state, and I am proud to be your voice in the Kansas Senate.
Jeannie Kay Speer, age 46, a resident of Ft. Scott, Kansas, passed away Monday, April 2, 2018, at the Mercy Hospital Emergency Room in Ft. Scott.
She was born August 5, 1971, in Ft. Scott, the daughter of Harley Anderson and Rhonda Mitchell Anderson. She married Johnny Speer, Jr on September 7, 1995, at Ft. Scott. Jeannie was a devoted wife and mother who loved her family dearly.
Survivors include her husband, Johnny, of the home and two sons, Ryan Speer and Dustin Speer, both of Ft. Scott. Also surviving is her mother, Rhonda Anderson, of Ft. Scott; a brother, James Anderson and Eva, of Ft. Scott and a sister, Tracy Anderson, of Yates Center, Kansas; her grandfather, Troy Mitchell of Pleasanton, Kansas and several nieces and nephews and great-nieces and great-nephews as well as her in-laws, John and Pam Speer, of Redfield, Kansas and Jonathan Field, of Ft. Scott.
She was preceded in death by her father, Harley Anderson; nephew, William Pulliam; great-nephew, Andrew Aerts and her mother-in-law, Judy Field.
Rev. Mark Demas will conduct funeral services at 11:30 A.M. Thursday, April 5th at the Cheney Witt Chapel.
Burial will follow in the U. S. National Cemetery.
The family will receive friends from 6:00 to 7:00 pm Wednesday at the Cheney Witt Chapel. Memorials are suggested to the Jeannie Speer Memorial Fund and may be left in the care of the Cheney Witt Chapel, 201 S. Main, Ft. Scott, KS 66701. Words of remembrance may be submitted to the online guestbook at cheneywitt.com.
JOB OF THE DAY – FULL-TIME FACILITY MANAGER – ADVANTAGE METALS RECYCLING
Advantage Metals Recycling is seeking applicants for the position of FACILITY MANAGER. Qualifications include bachelor’s degree in a business discipline, along with a minimum of 2 years’ experience in a business environment required; OR 5 years’ operations, heavy industrial or manufacturing experience with demonstrated leadership ability and understanding of business. Job requirements include creating a “Safety First” culture in each facility, the ability to lead teams, and the ability to represent the organization in local community and political matters. Apply online today! http://ow.ly/G3Qu30jhcMv
Governor Jeff Colyer, M.D. Begins Accepting Nominations for Governor’s Community Service Award Recipients
TOPEKA, KS – Governor Jeff Colyer today announced the start of accepting nominations for the Governor’s Community Service Award. Gov. Colyer, in association with the Kansas Volunteer Commission, is recognizing the hard work and selfless service of Kansas high school students through this award. Starting today, teachers, counselors and administrators can nominate both a junior and senior from their school who have displayed a dedicated commitment to serving his or her community. One junior and one senior from each nominating school will be selected to receive this award. Last year, 55 students received the award from over 40 Kansas communities.
“We have so many exceptional students across our state who are doing a great deal to help in their community and striving to make a difference where they live,” said Governor Colyer, “This award delivers a powerful message to encourage other students to take action. I believe students who possess such dedication to giving back deserve our gratitude.”
“I applaud Governor Colyer’s commitment to recognizing Kansas students who are giving back to their communities,” said Kansas Commissioner of Education Dr. Randy Watson, “Teaching our students to be good citizens builds strong communities and is a critical piece of the Kansans Can vision for education. All of this contributes to what makes Kansas so great.”
“Civic engagement is about students sharing their skills and knowledge through actions that improve their communities,” said Board of Education member Jim McNiece, “This award is a great way to honor students who have chosen to do something with their time that can have a lasting impact on the world around them.”
In order to qualify for nomination for this award, students are required to volunteer their time to help those in need at a nonprofit, community organization, faith-based organization, business, school or national service program. The deadline for submitting nominations is April 30th.
Nominations can be submitted through the following link: https://goo.gl/forms/F5VklxKNJbvFF9Ql2
State of Kansas Launches “My (Re)Employment Plan” Workforce Program to Improve Services for Job Seekers
In an effort to match unemployed job seekers with Kansas employers looking to hire workers, Governor Jeff Colyer, M.D., is proud to announce that the State of Kansas has launched “My (Re)Employment Plan,” a program that blends enhanced workforce services with personal responsibility to get Kansans back to work faster.
The collaboration between the Kansas Department of Labor, Kansas Department of Commerce and the KANSASWORKS Workforce System will provide enhanced reemployment services to Kansans who are unemployed and looking for work. The program, called “My (Re)Employment Plan” connects unemployment recipients with workforce service professionals in their area. Unemployed Kansans who are receiving benefits will be provided, free of charge, personalized job search assistance, including:
- Creation of a personalized “My (Re)Employment” Plan that focuses on goals and accountability
- Skills assessment to match interests and skills with occupations
- Resume, interview, and networking assistance
- Labor market information highlighting current in-demand jobs
To emphasize the importance of a planned, dedicated job search to match unemployed workers with jobs, individuals who fail, without good cause, to participate in this free of charge service will lose unemployment benefits until such time as they can demonstrate a reasonable job search. The program is designed to help people achieve their reemployment goals and to reduce time spent on unemployment.
Kansas jobseekers assigned for My (Re)Employment Plan services will be referred to one of 21 KANSASWORKS facilities throughout the state. Participants will be notified by mail around the midpoint of their unemployment claim. The notification will provide appointment details, including where and when the jobseeker will receive services, and the steps they need to take to better prepare for a successful job search.
“Kansas is experiencing low unemployment and Kansas businesses are ready to hire qualified workers,” said Governor Jeff Colyer. “The My (Re)Employment Plan program will connect unemployed job seekers with the 48,000 job openings at businesses across the state.”
“Workforce needs is one of the top concerns of the Kansas business community. The Kansas Chamber and its members appreciate the increased focus on getting Kansans back to work when there are thousands of open jobs and employment is at near record highs,” stated Alan Cobb, President, and CEO of the Kansas Chamber.
“Kansas SHRM supports efforts to connect unemployed individuals with job opportunities. A planned job search that emphasizes the importance of networking and access to quality job search tools will benefit both those looking for employment and employers,” said Shelbye Smith, State Council Director of Kansas SHRM.
“NFIB’s latest Small Business Economic Trends survey found that ‘quality of labor’ is the No. 1 problem facing America’s small-business owners,” NFIB State Director Dan Murray said. “The My (Re)Employment Plan Workforce Program is welcome news to Kansas small businesses that are struggling to find qualified applicants to fill must-needed jobs.”
“I know all the Local Workforce Development Boards in Kansas are constantly hearing from employers seeking talent and this initiative will assist in connecting job seekers to the large number of career opportunities available throughout Kansas,” said Keith Lawing, CEO, Workforce Alliance of South Central Kansas.
“The Associated General Contractors (AGC) of Kansas, which is recognized as the ‘Chamber of Commerce of the Kansas Construction Industry,’ applauds Governor Colyer’s focus on workforce development for Kansas. This is a key issue, as the construction industry in the state needs 8-10,000 new workers over the next few years to meet the demand that is driven by an enhanced state economy and the retirement of our baby boom generation of workers,” stated Mike Gibson, AGC of Kansas Executive Vice President.
“This commonsense initiative by Governor Colyer couldn’t come at a better time for our state’s employers, especially those in advanced manufacturing,” added Gary Plummer, President, and CEO of the Wichita Regional Chamber of Commerce. “We’re excited about the future prospects in this high paying industry sector and creating a pathway to connect those needing work with those firms that need workers is a wise and welcome program.”