Category Archives: Kansas

Kansas Workforce Development Improvement Begins

Governor Kelly’s Advantage Kansas Coordinating Council Holds First Meeting on Improving Workforce Development in Kansas

TOPEKA – The Advantage Kansas Coordinating Council held its first meeting Monday, officially beginning its work to implement Governor Laura Kelly’s vision of Kansas having the best educated, most skilled workforce in the Midwest.

The Governor signed an Executive Order in March establishing the Advantage Kansas Coordinating Council, which creates a statewide forum for crafting policy and legislative proposals aimed at workforce development.

“This council will align our education system with the needs of business and industry to build the robust pipeline of skilled workers needed to ensure we don’t fall behind in a constantly-evolving economy,” Governor Kelly said. “We must invest in our children and our businesses to create opportunities for all Kansans.”

During Tuesday’s meeting, the Council committed itself to the Governor’s 5-year vision of being the best in the Midwest in three key areas:

  1. Post-secondary readiness and success;
  2. Preparation for high-wage, high-demand, high-skilled, critical need occupations and;
  3. Business expansion, attraction, and retention.

The Council reviewed findings surrounding Kansas’s economic competitiveness from the state’s new economic development strategy, the Framework for Growth. After assessing the state’s existing advantages and areas for growth, the Council delved into educational attainment data in Kansas, identifying information gaps and metrics to assess growth in workforce development opportunities like apprenticeships, certifications, and more. The group concluded the meeting by organizing itself into three workgroups, each focused on one of three priority areas identified by the Governor:

  • The Jump Start Kansas team will work on post-secondary readiness and success, helping to improve work based and applied learning opportunities in the state;
  • The Talent Ready Kansas team will focus on preparation for high-wage, high-demand,, high-skilled, critical need occupations in Kansas, working to expand apprenticeship programs and increasing industry preparation in higher-education;
  • The Opportunity Kansas team will center its work on business expansion, attraction, and retention, helping to make Kansas the best place to live, invest, and grow.

The Advantage Kansas Council will meet monthly, with the next full-council meeting scheduled for May 12th. All meetings will be streamed live and notice will be posted via Public Square. Members of the public can view the meeting on the Board of Regent’s YouTube page here and access the meeting documents here.

Governor Kelly appointed the following members:

  • Alan Cobb, Topeka, Co-Chair
  • Shelly Kiblinger, Cherryvale, Co-Chair
  • Vijay Ramasamy, Topeka, Governor’s Office Representative
  • Dr. Cindy Lane, Kansas City, Governor’s Office Representative
  • Ann Mah, Topeka, State Board of Education Representative
  • Jean Clifford, Garden City, State Board of Education Representative
  • Dr. Randy Watson, McPherson, KS Commissioner of Education
  • Dr. Blake Flanders, Topeka, President and CEO of KBOR
  • Trent Armbrust, Manhattan, KS Department of Commerce
  • Matt Lindsey, Lawrence, Kansas Independent Colleges Association
  • Becky Wolfe, Augusta, Chamber of Commerce Executives of Kansas
  • Bob Hale, Kansas City, Organized Labor Association Representative

K-3 surface recycle to begin April 19

 

The Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) plans to begin work on a K-3 resurfacing project on Monday, April 19. The project starts at the west K-3/K-39 junction and continues north to U.S. 54.

 

Project activity includes a one-inch surface recycle, followed by a chip seal. KDOT awarded the $868,508 construction contract to Dustrol Inc. of Towanda. Flaggers and a pilot car will direct one-lane traffic through the work zone; expect delays of 15 minutes or less. A 10-foot driving lane width restriction will also be in effect.

 

The road work should be completed in one month, weather permitting. Persons with questions may contact Iola Area Engineer Troy Howard, (620) 901-6557, or Public Affairs Manager Priscilla Petersen, (620) 902-6433.

 

Check KDOT’s updated traveler information website, www.Kandrive.org, for more road condition and construction details. KDOT urges all motorists to be alert and obey the warning signs when approaching and driving through a work zone.

Kansas Pauses Johnson & Johnson Administration

 

TOPEKA – The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) announces that Kansas will pause administration of the Johnson & Johnson (Janssen) COVID-19 vaccine following an announcement from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) this morning. There are reports of six recipients in the United States who developed a rare disorder involving blood clots within about two weeks of vaccination. No known cases have been reported in Kansas to date.

“Just as important as getting vaccines into arms — is making sure those vaccines are safe,” Governor Laura Kelly said. “While this appears to have affected six people in the nearly seven million doses administered, out of an abundance of caution, Kansas will suspend Johnson and Johnson until the CDC and FDA clear it for use again. In the meantime, we anticipate our shipments of Pfizer and Moderna to continue and we will build on the one-third of Kansans who have already received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.”

The federal government will further study links between the vaccine and the rare blood clotting disorder. An emergency meeting of the CDC’s advisory committee has been scheduled for Wednesday.

KDHE asks providers with Johnson & Johnson vaccine to pause administration of the vaccine immediately and to place the supply into storage while material is reviewed. After KDHE has reviewed the findings from the federal government, further guidance will be given to providers on next steps.

Those who have received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine should contact their health care provider if they have any symptoms and report any illness to the VAERS Reporting System, https://vaers.hhs.gov.

The week of April 19th, Kansas is anticipated to receive the following doses:

  • 39,780 Pfizer Prime
  • 38,610 Pfizer Boost
  • 29,000 Moderna Prime
  • 27,800 Moderna Boost

Joint CDC and FDA Statement

As of April 12, more than 6.8 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson (Janssen) vaccine have been administered in the U.S. CDC and FDA are reviewing data involving six reported U.S. cases of a rare and severe type of blood clot in individuals after receiving the J&J vaccine. In these cases, a type of blood clot called cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST) was seen in combination with low levels of blood platelets (thrombocytopenia). All six cases occurred among women between the ages of 18 and 48, and symptoms occurred 6 to 13 days after vaccination. Treatment of this specific type of blood clot is different from the treatment that might typically be administered. Usually, an anticoagulant drug called heparin is used to treat blood clots. In this setting, administration of heparin may be dangerous, and alternative treatments need to be given.

CDC will convene a meeting of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) on Wednesday to further review these cases and assess their potential significance. FDA will review that analysis as it also investigates these cases. Until that process is complete, we are recommending a pause in the use of this vaccine out of an abundance of caution. This is important, in part, to ensure that the health care provider community is aware of the potential for these adverse events and can plan for proper recognition and management due to the unique treatment required with this type of blood clot.

Right now, these adverse events appear to be extremely rare. COVID-19 vaccine safety is a top priority for the federal government, and we take all reports of health problems following COVID-19 vaccination very seriously. People who have received the J&J vaccine who develop severe headache, abdominal pain, leg pain, or shortness of breath within three weeks after vaccination should contact their health care provider. Health care providers are asked to report adverse events to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System at https://vaers.hhs.gov/reportevent.htmlexternal icon.

CDC and FDA will provide additional information and answer questions later today at a media briefing. A recording of that media call will be available on the FDA’s YouTube channel.

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Legislative Update by State Senator Caryn Tyson

Caryn Tyson

 

April 9, 2021

 

Protecting Elections

Every vote is important.  “Voting is the most precious right of every citizen, and we have a moral obligation to ensure the integrity of our voting process.” Hilary Clinton.  So why are so many Democrats in Kansas trying to block legislation to protect our elections? Even worse, the U.S. House passed legislation that will destroy the integrity of our state elections (H.R.1, For the People Act of 2021).  Hopefully, HR-1 dies in the U.S. Senate.  The Kansas legislature passed HCR 5015 rejecting H.R.1 and S.1 (the senate version of H.R.1).

 

Kansas didn’t have the problems that other states had in the November 2020 elections but there is room for improvement.  Elections are too important and we need 100% accuracy.  The legislature passed Conference Committee Report (CCR) 2183 and CCR 2332.

 

CCR 2183 will limit ballot harvesting, make it unlawful to alter postmarks on mailed ballots, and require signature verification on mailed ballots.  It would also make it a crime to act like or try to appear to be a county clerk or Secretary Of State (SOS).  In November 2020, there were advance ballot applications and websites that appeared to be official.  They were not and just confused voters.  The bill would also require the SOS to post registered voter data and stop county clerks from accepting money from 3rd parties for elections – an example would be the Zuckerberg money that some clerks applied for and received in Kansas.  The CCR passed the Senate 27 to 11.

 

The legislature also passed CCR 2332 that would require residential and mailing addresses to be maintained and strengthen requirements for advance ballot applications, including signature verification.  The CCR passed 27 to 11.

 

I was able to strengthen election legislation with amendments through the chairman in committee and on the senate floor.  Some Senators argued these CCRs and the HCR promote voter suppression and that they are not needed.  That is not even true.  They help protect the integrity of our elections.  To paraphrase a friend, “What voter integrity checks would they ever support?  When will they opine that banks don’t need safeguards since bank robbery is so rare?”

 

Hopefully, the Governor will not veto these important bills.

 

Women’s Sports

CCR 55, the Fairness in Women’s Sports Act, would stop anyone who is not a biological female from participating in sports designated for females, women, or girls.  The CCR passed the House and Senate.  I was one of 26 who voted yes in the Senate.  There were 11 no votes.  We’ll see what the Governor does with the bill.

 

Legislature Break

While the legislature is on break for the next few weeks, I will continue to update you on topics covered during session.  All of the legislation is posted online at www.kslegislature.org.

 

It is an honor and a privilege to serve as your 12th District State Senator.

Caryn

Governor Signs 14 New Bills

Governor Laura Kelly Signs Several Pieces of Bipartisan Legislation

TOPEKA – Governor Laura Kelly today signed several bipartisan bills that will implement meaningful changes for Kansans, communities, and businesses.

“I want to thank the Legislature for their work to get these pieces of bipartisan, commonsense legislation to my desk,” Governor Kelly said. “These bills are a testament to what we can get done for Kansans when we work together, toward mutually-agreeable solutions, to make life better for the people in our state.”

Senate Bill 52

Senate Bill 52 establishes the Sedgwick County Urban Area Nuisance Abatement Act. It authorizes the Board of County Commissioners to order the removal or abatement of any nuisance from any property in the unincorporated area of Sedgwick County. All costs associated with the abatement are the responsibility of the property owner.

Before the abatement process could begin, the bill requires the County to first obtain a conviction for a county code violation regarding the nuisance no more than 12 months before the issuance of the abatement order.

Senate Bill 172

Senate Bill 172 amends the Kansas Criminal Code regarding crimes involving property by eliminating the crime of tampering with a pipeline and establishing four new crimes: trespassing on a critical infrastructure facility (CIF), aggravated trespassing on a CIF, criminal damage to a CIF, and aggravated criminal damage to a CIF. The bill also allows a judge to order restitution for property damage to any victim of the four new crimes.

House Bill 2022

HB 2022 amend laws concerning the filing of complaints and investigations pertaining to abandoned wells, responsible parties for plugging abandoned wells, and funds used by the Kansas Corporation Commission (KCC) for plugging abandoned wells.

House Bill 2050

House Bill 2050 amends statutes to remove requirements that the following reports and certifications be provided to the Legislative Division of Post Audit (LPA), the Post Auditor, or the Legislative Post Audit Committee:

  • An audited statement of actual expenditures incurred by a Kansas nonprofit corporation providing legal services to indigent inmates of Kansas correctional institutions;
  • A certified summary of the write-off of any accounts receivable or taxes receivable by the Director of Account and Reports;
  • An annual audit of corporations who contract with the Board of Regents (Board) or any state educational institution and are substantially controlled by the Board or such institution; and
  • An annual report by the Secretary of Revenue regarding tax abatements that reduce final tax liability by $5,000 or more.

Additionally, the bill makes technical amendments to ensure consistency in statutory phrasing and remove an outdated retroactivity provision.

House Bill 2070

HB 2070 allows private, not-for-profit postsecondary educational institutions in Kansas to collect a surcharge on credit card payments. The Kansas Uniform Consumer Credit Code bars sellers from collecting a surcharge on credit card payments, with certain exceptions that currently include Kansas public institutions, municipal universities, community colleges, technical colleges, and vocational schools.

Senate Substitute for House Bill 2072

Senate Sub. for House Bill 2072 creates the Utility Financing and Securitization Act (UFSA), which allows for the securitization of utility assets to recover energy transition costs for electric public utilities whose retail rates are subject to the Kansas Corporation Commission (KCC).

The UFSA also allows electric and natural gas public utilities whose retail rates are subject to the KCC to pursue securitization to help finance qualified extraordinary expenses, such as fuel costs incurred during extreme weather events.

House Bill 2112

House Bill 2112 permits online advertisement and sales of abandoned property by self-storage rental unit operators; provides for the designation by occupants of an alternate contact; and limits claims for loss or damage of stored property to the property value limit provided in the rental agreement.

House Bill 2126

House Bill 2126 provides immunity from civil liability for COVID-19 claims for certain covered facilities, including adult care homes, community mental health centers, crisis intervention centers, community service providers and community developmental disability organizations.

House Bill 2145

House Bill 2145 exempts the retail sale of electricity by public utilities for electric vehicle charging stations from the jurisdiction of the state corporation commission.

House Bill 2155

House Bill 2155 provides for the Kansas Department of Health and Environment response operations for water and soil pollutant release, discharge, or escape.

House Bill 2162

House Bill 2162 amends and repeals reapportionment census data laws to conform with 2019 amendments to the Kansas constitution and to remove certain obsolete provisions.

House Bill 2214

House Bill 2214 authorizes the Secretary of Administration on behalf of the Department of Corrections to convey land in Mitchell county to the city of Beloit.

House Bill 2298

House Bill 2298 changes requirements for service of process on nonresident drivers and clarifying service of process on certain business entities.

House Bill 2367

House Bill 2367 authorizes the state corporation commission to regulate certain transmission line wire stringing activities.

Detour route changed for K-39 bridge replacement

 

The Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) has begun a project to replace a bridge on K-39 in Bourbon County. The bridge spans Pawnee Creek and is located approximately 7½ miles east of the east K-3/K-39 junction.

 

K-39 will be closed to through traffic at the bridge starting Wednesday, April 14. A new signed state detour route will be in effect around the project. Eastbound traffic, from the west K-39/U.S. 59 junction, will travel south on U.S. 59 to K-47, east on K-47 to U.S. 69, and north on U.S. 69 to K-39. Westbound K-39 traffic should follow the same route in the opposite direction.

 

KDOT awarded the $1.4 million construction contract to B&B Bridge Company, Inc., of St. Paul. Weather permitting, the project should be completed by November 2021. Persons with questions may contact Iola Area Engineer Troy Howard, (620) 901-6557, or Public Affairs Manager Priscilla Petersen, (620) 902-6433.

 

KDHE amends travel quarantine list

 

TOPEKA – The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) has amended its travel quarantine list to add several states and countries – Connecticut and Pennsylvania and the countries of Andorra, Bermuda, Curacao, Poland, Serbia and Uruguay. Two countries, Czechia and Montenegro are removed.

A comprehensive list of those individuals needing to quarantine includes visitors and Kansans who have:

  • Traveled on or after April 8 to Connecticut or Pennsylvania
  • Traveled on or after April 8 to Andorra, Bermuda, Curacao, Poland, Serbia or Uruguay
  • Traveled on or after March 26 to Delaware, Michigan or Rhode Island
  • Traveled on or after March 26 to Hungary or Jordan
  • Traveled on or after March 12 to New Jersey or New York
  • Traveled on or after March 12 to State of Palestine or Estonia
  • Traveled on or after Feb. 26 to San Marino
  • Traveled between Feb. 26 – April 8 to Czechia or Montenegro.
  • Attendance at any out-of-state mass gatherings of 500 or more where individuals do not socially distance (6 feet) and wear a mask.
  • Been on a cruise ship or river cruise on or after March 15, 2020.

The travel quarantine period is seven days with a negative test result or 10 days without testing, with release from quarantine on Day 8 and Day 11, respectively. Further information on quarantine periods can be found on KDHE’s website.

For those traveling internationally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is requiring testing within three days of flights into the U.S. For further information on this and other requirements, visit their website.

For those who are fully vaccinated (meaning it has been greater than two weeks since they completed their vaccinations) they are not required to quarantine regarding travel if they meet all of the following criteria:

  • Are fully vaccinated (i.e., ≥2 weeks following receipt of the second dose in a 2- dose series, or ≥2 weeks following receipt of one dose of a single-dose vaccine)
  • Are within 6 months following receipt of the last dose in the series
  • Have remained asymptomatic since the travel

Persons who do not meet all three of the above criteria should continue to follow current quarantine guidance for travel.

Additionally, people with previous COVID-19 disease are not required to quarantine following travel if they meet all of the following criteria:

  • Have evidence of a previous infection supported by a positive PCR or antigen test
  • Are within 6 months following infection. If an investigation was done documenting the date that symptoms resolved, or the date isolation measures were discontinued for asymptomatic patients, then the 6-month period can start from that end date. If those dates are not available, then the period will start from the date of the positive laboratory test. A serology or antibody test may not be substituted for a laboratory report of a viral diagnostic test.
  • Have remained asymptomatic since the travel

Persons who do not meet all three of the above criteria should continue to follow current quarantine guidance for travel.

The travel quarantine list is determined using a formula to evaluate new cases over a two-week period, then adjusted for population size to provide a case rate per 100,000 population. This provides a number that can then be compared to the rate in Kansas. Locations with significantly higher rates — approximately 3x higher — are added to the list.

For more information on COVID-19, please visit the KDHE website at www.kdhe.ks.gov/coronavirus.

KCC approves refunds for solar customers who paid demand charges

 

 

TOPEKA – Today the Kansas Corporation Commission (KCC) ruled on two petitions for reconsideration related to a February order directing Evergy to put its residential distributed generation (DG) customers back on a two-part standard rate design eliminating a controversial demand charge.

In a two-part petition for reconsideration, Vote Solar, Climate & Energy Project, and the Sierra Club requested the Commission reconsider its earlier decision of not requiring Evergy to refund customers for charges collected under the previous three-part rate. Upon further review, the Commission determined refunds are appropriate and granted the request today.

Secondly, solar advocates sought reconsideration of the Commission’s decision to maintain the separate residential DG classification, stating it would deny DG customers an opportunity to participate in alternative rate offerings.  In response, Evergy agreed to make optional rates, minus the Time of Use pilot, available to DG customers. The Commission found that was an acceptable solution.

A group of Electric Companies (Evergy, Southern Pioneer, Liberty-Empire and the KEC Group) filed their own petition for reconsideration seeking clarification of the previous order. The group asked if they could propose rates to cover the costs of different or additional services provided to DG customers. The Commission clarified that the order does not prevent a utility from identifying other distinct services received by residential DG customers that may justify an added charge to offset any subsidy received by DG customers in a non-discriminatory way.

Today’s order can be viewed at http://estar.kcc.ks.gov/estar/ViewFile.aspx?Id=3fa461ee-5481-4195-8d8c-9a3ff6b37881 .

A recording of today’s Commission Meeting can be viewed on the agency’s YouTube Channel:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=10bSVa8nZ48&list=UU-uTcucl0oyHJr-_iOheuuw&index=1

 

Win $100 Gift Card by Taking Safe Digging Quiz

Kansas Gas Service reminds public to ‘Be a Dig Hero’ before starting any outdoor projects

OVERLAND PARK, Kansas – April 6, 2021 – With April being National Safe Digging Month,
Kansas Gas Service is promoting awareness about safe digging practices by offering customers a
chance to win a $100 gift card if they take an interactive quiz at BeADigHeroKansas.com
during the month of April.
“Safe Digging Month serves as a good reminder to call 811 at least two working days before
starting any digging project,” said Dawn Tripp, public relations manager at Kansas Gas Service.
“Whether it’s a small project, such as planting trees and shrubs, or a large commercial project,
calling 811 is the first step to safe digging.”
By making the free call to 811 or visiting KansasOneCall.com before digging, professional
locators will mark all underground utility lines within the designated project area with flags
and/or paint at no cost to the home or business owner. In 2020, 19% of the pipeline damages on
our system were from people not calling 811.
“Knowing how to dig safely helps avoid injury and protects the neighborhood because
underground utility lines may be found below yards, sidewalks, driveways or streets,” said Tripp.
VIDEO: The Scoop on Buried Utility Lines
3 Tips to Remember Before Digging
1) Even if you’re digging shallow, you need to call to have your lines marked.
2) If you hire a contractor, make sure they call 811 prior to digging.
3) Know the Tolerance Zone, which is the area 24 inches from each outside edge of the
pipeline. Within this zone, you are required to use soft digging techniques, such as hand
digging, vacuum excavation or other similar safe excavation methods to avoid any
contact or damage to the line.
About Kansas Gas Service
-more-
Kansas Gas Service provides a reliable and affordable energy choice to more than 645,000 customers in Kansas and
is the largest natural gas distributor in the state, in terms of customers.
Headquartered in Overland Park, Kansas Gas Service is a division of ONE Gas, Inc. (NYSE: OGS), a 100-percent
regulated natural gas utility that trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “OGS.” ONE Gas is
included in the S&P MidCap 400 Index and is one of the largest natural gas utilities in the United States.
For more information and the latest news about Kansas Gas Service, visit kansasgasservice.com and follow its social
channels: @KansasGas, Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube.
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Unemployment Insurance Technology Modernizes

Governor Laura Kelly Announces Next Steps for Unemployment Insurance Technology Modernization

~ KDOL requests proposals for new system ~

TOPEKA – Today, Governor Laura Kelly announced a major step forward in the effort to modernize the state’s Unemployment Insurance (UI) system at the Kansas Department of Labor (KDOL). The agency issued its request for proposal (RFP) for modernizing the over 40-year-old computer system.

“When I learned that the previous Administration abandoned efforts to modernize the state’s unemployment computer system in 2011, I immediately tasked the agency with reviving its modernization plans,” said Governor Laura Kelly. “Unfortunately, the pandemic hit, and the antiquated technology was unable to keep up with the record volume of claims. Today, we are taking a major step in fixing our broken system. We will finish what other Administrations’ failed to do.”

Prior to the pandemic, at Governor Kelly’s direction, KDOL staff traveled to states that had modernized their unemployment systems to learn from them how Kansas could build a system that would more efficiently serve claimants and businesses. In the past year, the agency has dedicated a specialized team to complete and expedite the modernization plan, incorporating the findings and best practices from these states.

“The RFP process is the next major step in our effort to modernize,” said Secretary Amber Shultz. “We plan to expedite this process as much as possible, while taking care to engage the business community, workers, and legislators. Over the past year, we have been able to stabilize our underlying systems which were not equipped to handle the volume of pandemic-related claims or the complexity of the new federal programs. The stabilization efforts worked and will help to speed modernization implementation once a vendor is selected,” said Shultz.

When Governor Kelly took office in 2019, one of her top priorities for the Department of Labor was to modernize the agency’s archaic mainframe UI IT system. However, when the state faced record-high unemployment due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the agency was forced to temporarily suspend its modernization efforts in order to focus on stabilizing the decades old system.

Today, the system has largely been stabilized and is paying out legitimate claimants in the traditional state unemployment program and new federal benefit programs. Since March 15, 2020, KDOL has paid out over 4.2 million weekly claims totaling over $2.8 billion between regular unemployment and the federal pandemic programs.

The Kansas Legislature is considering Governor Kelly’s $37.5 million budget request to replace KDOL’s aging system.

“We are on target to modernize this antiquated system,” said Governor Kelly. “While we navigate the procurement process, we also need the legislature to fund this critical upgrade. It will not be cheap—fixing a system that has been neglected for 40-plus years never is—but failing to act is not an option. I will continue working with the legislature to get this critical project done. We owe it to the people of Kansas.”

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Kansas Online Drivers Testing Exam Launched April 1

Kansas Department of Revenue Announces a Web-Based Written Driver’s License Exam Option

TOPEKA – On Thursday, April 1, 2021, the Kansas Department of Revenue’s Division of Vehicles launched KnowTo Drive Online, a web-based version of its driver’s testing exam, powered by Intellectual Technology, Inc. (ITI). The introduction of this testing service adds to the Department’s expanding online services it provides. With KnowTo Drive Online, Kansans have the opportunity to take their written test from the comfort of their home.

“The availability of an online written test has been on our list of customer service enhancements and we are happy to finally announce its arrival,” David Harper, Director of the Division of Vehicles, said. “This testing portal, coupled with our other online services, should greatly decrease the number of customers in the office and considerably reduce the duration of customer visits.”

Kansas is the newest state to offer testing through KnowTo Drive Online. ITI also hosts self-service kiosks in 13 states, which help motor vehicle agencies extend services to grocery stores and other places of convenience.

The KnowTo Drive Online testing portal is available 24/7 on the Division of Vehicles’ website at http://ksrevenue.org/vehicles. Fees are $10 for the first test and $8.50 for any re-test.

If preferred, the Kansas Driver’s License written version of the test will still be available to be taken in the office.

Kansas New Bills Signed Into Law

Governor Laura Kelly Signs Bill Requiring In-Person Learning Option, Other Legislation

~Governor Kelly signs school bill after all Kansas schools already offer in-person attendance options~

TOPEKA – Serving as a testament to her administration’s efforts to get Kansans back to school, back to work, and back to normal, Governor Laura Kelly signed SB63, and all unified school districts in Kansas will now provide a full-time, in-person attendance option for all students enrolled in kindergarten through grade 12.

“Since the pandemic began, my administration has prioritized keeping Kansans healthy, keeping businesses open, and getting kids back into classrooms,” Governor Kelly said. “Among other efforts, we earmarked vaccines specifically for school staff – and all teachers and staff members who wanted a vaccine have now received at least their first dose.

“As we maintain quick and efficient vaccine distribution, COVID-19 case numbers in Kansas continue to drop – and our schools have taken steps to safely and responsibly re-introduce in-person learning. Currently, every school in Kansas is already offering an in-person attendance option for students.”

View Senate Bill 63 here.

Governor Kelly also signed the following bills into law:

Senate Bill 37

Senate Bill 37 amends provisions governing agent licensing and renewal licensure requirements in the Uniform Agents Licensing Act and in the Public Adjusters Licensing Act, and also amends a statute governing the examination of applicants for agent licensure.

The bill also provides for an exemption and extension in complying with the continuing education requirements of licensed insurance agents serving on active duty in the National Guard or armed services of the United States for a specified period of time. SB 37 further requires certification by pre-need-only insurance agents that no other insurance business was transacted.

Senate Bill 99

Senate Bill 99 amends law regarding vehicle dealer license requirements and vehicle display shows. Specifically, the bill authorizes the Director of Vehicles, the Kansas Department of Revenue, to issue a temporary display show license to a sponsor of a motor vehicle display show.

House Bill 2014

House Bill 2014 defines “military surplus vehicle” in the Uniform Act Regulating Traffic on Highways and in law regarding vehicle registration. It also authorizes the owner of a military surplus vehicle to register it with an annual fee.  

House Bill 2172

House Bill 2172 amends the Kansas Water Appropriation Act by expanding the opportunity for the establishment of multi-year flex accounts for groundwater water rights to water right holders who did not have water use between 2000 and 2009.  

House Bill 2270

House Bill 2270 places a limit of $100,000 on deposits into the State General fund each fiscal year from moneys from a levy placed on each fire insurance company doing business in Kansas for the purpose of maintaining the Office of State Fire Marshal.