U.S. Senator Jerry Moran Newsletter



Capitol Tour
Angela Fullen of Emporia

Carson Powers of Emporia

Cadence Butler of Emporia

Colee Butler of Emporia

Jack Taylor of Emporia

Michelle Morales of Liberal

David Troutman of Wellington

Sandy Borne of El Dorado

Bill Maness of Wichita

Grace Bartel of Newton

Harlan Bartel of Newton

Debra Messamore of Wichita

Weller Messamore of Wichita

Alan Slipke of Netawaka

Phyllis Slipke of Netawaka

Brooke Slipke of Netawaka

April Slipke of Netawaka

Julio Jimerez of Maize

Rachel Jimerez of Maize

Natalia Jimerez of Maize

Kaylee Jimerez of Maize

Hannah Jimerez of Maize

Randy Hock of Wichita

Melinda Laubach-Hock of Wichita

Mason Hock of Wichita

Maddox Hock of Wichita
Dan Etzel of Topeka

Sarah Etzel of Topeka

Rachel Etzel of Topeka

Matthew Etzel of Topeka

Debra Seiler of Garden Plain

Gilbert Seiler of Garden Plain

Steve Burr of Manhattan

Cindy Burr of Manhattan

Steve Nelson of Valley Center

American Heart Association
Traci Poore of Delphos

Skyler Mangers of Lawrence

Kevin Harker of Leawood

Kansas Society of CPAs
Chad Allen of Lawrence

American Society for Radiation Oncology
Melisa Boersma, MD of Prairie Village

Saint Francis Ministries
Karen Soderstrom of Wichita

Dale Soderstrom of Wichita

Col. William Clark of Salina

Equipment Leasing and Finance Association
Joe Franco of Lawrence

Partnership to Advance Cardiovascular Health
Nancy Holland of Leawood

American Academy of Family Physicians
Chris Vering of Kansas City

Kathy Shepard of Independence

Lori Bishop of Manhattan

Jason Creed of Salina

American College of Physicians
Benjamin Quick, MD of Leawood

Isaac Opole, MD of Leawood

Donna Sweet, MD of Wichita

Aastha Bharwad, MD of Wichita

Jerrica Werner, MD of Overland Park

Hassan Farhoud, MD of Wichita

Dr. Ky Stoltzfus, MD of Kansas City

Rebecca Opole, MD of Kansas City





Welcome to “Kansas Common Sense.” Thanks for your continued interest in receiving my weekly newsletter. Please feel free to forward it on to your family and friends if it would interest them.

Honoring Those Who Have Sacrificed This Memorial Day
On Memorial Day, we pause as a nation to remember, honor and pay tribute to those who made the ultimate sacrifice in service to our country. I recently had the honor to present an American flag to World War II Kansas veteran Kenneth Miller and thank him for his service, while surrounded by his family and friends. I want to thank Gary Hicks and Roger Morris for helping to pay tribute to one of our nation’s heroes.


Speaking to World War II veterans, I am reminded of the heroic sacrifices thousands from the Greatest Generation and throughout our nation’s history made to protect the world from tyranny. Decades come and go, but we will always remember the service of the men and women who fought and died in far off places like Germany, Korea, Vietnam and Afghanistan – to defend our freedoms and our way of life.

We also recognize that military service is family service, and no one knows better the true cost of freedom than those who have lost a loved one as a result of their military service. This Memorial Day, I want to take time to honor our fallen servicemembers. To those brave Americans who gave their lives in defense of this nation, and to their families: we respect you; we thank you for your service; and we love you.

Protecting Survivor Benefits for Gold Star Spouses
As we reflect on the sacrifices of our nation’s fallen servicemembers each Memorial Day, we also remember their families and loved ones. As Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, I recently introduced legislation which would allow spouses of deceased servicemembers to retain certain survivor benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the Department of Defense, if they remarry before the age of 55.

You can read my op-ed in the Washington Examiner here.

You can read more from Fox News here.


Speaking at Ottawa County Veterans Memorial Dedication
Over Memorial Day weekend, I had the privilege of speaking at the dedication of the Veterans Memorial for Ottawa County in Minneapolis. The creation of the Veterans Memorial for Ottawa County was a grassroots community effort led by Tom Schur and Leland Johnson. This dedication was only possible with buy-in and investment from the Ottawa County community. I am grateful to the community for the opportunity to participate in this meaningful ceremony and to pay tribute to the fallen soldiers who sacrificed to defend our nation. Special thanks to State Senator Elaine Bowers for joining as well.



Joining American Legion Riders Memorial Day Service
On Memorial Day, I joined the American Legion for the Legion Riders Memorial Day Service at the cemetery in Abilene. I am always inspired by those who volunteer their time and efforts to honor our nation’s heroes.


Paying Respects to President Eisenhower
While in Abilene for Memorial Day, I visited the Place of Meditation at the Eisenhower Presidential Library to pay my respects to General Eisenhower. May we always remember and honor those who served our country.


Grand Opening of NBAF in Manhattan
This week, I joined USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack and several Kansas leaders, including Senator Pat Roberts, Senator Roger Marshall, Governor Laura Kelly, and many local leaders and partners for the dedication and ribbon-cutting ceremony of the Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility (NBAF) in Manhattan. This facility has been in the making for more than two decades, and it would not have been possible without a team of leaders who were dedicated to seeing the project come to completion.

After the 9/11 Commission, the Department of Homeland Security and Department of Agriculture were directed to develop a plan to provide “safe, secure, and state-of-the-art” agriculture biocontainment capabilities for research and diagnostics. DHS considered nearly 30 sites across the country as potential candidates for NBAF before landing on Manhattan. I have no doubt that Kansas was the right choice for this facility – in the heart of the nation, surrounded by farm country and next to a premiere agriculture university. With NBAF, Americans can have confidence that our nation stands ready to combat outbreaks of dangerous diseases that threaten the nation’s livestock, agriculture and public health.


For Kansas, NBAF also represents more opportunities for students in STEM and agriculture to remain here in Kansas while contributing to our national security and cutting-edge research. The future is brighter because of the research that happening at this facility. It will be the epicenter of the nation’s Animal Health Corridor – the area from Manhattan to Columbia, Mo.

I want to say thank you and congratulations to the federal, state and local leaders whose more than 20 years of collaboration brought this project to fruition. I want to recognize Sen. Pat Roberts and Governors Laura Kelly, Sam Brownback and Kathleen Sebelius. Thanks as well to NBAF Director Dr. Alfonso Clavijo, Program Manager Tim Barr and Director of Operations of the Biosecurity Research Institute (BRI) Dr. Marty Vanier.

You can hear my interview with AgriTalk here.

You can hear my interview with KMAN here.


NBAF Welcome Reception at K-State
On Tuesday evening, before the grand opening of NBAF, I hosted an event at K-State to recognize the Manhattan community for their years of work to make NBAF a reality. I want to thank K-State President Dr. Richard Linton, K-State Athletic Director Gene Taylor, and Manhattan Area Chamber of Commerce CEO Jason Smith for hosting and speaking at the event. I am also grateful to the more than 250 people who attended and recognized the importance that NBAF will have on the community and university.


Supreme Court Ruling Protects from Agency Overregulation
The Supreme Court’s ruling to narrowly define Waters of the United States (WOTUS) will help protect farmers and ranchers from overregulation of the rivers and creeks on their land. The previous rule on WOTUS intruded into the lives of everyday Americans by allowing the EPA to regulate even the smallest marshes, ponds and streams – also impacting landowners and businesses. This ruling upholds crucial, private property rights for all Kansas landowners.

Asking Commerce Secretary to Address Broadband Issues in Kansas
A recent broadband quality study found Kansas is the state ranked last in terms of average download speed and ranks only modestly better in other key broadband quality metrics, including latency. Other recent data collected by the University of Kansas found that up to 1 million Kansans, living primarily in rural areas, lack access to high-speed broadband service. Broadband access is correlated with more jobs and greater economic growth, better health care outcomes, and increased educational performance.

On Friday, following her April visit to Kansas at my invitation, I wrote to Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo about the state of broadband in Kansas and emphasized key characteristics the broadband deployment programs at the Department of Commerce must have to be effective. To work for Kansas, the programs must provide each state its fair share of funding; must not waste taxpayer dollars by competing with other federal programs and building over existing networks; and should minimize regulatory burdens to increase the number of broadband providers who participate in the program. Collectively, these steps will help to make certain the programs are successful in bridging the digital divide. I will continue to work with the secretary to ensure Kansans have every opportunity to realize the full benefits of quality broadband service.

You can read my full letter to Secretary Raimondo here.

You can read more from the Kansas Reflector here.

NOTAM Improvement Act Heads to the President
This week, my legislation designed to help prevent Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) system outages passed the U.S. House of Representatives and headed to the President’s desk to be signed into law. The NOTAM Improvement Act would require the FAA to establish a task force to strengthen the resiliency and cybersecurity of the NOTAM system, which alerts pilots of safety and location hazards on flight routes. This bill follows a recent NOTAM system outage in January that grounded flights nationwide and stranded millions of Americans. The FAA has a responsibility to make certain air travel in our country is as safe and efficient as possible. Passing this legislation is an important step to help meet the demands of 21st-century travel and prevent a similar failure in the future.

You can read more from WIBW here.


Recognizing 50th Homecoming of U.S. Prisoners of War from Vietnam
As the Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, I introduced a resolution to honor the extraordinary sacrifice and service of the approximately 766 members of the Armed Forces held captive during the Vietnam War. In 1973, 591 of those prisoners were released by the North Vietnamese. On May 24, 1973, President and Mrs. Nixon hosted the largest dinner in White House history – then and now – in honor of the released Vietnam POWs. On May 24, 2023, exactly 50 years later, nearly 200 of those POWs dined in the Nixon Library’s White House East Room replica and recreated that dinner, down to the menu items and centerpieces.

Our veterans deserve our gratitude and respect when they return home. As a teenager, I watched how Vietnam veterans were treated, and I committed to do everything I could to make certain our Vietnam Veterans were given the honor they are due. This resolution commemorating the homecoming of American prisoners of war represents our nation’s commitment to honor those who served in Vietnam and to say we are grateful for your service; we love you; and welcome home.

You can read more from Sunflower State Radio here.

Delivering Annual Cost-of-Living Increase for Veterans
Legislation that I introduced with Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), the Veterans’ Compensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment (COLA) Act of 2023, unanimously passed the U. S. House of Representatives and is now headed to the President’s desk for signature. The Senate passed this legislation in March.

As we enter another year of high inflation, passage of this legislation is imperative to make certain that VA compensation benefits, which Kansas veterans and millions of veterans and their survivors rely on nationwide, keep pace with rising costs. These benefits include disability and dependent compensation, clothing allowances and certain benefits for surviving military spouses and children. This adjustment will go into effect on December 1, 2023, after the new rates are released by the Social Security Administration. The Social Security Administration bases their annual COLA adjustment on the Consumer Price Index, as determined each December by the Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics.

I appreciate the swift and unanimous passage by my colleagues in the House of Representatives, so that the President can sign this bill into law and make certain there is no uncertainty or delays in adjustments to these veterans’ benefits at the end of the year.

You can read more from the Hays Post here.


Introducing Legislation to Address Affordable Housing Shortage
Along with Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), I introduced the Housing Supply Expansion Act, legislation that would increase the supply of affordable housing options by making targeted reforms to requirements under the Davis-Bacon Act, a 1930s-era labor law. These reforms would reduce labor costs and administrative burdens on residential construction contractors, which would free up capital that could be redirected toward building additional affordable housing.

Purchasing a home is a part of the American dream that is currently out of reach for many families. Reducing the burden of federal regulations will help homebuilders meet the demand for new homes, making homeownership a reality for more Kansans.

You can read more about this legislation here.

Kansas Community Visits
City of Larned
I visited the Larned Fire Department to announce a federal investment for the City of Larned to replace two fire engines and improve emergency communications capabilities. Last year, a wildfire burned thousands of acres and threatened homes, livelihoods and communities in Pawnee County. Members of the Larned Fire Department left their day jobs to extinguish the fire and protect lives and property.

The fire severely damaged two fire engines and forced the evacuation of Pawnee County’s 911 dispatch center. It proved difficult to source parts for these aging fire trucks, and the community identified a need for a mobile communications vehicle to make certain emergency messages would reach first responders and members of the community in future emergencies. This funding from the Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development will replace the two engines and provide the opportunity for upgrades to the county’s communications equipment.


Thank you to Fire Chief Leonard Herrman, Assistant Fire Chief Kyle Beckwith, 911 Dispatcher Jane Bleakney, Sheriff Scott King, Undersheriff Larry Atteberry, Mayor William Nusser, City Counselor Ken Barnes and all who attended to share in the good news, including USDA Rural Development State Director Christy Davis. Special thank you to all of the men and women in communities across our state who make tremendous sacrifices to protect others.

You can read more from the Great Bend Tribune here and the Great Bend Post here.


Larned High School
While in Larned, I also visited Larned High School to speak with students and faculty there. As the spring semester comes to an end, it was great to hear from these students about all they had learned and their plans for the summer. Thank you to Principal Dustin Wilson for hosting me for this visit.


Ellinwood District Hospital
On Monday, I visited Ellinwood District Hospital, a Critical Access Hospital that provides important health care services to the Ellinwood community and surrounding areas. During the visit, I learned more about the services provided to the community by the hospital and the focus on the health care needs of Ellinwood. The input and experiences from Kansas hospitals, their administrators and their staff are important to me as I work to support the health care industry in Kansas and across the nation.

Thank you to Jill Ritchie, Director of Nursing; Justin Lear, Secretary/Treasurer of Board of Trustees & CEO of Eagle Mutual & Eagle Insurance; Summer Zink, hospital CFO; Joyce Schulte, President of Board of Trustees Kile Magner, hospital CEO and Kristy Rupe, Foundation & Community Education Director.



Morning in Kansas
It was a beautiful weekend morning in Kansas on Sunday.



Now Accepting Fall 2023 Internship Applications
My own interest in public service was sparked by an internship for Kansas First District Congressman Keith Sebelius in 1974. As an intern, I had the chance to learn firsthand how a Congressional office operates and how the legislative process works. I am glad to be able to offer this same opportunity in my Senate office today, where I have interns working year-round with my staff to serve Kansans.

Applications for internships in my Washington, D.C. and Kansas offices for the fall 2023 session are due on Sunday, July 16. Congressional internships are open to qualified undergraduate and graduate students who have an interest in public service and have achieved academic excellence. Click here for more information and to apply.

Now Accepting Fall 2023 Page Program Applications
Senate pages play an important role in day-to-day operations of the United States Senate. High school students who are selected for and participate in the Senate Page Program are afforded a unique opportunity to work in the Senate and learn about Congress and the legislative process while maintaining their regular coursework. The Senate Page Program is administered by the Sergeant-at-Arms, the Secretary of the Senate and the party secretaries.

During the fall session, Senate pages attend school in the morning and work while the Senate is in session. Fall page eligibility is limited to juniors in high school who will be 16 or 17 years old on or before the date of appointment. The deadline to apply for the Fall 2023 Page Program is Sunday, June 25. Click here for more information and to apply.

Now Accepting 2023 Service Academy Applications
Applications are now open for students to apply to a United States Service Academy for the Class of 2028. One of my favorite duties as a U.S. Senator is appointing Kansans to the U.S. Military Academy in West Point, New York; the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland; the U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado and the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy in Kings Point, New York.

For the list of requirements and to apply, you can visit my website here. All application materials are due to my Olathe office by Friday, September 1, 2023. After applications have been reviewed, applicants will be notified of interviews with my Service Academy Selection Board.

Honored to Serve You in Washington
It is an honor to serve you in Washington, D.C. Thank you to the many Kansans who have been calling and writing in to share their thoughts and opinions on the issues our state and country face. I appreciate the words of Kansans, whether in the form of a form of letter, a Facebook comment or a phone call, who wish to make their voice heard.

Please let me know how I can be of assistance. You can contact me by email by clicking here. You can also click here to contact me through one of my Kansas offices or my Washington, D.C., office.

Very truly yours,

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