Lawmakers Pass Block Grant Bill to Fund Schools

TOPEKA | The Kansas Legislature has approved a bill that supports a solution to the broken school finance system that has diverted money away from classrooms and tied the hands of school administrators statewide for 23 years.

The House passed the measure Friday 64 to 57 and Senate followed suit Monday (March 16) by passing the bill 25-14. The governor is expected to sign the bill.

Most Johnson County lawmakers voted for the bill_ Substitute for Senate Bill 7.
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Southwest Power Pool touir

As a member of the House Energy and Environment Committee, Keith participated in a tour in early November (2015) of the Southwest Power Pool, a consortium of power companies that covers 18 states. Lawmakers visited the pool’s primary control center in Little Rock and discussed security and reliability issues with officials. The Southwest Power Pool tour was sponsored by Midwest Energy, Sunflower Electric, KCP&L, Westar, KEPCo and ITC. (Click on the photo above for a larger view)

House Backs Election Reform

The House on Thursday (Feb. 26) passed HB 2104 that would update the state’s election law dealing with ballot vacancies. Current law allows a candidate to have his or her name removed from the ballot by the Secretary of State if he or she becomes incapable of fulfilling the duties of the office sought.
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Education Bills Move Forward

The Kansas Senate approved a bill Thursday (Feb. 26) that defines current contract negotiation terms between boards of education and teacher organizations.

The measure, SB 136, now moves to the House, which approved its own broader bill Thursday 109 to 14.
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Keeping Obscenity Out of Classrooms

Under Senate Bill 56, which passed the upper chamber Thursday (Feb. 26), parents would have a place to complain if their children were exposed to obscene material in school.
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Freedom from Unsafe Restraint

The House approved a bill Thursday (Feb. 26) creating the Freedom from Unsafe Restraint and Seclusion Act.

It would provide that no child with a disability could be subjected to unreasonable, unsafe, or unwarranted use of physical restraint or seclusion rooms.
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School spending up, taxes down in Olathe

 Some naysayers said Kansas legislators couldn’t cut taxes and increase school spending at the same time. Well, they were wrong. In addition to cutting taxes, Republican conservatives have increase school spending every year that Sam Brownback has been governor.
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Economic Reforms in Kansas working for Olathe

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A Recent History of Kansas School Funding

Here’s what happened when a large influx of federal stimulus money was provided to the state for schools during the “Great Recession” and what happened when it went away.
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Keith files for Re-election in 2016

Keith files for re-election

State Representative Keith Esau announced today (Nov. 13) that he has filed to run for re-election in the 14th District, which covers portions of northern Olathe and western Lenexa.

For the third time, he has filed by petition for which he gathered signatures from over 200 voters that live in the district that he personally met with over the last few weeks.
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Spring Elections Would Move to Fall

The Senate approved a bill Friday (Feb. 27) that would move municipal elections from March to August for primary elections and April to November for general elections. The vote was 21-18.

This shift would make our local elections uniform with our state and national elections. Local elections would remain nonpartisan.

Under the Senate’s version, local elections would be held in odd-numbered years beginning in 2017. One exception was provided.

Cities could hold an election in even-numbered years for the purpose of staggering terms of office or having three-year terms of office.

By moving the elections, supporters said voter turnout would be increased substantially and more candidates will participate in the election process. Spring elections normally garner very low turnout.

A similar bill has been introduced in the House. It would also allow voters to mark a “straight line” party ticket, thus saving time at the polls.

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