News

Andy Marso / KHI news service

From the Kansas Health Institute:

Almost four years since new nutrition standards were introduced, many kitchens need updates.

Most Kansas school districts have moved to comply with stricter nutrition standards since the U.S. Department of Agriculture imposed them almost four years ago.

But many still lack kitchen equipment necessary to make the healthier school breakfasts and lunches appealing.

David Zalubowski / AP photo

The Colorado legislative session ended last week, and it was a period of missed opportunities, says Colorado Public Radio. The two parties agreed on what the problems facing Coloradans were. The trouble is, they couldn’t agree on the solutions. The result: the state’s residents still face many issues going forward.

wordsforworms.com

A card from a dear friend inspired me to think awhile about all the quotes about gardens.  

I was surprised to find some of my favorites were about weeds, like this one said by Eeyore, "Weeds are flowers too, once you get to know them.  

I've also been fond of Luther Burbank's, "Flowers always make people better, happier, and more helpful;  they are sunshine, food, and medicine for the soul."

Or these two that made me stop, and consider carefully what my garden says about me:

Jack Williams |  LIVE IN AMARILLO

Saturday, June 4th

@ The Fibonacci ~ (Chamber Music Amarillo)

3306 SW 6th Ave. ~ 7:00 p.m.

$15 Suggested Donation

JACK WILLIAMS returns to Amarillo! 

Kansas Highway Patrol / Topeka Capital-Journal

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback has signed a bill into law that aims to fill vacancies in the state’s Highway Patrol service, reports The Kansas City Star. As a result, Kansas motorists should expect to pay higher vehicle registration fees beginning in July. The extra fees will go toward providing funds for the Kansas Highway Patrol.

Urban Institute / KHI news service

From the Kansas Health InstituteBiggest gains found in states that expanded Medicaid eligibility for adults.

Bolstered by the federal health reform law, the number of lower-income children getting health coverage continues to improve, a recent study found.

Wikimedia Commons

An aviation company in Amarillo is in talks for a deal with the federal government that could bring as much as $100 billion to the region, reports Amarillo.com. Bell Helicopter could possibly soon begin producing as many as 4,000 aircraft for the United States Army. The deal hinges on Bell’s parent, Textron, beating out Boeing for the contract.

Prowers Journal

A wind turbine east of Lamar, Colorado, went offline last week, reports The Prowers Journal. The culprit? Metal shavings. Repairs are expected to cost about $300,000.

Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

The Oklahoma House of Representatives has chosen a new leader to take the reins next year, reports member station KOSU. Charles McCall is a Republican from Atoka in southeast Oklahoma. It’s hoped that he will bring a unique perspective on water to the capitol.

Corn planting in Princeton, Ill., last month. / Bloomberg News

Farmland values have fallen sharply in parts of America’s heartland, reports The Wall Street Journal. The Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago cites the recent period as the sharpest drop in Midwestern cropland values in almost three decades. Over the past two years, farm incomes have steadily declined. Investors who had piled into the asset a few years ago have begun to retreat. As a result, low prices are weighing down land values from Kansas to Indiana.

Pew Research Center / businessinsider.com

Over the course of this young century, the gap in American cities between the haves and have-nots has continues to widen, reports Business Insider. The Pew Research Center recently analyzed Census Bureau data, looking at the state of the middle class in America's metropolitan areas.

Photo illustration by Todd Wiseman / Jason Unboun / Texas Tribune

Texas’s complicated method for funding its public schools has increasingly come under criticism in recent years. Last week the case finally reached the state Supreme Court, reports The Texas Tribune. The high court upheld the state’s public school funding as constitutional, but didn’t exactly praise the system.

Prowers Journal

The National Park Service recently offered to manage Camp Amache in Southeast Colorado. But the site’s trustees in Granada are still weighing the variables they expect to encounter with the deal, reports The Prowers Journal.

Camp Amache is a former internment camp that was used to incarcerate approximately 7,500 Japanese-Americans shortly after World War Two. The location has been listed as a National Historic Landmark. Yet little remains of the original camp. There is also a small museum depicting life at Camp Amache during the war on Highway 50 in Granada.

Nick Oxford / Reuters

As Oklahoma’s earthquake frequency exploded, so did the rates of insurance companies covering the damages. Reuters reporter Luc Cohen recently examined thousands of pages of documents from the Oklahoma Insurance Commission.

insidehighered.com

The United States is facing an increasing doctor shortage in the near future. But rural medical schools may be the answer, reports InsideHigherEd.com. Over the next nine years, the country will be short as many as 95,000 doctors, the Association of American Medical Colleges predicts.

Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

As fracking activity in Oklahoma proliferated, the frequency of earthquakes in the state began to skyrocket. And as the quakes increased, so did the tension between federal and state researchers about the causes of the rumbling. So StateImpact Oklahoma decided to take a closer look at that feud. What they found was unsettling, though perhaps unsurprising to many. As earthquake activity spiked, federal scientists with the U.S.

Conservation Colorado

During this Colorado legislative season, GOP and Democratic lawmakers found little common ground between them. But they did find one issue they could agree on. After years of debate, rain barrels are now legal in the state of Colorado, reports KDVR.

Wichita Eagle

North Carolina gained national attention this month for its transgender bathroom law. Texas has moved to support the Carolinians by passing its own bathroom law. But now, Kansas is looking to get in on the act, reports The Wichita Eagle. A new Kansas law would bar transgender people from updating the sex on their birth certificates. Currently, trans people are allowed to change the gender on their birth certificate after completing gender reassignment surgery.

Marjorie Kamys Cotera / Texas Tribune

Texan members of the GOP are gathering in Dallas this week for their state convention. And leaders have called on the Texas Republican Party to unify behind Donald Trump, reports The Texas Tribune. Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick spoke to the GOP convention Thursday morning. “We must come together, he said. “We must support our Republican nominee for president: Donald Trump.”

Marjorie Kamys Cotera / Texas Tribune

Texan members of the GOP are gathering in Dallas this week for their state convention. And leaders have called on the Texas Republican Party to unify behind Donald Trump, reports The Texas Tribune. Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick spoke to the GOP convention Thursday morning. “We must come together, he said. “We must support our Republican nominee for president: Donald Trump.”

Luke Clayton

The natural world is governed by cycles that repeat themselves in a pretty predictable pattern! We have learned much about the cycles or “patterns” of fish and wildlife. We know when to expect the whitetail rut or the crappie to move shallow. We fishermen have also learned when the time is right for catching trophy-size blue catfish or smaller fish better suited for the frying pan.

mdt.mt.gov

Does anyone else wonder what highway workers charged with stopping one lane of traffic during road construction think about as they stand in the elements and flip their signs from stop to slow eight to twelve hours a day? Whenever possible, I visit with these souls who brave extreme temperatures and irate drivers to see how their jobs compare to my inside work.

Megan Hart / KHI news service

From the Kansas Health Institute:

Kansas health advocates lauded the Food and Drug Administration’s decision Thursday to regulate electronic cigarettes, while those in the vaping industry pointed to harm to businesses and people trying to quit smoking.

Creative Commons

Eggs are a big part of many American’s diets. And evidence shows that, for the most part, eggs have high nutritional value. Just how good for you are eggs? There’s no question they’re the gold standard when it comes to protein, says the Salina Journal. Research shows a deficiency in protein can hinder your ability to produce antibodies. And high-protein breakfasts may be especially helpful in weight loss because they control appetite.

Theo Stroomer / New York Times

Llooking for something to do this weekend? Why not head out to southern Colorado and wrestle an alligator?  The New York Times recently profiled the Colorado Gators Reptile Park in the San Luis Valle. At the park, people of all ages engage in gator grappling.

Flickr Creative Commons

In honor of Mother’s Day this past weekend, the personal finance website WalletHub has compiled a list of the best and worst states for working moms. A couple of High Plains states fared well on the list, landing in the top 10.

KFOR.com

In light of the state’s $1.3 billion budget shortfall, Oklahoma legislators have been forced to find creative ways to climb out of the hole. This week, GOP leaders decided part of the state’s economic burden should fall on the backs of the poorest Oklahomans, reports KFOR.

To bring in new revenue, Oklahoma lawmakers have approved a bill that would do away with a tax credit intended to help the most destitute citizens of the state.

hungerfreecolorado.org

Colorado has an exceptionally low enrollment rate for people eligible for food stamps, reports Colorado Public Radio. And now, because of the lack of response, the state’s food stamp administration is receiving close scrutiny from the federal government. Colorado has even drawn sanctions from Washington for its low enrollment rate.

Hutchinson News

The campaign for a Kansas seat in the US House of Representatives is heating up, reports The Hutchinson News. U.S. Rep. Tim Huelskamp’s seat is up for grabs in November, and both he and challenger Roger Marshall issued statements last week accusing the other candidate of lying.

Natalia Contreras / Caller-Times

I

n rural South Texas there’s a cemetery with names on the headstones like Davis, Baker and Harris. That in itself isn’t so odd. What is strange, reports The Guardian, is the types of names you won’t see. There are no Garcias here, no Lopezes or Hernandezes. That’s pretty unusual for a county where half the population is Hispanic.

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