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Stephen Koranda

Kansas lawmakers are set to resume the 2014 legislative session this week after taking almost a month off.  They still have some work to do according a recent report from Kansas Public Radio.

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Senator Bob Dole is doing a lot of appreciating these days. He just wrapped up the first leg of a thank you tour around his home state of Kansas, meeting with longtime friends and supporters who've helped him with throughout his career. And they did turn out to see the native Kansas son, who served as the Republican Majority Leader in the Senate and ran for president in 1996. It is clear Dole still loves working a room. He loves weighing in on the big issues, and he cannot resist a good one-liner.

futurewithinreach.com

Gov. Mary Fallin signed Senate Bill 1456 into law recently.  The new measure allows regulated electric utility companies to charge customers who generate electricity from rooftop solar panels or small wind turbines reported StateImpact Oklahoma.

cjonline.com

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback signed the school finance bill this week; complete with controversial add-ons reported the Topeka Capital-Journal

texastribune.org

With the Texas May primary run-off looming overhead, a Republican lieutenant governor candidate is being held-- feet to the fire.  Rep. Dan Patrick answered the social media challenge of San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro, where Castro called the senator the “most anti-immigrant Republican running for office,” according to a recent article from The Texas Tribune.

Colorado Republicans cut number candidates significantly during a recent statewide assembly. U.S. Rep. Gardner will not have a primary challenger. The number of gubernatorial hopefuls was whittled down from seven to four.

politico.com

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback recently signed 19 bills into law.  Topping the list was and a bill stripping the Kansas Supreme Court of its appointment power as well as changing the system’s management according to a recent article from the Kansas Health Institute.

Ross Ramsey / The Texas Tribune

The Texas Libertarian Party recently held its convention in Temple to nominate statewide candidates.  With fewer votes than it takes to get on the vestry of a church, November nominees were chosen.  But, there are advantages to being a small group reported The Texas Tribune.

About a dozen attorneys general attended the first-ever conference on fracking.

http://kgou.org/

Oklahoma State Rep. David Dank says a recently released report the Oklahoma Department of Commerce shows legislative film rebates are a “bad deal” according to a recent story from KGOU.

oksenate.gov

Lone Democrat, Frankie Lee Robbins, wants to unseat 10-term U.S. Rep Frank Lucas in Oklahoma’s 3rd Congressional District according to The Republic.

Michael Pearce / kansas.com

Legislative action to revoke the Kansas Endangered Species Act and another bill to prevent landowners from locking their property indefinitely into conservation programs are firing up conservationists reported the Wichita Eagle.

watchdog.org

Gov. Sam Brownback recently announced that Kansas is joining a federal lawsuit against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service over the designation of the lesser prairie chicken as a threatened species according to a recent article in the Wichita Eagle.

JOE WERTZ / STATEIMPACT OKLAHOMA

The Kaiser-Francis Oil Company is like other Oklahoma energy empires in many ways.  It’s been created by entrepreneurs who pulled themselves up by the bootstraps.  It’s ruled by a billionaire CEO who has weather storms of controversy and showers of praise, but the Tulsa-based exploration and production company is different.  It isn’t pushing for oil and gas tax cuts according to a recent article from StateImpact Oklahoma.

blogs.telegraph.co.uk

Recently programmers from five Colorado cities began competing against each other to create apps with a goal of putting to use massive amounts of public data sitting in virtual file drawers of government agencies reported Elaine Grant for Colorado Matters.

bestmeal.info

Eric Herm is one of a small group of farmers and environmental advocates pushing for labeling of GMO products in Texas according to a recent article in the Texas Tribune

destination360.com

The Kansas House rejected a bill to repeal the state’s renewable energy standards.  Kansas Public Radio reported the vote was 44-77. 

kansas.com

A compromise of a 16-foot median is the solution to US Highway 50 expansion between Dodge City and Cimarron, Kansas reported the Dodge City Daily Globe.

wikipedia.org

The Oklahoma Attorney General and the Domestic Energy Producers Alliance recently filed a lawsuit against the Department of the Interior and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for “colluding” with environmental groups to bypass public procedures for rule-making to enact endangered species regulations said a recent article by StateImpact Oklahoma.

Christopher Guinn / Dodge City Globe

Jim Sherow is challenging Rep. Tim Huelskamp to represent the 1st District of Kansas.  The Democratic hopeful says Huelskamp has lost west Kansas’s influence in the House, especially on agricultural issues reported the Dodge City Daily Globe.

kwch.com

A Wichita judge ordered the Election Assistance Commission to enforce Kansas and Arizona laws requiring additional documents to prove citizenship for new voters reported the Wichita Eagle.

NICOLE WEINGART / nashvillescene.com

Texas Democrats' best hope to score a win in the statewide election could be Kinky Friedman.  Friedman is in the May 27 runoff with Jim Hogan to be the Democratic nominee for agriculture commissioner reported Ross Ramsey for the Texas Tribune.

kveng.com

Two bills were recently passed by the Kansas Senate.  

Some Kansas lawmakers have been getting a lot of attention during this legislative session for controversial bills they've introduced. Some lawmakers argue that the initiatives are distracting from core issues, like the economy, and are casting a negative light on the state.

Lenzi Sheible/Todd Wiseman / The Texas Tribune

Last year, Texas lawmakers passed House Bill 2, which made abortion rules even more stringent.  The procedure was banned after 20 weeks of gestation and physicians performing abortions were required to have hospital admitting privilege within 30 miles of an abortion facility.  Those changes reduced access to abortions across the state according to The Texas Tribune.

The Kansas Supreme Court recently ruled on the school funding issue. The Kansas Attorney General recently gave legislators a deadline for solving the issue.

abovethelaw.com

Democratic-gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis recently appeared on TribLive, a Texas Tribune interview program.  

onelifesuccess.net

The Texas State Board of Education recently changed graduation requirements, curriculum, and testing requirements under the guidelines from lawmakers.  As part of the January change, algebra II will no longer be part of the “foundation graduation plan” beginning this fall said a recent article in the Texas Tribune.

zazzle.com

The Democrats recently held their convention in Topeka.  Their strategy to win the governor’s race and a few House seats is simple:  Convince moderate Republicans dissatisfied with the conservative wing of the GOP that they have a place underneath the Democratic Party’s big tent said a recent article in The Wichita Eagle.

texastribune.org

In the Texas primary, four of the five candidates in judicial and legislative races endorsed by Ted Cruz won on Tuesday said The New York Times.  

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