Kansas legislators are moving back toward distributing state dollars to public schools through a complicated per-student formula like one they junked two years ago. A special House committee outlined an education funding plan that uses basic concepts from the state’s previous funding formula. The Kansas Supreme Court ordered lawmakers to enact a school funding law by June 30 after ruling that the state isn’t spending enough on its public schools.
The Department of Agriculture is designating more than $6 million to help farmers and ranchers affected by recent wildfires in Kansas along with Oklahoma and Texas. The funding will be distributed through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program to help restore grazing lands, rebuild fencing and protect damaged watersheds. The fires this month charred more than 625 square miles of Kansas.
Police are investigating the death of a 10-month-old who was left alone in a bathtub in Leavenworth. The girl was unresponsive when officers responded to a report of a child not breathing. She was rushed to a hospital where she was pronounced dead.
Investigators determine the fire that destroyed a multi-million dollar apartment complex under construction was an accident. A welder was doing hot work at the site, which touched off the fire. The flames spread to nearly two dozen homes, with seven of them severely damaged or destroyed. Three firefighters were also hurt, but none of them seriously.
Kansas oil production hit a ten-year low in 2016, thanks in no small part to sagging crude prices. Ellis County produced 2.67 million barrels to lead the state, followed by Harper and Barton Counties. In total, 37.9 million barrels were pumped out of the ground in Kansas, making it 10th in the nation for oil production.