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Students OK after bus fire on I-70 and other headlines: January 5, 2016

andy lambertJanuary 5, 2016
Dozens of students from Purdue University in Indiana are safe after a bus taking them on a Colorado ski trip caught fire on I-70 near Brewster. a bus from Brewster High School picked up the students and they spent much of the day in the gym waiting for another chartered bus to pick them up. It’s believed the whole thing started when the right rear tire caught fire.
Kansas is reporting that it collected $27 million less in taxes than anticipated in December with both individual income and sales taxes falling short of expectations. So far this fiscal year taxes are $19 million behind forecast.
A new report says Kansas needs a “complete overhaul” of its system for funding public schools. The legislative committee’s report says the state’s formula for distributing more than $4 billion in aid annually should be redesigned to focus on individual students. It also suggests that things such as transportation and food service could be handled regionally or privatized to save money.
Meanwhile leaders are worried a Kansas Supreme Court ruling on school funding could hurt the chances for a short session of the state legislature. Lawmakers convene in a week to begin working on how to erase the state’s budget deficit. They have a goal of wrapping up in less than the scheduled 90 days after last year’s session went a record 114 days.
Two teenage girls found in Utah with their mother are being returned to their father in Kansas. That man from Topeka says abuse allegations being leveled at him have already been investigated and aren’t true. He has legal custody of the girls, who have been on the run with their mother for more than a year.
A survey says the economy continues to slow in nine Midwestern and Plains states, including Kansas, because crop and energy prices remain low and the strong dollar is hurting exports. The region’s overall economy index remained in weak territory and declined to 39.6 in December, from 40.7 in November. Any figure below 50 suggests a slowing economy.

 

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