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Today in Kansas Report headlines: January 21, 2016

andy lambertJanuary 21, 2016

Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach says he has no plans now to ask lawmakers to ban people who use a federal form to register from voting in state and local elections. Kobach adds he believes a judge made legal errors when he ruled in favor of voters who challenged the state’s “dual registration” system. He may appeal or ask the judge to reconsider.

State senators consider a bill that would allow limited possession of marijuana. It would reduce penalties for first- and second-time offenders. It also allows some medical cannabis treatment for those suffering from seizures and encourages industrial hemp research. The state House passed the bill last year.

The state board of regents adopts a new policy for concealed weapons on campus that will continue some restricitons for gun owners. It’ll kick in in July of next year, when Kansas law won’t let the universities keep barring concealed weapons from buildings without security measures like metal detectors. The new policy prohibits open carry on state university campuses and requires guns in cars and dorms to be secured.

A Kansas lawmaker argues his plan to reduce the number of school districts in the state is a reorganization, not a consolidation. Representative John Bradford’s measure could decrease the number of local districts to 132 from the current 286. Bradford claims he’s not for closing individual schools. Under his plan, most counties in Kansas would have one school district each.

A U.S. Supreme Court ruling in the death sentences for three Kansas men sends their cases back to the state’s highest court. Justices ruled the Kansas Supreme Court was wrong to overturn the sentences of the Carr Brothers and one other person. The Sedgwick County DA says he’s pleased with the high court ruling because it would have been difficult for victims’ families to go through a new sentencing.

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