Colby, KS

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Wednesday, March 2nd headlines from the Today in Kansas Report

andy lambertMarch 2, 2016

A parade honoring the Colby High School state champion wrestling team is set for tomorrow afternoon. That’ll start at 2:30 on Franklin Avenue between 3rd and 4th streets.

Investigators are still looking into a trench collapse in Hays that killed two people. A section of Main Street between Seventh and Eighth gave way as city workers repaired sewer lines.

Some folks are being asked to drive hundreds of miles to vote. While the state GOP has at least one caucus site in nearly every county in the state, Kansas Democrats have just one per state senatorial district. In state senate district 40, that means folks in Saint Francis have to drive 180 miles each way to caucus in Hays, and it’s nearly 150 miles each way from Goodland. Party executive director Kerry Gooch doesn’t consider that a problem, saying he doesn’t believe the mileage is a barrier to voting. Democrats caucus Saturday at 3. Republicans start at 10.

Fresh off Super Tuesday, several candidates head to Kansas. Ted Cruz is speaking tonight in Overland Park, while Bernie Sanders heads to Lawrence tomorrow. Friday, Marco Rubio is expected to appear in Wichita.

More bad news for the Kansas budget. The state Revenue department says total collections were $56.7 million below estimates for the month.  The revenue secretary blamed the drop on a downturn in the oil and gas sectors.  Governor Sam Brownback called it “an economic problem, not a tax policy program.”

A Kansas Senate bill would allow cities and nonprofit organizations to gain temporary ownership of abandoned houses to rehabilitate them. The measure would change the definition of abandoned property to include blighted real estate that has been unoccupied for a year. Critics worry the measure would unfairly target disadvantaged people  who can’t afford to maintain their homes.

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