Written by Don Schgroeder Tuesday, 14 May 2013 13:32After a longer than normal break, the Kansas Legislature is back in Topeka for the wrap-up/veto session to finish the work begun in January and going through April.
We have a number of issues that may be taken up, but the only issue requiring action is the 2014 budget. Making adjustments to the tax revenues is actually optional, but the earlier we settle some of those issues the better for the state long-term.
The state budget was nearly finished before the Legislature recessed in April...
Written by John Schlageck Tuesday, 07 May 2013 14:11The dream of many young farm boys and girls is to ride on a tractor. For a youngster, the mammoth tractor epitomizes raw power, responsibility and coming of age.
Nothing is more exciting to farm kids than the belch of diesel smoke, the roar of engines and rubber wheels on powerful tractors, combines or silage cutters. They draw children like a moth to a flame and, like fire, can be dangerous. Such equipment can cut, crush or trap children. It can harm the ones we want to protect the most—our children.
Soon children will be home from school and the chance of farm accidents will be greater.
During the summer months, never invite children to ride in the tractor, says Holly Higgins, Kansas Farm Bureau safety director.
Written by John Schlageck Tuesday, 16 April 2013 12:50One alarming trend in our society today is the prevalence of junk food in our diets—and more importantly in those of our children. While the selection of junk foods continues to grow and the enormity is mind boggling, let’s focus on just one: soft drinks.
They have wiggled their way into nearly every venue in our society. About the only public place I haven’t seen them is in the back vestibules of our nation’s churches.
Soft drinks have no place is this nation’s schools. Soft drinks have little, if any nutritional value whatsoever. Look at the ingredients in a soft drink the next time you pick one up. Most people wouldn’t have a clue what these ingredients are, myself included.
To be part of a balanced diet, a food product...
Written by Don Schroeder Tuesday, 09 April 2013 12:47The last week of regular session started slowly but ended with many conference committee reports to vote on before first adjournment.
We had two days off last week while conference committees were supposed to meet. Few conference committees took place so that simply put more work into this week.
The only regular committees that continue to meet are the exempt committees, which are Appropriations, Fed and State and Taxation. Primarily, only the Appropriations Committee meets occasionally as they continue to iron out the budget. Fed & State and Taxation will meet only as needed to help get the budget and revenues to come out so the budget is balanced.
The conference committee process has been in full swing this week. The Senate Ways...
Written by Don Schroeder Tuesday, 02 April 2013 11:52It seems we actually are nearing the finish line of the 2013 legislative session. While being optimistic about nearing the end of a fast-paced session, we are not yet finished. Many bills need to go through the conference committee process to reconcile the House and Senate versions of those bills.
This week we spent long days on the House floor debating a list of bills that waited until now to be considered. Most of them are innocuous and are simply making slight changes to improve efficiency or correct some small inconsistency in the laws. A few bills are not so simple and take long hours of debate.
Monday the largest amount of time spent on a bill was for a program that would create a tax credit limited to $10 million for...
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