SCHOOL FUNDING FIGHT-GOP LEADERS
Kansas GOP leaders pleased by schools ruling
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) - Gov. Sam Brownback and other Republican leaders in Kansas say a state Supreme Court ruling on public schools funding is reasonable.
Brownback said Friday he was pleased with the court's ruling in a lawsuit filed by parents and school districts. The court found that the state is spending too little on schools.
The court ordered legislators to boost two types of aid by July 1. It returned the case to a lower court for more hearing on how much the state must spend overall to provide an adequate education for every child.
But Attorney General Derek Schmidt said the Legislature has multiple options for complying with the court's July 1 deadlines. Schmidt said he was pleased that the justices didn't impose a specific target for the state's overall spending.
SCHOOL FUNDING FIGHT-REACTION
Lawyer suing Kansas sees schools ruling as victory
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) - An attorney for Kansas parents and school districts suing the state over education funding says the state Supreme Court's ruling in the case is a victory for children.
Newton attorney John Robb said Friday he's pleased with the high court's ruling. The justices ordered the Legislature to boost two kinds of aid to school districts by July 1.
It returned the case to Shawnee County District Court for more hearings on how much the state must spend overall to provide for all children have an adequate education.
Robb said the guidelines the Supreme Court set for reviewing total funding are in line with what the parents and school districts had suggested at trial.
SCHOOL FUNDING FIGHT-TEACHERS' UNION
Kansas teacher group wants boost in school aid now
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) - The largest teachers union in Kansas says legislators shouldn't wait on more court rulings to increase total state spending on public schools.
Kansas National Education Association President Karen Godfrey said Friday that lawmakers can end a lawsuit over school funding by boosting the state's aid to school districts this year.
The Kansas Supreme Court ruled Friday in a suit filed by parents and school districts that Kansas isn't spending enough money on its schools. It ordered the state to increase spending on two types of aid by July 1 but ordered more lower-court hearings on how much the state needs to spend overall.
Teachers' union officials were disappointed that more court hearings have been ordered and said lawmakers should move ahead anyway.
Rash of fires hits rural NW Kansas county
(Information in the following story is from: The Hays (Kan.) Daily News, http://www.hdnews.net)
HAYS, Kan. (AP) - An investigator from the Kansas fire marshal's office will help investigate an outbreak of fires in a rural northwestern county.
The Hays Daily News reports the Ellis County Rural Fire Department responded Thursday night to five fires in four hours outside the Hays city limits.
Rural Fire Director Kick Claus said the first call involved a burning pile of trees. That was followed by the burning of a camping trailer, four-wheeler and personal water craft.
Crews also responded to a horse trailer and bales on fire; a fire at a storage shed; and the burning of a trailer house used for storage.
Klaus said he wasn't sure there was enough evidence left at any of the scenes to determine a cause.
Man guilty of trying to kill firefighters, police
OLATHE, Kan. (AP) - A northeast Kansas man has been found guilty of setting a house fire and trying to kill emergency personnel who pulled him from the burning building.
The Kansas City Star reports a Johnson County jury on Friday convicted 59-year-old William Outhet Jr. of arson and attempted first-degree murder.
Police and firefighters reported hearing several loud booming sounds when they arrived at Outhet's Olathe (oh-LAY'-thuh) home on Feb. 1, 2013. Prosecutors later charged Outhet with firing shots as the responders arrived.
No emergency responders were injured, but firefighters found Outhet unconscious inside the home with a shotgun across his chest. Investigators also said the fire had been intentionally set and that other firearms were positioned around the house.
Sentencing is scheduled for May 1.
SUICIDE BOMB PLOT-KANSAS
Feds get more time in Kansas suicide bomb case
WICHITA, Kan. (AP) - A judge has granted a prosecution request for more time to file a key motion in their case against a Wichita man accused of plotting an airport suicide bombing.
Avionics technician Terry Loewen has pleaded not guilty to charges, including attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction.
Loewen was arrested Dec. 13 in a sting operation after allegedly trying to bring a van filled with inert explosives onto the tarmac Mid-Continent Airport in Wichita.
Prosecutors were facing a Friday deadline to file a motion under the federal Classified Information Procedures Act, which lays out the handling of national security material. On Friday, U.S. District Judge Monti Belot extended the deadline to April 21 after prosecutors argued the filing requires coordination and approval from officials at high levels of government.
Students seeking less smoke at state fair
(Information in the following story is from: The Hutchinson (Kan.) News, http://www.hutchnews.com)
HUTCHINSON, Kan. (AP) - Several Hutchinson students want to limit smoking at the Kansas state fairgrounds.
About 25 members of Communities that Care, a Reno County youth organization, have asked the Kansas State Fair board to consider their proposal to make the grounds smoke-free, except for a few designated smoking areas.
Smoking isn't allowed now in the buildings or in the grandstand.
The students said other state fairs have implemented similar policies.
Fair Manager Denny Stoecklein says more studies would be needed to determine how other fairs implemented such plans, and the board would not make any decisions without getting more feedback from patrons.
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