News From the Kansas Legislature – Week 12

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Rep. Bill Sutton

HOUSE HONORS VETERANS OF THE VIETNAM WAR

On Thursday, the House recognized the valiance of those who fought in the Vietnam War. In 2017, President Trump signed into law the Vietnam War Veterans Recognition Act of 2017, which officially designated March 29th as National Vietnam War Veterans Day.

Rep. Karleskint and other legislators approached the well to commemorate the sacrifice they made during the Vietnam War. 2.7 million Americans served in Vietnam, with more than 58,000 never returning home to their families. With eleven years of combat, thousands returned home with scars, PTSD, and memories that will never be forgotten. We will forever be thankful for their service.

Vietnam

HOUSE PASSES SAFE AND SECURE SCHOOLS ACT

On Thursday, the Kansas House voted to pass the HB 2773, also known as the Kansas Safe and Secure Schools Act. Principally, the bill would:
* Coordinate with the Kansas State Board of Education and other agencies to develop statewide standards for safe and secure school buildings.
* Empower local school districts to coordinate with local law enforcement and emergency management agencies to review and evaluate current building infrastructure policies and procedures.
* Establish the Safe and Secure Schools Grant Program with funds that can be used for improvements to any facet of the school safety and security plan including infrastructure and training.
* Provide standardized firearm safety education programs that may be offered by school districts.
* Appropriate funds to the Department of Education, which will be used for two FTE positions to review and evaluate school safety and security plans.

The provisions of this bill would encourage schools to make improvements, such as reinforced doors, additional security cameras, and training opportunities to enhance the overall security of school grounds. The Safe and Secure Schools Act will advance communication between local school districts and law enforcement.

A safe and secure learning environment is one of the highest priorities in our state, and this establishes an opportunity for all Kansas school districts. Additionally, for the purposes of promoting the safety and protection of students via education, the State Board of Education would be required to establish curriculum guidelines for a standardized firearm safety education program. This bill has been sent to the Senate for consideration.

K-12 EDUCATION: EQUITY AND ADEQUACY LEGISLATION

On Wednesday, the K-12 Education Budget Committee finalized its work on HB 2445. The bill, as introduced, provided fixes to the four equity issues identified in Gannon V. The bill also addressed the finding from the Legislative Post Audit on K-12 Transportation. The Committee amended the bill to reflect both equity and adequacy provisions.

The Kansas State Department of Education has provided documents with the major policy provisions and the school district runs. Those can be found at: http://www.ksde.org/Agency/Fiscal-and-Administrative-Services/School-Finance/Whats-New

CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT INTRODUCED

On Thursday, the House Taxation Committee met. John Donley, representing the Kansas Coalition for Fair Funding, a group of Kansas agricultural and business leaders requested introduction for a constitutional amendment.

The short title for HCR 5029 is “Constitutional amendment to declare the power to appropriate funding for education is exclusively a legislative power and not subject to judicial review.” HCR 5029 has been referred to the House Judiciary Committee for its consideration and is scheduled for a hearing on Tuesday, April 3.

ADOPTION PROTECTION ACT AMENDMENT PASSES SENATE; STALLS IN HOUSE

Sen. Molly Baumgardner successfully amended the Adoption Protection Act on to HB 2481
in the Senate. The bill passed out of the Senate on a vote of 28-12.

Rep. Susan Humphries made a motion to concur to the Senate amendments in the House
that failed on a vote of 58-64. The measure was not lost however, as the bill was put into a
conference committee and is awaiting further action, which may come as early as Monday,
April 2nd.

The measure ensures that faith-based adoption providers are allowed to continue to
operate in accordance to their sincerely held religious beliefs.

Opponents of the measure have spread much misinformation, including the claim the bill
will discriminate against same-sex couples for adoption. That claim is patently untrue. The
measure would merely codify current procedures for private faith-based child-placing agencies.

The Adoption Protection Act was narrowly drafted to apply only to licensed child-placing
agencies.

Seven states have passed similar laws to protect faith-based adoption providers.
The legislation is modeled after the Virginia law passed in 2012, which has not faced any
legal challenge.

FLOOR ACTION

Friday, March 23
HB 2427— Amendments regarding the licensure, employment and background checks for employees of adult care homes, home health aides and providers of disability services.

This bill would amend current law governing licensure, employment, and background checks for applicants seeking employment at adult care homes, home health aides, and providers of disability services. In addition, the bill would change the requirement that such applicants must not have committed a felony from the past five years, to six years.
Final Action, Monday, March 26, 123-0
Bill carried by: Representative Chuck Weber
I voted “aye.”

HB 2778— Concerning restrictions of state contracts with businesses engaged in anti-Israel boycotts.

This bill would amend law related to contracts between the State of Kansas and companies who are actively engaged in a boycott against Israel.
Final Action, Monday, March 26, 93-30
Bill carried by: Representative Blaine Finch
I voted “aye.”

SB 331— Designating Flint Hills trail state park and Little Jerusalem Badlands state park as part of the state park system.

This bill would add the Flint Hills Trial State Park and Little Jerusalem Badlands State Park to the State Park System list.
Final Action, Monday, March 26, 99-24
Bill carried by: Representative Dave Baker
I voted “aye.”

Monday, March 26
SB 282— Updating substances included in schedules I, II and III of the uniform controlled substances act.

This bill would amend the state’s Uniform Controlled Substances Act by updating drugs contained in Schedules I, II, and III. The bill would also authorize the sale of CBD products with 0% THC, and also removes Kratom from the being classified as a scheduled drug.
Final Action, Tuesday, March 27, 121-3
Bill carried by: Representative Abe Rafie
I voted “aye.”

SB 284— Amending the Kansas money transmitter act.

This bill would add language authorizing the Bank Commissioner to issue and order to address any violation of rules and regulations adopted pursuant to the Kansas Money Transmitter Act. The bill would also allow the commissioner to enter into an informal agreement with a money transmitter to resolve a matter concerning the KMTA.
Final Action, Tuesday, March 27, 102-22
Bill carried by: Representative Jim Kelly
I voted “nay.”

HB 2308— Suicide evaluation upon admission to certain treatment facilities.

This bill, also known as Gordy’s Bill, would require treatment facilities to conduct a suicide risk evaluation upon admission of a patient to the facility. Additionally, the bill would require that the staff personnel conducting the evaluation to be knowledgeable about suicide risk management, and be equipped with an appropriate level of patient monitoring and assistance.
Final Action, Wednesday, March 28, 124-0
Bill carried by: Representative Mike Houser
I voted “aye.”

HB 2644— Budget process; exempting postsecondary educational institutions from the program service inventory, integrated budget fiscal process and performance-based budgeting system if such institution has implemented performance agreements.

This bill would exempt postsecondary educational institutions that have implemented a performance agreement with the State Board of Regents from the state’s performance-based budgeting requirements.
Final Action, Tuesday, March 27, 82-42
Bill carried by: Representative Susie Swanson
I voted “nay.”

SB 386— Adding related educational degrees to professional counselor licensure criteria.

This bill would allow licensure for an applicant to the Behavioral Sciences Regulatory Board to those who earned a graduate degree in a counseling-related field.
Final Action, Tuesday, March 27, 124-0
Bill carried by: Representative Cindy Holscher
I voted “aye.”

SB 56— Creating the Kansas cybersecurity act and revising membership of the information technology executive council.

This bill would create the Kansas Cybersecurity Act and would amend the membership and the frequency of required meetings for the Information Technology Executive Council.
Final Action, Tuesday, March 27, 124-0
Bill carried by: Representative Keith Esau
I voted “aye.”

SB 272— Regulating traffic; unlawful passing of a waste collection vehicle.

This bill would require a law enforcement officer to issue a warning citation for the unlawful passing of a waste collection vehicle and would establish a fine of $45.00, effective after July 1, 2019.
Final Action, Tuesday, March 27, 94-30
Bill carried by: Representative John Wheeler
I voted “aye.”

HB 2739— Including relations between law enforcement and those interacting with law enforcement in the crime of unlawful sexual relations; increasing criminal penalty for lewd and lascivious behavior

This bill would increase the penalty for publicly engaging in sexual activity in the presence of an individual under the age of sixteen, from a class B misdemeanor to a severity level 9 person felony.
Final Action, Tuesday, March 27, 124-0
Bill carried by: Representative Dennis Highberger
I voted “aye.”

SB 348— Establishing electronic delivery as the standard method of delivery for explanation of benefits and member policies of health benefit plans.

This bill would authorize a health benefit plan to utilize electronic delivery as its default method of delivery for the insured party’s explanation of benefits and policy documents, given some restrictions.
Final Action, Tuesday, March 27, 124-0
Bill carried by: Representative Gail Finney
I voted “aye.”

Tuesday, March 27
SB 391— Establishing the joint legislative transportation vision task force for evaluation of the state highway fund and the state highway transportation system.

This bill would establish the Joint Legislative Vision Task Force, with the scope of: 1. Evaluating the progress of the 2010 Transportation Works for Kansas program; 2. Evaluate the condition of the state transportation system; 3. Evaluate the current use of the State Highway Fund; 4. Evaluate current transportation funding in Kansas; 5. Identify additional necessary transportation projects.
Final Action, Wednesday, March 28, 123-1
Bill carried by: Representative Shannon Francis
I voted “aye.”

HB 2398— Roads and highways; traffic-control devices maintained by counties and townships.

This bill would amend the Uniform Act regulating traffic pertaining to the powers of local authorities.
Final Action, Wednesday, March 28, 124-0
Bill carried by: Representative Francis Awerkamp
I voted “aye.”

HB 2773— Creating the Kansas safe and secure schools act.

This bill would create the Kansas Safe and Secure Schools Act, whereby the State Board of Education shall develop and adopt statewide standards for school safety and security plans to be adopted by each school district. This would include an evaluation of the infrastructure of school buildings, training of school district employees on school safety and security policies and procedures, and other protocols to ensure safety for Kansas students and teachers.
Final Action, Wednesday, March 28, 119-5
Bill carried by: Representative Fred Patton
I voted “aye.”

SB 263— Creating a program to research the use of industrial hemp.

This bill would enact the Alternative Crop Research Act, which would allow the Kansas Department of Agriculture to grow and cultivate industrial hemp and promote the research and development of industrial hemp, in accordance with federal law.
Final Action, Wednesday, March 28, 123-1
Bill carried by: Representative Kent Thompson
I voted “aye.”

SB 410— Updating captive insurance statutes and providing for association and branch captive insurance companies and special purpose insurance captives.

This bill would create the Captive Insurance Act under the Insurance Code by amending law and creating law related to captive insurance companies.
Final Action, Wednesday, March 28, 109-15
Bill carried by: Representative Dan Hawkins
I voted “aye.”

SB 194— Amending groundwater management district water user charges.

This bill would permit Groundwater Management District boards to increase the maximum withdrawal charge from $1.00 per acre-foot to $2.00 for each acre-foot.
Final Action, Wednesday, March 28, 106-18
Bill carried by: Representative Greg Lewis
I voted “nay.”

HB 2676— Failure of community service providers to comply with developmental disability reform act.

This bill would allow the Secretary for Aging and Disability Services to issue correction orders to community service providers, when it is found that such provider is in non-compliance with the Developmental Disabilities Reform Act.
Final Action, Wednesday, March 28, 124-0
Bill carried by: Representative Melissa Rooker
I voted “aye.”

SB 311— Adding emergency medical personnel to the list of mandatory reporters of abuse, neglect or exploitation of certain adults.

This bill would add an emergency medical services attendant to the list of mandatory reporters of abuse, neglect, exploitation, or need of protective services, as it pertains to residents of adult care homes.
Final Action, Wednesday, March 28, 124-0
Bill carried by: Representative Patty Markley
I voted “aye.”

SB 307— Amendments to the Kansas amusement ride act.

This bill would amend the Kansas Amusement Ride Act, to change the fee schedule, insurance requirements, and permitting process.
Final Action, Wednesday, March 28, 113-11
Bill carried by: Representative John Whitmer
I voted “aye.”

SB 428— Changing licensure requirements for a child care facility operating in a public recreation center or school.

This bill would amend licensure and inspection requirements for child care facilities.
Final Action, Wednesday, March 28, 124-0
Bill carried by: Representative Erin Davis
I voted “aye.”

SB 260— Audits of state agencies; financial-compliance audits; Kansas lottery security audit; selection of auditors, contracts with.

This bill would transfer responsibility for procuring independent audits from the Legislative Division of Post Audit to the audited agencies. Under current law, LPA is responsible for administering the audits, but agencies are responsible for the costs.
Final Action, Wednesday, March 28, 124-0
Bill carried by: Representative John Barker
I voted “aye.”

Wednesday, March 28
SB 279— Concerning the gas safety and reliability surcharge.

This bill would raise the cap on gas safety and reliability surcharges (GSRS) monthly charge from $0.40 to $0.80 per residential customer, upon KCC approval.
Final Action, Thursday, March 29, 99-25
Bill carried by: Representative Tom Cox
I voted “aye.”

SB 328— Prohibiting the outsourcing or privatization of any operations or facilities of any correctional institution or juvenile correctional facility; allowing existing contracts to be renewed.

This bill would prohibit the Secretary of Corrections from privatizing security services at any state correctional facility unless legislative approval is given.
Final Action, Thursday, March 29, 111-13
Bill carried by: Representative Russ Jennings
I voted “nay.”

SB 261— Transferring the duty to appoint certain appraisers from the judicial administrator to the director of property valuation.

This bill would extend the disposition of docket fees from June 30, 2019, until June 30, 2021, the period during which the State Treasurer shall deposit the first $3.1 million into the Electronic Filing and Management Fund.

Final Action, Thursday, March 29, 111-13
Bill carried by: Representative John Wheeler
I voted “aye.”

SB 266— Amending collateral source definition for crime victims compensation fund.

This bill would specify the definition of “collateral source” to mean “net financial benefit” received by a victim or claimant from various sources and exclude taxes, legal fees and other costs, concerning the governing awards from the Crime Victims Compensation Board
Final Action, Thursday, March 29, 124-0
Bill carried by: Representative Leonard Mastroni
I voted “aye.”

SB 281— Protection orders for human trafficking victims under the protection from stalking, sexual assault or human trafficking act.

This bill would include victims of human trafficking as a part of the Protection from Stalking or Sexual Assault Act. The bill would also allow a court to enter an order restraining the defendant from following, harassing, contacting, committing or attempting to commit human trafficking upon the human trafficking victim.
Final Action, Thursday, March 29, 124-0
Bill carried by: Representative Elizabeth Bishop
I voted “aye.”

SB 310— Amending the definition of escape in crimes of escape and aggravated escape from custody.

This bill would amend the definition of “escape” in criminal law.
Final Action, Thursday, March 29, 124-0
Bill carried by: Representative Randy Garber
I voted “aye.”

SB 180— Providing for law enforcement agencies to request and receive files concerning applicants previously employed by another state or local law enforcement agency.

This bill would create a process for disclosure of a law enforcement officer applicant’s files, if the candidate has been employed by another governmental or law enforcement agency. Such agencies would be required to disclose the files to the hiring agency within 21 days of receiving the request.
Final Action, Thursday, March 29, 124-0
Bill carried by: Representative Tom Cox
I voted “aye.”

HB 2734— Making changes to the Kansas sexually violent predator program.

This bill would amend definitions to the Kansas Sexually Violent Predator Act, whereby a plan of treatment established by the court for conditional release be based upon the recommendation of the treatment staff would also include the recommendation of the progress review panel. Other changes to the act would also take effect.
Final Action, Thursday, March 29, 123-1
Bill carried by: Representative Brad Ralph
I voted “aye.”

SB 336— Extending open records exceptions and requiring release of certain records by the secretary for children and families.

This bill would amend the Kansas Code for Care of Children, whereby the Secretary of DCF would be required to release certain defined information in the event that child abuse or neglect results in a child fatality. The Secretary would be required to release specified information in those instances when a child fatality occurs while that child is in the custody of DCF. The information would include age and sex of the child, date of the fatality, and a summary of facts surrounding the death.
Final Action, Thursday, March 29, 124-0
Bill carried by: Representative Blaine Finch
I voted “aye.”

SB 296— Allowing evidence of failure to use a safety belt to be admissible in any action for certain purposes.

This bill would provide that evidence of misuse or nonuse of a safety belt may be considered by the trier of fact in a civil action, against an automobile manufacturer alleging harm caused by a defective vehicle occupant protection system, for the purpose of determining causation, the absence of a defect or hazard, or negligent design or construction.
Final Action, Thursday, March 29, 94-30
Bill carried by: Representative Brad Ralph
I voted “aye.”

SB 288— Repealing the prohibition on Saturday process service.

This bill would repeal the misdemeanor of knowingly causing or procuring any process issued from a justice’s court in a civil suit to be served on Saturday, upon a person whose religious faith recognizes Saturdays as the Sabbath.
Final Action, Thursday, March 29, 85-39
Bill carried by: Representative Susan Humphries
I voted “nay.”

SB 199— Amending bond requirements for appeals in the code of civil procedure.

This bill would add a provision limiting the amount of any supersedeas bond to no more than $25 million, regardless of the full amount of judgement, to the limitations used for establishing the amount of such supersedeas bond.
Final Action, Thursday, March 29, 120-4
Bill carried by: Representative Leonard Mastroni
I voted “aye.”

SB 179— Creating juvenile crisis intervention centers.

This bill would create and amend law to establish juvenile intervention centers.
Final Action, Thursday, March 29, 124-0
Bill carried by: Representative Blaine Finch
I voted “aye.”

SB 374— Amendments related to driving under the influence, including testing, administrative penalties and criminal penalties.

This bill would amend law concerning driving under the influence, while specifically repealing the crime of test refusal.
Final Action, Thursday, March 29, 124-0
Bill carried by: Representative Blaine Finch
I voted “aye.”

HB 2184— Amending workers compensation death benefits
Motion to concur with Senate Changes
Final Action: 120-0
Motion carried by: Representative Les Mason
I voted “aye.”

HB 2590— Review of state long-term care ombudsman program and activities and access to certain records
Motion to concur with Senate Changes
Final Action: 122-0
Motion carried by: Representative Dan Hawkins
I voted “aye.”

HB 2628— Certain airport authorities; dissolution procedures
Motion to concur with Senate Changes
Final Action: 122-0
Motion carried by: Representative Kristey Williams
I voted “aye.”

Thursday March 29
HB 2496— Enacting the nurse licensure compact
Motion to concur with Senate Changes
Final Action: 123-1
Motion carried by: Representative Dan Hawkins
I voted “aye.”

Thursday, March 29
HB 2784— Providing for payroll deductions for indemnity insurance.

This bill would require the Kansas State Employees Health Care Commission to offer indemnity insurance to all state employees.

Final Action, Monday, April 2, 120-0
Bill carried by: Representative Bill Sutton
I voted “aye.”

SB 394— Ensuring transparency in state government contract decisions and other actions.

This bill would expand the definition of “lobbying” to include the lobbying of the executive and judicial branches, to equalize the treatment of meals provided by lobbyists to both the legislative and executive branches, and to require similar reporting and registration standards.
Final Action, Monday, April 2, 120-0
Bill carried by: Representative Francis Awerkamp
I voted “aye.”

More information on these bills can be found at:
http://www.kslegislature.org/li/b2017_18/measures/bills/

Sincerely,

Bill Sutton
State Representative, District 43