March 22, 2019

Capitol Connection is your weekly report from KAC's Director of Government Relations Adrienne Olejnik on happenings at the Statehouse and issues affecting Kansas children and families. For more updates, like KAC on  Facebook  and follow us on Twitter .

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This week

On Monday evening, KAC presented a film screening of   No Small Matter -- a compelling documentary about early brain development and the importance of high-quality early learning and child care. We had a great turnout at the event, which also featured keynote remarks from Gov. Laura Kelly about her vision for strengthening early childhood programs in our state.

Photo: Ken Doll

KAC is watching

The big news of the week was the successful House gut-and-go floor amendment to pass Medicaid expansion.   Final action on the bill was 69-54  on Thursday. HB 2066 will now go to a Senate committee where it may not be worked. In order to truly get it to a vote on the Senate floor, it would take 27 Senators to override standard Senate rules.
 
Annie McKay, President and CEO of KAC, presented to the House Rural Revitalization committee on Tuesday morning about issues affecting kids in rural areas of the state. She was joined by Melissa Rooker, Executive Director of the Kansas Children's Cabinet and Trust Fund, and Amanda Petersen, Director of Early Childhood at the Kansas State Department of Education.

KAC President and CEO Annie McKay testifies on Tuesday.

We're awaiting Gov. Kelly's response to SB 22, the risky tax bill that passed out of the House and Senate last week. She has criticized the legislation, but we urge everyone to let the governor know they support a veto to protect the progress we've made. Use our action alert today
 
Today is the last day for non-exempt committees to meet and consider bills. Most committees have finished their work for the week, but a few are still meeting today for final votes on bills. Both chambers are scheduled for floor action work all day on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday next week.

Just for fun

Now that the weather is more palatable to lingering outside, I looked into the Kansas Walk of Honor name plates I've noticed on the Statehouse grounds. The project began in 2011 and features people who have made significant contributions to our state and nation -- and who also have strong ties to Kansas. There are currently 16 plaques with open spaces for 24 more. The most recent plaques were installed in November 2016.

Those on the list: Clyde Cessna, Walter Chrysler, Samuel Crumbine, John Steuart Curry, Charles Curtis, Bob Dole, Amelia Earhart, Dwight Eisenhower, Fred Harvey, Nancy Landon Kassebaum, Jack Kilby, Alfred Landon, Joseph McCoy, Karl Menninger, Gordon Parks, and William Allen White.
 
You can read more about the project on the Kansas Historical Society website.