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Top Democrat In Kansas Senate Believes Session Is Off Track

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Kansas Public Radio

The top Democrat in the Kansas Senate says lawmakers haven’t accomplished enough so far this session.

Legislators are facing a significant deadline this week, which marks the midpoint of their scheduled time in Topeka. Democratic Sen. Anthony Hensley believes they’re not making enough progress solving problems like a budget shortfall.

Hensley is concerned that they haven’t tackled some big issues and they haven’t passed enough bills. He says they’re already set up to go beyond the normal 90 days of the Kansas session.

“It doesn’t appear to me that the GOP’s got their act together. It looks very chaotic, very dysfunctional,” says Hensley.

But Republican House Speaker Ray Merrick disagrees with Hensley, and says you don’t judge a session by the number of bills you pass. He says in the House, the budget committees have been working double duty.

“He’s not in any of that stuff on my side but I know how hard my people are working. Last time I saw, I think he’s got eight members over there, and when he’s in charge he can set the pace,” says Merrick.

Merrick says lawmakers are also waiting for updated tax collection numbers that will come in April.

As the Kansas News Service managing editor, I help our statewide team of reporters find the important issues and breaking news that impact people statewide. We refine our daily stories to illustrate the issues and events that affect the health, well-being and economic stability of the people of Kansas. Email me at skoranda@kcur.org.
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