Five days of legislative activity were packed into just three days this week, with lawmakers back in their districts both Monday and Friday. But in those three days, committees held key hearings on education, the Governor’s tax proposal and the process for appointing judges, among other controversial issues.
With the goal of adjourning in just 80 days, the 2013 Kansas Legislature doesn’t appear poised to let many issues or bills linger. Instead, committees are serving up meaty proposals and moving them along in the legislative process.
For KU, one of the week’s highlights came at the KU Medical Center as Governor Brownback and others joined with university leaders in announcing a plan to streamline operations at the medical center and the University of Kansas Hospital to benefit patients and medical education.
“The creation of this new clinical partnership will be as important to the success of the campus as was the independence of the hospital in 1998. Everyone is coming together, breaking down barriers and embracing new ideas in order for every campus function to be the best it can be and to better serve Kansans and the region,” said Brownback.
Earlier that day, Governor Brownback and legislative leaders saluted Dr. Roy Jensen and the KU Cancer Center’s successes in obtaining National Cancer Institution designation. A statehouse ceremony organized by the American Cancer Society drew an appreciative crowd of state lawmakers.
Key pieces of legislation of interest to KU are making their way from the drafting stages to final form. HB 2071 would pave the pave for the university to transfer land with the KU Endowment Association and will be heard this coming week by a House committee.
And HB 2055, allowing for concealed carry of weapons in public buildings has also been introduced for consideration. It is important to note that this measure DOES contain an important provision allowing the Kansas Board of Regents to set the policy governing concealed carry on state university campuses under its jurisdiction. The measure would also allow for governing bodies of hospitals to set weapons policies for those settings. There’s no word yet on when the measure will be taken up by state lawmakers.
I hope you’ve marked your calendars for our KU in the Capital breakfast February 7, 7:30–9 a.m. Our response from state legislators has been terrific so we hope you can join us. Please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Director of State Relations