had a short week as they push toward First Adjournment, which is set
for April 5. Both chambers continue to hammer out budget details and try
to figure out a tax plan that will cover the projected budget hole. The
real telling point of the state’s fiscal health is the April Consensus
Revenue Estimates. Presently the executive branch is taking a "prepare
for the worse, hope for the best approach” when they discuss the FY 2014
budget. The governor’s staff has already come out with a statement
saying that failure to pass the sale’s tax extension will lead to
further cuts. See http://bit.ly/cjonline_brownback_salestax
On Wednesday, March 27, Gov. Sam Brownback signed HB 2019,
which reforms the method of selecting Kansas Court of Appeal judges.
This action makes Kansas only the third state in the country to have
dual methods of selecting its appellate level judges and justices. See http://bit.ly/judicialselection_nj.
2019 becomes effective on July 1, 2013. The governor will be able to
appoint a judge to the Court of Appeals later this year should funding
for the 14th judge be approved by the legislature. At the present moment
there appears to be enough money to make this happen.
included (l-r): Sen. Julia Lynn (R-Olathe); Rep. Shanti Ghandi
(R-Topeka); Rep. Mark Kahrs (R-Wichita); Hon. Anthony Powell; Rep. Jerry
Lunn (R-Overland Park); Speaker of the House Ray Merrick (R-Stillwell);
Gov. Sam Brownback; Sen. Greg Smith (R-Overland Park); Sen. Steve
Fitzgerald (R-Leavenworth); Rep. Charles Macheers (R-Shawnee); Rep.
Lance Kinzer (R-Olathe); Rep. Keith Esau (R-Olathe); Sen. Mitch Holmes
(R- St. John); Secretary of State Kris Kobach; Rep. John Rubin (R-Kansas
City); Rep. Troy Waymaster (R-Luray); and Sen. Terry Bruce
governor held a press conference prior to the bill signing and it may be
viewed at http://bit.ly/brownback_pressconf. You may also view the
press release online at http://bit.ly/brownback_pressrelease.
to the first bill signing of the 2013 session has been quick. The
following articles discuss the change to merit selection:
the bill signing the KBA has been tracking conference committee work
this week. The KBA continues to monitor the budget conference committee,
which will determine if attorney registration fees are swept into the
state general fund (SGF), if docket fees will be swept into the state
general fund, if the Kansas Judicial Council will be fully funding
(current recommendations is to cut 30K for FY 2014 and FY 2015), and to
determine how e-filing is funded (with SGF funds or attorney
In addition, the KBA is tracking the Judiciary Conference Committee as they work through the following bills:
- HB 2204, dealing with redemption of real property;
- SB 20, dealing with poverty affidavits;
- HB 2164, relating to citizen grand juries and jury service;
- SB 122, dealing with electronic service of process; and
- SB 124, pertaining to the Kansas restraint of trade act.
KBA is also tracking the Senate Judiciary and House Corrections
Conference Committee as they work through bills dealing with criminal
acts. Please be advised that these bills primarily deal with sentencing
grid, statute of limitations of rape cases, and all the death penalty
KBA-sponsored or supported bills include:
- SB 81,
requiring the restriction of certain officials' information from
publicly accessible records was amended on the House floor and
recommended for passage, and passed the Kansas Senate 40-0 (KBA supports
- HB 2014, revoking an ex-spouses inheritance rights upon divorce, HB 2015,
marital property. were recommended favorable for passage by the Senate
Judiciary Committee; passage is probable (KBA supports both bills).
- HB 2166,
medical assistance recovery act, was passed as amended by the Kansas
House. The KBA Title Standard Committee provided the amending language
that Rep. Blaine Finch used to clarify the lien priority status and the
Kansas House approved this bill 112-11 (KBA was neutral on this bill but
for the floor amendment).
- HB 2205,
adoption hearings, time and waiver of notice, passed out of the Senate
Judiciary Committee and was placed on the Senate Consent Calendar as an
uncontroversial bill; passage appears imminent (KBA supported this
- HB 2398,
relating to the Kansas revised limited liability company act, was given
a hearing on Monday, March 18 but the House Judiciary Committee will
hold this bill over to 2014 (KBA introduced this bill).
For more information and to find other bills please review the updated Bill Tracking Chart at http://bit.ly/KBABillTrackingChart.