Friday, August 22, 2014

Brownback nixes bill, signs 16 others

By The Herald Staff | 4/16/2014

TOPEKA — The governor knocked out one bill, but signed more than a dozen others in recent action at the Statehouse.

In a bid to promote transparency in government, Gov. Sam Brownback said, he vetoed Senate Bill 99, which aimed to increase the threshold of money a person can spend on activities considered lobbying before having to register as a lobbyist.

TOPEKA — The governor knocked out one bill, but signed more than a dozen others in recent action at the Statehouse.

In a bid to promote transparency in government, Gov. Sam Brownback said, he vetoed Senate Bill 99, which aimed to increase the threshold of money a person can spend on activities considered lobbying before having to register as a lobbyist.

“While I understand the purpose and intent behind SB 99, I believe that retaining the lobbyist registration provisions in current law promotes transparency and openness,” Brownback said. “Although the amounts involved may seem small, there is no harm in continuing to require lobbyist registration at the lower level of reportable lobbying expenditures contained in the existing statute.”

The bill previously passed the Kansas Senate with unanimous 40-0 vote, earning the support of state Sen. Caryn Tyson, R-Parker, as well as the House with 117-6 vote. State Reps. Blaine Finch, R-Ottawa, and Rep. Kevin Jones, R-Wellsville, both voted to pass the bill.

Though Brownback vetoed the measure, he signed 16 bills into law on the same day, bringing the total of new laws for the 2014 Legislative session to 40. Those bills, along with the votes of the Franklin County delegation to Topeka, include:

• Senate Bill 254 — clarifies operational rules and regulations dealing with the State Children’s Health Insurance Program. [Finch Y; Jones Y; Tyson Y]

• Senate Bill 306 — updates statutes applying to investments of insurance companies to allow certain types of equity investments. [Finch Y; Jones Y; Tyson Y]

• Senate Bill 309 — makes changes to the list of associations providing health insurance coverage which are exempted from the jurisdiction of the Kansas Insurance Commissioner. [Finch Y; Jones Y; Tyson Y]

• Senate Bill 310 — amends statutes related to grand juries. [Finch Y; Jones Y; Tyson Y]

• Senate Bill 359 — enacts the Successor Corporation Asbestos-Related Liability Fairness Act governing liability of the successor corporation. [Finch N; Jones Y; Tyson Y]

• Senate Bill 402 — amends statutes related to the Kansas Criminal Justice Information System Committee. [Finch Y; Jones Y; Tyson Y]

• Senate Bill 424 — amends hospital lien filing and notification requirements. [Finch Y; Jones Y; Tyson Y]

• House Bill 2152 — repeals the Uniform Land Sales Practices Act and makes technical changes to a continuing statute to reflect the repeal. [Finch Y; Jones Y; Tyson Y]

• House Bill 2398 — specifies and clarifies sections of the Kansas Revised Limited Liability Act. [Finch Y; Jones Y; Tyson Y]

• House Bill 2444 — amends the law concerning spendthrift provisions of a trust to more closely mirror uniform law provisions. [Finch Y; Jones Y; Tyson Y]

• House Bill 2463 — establishes a specific civil cause of action for a person injured as a result of the crime of terrorism or the crime of furtherance of terrorism or illegal use of weapons of mass destruction, in regard to recovering damages, the statute of limitations and the victim’s right to request the attorney general to pursue such a case on the victim’s behalf. [Finch Y; Jones Y; Tyson Y]

• House Bill 2491 — clarifies when a lawyer may appear in a small claims action falling within the Tort Claims Act. [Finch Y; Jones Y; Tyson Y]

• House Bill 2602 — removes the statutory limitation on the maximum percentage of allowable unclassified staff working for KPERS. [Finch Y; Jones Y; Tyson Y]

• Substitute For House Bill 2146 ­— amends the Kansas Pharmacy Act by clarifying prescription refill restrictions and creating the Collaborative Drug Therapy Management Advisory Committee [Finch Y; Jones Y; Tyson Y]

• Substitute For House Bill 2002 — re-codifies current statutory auditing requirements for the Kansas Lottery and the Kansas Public Employees Retirement System (KPERS). [Finch Y; Jones Y; Tyson N]

• Substitute for House Bill 2424 — names various portions of highway in honor of Kansans. [Finch Y; Jones Y; Tyson Y]

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