Road map – Gov. Sam Brownback’s “Road Map for Kansas” was polished and presented with the idea that we’d all see more money in our pockets, our pick of a multitude of high-paying jobs, lower overall tax burdens and fewer children who live in prosperity. But we’re not just looking at a map anymore – we’re driving down the road – and it’s starting to look like this map was poorly drawn and is sending us down a dark and scary dead-end road that is littered with impoverished children, higher property taxes, lower-than-average earnings and lackluster job growth.
Social media policy – The Kansas Board of Regents blew it. That’s the simplest way to sum up the board’s arbitrary and wrongheaded attempt to create a policy regarding employees’ use of social media at the state’s six universities. The policy is in response to the uproar created by a University of Kansas professor’s inappropriate tweet and appears to be a ham-handed attempt to mollify conservatives in the Legislature. It was devised with no input from faculty members, and it shows. In giving university leaders the authority to discipline or terminate even tenured professors for vague, subjective offenses, the regents have set up a chilling environment that runs contrary to the ideal of academic freedom.
Kansas City Star
NBAF – Now that Kansas’ congressional delegation is in agreement that a House budget bill doesn’t make specific mention of construction funding for the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility at Kansas State University and that an appropriations bill is required to secure it, it’s time for Congress to finally produce the funding. Continued haggling over federal funding for a federal laboratory to conduct research essential to the entire nation serves absolutely no purpose.
Budget deal – The latest budget deal in Washington was good for business. It postponed the threat of another government shutdown and gave a glimmer of hope for more bipartisan cooperation on Capitol Hill. Business in this country needed to know Congress would not put another partisan confrontation ahead of the economic recovery. Too many of our Republican lawmakers from Kansas do not seem to understand the impact of their behavior on the business climate. Former businessman Rep. Mike Pompeo, R-Wichita, in particular, should know better.
Winfield Daily Courier
Terrorism – Though Terry Lee Loewen’s case must make its way through the justice system, the incident at Wichita Mid-Continent Airport delivered a reminder of the need for vigilance. Individuals in the United States and beyond do indeed want to hurt innocent people to make some sort of twisted political statement.
Garden City Telegram
Volunteerism – A new report by the Corporation for National and Community Service ranks Kansas fourth in the country in terms of volunteerism. Almost 37 percent of all Kansans donated their time and talent to one worthwhile cause or another in 2012. Only Utah, Minnesota and Idaho had higher rates of participation. Nationally, the average is approximately 25 percent. Kansas is indeed a great state to live in – and it’s the people who make it so strong. We have the numbers to prove it.
Hays Daily News