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House second-guessed a painless cut

The state is flat broke, which is why the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks decided to close the west entrance to Tuttle Creek State Park near Manhattan to save $50,000. The department also said a single entrance would deter crime and improve traffic monitoring. Instead of applauding the department's cost-saving move, though, the House voted 59-57 last week to reopen the entrance. State Rep. Richard Carlson, R-St. Marys, said he was skeptical about the stated savings and would rather the department let an administrative job go unfilled and "keep the entrance open for the public's benefit." To which Topeka Capital-Journal columnist Ric Anderson responded: "Hmm. Wonder how Kansans who are at risk of losing social and medical services would prefer that money be spent?"