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Contact Susan

 
In Topeka:
State Capitol, Room 149-S
785-296-7644
susan@concannonforkansas.com

At home in Beloit:
921 N. Mill Street
Beloit, KS 67420
785-738-8087
susan@concannonforkansas.com


About the 107th

Committee Appointments

Dear Friend:

It’s Turnaround time, which is our first major legislative deadline. All bills have to be “turned around” or passed out of, their house of origin (the chamber in which they were introduced) in order to remain under consideration for the remainder of the session. 
 
Committees were swamped the last few weeks and you will see that we finished up committee work and were busy debating bills on the House floor. After a brief break to allow legislative staff to complete the Turnaround paperwork, we will return next week and begin considering bills sent over from the Senate. 
On the Home Front
In my last newsletter, I detailed the Value Them Both constitutional amendment and walked through my extensive work supporting the effort. Kansans for Life sent mailers throughout Kansas to legislators’ districts who opposed the effort. Unfortunately, there was a list error and the piece was inadvertently sent into some districts where legislators voted FOR the amendment… including mine. KFL has apologized for the error, but I know that many of you will not see their correction. Please share this information with your friends and neighbors.
Under the Dome
I honored Chad Lorenz, 2018 Adult Male Athlete of the Year at the Sunflower State Games and National Congress of State Games Adult Male Athlete of the Year. I shared Chad’s heart health story from open heart valve replacement surgery, to a heart attack, to recovery and eventual 1st place finishes in the 800m and 1500m. He is a medical miracle! (pic of Laura, Autumn & Chad Lorenz) 
I was fortunate to serve as Chair of the Committee of the Whole during part of last week’s debate. It’s a nerve-wracking but fun role to direct the conversation.
It was a pleasure to welcome the sisters of St. Joseph for their annual LEAF conference.
Beloit school display of redesign.
Rock Hills senior, Jaclyn Yelken, shadowed me for the day.
Friends at the Kansas Livestock Association dinner.
If you’ve been reading for at least a year, you’ve heard me talk about “the blessing of the bills” – to keep them alive. When a bill is introduced in or touches (by being referred to) any of the following committees, they are exempt from legislative deadlines and “stay alive” for the remainder of the session:
House: 
  • Appropriations
  • Federal & State Affairs
  • Taxation
Senate
  • Ways & Means
  • Federal & State Affairs
  • Assessment & Taxation
On the House Floor - This week’s Calendar. Times below are unless otherwise noted in the Calendar. Watch live here.
You will notice the vast majority of our bills we pass either unanimously or by a very wide margin. Much of the work to iron out problems in a bill is done during the committee process.
 
Additionally, it’s not that I didn’t have committee work the last two weeks, but with two of my committees being exempt, most of the bills are not under deadline, so will be discussed in future newsletters. We did plenty on the House floor to keep you updated for a while – or help you sleep!
Passed the House on a divided vote:
Commerce
HB 2507 would exempt businesses from liability claims when high school students apprentice as part of a work-based learning program, assuming students’ school districts have the applicable insurance coverage. This will allow students to move more quickly into skilled trades without the impediment of businesses being reluctant to risk liability. It passed 97-27, I voted YES. 

Do you rent a storage shed? HB 2454 would allow self-storage unit operators to tow a vehicle, watercraft or trailer from units, and require that notice be given to the renter that the proceeds of sales will be used to satisfy liens, and remaining funds can either be claimed by occupants or sent to the state as unclaimed property. The bill also caps the maximum value renters can claim for damage or loss of personal property to the amount permitted to be stored under the rental agreement. Read hearing testimony here. It passed 114-9, I voted YES. 

Transportation
  • The OJ bill: HB 2448 would change the “car chase” laws to include operating a stolen motor vehicle. The bill also adds a fine of $500 when drivers are operating stolen vehicles during the commission of crimes. Read hearing testimony here. It passed the House 98-25, I voted YES. 
Corrections
  • HB 2469 would increase the number of days the Department of Corrections can grant the release of inmates with terminal medical conditions from 30 days to 90 days. If the inmates do not die within 90 days, the Department can return the inmates to prison. Only one inmate has been released since 2013 under the 30-day rule. Expanding the time frame to 90 days would likely increase the number of candidates eligible for release. It passed 120-5, I voted YES.
Judiciary
  • Current law only allows for adoptions to take place where the child or petitioners reside, or at the location of the principal place of business of the adoption agency. HB 2587 would allow adoptions to take place where the state, or an agency or subcontracting agency of the state, has an office. It passed 124-1, I voted YES.
Passed the House unanimously:
Ag
  • HB 2432 creates the Pesticide Waste Disposal Fund to provide funding to relieve the financial burden of disposing of pesticides and to reduce the health risk by having pesticides packaged, shipped and disposed of by professionals. Read hearing testimony here
  • HB 2451 would move livestock and domestic animals’ license, bond and permit renewal fee from June 30 to Sept. 30 each year. The legislation also would allow the animal health commissioner in the Department of Agriculture to recover the actual cost of official calfhood vaccination tags. Read hearing testimony here.
Public Safety
Are you the victim of sexually violent crime?
  • HB 2518 would change current law to count any crime with a domestic violence designation as a prior conviction under domestic battery statutes. This change would be limited to only convictions that have occurred in the preceding five years.
  • HB 2495 would allow compensation for mental counseling resulting from sexually violent crimes outside the two-year time limit from the date of testimony or after notification that DNA testing or other evidence has revealed the DNA profile of a suspect. The time limit would be waived if the Crime Victims Compensation Board determines there was good cause for failure to file. View hearing testimony here
  • HB 2546 would create the crime of sexual extortion. Communicating by any means:
    • Threats to injure the property or reputation of individuals, 
    • Commit violence against individuals, or 
    • Distribute images or videos of individuals of a sexual nature or that shows them nude. 
    • Sexual extortion also could mean: 
      • Trying to coerce others into conduct of a sexual nature, 
      • Producing or distributing images or videos of individuals who are nude or engaging in activity of a sexual nature. 
After spending much of the last half of 2019 researching the issue at conferences and on my own, the Children & Seniors Committee I chair worked hard on HB 2438, which would allow the State Child Death Review Boardto participate in a free national database to track child deaths. The legislation also would permit the Board to share information with law enforcement, as well as county and district attorneys, for investigation and prosecution purposes.

Transportation
  • HB 2420 would allow military surplus vehicles to register with the Division of Motor Vehicles for road use, if less than 35 years old, manufactured for use by the U.S. military, and authorized for sale to the public. 
Education
  • HB 2487 would replace the term “emotional disturbance” in special education law with the term “emotional disability” in order to help remove the stigma associated with the “emotional disturbance” term. Read hearing testimony here. It passed 118-7, I voted YES.
Taxation

HB 2516 would modify Kansas adjusted gross income (AGI) of individuals that contribute to a First-Time Home Buyer Act savings account, allowing individuals to open an account with a financial institution and designate all the funds in the account to be used to pay or reimburse a beneficiary’s eligible expenses for the purchase or construction of a primary residence in Kansas. The maximum contribution to an account in any tax year would be $3,000 by individuals and $6,000 by married couples filing jointly. Lifetime maximum contributions would be $24,000 by individuals and $48,000 by married couples filing jointly. View hearing testimony here. It passed 123-2, I voted YES.
Please feel free to contact me about these or other legislative issues. Thank you for the opportunity to serve and represent you in Topeka.

Sincerely,

Rep. Susan Concannon
R-Beloit
Copyright © 2020 Paid for by Concannon for Kansas, Tamarah Pruitt, Treasurer, All rights reserved.


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