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  • 14 Jan 2020 10:12 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    2019 Legislative Session Recap

    The 2019 legislative session concluded in early May with the legislature having tackled many large issues, while still leaving plenty of work to be done in the second year of the biennium starting on January 13, 2020. Given that Governor Laura Kelly's first budget survived mostly intact, and that no substantial tax reform package was signed into law, the state accounting ledger is on relatively firm footing heading into 2020. The Legislature was able to put together a school finance package to satisfy the Supreme Court, but Medicaid Expansion still remains elusive to advocates looking to expand access to health insurance.

    Current Economic Environment

    The Consensus Group consisting of Legislative Research, Division of the Budget, Department of Revenue, and economists from state universities meet twice a year, in April and November to provide an estimate of revenue and expenses for the Governor and Legislature to build the annual budget. The most recent meeting of this group produced some interesting and mostly positive data forecasts for the Kansas economy. It is anticipated that we will continue to see modest economic growth through FY 2021. Real Kansas Gross State Product is expected to grow by 1.7% in 2020. This lags the national economy as measured by U.S. Gross Domestic Product which is expected to grow by 1.9%.

    Employment continues to be strong in Kansas and the data shows that wages have been growing. The labor market is relatively tight with unemployment at 3.4%. In terms of agriculture, there has been modest growth in net farm income over the last couple years attributable in large part to the federal market facilitation payment program. However, the energy sector continues to experience declines in production and price for both oil and natural gas. Inflation continues to be moderate and the 2020 and 2021 forecasts both call for a 2.1% inflation rate.

    Budget Projections

    Given the moderate growth expected by the Consensus Group, and the favorable economic indicators, overall revenue estimates for FY 2020 and FY 2021 were increased by a combined $525.5 million. The profile for the State General Fund, taking the recent consensus estimates into account, shows that the State will have a positive ending balance through FY 2023. The State ended FY 2019 with over $1.1 billion in the bank. Even with the additional anticipated revenues, the State continues to have higher expenditures than revenues. The State General Fund profile assumes consistent and reasonable growth and does not consider any potential additional revenue (e.g. Internet or digital sales tax) or reductions in revenue from potential tax cuts.

    Major Issues

    Medicaid Expansion - One of the biggest policy issues from the 2019 Legislative Session was expanding Medicaid, which would provide health insurance coverage to approximately 150,000 Kansans. Last session, the Kansas House passed Medicaid Expansion through HB 2066 by a vote of 69-54, however, progress on sending a bill to Governor Kelly stalled out in the Senate. It has been over nine years since the Affordable Care Act (ACA) passed, and Medicaid Expansion has been an option for states to pursue since 2014. To date, Kansas, along with 13 other states have not expanded their programs. There was a commitment by Senate leadership that the issue would be studied in the interim by two different committees - the Senate Select Committee on Health Care Access and the Special Joint Committee on Medicaid Expansion. Both Committees have met, and we now have a Senate proposal that should be debated when the legislature convenes in January.

    Tax Policy - In addition to Medicaid Expansion, another large policy item leftover from the 2019 Legislative Session revolves around state tax policy. SB 22, which was one of the original large-scale tax bill from last session was vetoed by Governor Kelly in late March. After the legislature reconvened in early May, they passed another tax bill in the form of HB 2033, which contained nearly all of the same provisions as SB 22, but at half the cost because it did not allow for the changes to be retroactive. Governor Kelly ultimately vetoed both bills and the legislature was unable to override her veto on either bill. Governor Kelly issued an Executive Order in September creating the Governor's Council on Tax Reform, which had the charge of studying how Kansas can create a fair and efficient tax policy. Governor Kelly's Council made a series of recommendations including taxing digital products and implementing a refundable food sales tax credit. It is anticipated that legislators and lobbyists will again push this year to address the issues around decoupling and taxation of international income, which will set the stage for another year of fighting on tax policy.

    Constitutional Amendment on Abortion - With the Supreme Court decision in April ruling that the state constitution protects the right to an abortion, many legislators have been strategizing on how they can address this in the 2020 Legislative Session. One part of the debate is settled, and that is to put a constitutional amendment on the ballot for the voters of Kansas to decide. While all the details around the potential language have yet to be worked out, it can be reasonably assumed that there will be a robust debate in both chambers. Perhaps the biggest unknown at this point, should the amendment be approved by the legislature, is whether the constitutional amendment appears on the August or November ballot.

    Supreme Court Nominating Process - The process by which justices are nominated to serve on the state Supreme Court been questioned by legislators, especially in terms of transparency. The current process involves a nine-member Nominating Commission, including five lawyers and four nonlawyers. There are feelings that the current process leads to justices that don't represent the political makeup of Kansas, and many in the legislature would like Kansas to follow the Federal model, allowing the Governor to make appointments subject to Senate confirmation. It is anticipated that we will continue to hear from legislators that this process should be amended.

    Criminal Justice Reform - The 2019 Legislature passed HB 2290 with only one dissenting vote between both chambers. One of the provisions in the bill was to create the Kansas Criminal Justice Reform Commission. The Commission was charged with studying numerous aspects of the criminal justice system including sentencing guidelines, proportionality, diversion, supervision, specialty courts and other programs for offenders. Meetings of the Commission began this summer to meet a December deadline of producing an interim report (http://www.kslegresearch.org/KLRD-web/Publications/CommitteeReports/2019CommitteeReports/KS-CriminalJustRefmComm-cr.pdf). The Commission will continue to meet throughout the year and will issue their final report by December 1, 2020.

    Marijuana - Legalization of marijuana has been a hot topic around the legislature for the past few years and there are now three states bordering Kansas that have legalized recreational or medical marijuana. The Special Committee on Federal and State Affairs met in October on the topic of medical marijuana. There were many proponents and opponents who testified. Ultimately the recommendation from the Special Committee was to take a look at the Ohio law, which allows for medical marijuana in some forms. The Committee was also interested in what could be done to provide individuals an affirmative defense if someone who can legally possess marijuana in other states is traveling through Kansas. These recommendations will head to the legislature and it seems likely that there will be legislation this session on this topic.

    Transportation Plan - Transportation funding has been one of the annual budget issues facing legislators over the last decade. From FY 2011 - FY 2020, on average, $177 million has been swept from the state highway fund to the state general fund every year to fund core services of government. This does not include other extraordinary expenses that have come over time including Statehouse Debt Service, the Affordable Airfares program, and education transportation funding to name a few. Legislators have coined transportation funding as the "Bank of KDOT" (Kansas Department of Transportation) since it has been used so often to fund other government services. Governor Kelly would like to end the transfer of funds and keep more funding at KDOT to implement her new transportation plan. This new plan will focus on being nimble, stretching dollars, and community input to address the estimated $18 billion worth of needs statewide. As the Governor rolls out her new budget, this new plan, and funding for the plan will be one of the big budget issues this session.

    Noneconomic Damages Cap - This summer the Kansas Supreme Court struck down the state's cap on noneconomic damages, citing that it violates the state constitution. The statute in question relates to damages for personal injury or death, which has been currently capped at $325,000. Striking down of the cap disrupts years of public policy and advocates claim that this will have far-reaching consequences for cases involving medical malpractice, workers compensation, and general tort litigation. The legislature held two interim committees this fall to discuss the topic with the only recommendations that they continue to study the issue and get updates from stakeholders on ramifications.

    2020 Legislative Calendar

    • Jan. 13 - First day of session.
    • Feb. 3 -- Last day for individual members to request sponsored bill drafts.
    • Feb 10 - Last day for non-exempt committees to request bill drafts.
    • Feb. 12 - Last day for individual bill introductions.
    • Feb. 14 - Last day for non-exempt committee bill introduction.
    • Feb. 24 - Last day for committees to meet
    • Feb. 25-26 - On floor all day.
    • Feb. 27 - Turnaround Day, last day for non-exempt bills in house of origin.
    • Feb. 28-March 3 - No session.
    • March 20 - Last day for non-exempt committees to meet and consider bills.
    • March 23-24 - On floor all day.
    • March 25 - Last day for debate of non-exempt bills in either chamber.
    • March 26-27 - No session.
    • March 30-31 - Conference committees meet.
    • April 1 - Last day for conference committees to agree.
    • April 3 - Last day for conference committee agreements, First Adjournment.
    • April 4-26 - Spring Break.
    • April 27 - Veto session opens on Day 74 of the session.
    • May 13 - Day 90, the traditional length of the session.

    House Leadership

    • Speaker - Ron Ryckman (R - Olathe)
    • Speaker Pro Tem - Blaine Finch (R - Ottawa)
    • Majority Leader - Daniel Hawkins (R - Wichita)
    • Minority Leader - Tom Sawyer (D - Wichita)

    Senate Leadership

    • President - Susan Wagle (R - Wichita)
    • Vice President - Jeff Longbine (R - Emporia)
    • Majority Leader - Jim Denning (R - Overland Park)
    • Minority Leader - Anthony Hensley (D - Topeka)

    You can find a list of the 2020 Legislature here: http://kslegislature.org/li/b2019_20/members/, or in Excel which includes all contact information: http://kslegislature.org/li/b2019_20/members/csv/


    2020 Election

    All 165 legislators will be up for election this year. This will most certainly create an interesting dynamic as a number of legislators including Senate President Susan Wagle (running for US Senate) and House Appropriations Chairman Troy Waymaster (running in the 1st Congressional) will be running for new positions, as well as those legislators just trying to retain their seats. Positioning on issues will become paramount, in addition to trying to end the session in an expedient manner so the candidates can free up their time for campaigning and fundraising.


    Snack Bar

    The Capitol will have a new snack bar ready for this session that will feature a grill and serve hot food. After about $150,000 worth of work, you will now be able to enjoy a new snack bar on the ground floor of the Capitol, just across from the vending area near the Visitor Center and entrance. Don't worry, if you're upstairs and need some refreshments, the snack bar on the third floor won't be closing.

    Information provided by:

  • 06 Jan 2020 9:37 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas is excited to announce that the Request for Applications for the second phase of the Pathways to a Healthy Kansas initiative is now available! Blue Cross is continuing efforts to improve the health and wellness in communities across Kansas. The four-year coordination grants will award $200,000 each for up to 24 communities.

    Pathways to a Healthy Kansas is the largest community grant program ever funded by BCBSKS. It provides community coalitions with the tools and resources needed to remove barriers and engage their communities in ways that enable healthy eating and tobacco-free, active living to become a way of life. Communities that are awarded a coordination grant will have the opportunity to access additional non-competitive grant funding.

    The funding period is from Aug. 1, 2020, to July 31, 2024. BCBSKS is accepting letters of intent from communities interested in applying for the grant. Letters of intent must be submitted no later than Jan. 17 in order to receive an application packet. Applications are due March 20. Awardees will be announced on July 1.

    Please see the attached RFA . More information and frequently asked questions, is available at http://www.bcbsks.com/pathways/.

    Request for Application Packet

    For questions regarding the Letter of Intent contact:

    Virginia Barnes. MPH

    Director, Blue Health Initiatives

    Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas


    Toll-free: 1-800-432-0216, ext. 8004

    In Topeka: 785-291-8004

  • 31 Dec 2019 8:38 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    New Year Opportunities

    This time of year always brings the opportunity to reflect on the successes and growth that came in 2019 and look ahead to what we hope 2020 will hold. Kansas Recreation and Park Association wants to take a minute to thank you, our members and family, for letting us serve you and thank all the professionals who invested their time and resources into the success of our association and the park and recreation profession.

    KRPA looks to the future year with great anticipation. We are excited to work with you in 2020 and help improve the health and wellness of Kansans across the state.

    Upcoming 2020 Events

    Annual KRPA Conference and Trade Show-
    February 10-12, 2020 in Topeka, KS

    The countdown is on for the start of the 2020 KRPA Conference in Topeka, KS. For over 70 years, parks and recreation professionals in Kansas have gathered together for the Annual KRPA Conference. This outstanding park and recreation conference attracts over 400 professionals and elected officials for three exciting days of quality educational programming, networking and professional development. Featuring over 65 educational sessions and a trade show where more than 90 exhibitors showcase their latest and greatest products and services, the 2020 Conference is sure to be the place to be next February! Click here to learn more about the complete schedulehotel room blockregistration, and more.

    Aquatic Facility Operator Certification Course and Exam-
    March 11-12, 2020 in Derby and April 15-16, 2020 in Lawrence


    The Aquatic Facility Operator (AFO) program is an advanced, state of-the-art educational training program for those persons managing and operating aquatic facilities. The AFO program is fast becoming the leading training opportunity for pool operators and aquatic facility managers in the United States and to date has certified over 16,000 aquatic facility operators in the 16 years of existence. Click here to learn more.

    Certified Playground Safety Inspector Course and Exam-
    March 3-5, 2020 in Mission, KS


    The Certified Playground Safety Inspector (CPSI) course promotes children’s right to play and promotes the importance of play in children’s development. CPSI provides the most current comprehensive training program on playground safety including the development and distribution of playground training and safety products. CPSI provides input to help develop responsible public policy for the guaranteed safety of our children while at the same time advocating sound fiscal responsibility to provide resources for the ongoing maintenance and support of the policy. Click here to learn more.

    Marketing Workshop-
    March 31, 2020 in Emporia, KS

    This new workshop will provide attendees the opportunity to learn more about the latest trends and best-practices for marketing, social media and more. Morning and early afternoon sessions will feature a special keynote speaker and then join the Marketing Committee for their 60-in-60 afternoon session. Registration and details will be available soon.

    Recreation Commission Summit-
    April 8-9, 2020 in Derby, KS

    This once a year workshop gives recreation commissions the opportunity to review the budget process, network to discuss what is effecting recreation commissions, educational opportunity for recreation commission board members, and what the future might hold for recreation commissions in Kansas. More information and details will be announced at a later date.

  • 21 Nov 2019 11:53 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The Changing Point with Ian Hill is offering a FREE webinar on December 6th from 12pm - 1pm about Maximizing the Use of Your Time.

    In today's hectic world there just doesn't seem to be enough time to get done all that is expected of us.  From responsibilities at work, obligations at home and our own self care...there just doesn't seem to be enough time!

    In December's Lunch and Learn Ian Hill will share with us a proven system to not just manage our time but to maximize it!

    He will show us how to align our daily activities with our long term goals, identify and utilize our high impact activities, and avoid our time stealers as well provide actionable tools that you can use right away.

    Join us December 6th and prepare to make 2020 the best year so far, by maximizing the use of your time at www.thechangingpointedu.com!

  • 05 Nov 2019 10:05 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    KRPA is happy to announce that the KRPA Today Fall magazine is now available for KRPA members. This edition features:

    -KRPA Conference schedule

    -Article: Leadership: Values vs. Boundaries

    -Article: Filling the Empty Seats

    Read complete publication here.

  • 31 Oct 2019 1:15 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Kansas Recreation and Park Association (KRPA), PlayCore, GameTime, and Cunningham Recreation are aligning resources and partnering for the second year to promote best practices in parks and recreation, provide quality education, and arm communities with evidence-based resources.

    Parks are essential to creating healthier, happier communities across generations. Complimentary professional development events will be hosted in April 2020 across the state of Kansas. These interactive education symposiums will help participants effectively fuel their community’s passion for play and recreation and empower stakeholders to become champions for high quality outdoor play and recreation environments that meet the diverse needs of children, families, and communities. 

    Attendees will be inspired by unique design and program innovations, leadership case examples, and strategies to creatively consider the needs and goals of community stakeholders. The content and hands-on learning activities will equip participants in developing strong advocacy messages of how investing in parks and recreation has a positive impact on building viable communities through physical activity, inclusive play, engagement with nature, and play value in a collaborative effort to improve the quality of life in communities across Kansas.

    Learning Objectives:

    • Develop advocacy messages describing why play and recreation is essential to a healthier and happier society.
    • Apply research-based design best practices to create high-quality outdoor play and recreation destinations.
    • Discuss model projects, positive community outcomes, and the benefits of inclusion, physical activity, and nature engagement.

    PlayCore's Center for Outreach, Research & Education is providing the statewide professional development services and GameTime will provide up to $1M in matching funds to assist agencies across Kansas create play and recreation destinations that have been thoroughly reviewed to align with research-based best practices. These projects will serve as National Demonstration Sites (NDS) and serve as national models for promoting physical activity, fitness, nature engagement, and inclusion.

    The sessions will offer Continuing Education Units for professionals and promise to be lively, informative, and educational. Lunch and educational resources will be provided by GameTime and Cunningham Recreation.

    To learn more about this partnership and ways to attend the events, please visit: www.gametime.com/krpa.

  • 25 Aug 2019 9:35 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Purchase Kansas City Chiefs Tickets and Support Kansas Parks and Recreation Professionals

    KRPA is participating in the Chiefs Ticket Fundraiser again this year to provide you with a chance to attend Kansas City Chiefs' home games and support the KRPA Scholarship Fund at the same time.

    Tickets are available to purchase for Chiefs home games in 2019, Tickets vary in price but $10 goes directly to KRPA. Here's a great opportunity to see the Chiefs play and also support park and recreation professionals across Kansas.

    Be sure to use the link below and the promo code: KRPA

    Current ticket options are for:
    Chiefs vs Ravens (Regular Season Game)- September 22
    Chiefs vs Colts (Regular Season Game)- October 6th
    Chiefs vs Texans (Regular Season Game)- October 13th
    Chiefs vs Packers (Regular Season Game)- October 27th
    Chiefs vs Vikings (Regular Season Game)- November 3rd
    Chiefs vs Raiders (Regular Season Game)- December 1st
    Chiefs vs Broncos (Regular Season Game)- December 15th
    Chiefs vs Chargers (Regular Season Game)- December 29th

    Tickets will be purchased and delivered directly from the KC Chiefs. Tickets are first come, first serve.

  • 20 Aug 2019 1:36 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    It's time to highlight your agency or share a job change with the KRPA family. This is a request for articles for the "Around KANSAS" and "Members on the Move" section of the KRPA Today magazine. Please send a 125 word or less article and photos of events, news, and KRPA members on the move that you would like published in that section of the magazine. The magazine will be published this fall. Article and photos are due by September 20, 2019 to amanda@krpa.org.

  • 10 Aug 2019 2:15 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Effective Motivation- Moving Others into Action

    When: 9/6/2019 from 12:00 pm- 12:45 pm
    Live broadcast at www.thechangingpoint.life/broadcast.

    Description: Motivation is the most over discussed and misunderstood aspect of leadership!  Pep talks and rah-rah speeches won’t move others into action today, there needs to be more! In this 45 minute live broadcast, Master Motivator Ian Hill will provide proven approaches to move others into sustained action and higher productivity. Participants will learn a system of motivation that will help others move to the ultimate motivation, self-motivation!

    Ian Hill facilitates the KRPA Leadership Intensive program. Registration is now open for the second round of Leadership Intensive that starts on October 10th. Click here to learn more about the program and hear from current Leadership Intensive participants. 

    Leadership Intensive is an individualized, competency based leadership development program that meets participants where they are at. It utilizes an innovative behavioral change model and a blended learning approach. The program has been designed specifically for the park and recreation sector and to accelerate demonstrated knowledge acquisition of director-level leadership competencies.

  • 01 Aug 2019 9:10 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Hall of Fame Nominations

    Are you aware of a professional who committed a lengthy time of service to the field of parks and recreation in Kansas?  Please take this opportunity to pay tribute and honor this person by nominating them for the KRPA Hall of Fame. This year's Hall of Fame inductees will be honored at the Hall of Fame Luncheon and KRPA Conference Opening Session on February 10, 2020 in Topeka, Kansas. 

    Hall of Fame nominees must be retired from the profession for at least two (2) years and be a past member of KRPA. Professional nominees are preferred to have had professional certification but not required. Hall of Fame inductees are selected by the KRPA Board of Directors.

    The deadline to submit nominations for the KRPA Hall of Fame is September 13, 2019.  Please send nomination form or questions to Erika Devore (KRPA Executive Director) at erika@krpa.org.

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