Wichita Pot Campaign Intensifies
April 3, 2015

(AP) – Some lawmakers and state officials are ramping up the pressure against a Wichita ballot initiative that seeks to ease penalties for possessing small amounts of marijuana.

But supporters of the measure are also pushing back after crashing their news conference Friday in front of the Sedgwick County courthouse.

The issue is on the ballot for Tuesday’s election in Wichita.

The proposed ordinance does not legalize marijuana. It makes first-time possession a criminal infraction with a $50 fine. Under state law, it is a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $2,500 and a year in jail.

Opponents contend the city has no legal authority to adopt an ordinance that conflicts with state law.

Supporters say people should vote for the measure anyway to send the Legislature a message.

KC Man Charged in “Imaginary Plot” to Taint Water Supplies
October 26, 2013

(AP) – A 69-year-old man was charged Friday with trying to extort $10,000 from the FBI in exchange for averting what a federal prosecutor called an “imaginary plot” to contaminate public water supplies in four Kansas and Missouri cities.

Manuel Garcia, of Kansas City, Mo., was charged in a criminal complaint and placed in federal custody pending a detention hearing, U.S. Attorney Tammy Dickinson said.

Dickinson said investigators don’t believe there was ever a credible threat against the water supplies in St. Louis, Kansas City, Mo., Topeka and Wichita, Kan.

“There is no evidence that anyone actually possessed any chemicals to contaminate public water supplies,” Dickinson said in a news release. “The chemicals were as fictional as the conspirators in this imaginary plot.”

Investigators said in an affidavit that Garcia spoke of the plot in calls this month to the FBI, the Kansas City Police Department and the Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms Joint Support Operations Center in Washington, D.C.

Garcia told the federal agents that two of his acquaintances planned to put an unknown chemical into the four cities’ water supplies, according to the affidavit.

Garcia said the two had tested their plan on horses that suffered convulsions and died. Garcia stated that for $10,000 and a grant of immunity he would attempt to locate his acquaintances, investigators said.

The affidavit states that Garcia was contacted Wednesday after an FBI agent recognized his voice on three of the calls. He lives close to a cell tower identified as the vicinity from which one of the calls originated, investigators said.

Garcia did not have a lawyer Friday.

In 2010, Garcia was sentenced to 18 months in federal prison after pleading guilty to making a phone call threatening to bomb the U.S. courthouse in downtown Kansas City.

Prosecutors said he placed a mesh cloth cooler outside the courthouse with a note saying it contained explosives, although it contained only telephone books. He also was accused of calling 911 to say three more bombs were inside the courthouse the next day

Boeing Rival Concedes, Tanker & Jobs Head to Kansas
March 4, 2011

What may be the last remaining obstacle to  Kansas,  getting a huge economic boost by building a new tanker for the Air Force, has been cleared.

Washington announced last week it awarded Boeing the contract for its the Air force’s new tanker new. Today Boeing rival for the project, the European builder EADS, says it will not challenge the contract award.

“I appreciate the decision by EADS to accept the clear outcome of the Air Force’s contract award. It was a very thorough, robust and open competition. Now we can focus on executing this program and delivering new tankers to our American war fighters. Again, congratulations to the Boeing Wichita and Spirit AeroSystems team!” Governor Brownback said in a news release.

The KC-46A airframe will be designed for air-refueling operations, which significantly extends the range of Air Force operations. The current fleet of refueling tankers were commissioned in the 1950’s and 1960’s.

That means  jobs and money for the Boeing plant it Wichita. It is estimated the economic  shot to the Kansas economy could be well beyond $300 million dollars.

Kansas by the Numbers, Basics of the Census Report
March 3, 2011

The 2010 Census numbers for ther state of kansas are out. Missouri’s were released last week.

Here are some of the baisc numbers  for the Sunflower State:

Data for Kansas show that the five most populous incorporated places and

their 2010 Census counts are Wichita, 382,368; Overland Park, 173,372;

Kansas City, 145,786; Topeka, 127,473; and Olathe, 125,872. Wichita grew by

11.1 percent since the 2000 Census. Overland Park grew by 16.3 percent,

Kansas City decreased by 0.7 percent, Topeka grew by 4.2 percent, and

Olathe grew by 35.4 percent.

The largest county is Johnson, with a population of 544,179. Its

population grew by 20.6 percent since 2000. The other counties in the top

five include Sedgwick, with a population of 498,365 (increase of 10.0

percent); Shawnee, 177,934 (increase of 4.7 percent); Wyandotte, 157,505

(decrease of 0.2 percent); and Douglas, 110,826 (increase of 10.9 percent).

Big Score for Wichita, Boeing Gets Tanker Contract
February 24, 2011

Politico reports on a major economic development for the Kansas aviation industry. After a decade of false starts, Boeing has won the $35 billion contract to build a fleet of Air Force aerial refueling tankers, two congressional sources tell POLITICO.

Kansas Governor Sam Brownback’s office had a statement.
““I have been waiting a decade to say this – Congratulations Boeing workers! This is a great day for the company, its employees as well as for our country’s economy and for Kansas. The U.S. Air Force’s decision to award its $35 billion contract to Boeing is the type of economic growth government can provide to get the U.S. and our state back on the road to economic recovery with good jobs”, Brownback said.

Kansas Senator Pat Roberts:

“I am also pleased to see that the Air Force awarded the most highly-skilled, experienced workforce to build the tanker. I am proud of our workers at Boeing Wichita who can outcompete anyone and look forward to seeing that first tanker finished and out of the hanger.

“This award will create 7,500 new jobs at a time when the aviation industry and our nation needs them the most. The economic impact to Wichita and the state is an estimated $388 million.

“Wichita has long been known as the ‘Air Capital of the World,’ said Senator Jerry Moran, “and will live up to that reputation as thousands of skilled Kansans get to work on building the next generation tanker. This decision is great news for our state’s economy and will bring much-needed jobs to the aviation industry that has been hit particularly hard during the economic recession. I look forward to the day when Boeing tankers are coming off the Wichita production lines and being flown by the airmen and women at McConnell Air Force Base.”