News Briefs: Feb. 8


Kansas Senate panel proposes $23M cut from higher education

According to the Topeka Capital Journal, the Kansas Ways and Means Committee proposed a $23 million cut from the higher education budget and a $128 million cut from K-12 public schools, both of which still need approval from the House and Senate. These cuts, as well as other cuts in other state departments, are meant to cover a $310 million shortfall in state revenue for the current fiscal year. The reductions would take place this year.

These proposed cuts would decrease the state K-12 education budget by 5 percent and the higher education budget by 3 precent.

Riley County commissioners approve $3M roadwork project

According to the Manhattan Mercury, a $3 million project expanding Marlatt and Denison avenues was approved by Riley County commissioners on Monday and will begin in 2018. The project will expand Marlatt from three to four lanes between Tuttle Creek Boulevard and Denison and will expand Denison from two to three lanes at the Marlatt-Denison intersection.

Included in the project are the replacement of a box culvert on Marlatt, west of Denison, and the creation of a pedestrian and biking trail connecting to the existing trail at Kimball Avenue.

Forty percent of the project will be paid by the city of Manhattan while the rest will be covered by the county.

DeVos confirmed as Secretary of Education

The Associated Press reported the U.S. Senate’s approval of Betsy DeVos as the Secretary of Education, in which Vice President Mike Pence cast a tie-breaking vote. DeVos has been criticized by Democrats for her lack of experience and conflicting financial interests in organizations pushing for charter schools, though President Donald Trump said DeVos is a reformer and will help public schools improve.

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