No State of Emergency Extension

Top Republicans on Tuesday ended Kansas’ state of emergency for the coronavirus pandemic, refusing to consider Democratic Governor Laura Kelly’s arguments that it is still necessary for vaccinations and some testing for COVID-19.

Will Lawrence, Chief of Staff for Kelly, said the state will lose $14.5 million a month in extra federal aid because of the Republican action.

Senate President Ty Masterson announced the cancellation of a meeting of eight legislative leaders set for Tuesday afternoon.

A law enacted in late March required the legislative leaders to sign off on an extension, and Masterson’s announcement means that the state of emergency expired at day’s end after being in place since March 2020.

Kelly told reporters last week that she wants the state of emergency to continue at least through the end of August.

Kelly wanted legislative leaders to approve a 30-day extension, the most the law allowed.