Racial Commission Ideas Languish

The Kansas Legislature has so far not acted on proposals from a racial justice and equity commission established last year by Governor Laura Kelly, and neither the governor nor the commission members are pushing publicly for action.

The Commission on Racial Justice and Equity released a report in December with more than 30 recommendations to state legislators regarding policing practices.

Five bills that address the commission’s recommendations have stalled in committees.

Kelly said racial justice is a priority for her administration, but she hasn’t really given that much thought to why the bills are stalling in committees because she’s been focused on the state’s emergency management law rewrite.

Her office didn’t respond to further questions about efforts to enact her commission’s agenda.

The co-chairwoman of Kelly’s commission said the group’s work is really for the “long haul”, and the commission looks forward to continuing to work with lawmakers in future sessions.