Senate committee advances proposal to increase income taxes…and other headlines: February 15, 2017

A Kansas Senate committee advances a budget-balancing proposal from Democrats to raise $1.2 billion over two years by increasing income taxes. The Assessment and Taxation Committee now forwards a bill to the Senate that contains the plan. But the panel specifically did not endorse the measure in its voice vote. The full Senate is expected to debate it tomorrow.
In the Kansas House, a committee considers a proposal to keep concealed guns out of public hospitals, mental health clinics and nursing homes. The Federal and State Affairs Committee took up the bill that would allow the University of Kansas Medical Center to continue barring concealed weapons after July 1. Committee Chairman John Barker offered an amendment to broaden the bill.
Leaders of a fundraising campaign say they have reached their goal for establishing a new home for the University of Kansas School of Medicine-Salina. A news release from the executive director of the Salina Regional Health Foundation, says the group has raised more than $7.6 million. The new building is expected to open in June of next year.
A pair of Wichita police officers are on administrative leave pending the outcome of internal and criminal investigations. The department isn’t releasing any details other than saying it possibly involves misconduct, and that the move was prompted by another agency’s criminal investigation.
Investigators still aren’t sure who slipped onto a hunting preserve near Dodge City, killing several animals last week. The owner says some of the animals were pets, not there for hunting, and that a number of the animals still haven’t been accounted for.

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