Local State Legislators Hold Community Forum – Part II (AUDIO)


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We continue with our coverage of Saturday’s legislative forum held in Beloit with State Senator Elaine Bowers and Representative Susan Concannon.

The pair discussed the current state of the Kansas budget and the projected shortfall in the hundreds of millions combined for this and the next two fiscal years. A bill passed by the legislature and vetoed by Governor Brownback two weeks ago fell just a handful of votes in the senate short of a veto-override after the override passed the house the day before.

Senator Bowers discussed the ongoing grudge match between the legislature and the governor’s office while describing some of the political gamesmanship going on in Topeka as well as in the media when it comes to the budget issue. She talked about how the recent failed legislation to restore part of the cuts made in 2012 came to be.

Bowers went on to explain her belief that separate pieces passed by both sides of the legislature is preferable as those bills are more thoroughly vetted and not pushed through by concurrent votes on less scrutinized pieces of legislation.

Bowers explained that the veto-override effort passed by one vote in the house and failed by four votes in the senate. She expects those bills to continue to be tweaked until they can get enough votes to override future vetoes by Governor Brownback on similar pieces of legislation.

Representative Concannon also shared her view on the potential budget fixes which will be presented in the coming weeks.

Concannon continued to explain her position on the budget battle.

Tune into to KD-Country 94 and Z-96.3 News on Wednesday for Part III of this series.


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Derek Nester
Derek Nester
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2021 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.

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