May 27, 2004
First – welcome to those who are Sharp Record first-timers! Whether you gave me your email address walking door-to-door or at the Lenexa Business Blast, we’re glad to have you! The link above will connect you to the editions you missed during the legislative session.
Second, welcome to Sine Die. Both mathematicians and morticians are confused by that one! You Latin lovers understand… Sine Die means “without a day”, meaning it is the last official day of the legislative session. All bills that have been presented to the governor must be signed or vetoed by this date. Traditionally, no action occurs on this day, it is normally just a formality. As a result, not everyone attends.
Third, be sure to tune in this Saturday at 10:00 am to 1510 AM (or click to listen live online), when “Inside Kansas Politics with Reps. Stephanie Sharp and Rob Boyer” will discuss the press in politics. Jim Sullinger with the Kansas City Star, Dan Simon with the Olathe Daily News, and an unconfirmed legislator will be our guests.
Sine Die Adjournment Activities
There were a handful of bills the governor vetoed in the last week or so. One was $300,000 to expand a pregnancy maintenance initiative. A veto override requires 80 votes, and they are usually partisan votes, the Democrats vote to support their governor, and we vote to overturn her decision… Today, a couple of Democrats joined the Republicans and voted to override her veto. I believe there were 88 votes on that one, I voted YES.
However, the measure failed to get the required votes in the Senate, and the governor’s veto was sustained.
There were a couple of other override attempts, but they failed because we didn’t have all 80 Republicans there today. I am sure those bills will be resurrected in compromises next year.
You have read by now that the Supreme Court basically told Shawnee County District Judge Terry Bullock to “sit down and be quiet”. OK, not in those exact words, that is my non-lawyer paraphrase… The Court has expedited the case and will be looking at it on August 30, 2004. Schools will not close, teachers will get paid, kids will learn, and we’re working on World Peace next. Let me know if you want to help!
No, the problem is not solved, our schools are still hurting and I am still extremely frustrated about it. However, with a Supreme Court ruling, we will have an appropriate context and outline for what is constitutional, as we seek to fix the funding formula next year, or possibly in a special session of the legislature in the fall, if the governor so chooses.
What is a special session? The governor, at any time, can call the legislature back to Topeka, to further deliberate on any issue (i.e. education). That is a possibility after the Supreme Court decision is handed down this fall.
Thank you to my old and new friends in Maple Falls and Stoneridge Manor in Lenexa for your interest in my campaign last week. A lot more door-to-door tonight and this weekend – You never know when I’ll knock on your door!
Congratulations to the seniors and parents of Shawnee Mission West and Northwest! Both graduations were held last week, and I noticed that a lot of the doors I knocked on probably belonged to graduating seniors. Kudos to you. The first part of the “real world”? Voting! Be sure to register to vote. Click here for a voter registration form from the Johnson County Election Office.
Where’s Waldo (Rep. Sharp)? May 15 – May 27, 2004
- Sine Die in Topeka
- Two weeks ago, “Inside Kansas Politics” was one co-host short – I handled it alone! We had Mary Cohen with the U.S. Board of Education, Rep. Ward Loyd (R-Garden City), Rep. Jim Yonally (R-Overland Park), and Bill Land with the Blue Valley NEA (also a constituent) in to discuss the “Bullock decision”. It was a great show and we have received a TON of compliments on it. Thanks for tuning in!
- “Inside Kansas Politics” was host to Alan Conroy last week, on a discussion of the state budget. He gave a great overview of the “smoke and mirrors” budget gimmicks that have been used over the past couple of years, including the recent education plans that were based on gimmickry. Alan is the Director of Legislative Research for Kansas, and one of the truly brilliant people in Topeka… Insert your own smart remark here!
- I wasn’t there as your Representative, rather as a personal friend, but I do want to take this opportunity to congratulate Ward and Sally Cook on their wedding! Ward is the current chair of the Johnson County Young Republicans, and a friend from my days with the Kansas crew in Washington, DC.
- Brown vs. Topeka Board of Education site
- THIS WAS AWESOME! When the President arrived, Air Force One flew right over the assembled crowd. Pretty impressive. The fact that Kansas was host to two presidents and two presidential candidates in one week says a lot about our state’s role in civil rights and historical politics. Additionally, Senators, Congressmen, a Cabinet Secretary, and a U.S. Supreme Court justice all attended the Brown event!
- Shawnee Chamber of Commerce “Business After Hours” at First National Bank, Shawnee Mission Parkway and Pflumm
- Graduation services at Midland Academy – Congratulations Beckie Fairchild and the senior class!
- Overland Park Chamber of Commerce Johnson County Delegation Legislative Appreciation lunch
- Lenexa Chamber of Commerce Business Blast!
- Johnson County Young Republicans
3rd District Debate
- This was the first sanctioned debate between the candidates.
- Congratulations to the Johnson County Young Republicans for holding a well-run, respectable, and well-attended event!
- Kansas City Star “Report Card on the Session” event
Question of the Week!
Last week’s question:
Who was the first female governor of a state, to what state was she elected, and in what year?
Answer and Winner: Ken Swearingen of Shawnee wins a Kansas Seal lapel pin and one of my refrigerator magnets. Nellie Taylor Ross, of Wyoming, was inaugurated in 1925.
New Question: Who was the first U.S. vice president to die while in office?
As always, I would love your comments and questions about anything included here, or about anything in state government! If I can ever be of service to you, please do not hesitate to drop me a line!
Representative Stephanie Sharp
17th District, KS House
Serving Lenexa and Shawnee