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Legislative Update from Representative Shannon Francis
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This was a difficult week for me.  I lost my dear friend and coworker Elaine Fitzgerald.  It was pretty sudden.  She fought a long hard battle and was taken from us by surprise.  She was as honest as the day is long and valued hard work.  No matter what life threw at her she handled it and didn’t complain.  I pray I can handle adversity as well as she did.  My love and prayers go out to her husband, Mark, and Jasmine, Savannah, Kevyn and the rest of her family.
 
Dr. Lamberto Flores, his wife, Karen, and the staff of Women’s Specialists of Liberal, PA were recognized at the capital by the Kansas Small Business Development Centers for being one of Kansas’s 16 successful small businesses.  Mike O’Kane, our local representative, was also on hand.
 
Dr. Leslie Bissel and Marshall Lewis from Southwest Guidance Center were in my office discussing issues effecting rural mental health care. Funding continues to be an issue as well as state mandates that could harm patient care and increase administrative expenses. We also talked about the shortage of psychiatric hospital beds in Kansas. 
 

Committee Updates


Serving on the Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee this year has been a real pleasure.  The Chairwoman, Sharon Schwartz, is a great role model. I saw a number of legislative maneuvers that allowed us to get several important bills out of committee.  Many of these were technical fixes but there were also some important water bills that will give farmers more opportunity to come up with innovative ways to conserve water. She is also great at stopping needless legislation.
 
My Vision 20/20 Committee was chaired by Representative Tom Sloan.  Tom and Sharon are two of the senior members of the house and both have great institutional knowledge.  Chairman Sloan focused on innovative healthcare programs to benefit rural and urban areas, water, and Internet security. The hearings we had will help form future bills that will benefit rural Kansas.
 
Representative Steve Huebert, another long time legislator, chaired my Local Government Committee.  We did a lot of work in this committee on technical fixes for communities through out Kansas.
 

Looking Forward

 
For the next 10 days we will spend most of our time working bills on the floor.  The most important one will be the appropriations bill. I am still looking for a way to restore some of our lost transportation funding.  This bill will determine the content of the tax bill.  If the transfer of $135 million the Governor has requested from KDOT stays in this bill I am concerned we will never get it back and road projects in 2018 and 2019 will be in jeopardy.

Weekly Coffee Meetings

I will be having a coffee this Saturday, March 28th from 9:00 to 11:00 am at Spencer Browne’s Coffee House.  Please stop by and visit.  I’m happy to answer any questions you might have.  These are very informal and it’s important for me to listen to you so I know the community’s views.

Contact Info

Thank you for the opportunity to serve during these challenging times.  Our rural communities are the backbone of a strong Kansas.  During the session please contact me any time. My office is 167-W, my phone number is 785-296-7655 and my email is shannon.francis@house.ks.gov.

Shannon Francis
125th District Representative
Kansas House of Representatives
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Contact Shannon

At the Legislature:

State Capitol
Room 167A-W
Topeka, KS 66612
shannon.francis@house.ks.gov

At Home in Liberal:

1501 Tucker Court
Liberal, Kansas 67901
sfran83384@aol.com
620-624-9571

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Copyright © 2015 Shannon Francis for State Representative, All rights reserved.


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