Kansas Legislative Insights Newsletter | February 10, 2023
Committee Action Dominates Week
Week 5 was highlighted by committee hearings covering a wide range of topics from agency budgets, education funding, regulating websites, tax cuts, wind energy, and water conservation. The week featured a contentious hearing on educational savings accounts allowing school choice and the Senate Assessment and Taxation approving $180 million in tax cuts. Also this week, both houses worked on agency budgets. Multiple committee hearings on bills were heard ahead of the Feb. 21 deadline for non-exempt committees to meet. Both the House Appropriations and Senate Ways and Means Committees heard at least 25 agency budget reports in addition to committee or subcommittee hearings on other agencies. After this week, there are only seven days left for non-exempt committees to consider non-exempt bills.
As deadlines approach, both chambers are starting to debate bills. The House went on general orders to debate bills on Tuesday and Wednesday. Thursday afternoon, the Senate debated and passed seven bills plus two on the consent calendar. Also, the Senate confirmed various appointments, including a 39-0 vote confirming Tony Mattivi as the next director of the Kansas Bureau of Investigation.
The use of the Consent Calendar permits non-controversial bills to move forward without amendment. If there are no objections after three days, the bills are advanced to a final vote, obviously expediting the legislative process. The two bills passed on the Senate Consent Calendar were reauthorization of a permanent life-size version of the “Ad Astra” sculpture on the state capitol grounds and a bill authorizing the Capitol Preservation Committee to develop and approve plans for a mural honoring the 1st Kansas (Colored) Voluntary Infantry Regiment.
Senate Tax Cuts
The Senate Tax Committee approved $180 million in tax cuts for this year on Wednesday. The proposed cuts increase the standard deduction for individual income taxes to reflect increases on federally approved cost-of-living increases. Social Security benefits would be exempt from Kansas taxable income tax. The initial cost would be $147 million, with the cost projected to fall to $120 million in the next two years. Also, a net operating loss carry-forward tied to the pandemic effect on businesses providing $8 million in tax relief got a nod in Committee and the sales tax on custom butchering of livestock is recommended for elimination. Finally, the Committee approved exclusion of the value of manufacturers’ coupons from the sales-taxable price of goods. This last item is projected to cost $1.7 million.
Educational Savings Accounts for School Choice Approved
After a contentious hearing on Monday, the House K-12 Education Budget Committee approved HB 2218 on Wednesday, allowing Kansas children to use state aid to attend a private school. The bill establishes the Sunflower Education Equity Act to provide education savings accounts for qualified students. The bill allows qualified elementary and secondary students to use 95% of state aid per student (approximately $5,100) to attend private school. The educational savings accounts would be phased in over four years starting with the 2023-24 school year with 2,000 private school students whose family income is less than or equal to 300% of the poverty level. The second year is set at 400% of poverty with 4,000 students. In year three, there is no income requirement with 8,000 children; and by year four, all Kansas students would be eligible. The Act would be administered by the State Treasurer at the direction of the Sunflower Education Equity Board created by the legislation. The 10-member board (nine voting members) would develop guidelines and could not promulgate rules and regulations. The bill passed along party lines. Public education advocates fear it will gut funding for public schools.
The House Federal and State Affairs Committee heard HCR 5005, urging Congress to call a convention of states to establish term limits for members of Congress. On Thursday, the Committee heard HB 2269, raising the age for the sale, purchase, and possession of tobacco products, including electronic cigarettes.
The House Water Committee heard a bill addressing the approaching crisis in the Ogallala Aquifer. The bill would require groundwater management districts to make a plan to conserve the aquifer and report their spending to the Legislature each year. Portions of the aquifer have only 10 to 20 years of water left. The current drought is bringing more attention to the issue. The Kansas Water Authority has recommended the state change its de facto policy of draining the aquifer for short-term gain. Agricultural organizations and groundwater management districts expressed support with minor suggestions.
The Senate Federal and State Affairs Committee approved SB 50 on Thursday, prohibiting restrictions on free speech in internet content. The bill sponsor, Sen. Mark Steffen, R-Hutchinson, says the bill targets are Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, which entities claim remove conservative political statements. The committee vote was 4-4 with Chair Sen. Mike Thompson breaking the tie. The Attorney General’s Office warned that two other similar laws in Florida and Texas are in litigation.
The House Tax Committee approved HB 2066, providing for a property tax exemption for up to two motor vehicles for firefighters and emergency medical service providers. The bill was amended to only apply to volunteers.
The Senate Assessment and Tax Committee will continue the hearing on SB 128, establishing the Ad Astra Opportunity Tax Credit to provide an income tax credit for taxpayers with eligible dependent children not enrolled in public school. The hearing was extended to allow conferees more time to testify.
The Senate Utilities Committee spent the entire week hearing proponent, opponent, and neutral testimony on SB 68. This proposed legislation would enact a state right of first refusal (ROFR) for incumbent electric transmission owners to construct, upgrade, own, and maintain an electric transmission line that has been approved for construction in a transmission plan of a regional transmission organization (RTO). An incumbent electric transmission owner could exercise the ROFR if the proposed electric transmission line would interconnect with facilities that are owned or proposed to be constructed by such incumbent electric transmission owner. There are approximately eight states surrounding Kansas who have adopted ROFR legislation. Generally, the proponents’ arguments relate to concerns the current federally driven processes are constraining cooperation and creating cost overruns. Proponents also contend that the competitive process delays the implementation of projects. Conversely, opponents testified that competition creates significant cost savings on transmission projects, which benefits rate payers. The Committee completed its hearings and will be working the bill in the near future.
Bill Introductions and Notable Developments
COURTS, LAWS, AND REGULATIONS
HB 2027 – As recommended by the House Committee on Judiciary, Rep. Fred Patton, Chair, would amend the “slayer rule” in the Kansas Probate Code to create a procedure to prevent the distribution of estate assets until the resolution of criminal proceedings involving a person who has interest in the estate and who has been arrested or charged with the felonious killing of the decedent.
HB 2058 – As recommended by the House Committee on Federal and State Affairs, Rep. Will Carpenter, Chair, would amend provisions of the Kansas Liquor Control Act to require remittance of gallonage taxes by holders of a special-order shipping license to be submitted to the Secretary of Revenue monthly rather than quarterly as required in the current law.
HB 2059 – As amended by the House Committee on Federal and State Affairs, Rep. Will Carpenter, Chair, would amend the Kansas Club and Drinking Establishment Act’s provisions related to common consumption areas to remove the requirement that a city or county permit (rather than require) that the portions of common consumption areas on public streets or roadways be blocked from motorized traffic during events.
Sub for HB 2077 – Would require reporting of significant cybersecurity incidents by State agencies and provide for changing membership, terms, and quorum requirements for the Information Technology Executive Council. Information technology projects and reporting requirements would also be impacted. Referred to the House Committee on Appropriations, Rep. Troy Waymaster, Chair.
HB 2105 – As recommended by the House Committee on Financial Institutions and Pensions, Rep. Nick Hoheisel, Chair, would create the Kansas Earned Wage Access Services Act (EWA) and authorize the office of the State Bank Commissioner (Commissioner) to regulate earned wage access services providers. The bill would establish registration criteria, including annual reporting and business record requirements, as well as assign powers and duties to the Commissioner, including examination and enforcement, to ensure compliance with EWA.
HB 2124 – As recommended by the House Committee on Federal and State Affairs, Rep. Will Carpenter, Chair, would amend the Kansas Cereal Malt Beverage Act’s provisions concerning on-premises sales of cereal malt beverage on Sunday to remove the 30 percent food sales requirement for Sunday sales. In continuing law, Sunday sales must have been authorized by the county or city where the licensee is located. Additionally, there is no food sales requirement for other days of the week.
HB 2170 – As recommended by the House Committee on Federal and State Affairs, Rep. Will Carpenter, Chair, would amend the Kansas Liquor Control Act provisions on the licensing of spirits, wine, and cereal malt beverage distributors concerning samples of products provided to retailers and to club and drinking establishment licensees.
HB 2173 – As recommended by the House Committee on Commerce, Labor, and Economic Development, Rep. Sean Tarwater, Chair, would prohibit any state agency or local unit of government form prohibiting or restricting the use of any refrigerant approved for use under federal Safe Alternatives Policy (42 U.S. Code Section 7671k) or its enacting regulations when the refrigerant is installed and used in accordance with federal law.
HB 2268 – Would prohibit homeowner’s associations from restricting installation of solar energy devices. Referred to the House Committee on Local Government, Rep. Emil Bergquist, Chair.
HB 2269 – Would raise the minimum age for the sale, purchase, or possession of cigarettes, electronic cigarettes, and tobacco products to 21 years of age. Referred to the House Committee on Federal and State Affairs, Rep. Will Carpenter, Chair.
HB 2273 – Would constitute the House appropriations measure for the fiscal years ending June 30, 2024, June 30, 2025, and June 30, 2026, for state agencies. Referred to the House Committee on Appropriations, Rep. Troy Waymaster, Chair.
HB 2274 – Would provide appropriations for the fiscal years ending June 30, 2023, and June 30, 2024, for state agencies. Referred to the House Committee on Appropriations, Rep. Troy Waymaster, Chair.
HB 2291 – Would permit microbrewery food establishments to allow dogs on the premises, notwithstanding certain provisions of the Kansas food code. Referred to the House Committee on Commerce, Labor and Economic Development, Rep. Sean Tarwater, Chair.
HB 2294 – Would increase the minimum age required to purchase or possess cigarette and tobacco products and establish unlawful acts and penalties for violations. Referred to the House Committee on Judiciary, Rep. Fred Patton, Chair. See HB 2269 above.
HB 2301 – Would require age verification for access to material on the internet deemed harmful to minors and establish a civil cause of action for actual and punitive damages, attorney fees, and costs for persons harmed. Referred to the House Committee on Federal and State Affairs, Rep. Will Carpenter, Chair.
HB 2320 – Would require the Department of Commerce to designate or establish a C-PACE (Commercial Property Assessed Capital Enhancement Act) Board to evaluate financing applications, develop business rules, and administer assessment contracts. The Board would interface with lenders and property owners. Referred to the House Committee on Financial Institutions and Pension, Rep. Nick Hoheisel, Chair.
HB 2324 – Would amend the Residential Landlord and Tenant Act by removing the requirement to publish notice prior to a landlord’s sale of abandoned tenant property. Referred to the House Committee on Local Government, Rep. Emil Bergquist, Chair.
HB 2334 – Would extend the deadlines for project agreements under the Attracting Peaceful Economic Expansion Act and enhance incentives for qualified suppliers by providing for up to 10% of refundable tax credits for up to 10 years and increasing the training reimbursement to up to $500,000 per year for five years. The bill includes other incentive enhancements. Referred to the House Committee on Commerce, Labor and Economic Development, Rep. Sean Tarwater, Chair.
HB 2343 – Would authorize the use of internet websites for publication of legal notices. Referred to the House Committee on Local Government, Rep. Emil Bergquist, Chair.
HB 2357 – Would require a two-thirds majority vote of the Senate to be qualified to be a Kansas Supreme Court justice. Referred to the House Committee on Judiciary, Rep. Fred Patton, Chair.
HB 2376 – Would prohibit the recording of unlawful restrictive covenants and authorize the removal of unlawful restrictive covenants and prohibit any city or county ordinance or resolution prohibiting discrimination that is more restrictive than the Kansas Act Against Discrimination. Referred to the House Committee on Local Government, Rep. Emil Bergquist, Chair.
HB 2387 – Would, among other things, provide funding to replace lost food sales tax revenue for STAR bond districts established prior to Dec. 31, 2022, and modifying the tax increment definition for such districts. Referred to the House Committee on Commerce, Labor, and Economic Development, Rep. Sean Tarwater, Chair.
HB 2388 – Would require that licensing bodies provide verified electronic credentials, in addition to paper-based credentials, to all credential holders, including military servicemembers and others receiving Kansas credentials based on their credentials from other jurisdictions and require licensing bodies to use centralized electronic credential date management systems capable of providing instantaneous credential verification. Referred to the House Committee on Commerce, Labor and Economic Development, Rep. Sean Tarwater, Chair.
HB 2389 – Would authorize the Kansas Real Estate Commission to issue cease-and-desist orders and provide that dealing in assignable contracts for the purchase, sale of, or options on real estate requires licensure. Referred to the House Committee on Commerce, Labor and Economic Development, Rep. Sean Tarwater, Chair.
SB 152 – Would adjust the rate of pay for senior state officers. Referred to the Senate Committee on Ways and Means, Sen. Rick Billinger, Chair.
SB 153 – Would provide appropriations for fiscal years ending June 30, 2023, and June 30, 2024, for state agencies. Referred to the Senate Committee on Ways and Means, Sen. Rick Billinger, Chair.
SB 155 – Would constitute the Senate’s appropriation bill for three fiscal years ending after June 30, 2024, applicable to Kansas state agencies. Referred to the Senate Committee on Ways and Means, Sen. Rick Billinger, Chair.
SB 159 – Would create the Kansas Rural Grocery Store Development Incentive Act and establish the Grocery Business Project Fund and the Kansas Rural Grocery Business Grant Fund. Referred to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Sen. Renee Rickson, Chair.
SB 164 – Would provide a $2,000 tax credit for qualified employees of licensed childcare facilities. Referred to the Senate Committee on Assessment and Taxation, Sen. Caryn Tyson, Chair.
SB 165 – Would permit workers compensation for post-traumatic stress disorder suffered by first responders. Referred to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Sen. Renee Erickson, Chair.
SB 215 – Would establish the Kansas Rail Safety Improvement Act to provide safety requirements for railroad operations and crossings and would allow for the transfer of title for abandoned railroad tracks to municipalities. Referred to the Senate Committee on Transportation, Sen. Mike Petersen, Chair.
SB 217 – Would limit the use of any electronic tracking system or acquiring tracking information to determine a targeted person’s location, movement, or travel patterns when done as part of an unlawful course of conduct and would authorize orders to prohibit such conduct under the Kansas Family Law Code, the revised Kansas Code for Care of Children, the Protection From Abuse Act, and the Protection from Stalking, Sexual Assault, or Human Trafficking Act. Referred to the Senate Committee on Judiciary, Sen. Kellie Warren, Chair.
HB 2201 – As recommended by the House Committee on Taxation, Rep. Adam Smith, Chair, would require annual property valuation notices provided by county appraisers to include the appraised and assessed value of the property for the current year and four preceding years.
HB 2282 – Would eliminate the income limitation to receive the subtraction modification exempting Social Security benefits. Referred to the House Committee on Taxation, Rep. Adam Smith, Chair.
HB 2292 – Would establish a tax credit incentive program for apprenticeships and enact the Kansas Apprenticeship Tax Credit Act. Referred to the House Committee on Commerce, Labor, and Economic Development, Rep. Sean Tarwater, Chair.
HB 2316 – Would allow a carryback for income tax purposes of losses from sale of certain historic hotels. Referred to the House Committee on Taxation, Rep. Adam Smith, Chair.
HB 2318 – Would decrease rate of sales and compensating use tax to 6.15%. Referred to the House Committee on Taxation, Rep. Adam Smith, Chair.
HB 2319 – Would provide for a property tax exemption for business property that operates in competition with property owned or operated by a governmental entity. Referred to the House Committee on Taxation, Rep. Adam Smith, Chair.
HB 2384 – Would increase the Kansas standard deduction by a cost-of-living adjustment. Referred to the House Committee on Taxation, Rep. Adam Smith, Chair.
SB 30 – As recommended by the Senate Committee on Assessment and Taxation, Sen. Caryn Tyson, Chair, would provide, beginning in tax year 2023, for the Kansas individual income tax standard deduction amounts to be annually increased by the cost-of-living adjustment provided for by Section 1(f)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.
SB 33 – As recommended by the Senate Committee on Assessment and Taxation, Sen. Caryn Tyson, Chair, would expand the Kansas individual income tax exemption for Social Security benefits to include all federally taxable Social Security benefits beginning in tax year 2023.
SB 40 – As recommended by the Senate Committee on Assessment and Taxation, Sen. Caryn Tyson, Chair, would create a subtraction modification allowing taxpayers who carried back federal net operating losses in tax year 2018 through 2020 pursuant to the federal CARES Act to subtract such amounts from their income for purposes of determining Kansas adjusted gross income. Taxpayers would be permitted to carry forward such net operating loss for up to 20 years if the amount exceeds the Kansas adjusted gross income of the taxpayer. The bill would extend the deadline for eligible taxpayers to file amended returns for tax years 2018 through 2020 until April 15, 2025.
SB 53 – As amended by the Senate Committee on Assessment and Taxation, Sen. Caryn Tyson, Chair, would exclude from sales price, for purposes of retail sales and compensating use taxes, the amount of coupons issued by a manufacturer, supplier, or distributor when the seller accepts such coupons and is reimbursed by the manufacturer, supplier, or distributor.
SB 168 – Would authorize cities and counties to exempt sales of food and food ingredients from such city or county taxes. Referred to the Senate Committee on Assessment and Taxation, Sen. Caryn Tyson, Chair.
SB 169 – Would modify individual income tax rates. Referred to the Senate Committee on Assessment and Taxation, Sen. Caryn Tyson, Chair.
BANKING AND INSURANCE
SB 25 – As amended by the Senate Committee of the Whole, would amend a provision in the Insurance Code pertaining to the premium tax assessed for surplus lines business that is transacted on behalf of insured whose home state is Kansas. The bill would reduce the prescribed tax rate from 6.0 percent to 4.0 percent. The Senate Committee of the Whole passed the bill, as amended, on emergency final action. Yea: 39, Nay: 0.
SB 26 – As recommended by the Senate Committee on Financial Institutions and Insurance, Sen. Jeff Longbine, Chair, would amend law relating to the financial documentation demonstrating fiscal soundness that must be submitted by a health maintenance organization (HMO) or a Medicare provider organization (MPO) when applying for a certificate of authority to provide healthcare in the state. The Senate Committee of the Whole passed the bill on emergency final action. Yea: 38, Nay: 1.
HB 2133 – As recommended by the House Committee on Financial Institutions and Pension, Rep. Nick Hoheisel, Chair, would repeal the prohibition on imposing a surcharge on payments made by credit or debit cards. The bill would repeal the statute within the Uniform Consumer Credit Code (K.S.A. 16a-2-403) that prohibits the imposition of this surcharge and amend other sections of law to remove references to the statute.
HB 2325 – Would amend the Kansas Insurance Code to add maternity center to the definition of “healthcare provider.” Referred to the House Committee on Insurance, Rep. William Sutton, Chair.
SB 148 – Would impact health insurance by imposing certain requirements and limitations on the use of prior authorization for healthcare services. Referred to the Senate Committee on Public Health and Welfare, Sen. Beverly Gossage, Chair. See also HB 2283.
SB 161 – Would impose coverage requirements for coverage of diagnostic and supplemental breast examinations, amending K.S.A. 40-2, 103 and 40-19c09 and repealing the existing sections. Referred to the Senate Committee on Public Health and Welfare, Sen. Beverly Gossage, Chair. See also HB 2287.
SB 176 – Would impact behavioral science regulations, decrease the years of practice required for reciprocity licensure, require that clinical social work supervisors be approved by the board, and among other aspects of the regulatory scheme, provide additional continuing education requirements. Referred to the Senate Committee on Public Health and Welfare, Sen. Beverly Gossage, Chair. See also HB 2340.
SB 194 – Would remove the requirements that such members of hospital district boards be qualified electors. Referred to the Senate Committee on Local Government, Sen. Carolyn McGinn, Chair.
SB 219 – Would designate certain healthcare providers (facilities where elective abortions are performed) as ineligible to purchase professional liability insurance from the Healthcare Stabilization Fund but would require such healthcare providers to maintain continuous professional liability insurance coverage equivalent to that provided by the Healthcare Stabilization Fund as a condition of licensure. Referred to the Senate Committee on Public Health and Welfare, Sen. Beverly Gossage, Chair.
HB 2023 – As recommended by the House Committee on Judiciary, Rep. Fred Patton, Chair, would create the crime of interference with the conduct of a hospital, which would generally be defined as conduct at or in a hospital so as to knowingly deny an employee of the hospital to enter or impeding an employee of a hospital from the performance of such employee’s duties.
HB 2263 – As amended by the House Committee on Health and Human Services, Rep. Brenda Landwehr, Chair, would amend a provision in the Pharmacy Act of the State of Kansas to add pharmacy technicians, at least 18 years of age and under the direct supervision and control of a pharmacist, to the list of those authorized to administer vaccinations after successfully completing a course of study and training in vaccination storage, protocols, injection technique, emergency procedures, recordkeeping, and cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
HB 2276 – Would prohibit pelvic, rectal, or prostate exams on unconscious patients without informed consent. Referred to the House Committee on Health and Human Services, Rep. Brenda Landwehr, Chair.
HB 2337 – Would amend the Kansas Telemedicine Act by requiring certain insurance coverage of in-state telemedicine services and provide for certain standards of care and establish the Kansas Telehealth Advisory Committee. Referred to the House Committee on Health and Human Services, Rep. Brenda Landwehr, Chair.
HB 2347 – Would provide price limitations and requirements applicable to insulin drugs and devices under health insurance plans and establish the Insulin Affordability Program for the uninsured and procedures to acquire emergency insulin supplies. Referred to the House Committee on Health and Human Services, Rep. Brenda Landwehr, Chair.
HB 2362 – Would remove state fire marshal approval as a requirement for licensure or renewal of licensure of facilities, including hospitals providing disability services. Referred to the House Committee on Appropriations, Rep. Troy Waymaster, Chair.
HB 2279 – Would require groundwater management districts to submit annual reports to the legislature and direct groundwater management districts to submit conservation and stabilization plans to the chief engineer. Referred to the House Committee on Water, Rep. Jim Minnix, Chair.
HB 2302 – Would create the Water Technical Assistance Fund and Water Projects Grant Fund and authorize the Kansas Water Office to provide grants from such funds and adopt rules and regulations to establish the criteria for grants from such funds. Referred to the House Committee on Water, Rep. Jim Minnix, Chair.
HB 2309 – Would make the 911 Coordinating Council subject to the Kansas Governmental Operations Accountability Law and reduce the fees imposed on telecommunications services and prepaid wireless services pursuant to such act. Referred to the House Committee on Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications, Rep. Leo Delperdang, Chair.
HB 2310 – Would increase the number of commissioners on the state corporation commission subject to gubernatorial appointment and Senate confirmation and prohibit the appointment or confirmation of any person who has a conflict of interest. Referred to the House Committee on Energy, Utilities, and Telecommunications, Rep. Leo Delperdang, Chair.
SB 144 – Would exempt providers of broadcast satellite services and video programming delivered over the internet from the provisions of the Video Competition Act. Referred to the Senate Committee on Utilities, Sen. Robert Olson, Chair.
SB 166 – Would require public disclosure of any application submitted for a transmission line siting permit. Referred to the Senate Committee on Utilities, Sen. Robert Olson, Chair.
SB 214 – Would prohibit recovery of dues, donations, or contributions made to charitable and social organizations in customer rates and require the state corporation commission to disallow such expenditures in rate proceedings. Referred to the Senate Committee on Utilities, Sen. Robert Olson, Chair.
HB 2332 – Would transfer the powers, duties and functions from the Department of Wildlife and Parks to the Department of Commerce regarding tourism. Referred to the House Committee on Agriculture and Natural Resources, Rep. Ken Rahjes, Chair.
HB 2342 – Would establish the Pet Animal Board of Veterinarians within the Kansas Department of Agriculture and transfer all Kansas Pet Animal Act powers, duties, and functions of the Animal Health Commissioner to the Pet Animal Board of Veterinarians and make other administrative changes applicable to pet animals. Referred to the House Committee on Agriculture and Natural Resources, Rep. Ken Rahjes, Chair.
HB 2372 – Would further regulate the land application of swine feeding facilities, including manure and wastewater. Referred to the House Committee on Agriculture and Natural Resources, Rep. Ken Rahjes, Chair.
SB 205 – Would authorize certain water rights in a water bank to participate in multi-year flex accounts on a temporary basis. Referred to the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Natural Resources, Sen., Dan Kerschen, Chair.
Kansas Legislative Insights is a publication developed by the Governmental Affairs & Public Policy Law practice group of Foulston Siefkin LLP. It is designed to inform business executives, human resources and governmental relations professionals, and general counsel about current developments occurring in current Kansas legislation. Published regularly during the Kansas legislative session, it focuses on issues involving Healthcare, Insurance, public finance, Taxation, financial institutions, business & economic development, Energy, Real Estate & Construction, environmental, Agribusiness, employment, and workers compensation. Bill summaries are by necessity brief, however, for additional information on any issue before the Kansas Legislature, contact Foulston Siefkin’s Governmental Affairs & Public Policy Law practice group leader, James P. Rankin at 785.233.3600 or email@example.com. Learn more about the authors below:
James (Jim) P. Rankin
As a partner at Foulston Siefkin, Jim’s practice focuses on employee benefits law relating to public, private, governmental, and tax-exempt organizations. A large part of his work involves Insurance Regulatory and compliance issues in many industries, including Healthcare. Jim has been selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® and the Missouri & Kansas Super Lawyers® list. He is the firm's representative with State Law Resources, Inc., a national network of independent law firms selected for their expertise in administrative, regulatory, and governmental relations at the state and federal level.
Gary L. Robbins
Gary, a governmental affairs consultant to Foulston Siefkin’s Governmental Affairs & Public Policy practice group, provides legislative monitoring and lobbying services for Foulston’s governmental relations clients. He holds a bachelor of science degree in history and political science from Southwestern College and a master’s degree in labor economics from Wichita State University. Throughout his extensive career, Gary has served as CLE Director to the Kansas Bar Association and as Executive Director of the Kansas Optometric Association.
Eric L. Sexton, PhD
Eric, a governmental affairs consultant to Foulston Siefkin’s Governmental Affairs & Public Policy practice group, has nearly 30 years’ experience providing strategic direction and governmental relations services. As Wichita State University’s governmental relations leader for 18 years, Eric developed lasting relationships at the local, state, and federal Government level around Kansas. Eric holds a doctorate in political science from the University of Kansas and a masters in public administration from Wichita State University, complementing his undergraduate business degree from Wichita State.
C. Edward Watson, II
As a partner at Foulston Siefkin, Eddie represents clients in matters before state regulatory commissions, courts, and local governmental bodies. He has built and maintained relationships with key individuals – including lobbyists, elected and appointed officials, and staff members – that prove valuable in advancing clients’ interests and issues. Drawing on his experience as a regional governmental affairs attorney for AT&T in Chicago, he helps clients navigate the maze of federal policies and agencies, advises on how processes work in Washington, and provides introductions to those who can help them accomplish their goals.
This update has been prepared by Foulston Siefkin LLP for informational purposes only. It is not a legal opinion; it does not provide legal advice for any purpose; and it neither creates nor constitutes evidence of an attorney-client relationship.