On Saturday, local lawmakers had the opportunity to meet with area residents as part of Emporia’s first legislative dialogue of the year.
House Representatives Mark Schreiber of Emporia, Eric Smith of Burlington and Duane Droge of Eureka offered their thoughts on the day’s work and also answered questions from the audience. Schreiber says several aspects of fiscal policy look promising.
Smith says more than 700 bills have already been tabled and warns that not all of them will be drafted, let alone brought to the floor for a vote. The focus is on what can be approved, and Smith sees potential changes in juvenile crime policy and water policy that could see approval.
There are areas of disagreement among local lawmakers, particularly when it comes to education policy.
Schreiber of Emporia is not in favor of education savings accounts, commonly called school vouchers for private schools.
Schreiber also isn’t in favor of the Fairness in Women’s Sports Act, which is designed to prevent transgender athletes from being involved in women’s or women’s sports. Schreiber says the Kansas State High School Activities Association and the NCAA already have rules in place to handle such related matters.
Smith, meanwhile, supports the basic idea of parental choice in schools and the protection of biological women in their sporting endeavours.
Eureka 13th District Representative Duane Droge also appeared, mentioning his staunch support for traditional gender roles. Droge also touched ground in his early job on the Social Services Budget Committee. He also mentioned working with Smith on possible adjustments to rural ambulance crews that could make it easier for rural fire districts to transfer patients if needed.
KVOE will continue to keep you posted on the legislative session, including weekly updates from the League of Women Voters Emporia chapter covering bills introduced, bill resolutions, and the votes of legislators representing Lyon County.