There's no doubt statewide law enforcement agencies in Kansas are hurting. But there is some movement in the state Legislature, albeit modest, to help both agencies.
The Kansas Senate on Tuesday approved two new vehicle registration surcharges that will help bolster the budgets of the Highway Patrol and Law Enforcement Train Center in Hutchinson.
The Kansas Highway Patrol (KHP) is 80 troopers below strength even after graduating a new class in December. The Kansas Bureau of Investigation (KBI) is short 20 agents and says it has been turning down 20 percent of felony cases referred by local sheriffs and police departments.
The Senate bill would tack on an extra $3.25 to the registration fee for all vehicles. The bill would send $2 to the KHP and $1.25 to the training center. In all, the bill could generate $3.4 million a year.