Kansas Highway Patrol

Sam Zeff / KCUR

  We already know that the budget problems in Kansas are eating into some core functions of government.

The state will have to postpone maintenance work on hundreds of miles of highways. And those highways are a little less safe because the Kansas Highway Patrol is at least 75 troopers short of full strength.

But budget problems for state law enforcement run even deeper.

Sam Zeff / KCUR

We’ve heard a lot about problems funding education and roads in Kansas because of poor tax revenues — but we can add another problem to that list: state law enforcement agencies.

There are shortages everywhere.

In the past 10 years, as the population of Kansas has grown about 6 percent, the number of police officers has stayed about the same, right at 7,000.

Dwindling law enforcement

Kansas is facing the lowest number of state highway troopers in ten years. Guest host Brian Ellison examines the reasons for this and looks at efforts to recruit and retain new troopers on both sides of the state line.

Guests:

  • Technical Trooper Cory Beard is with the Kansas Highway Patrol.
  • Capt. John Hotz is with the Missouri Highway Patrol.

Police and highway patrol on the Kansas side of metro Kansas City are finding it hard to enforce laws against texting while driving. Loopholes allow it to go on, relatively unchecked as numbers bear out.

Kansas law is pretty clear, stating you can’t drive on road or highway “while using a wireless communications device to write, send or read a written communication.”

Yet, the Johnson County Sheriff's office only issued 17 tickets  for testing while driving in 2012. Overland Park Police wrote 45 tickets for the offense in 2011 and 40 in 2012.  

Pregnant Woman's Mystery Crash Resolved

Feb 13, 2012
palawblog.stark-stark.com

The Kansas Highway Patrol has found the semi tractor-trailer rammed by a car last week in Johnson County. The truck driving team reportedly was unaware of the collision in which a pregnant woman was badly injured.

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