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Governor Kelly Announces $28.5M for High-Speed Internet Infrastructure Governor Laura Kelly announced today that $28.5 million in grants were awarded to 12 entities through the Lasting Infrastructure and Network Connectivity (LINC) program. The LINC program provides strategic funding for crucial aspects of broadband connectivity to reduce the cost of internet service, increase availability, and improve performance. Governor Kelly Announces $5M to Expand Access to High-Speed Internet in Rural Kansas Communities Governor Laura Kelly today announced that $5 million has been awarded to eight internet service providers (ISPs) in the latest round of Broadband Acceleration Grants for 2023. The awards will be paired with an additional $6.6 million in matching funds, resulting in an investment of nearly $12 million for high-speed broadband access projects across 10 rural Kansas counties. Commerce Program Opens Employment Pathway for Justice-Involved Kansans KANSASWORKS, a division of the Kansas Department of Commerce, is taking significant strides to empower justice-involved individuals across the state through the Re-entry Specialized Employment Counseling & Training (ReSpECT)WORKS program. This program provides intensive case management and career navigation for eligible individuals released from the prison system in Kansas. Governor Kelly Proclaims Apprenticeship Week in Kansas Governor Laura Kelly has proclaimed this week, November 12-17, Apprenticeship Week in Kansas. National Apprenticeship Week is an annual event to promote the essential role apprenticeships play in developing a skilled and vibrant workforce here in Kansas. In September 2022, Governor Kelly created the Office of Registered Apprenticeship within the Kansas Department of Commerce to promote the creation of registered apprenticeships as a tool for developing the state’s workforce. View All


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Kansas leader talks rural growth

Jul 20, 2019

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WATHENA, Kansas — A Kansas leader is on a tour to assure constituents and businesses that he won’t approach their needs with a “Let them eat cake” attitude.

Visiting Marie Antoinette’s Gluten Free Bake Shoppe and the Dairy Barn family restaurant on Thursday afternoon in Wathena, Lt. Gov. Lynn Rogers emphasized how the Democratic-led administration of Gov. Laura Kelly wants to dispel the notion that the state government cares only for Topeka, Johnson County and other high-population communities.

“For both Gov. Kelly and myself, that’s really important. We want to be out in the country and on a regular basis,” Rogers said. “Every time we hear a suggestion, we’ll have some staff look into that.”

Marie Antoinette’s owner Rani Navarro-Force said she believes that the first thing the state government should do is pave roads through bureaucracy toward business growth in local communities.

However, breaking into new markets and operating multiple tiers of her business imposes what Navarro-Force regards as imposing regulatory requirements and fees, some adding up to tens of thousands of dollars per year. Navarro-Force urged Rogers to sponsor state financial incentives that can assist with such burdens.

“That would be a great help, you know, with the state if they could actually provide the resources that we need in order to fulfill the obligations that the state requires,” she said.

At the Atchison Event Center, the state government called together focus groups led by employees from the Office of Rural Prosperity, to help determine what local constituents believe is their ideal of a successful community. The focus groups wrote down their ideas on easels and gave presentations on policies the state government should pursue.

As might be expected, leading issues proved to be helping less-advantaged residents afford housing, education and health care. The Democratic-led Kelly administration, since taking office in January, has actively sought to pass Medicaid expansion under the auspices of the U.S. Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare. Thus far, the Republican-dominated Legislature has declined to play ball.

If Medicaid expansion could happen, focus group participant Stevie Durkin said, it would make a big difference, to the tune of millions of dollars in guaranteed revenue for regional health services.

“Because so many people are uninsured,” said Durkin, executive director of the Atchison Community Health Clinic. “So what we would love to see is an enhanced effort to kind of increase funding for community health centers so we can take care of people, regardless of their ability to pay.”

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