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Kansas Legislature Opens Session

Kansas legislators have opened their annual session with new leaders in the Senate and new lawmakers in a quarter of the seats.

The Monday House and Senate sessions were for swearing in members and ratifying Republican lawmakers’ selection of the House speaker and speaker pro tem and the Senate president and vice president.

Twenty-eight of the House’s 125 members are new.

Fourteen of 40 senators are new, though seven previously served in the House.

This year’s 90-day session will be marked by COVID-19 precautions.

About half of the House’s 165 members will be seated in its galleries to allow for social distancing, while senators will take over space on the floor of their chamber normally reserved for visitors and reporters.

The Legislature spent $3 million to upgrade its technology for live video and audio streaming of its meetings, and so that people could participate remotely.


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