Kansas Common Sense
Welcome to “Kansas Common Sense.” Thanks for your continued interest in receiving my weekly newsletter. Please feel free to forward it on to your family and friends if it would interest them.
Care and Concern for Las Vegas
I am appalled by the heinous act that occurred at a country music festival in Las Vegas. What we heard wasn’t the sound you hear at a gun range or the farm, it was a war zone. As the investigation continues, we need to learn more about the shooter’s use of bump stocks. I will engage the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) regarding the bureau’s 2010 and 2012 rulings on bump stocks and how these mechanisms comply with federal law. I will also continue exploring additional action Congress can take that would make certain legal firearms cannot be modified into illegal automatic weapons.
Working with the Kansas Business Community on Promoting the Startup Act
This week, my bipartisan jobs legislation to encourage creation and growth of new business, the Startup Act, received praise from businesses, universities and foundations, including the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, Sprint Corporation, Kansas State University and the Kansas City Chamber of Commerce. Here are a few Startup Act statements of support that might be of interest to you:
- Jason Wiens, Director of Policy, Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation: “Too many have been left out of our economy. There’s a connection between the long-term decline in entrepreneurship and the effect on productivity, growth and wages. Put simply, fewer startups means a lower quality of life for all Americans. We need more startups, fast. Based on research, we know that skilled immigrants are more likely than native-born to start new business that hire Americans. Job creation, innovation and overall quality of life for all Americans would receive a boost by increasing the numbers of entrepreneurs in our nation, whether American or foreign-born.”
- Sprint Corporation: “Sprint commends Senators Moran and Warner for their leadership to retain foreign students in the STEM fields with the introduction of the Startup Act. It is critical for American competitiveness that we have the ability to attract and retain top talent from around the world. We look forward to working with the Senate in advancing this important legislation.”
- Kansas City Chamber of Commerce: “The Kansas City Chamber is very supportive of the Startup Act as a valuable initiative to help reduce many barriers for these small business owners who are key to future growth of our economy. Our folks saw firsthand the power of progressive policy to encourage reduce barriers to growth and support opportunities to advance investment in small business. Thank you to Senator Moran and your team for continuing to fight for these commonsense measures to help businesses grow and allow foreign born entrepreneurs to build businesses, create jobs and contribute to the nation’s economy.”
- Kent Glasscock, President, Kansas State University, Institute for Commercialization: “It was with great pleasure that I learned of your plan to reintroduce the Start-Up Act legislation. As our university’s commercialization/economic development/corporate engagement entity, the Kansas State University Institute for Commercialization is daily engaged with entrepreneurs, entrepreneurial faculty and students, emerging companies and mature, established companies. As we strive at K-State to increase the velocity science and technology from our $180MM research enterprise into the global marketplace, we face great opportunities and challenges. Once again, Senator Moran, let me express my excitement and support of the Start-Up Act reintroduction. You continue to be a national leader in this very important arena.”
Find more information on the Startup Act here.
Meeting with Advocates from the National Down Syndrome Society
I had a productive meeting with advocates from the National Down Syndrome Society to discuss ways to incentivize employment for people with Down syndrome on Tuesday.
During Down Syndrome Awareness Month and National Disability Employment Awareness Month, and as Senate co-chair of the Congressional Task Force on Down Syndrome, I’m glad I was able to hear from this group on issues that matter most to the community, and I will continue working with them to create sustainable solutions for those with Down syndrome and their families.
Thank you to Kansans Tavrick Lawless and Anita Raghavan of Wichita for sharing your important perspectives on how we can better empower people with Down syndrome.
Honored to Receive the McGovern-Dole Leadership Award from the World Food Program
I was humbled to receive the McGovern-Dole Leadership Award from the World Food Program (WFP) USA on Wednesday in Washington, D.C. Senator Dole has long represented the compassionate spirit of Kansans and the farmers who feed the world and this award is rightly named after him and I appreciated his kind congratulations: “I am proud of Sen. Moran for his interest in world hunger issues,” said Sen. Dole. “As a Kansan, he knows how greatly our state has contributed to combating hunger worldwide. I congratulate him for receiving this award.”
Addressing global hunger is important to providing economic stability worldwide and to strengthening American interests and our national security. Access to food provides hope and opportunity; when parents have access to food, they can work to provide a better future for their children. When hunger no longer impedes children’s ability to learn, they can attend and remain in school, leading them down a path to greater economic opportunity. Providing international food aid and finding expedient, affordable and efficient ways to get food grown by U.S. farmers to those who need it most remains a priority of mine as co-chair of the Senate Hunger Caucus.
I’m grateful for all WFP USA does to address global hunger and I look forward to working together to find ways to make certain that people across the world have access to food.
Department of Commerce’s Bombardier Determination Would Damage Kansas
On Friday, the U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC) issued a preliminary ruling to impose additional duties on C Series aircraft from Bombardier, Inc., following a recent preliminary decision to levy nearly 220 per cent tariffs on the aircraft manufacturer. Friday’s ruling represents another benchmark in the petition brought by domestic aerospace manufacturer Boeing before the International Trade Commission against Bombardier, claiming material injury from prospective sales of C Series aircraft by Bombardier to Delta Airlines. The C Series aircraft, however, are substantially smaller than any aircraft currently produced by Boeing, representing a market that Boeing abandoned over one decade ago.
Kansas’ leadership in the aerospace sector is essential to thousands of jobs in our state, which is why I have closely monitored the U.S. government proceedings on this matter. On August 17, I joined Senator Pat Roberts, Congressman Ron Estes and members of the West Virginia Congressional delegation in writing to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and other administration officials to remind them of the significant employment and economic benefits that production and support of C series aircraft means for the U.S., including hundreds of jobs in Wichita. With a final decision expected to be handed down by DOC in early 2018, it is my hope that the Department will find a responsible solution that will not negatively impact American aerospace workers, airlines and consumers.
Speaking at the Ashland Health Center Grand Opening Ceremony
On Sunday, I traveled to Clark County to attend the grand opening ceremony of the new Ashland Health Center. Those of us that are products of rural Kansas understand the value of having and maintaining a hospital in our communities: access to quality health services often determines whether local residents remain in the places that they have always called home. The new Ashland Health Center is a result of years of collaboration and hard work to replace an aging facility and address the needs of future generations.
Returning to Clark County also reminded me of the wildfire devastation the county suffered earlier this year. With the hard work of emergency personnel who prevented the encroaching fire from reaching the hospital’s construction site—this new facility can serve as a symbol of resilience for a community determined to move forward. I appreciated Ashland Health Center’s CEO Michael Mages for the invitation, and for the warm welcome by Mayor Kendal Kay and many others.
Participating in an Honor Flight at the WWII Memorial
I was honored to spend time with 39 veterans from Kansas at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C. Two of the veterans served in World War II, 14 in the Korean War and 23 in the Vietnam War. Many of them expressed gratitude for the opportunity to serve our great nation, and I expressed my gratitude to them for their service. These visits, organized by the Kansas Honor Flight Network, are humbling and inspiring and continue to reinforce my commitment to our nation’s heroes.
Touring the Dwayne Peaslee Technical Training Center in Lawrence
I toured The Dwayne Peaslee Technical Training Center in Lawrence to hear more about the programs offered and how students are turning their technical education into sustainable careers. The Center offers education in industrial engineering technology, power plant technology, HVAC, construction technology, welding, allied health, automotive, technology, and workplace/computer and academic skills.
Thanks to Peaslee Tech Director Kevin Kelley and Lawrence Chamber VP of External Affairs Hugh Carter for the tour and update.
Now Accepting Spring Internship Applications
My own interest in public service was sparked by an internship for Kansas First District Congressman Keith Sebelius in 1974. As an intern, I had the chance to learn firsthand how a Congressional office operates and how the legislative process works. I am proud to be able to offer this same opportunity in my Senate office today, where I have interns year-round working closely with my staff on behalf of Kansans.
Applications for internships in my Washington, D.C. and Kansas offices for Spring 2018 are due Friday, October 27. Congressional internships are open to qualified undergraduate and graduate students who have an interest in public service and have achieved academic excellence. Click here for more information.
Kansans in the Office
Mark Richardson of Hutchinson
Ken Wold of Elmdale
WAND/WiLL Advocacy Day
Sydney Carlin of Manhattan
Jerry Farley of Topeka
Doug Smith of Topeka
Friends of Community Media
Spencer Graves of Overland Park
Veterans of Foreign Wars
Kathy Jones of Chanute
Kansas City District US Army Corps of Engineers
Rex Ostrander of Overland Park
Jennifer Switzer of Kansas City
National Down Syndrome Society
Tavrick Lawless of Wichita
Anita Raghavan of Wichita
Joe Steffy of Louisburg
Jennifer Steffy-Straton of Louisburg
Trevor Straton of Louisburg
Association of Community Mental Health Centers for Kansas
Kyle Kessler of Topeka
Chrycka Harper of Wichita
Dave Kisher of Overland Park
Missouri and Associated Rivers Coalition
Tom Poer of Overland Park
John Krumme of Kansas City
Oral Health America
Tanya Dorf Brunner of Topeka
Christi Nance of Kansas City
Auto Care Association
Joel Rosenthal of Lenexa
Brad Kraft of Emporia
The Fertilizer Institute
Nathan Nelson of Manhattan
Ashleigh de la Torre of Topeka
Jaime Perales Puchalt of Roeland Park
American Public Works Association
Chuck Williams of Lenexa
Mark Farr of Topeka
Sandra Walker of Lawrence
Roni Knight of Garden City
Regional Forensic Science Center
Tim Rohrig of Wichita
Kansas Water Office
Ginger Harper of Topeka
Dan Brungardt of Benton
Janet Brungardt of Benton
Catherine Brungardt of Benton
Dominic Brungardt of Benton
Anne Brungardt of Benton
Joseph Brungardt of Benton
Anthony Brungardt of Benton
Aaron Bulmer of Topeka
Jessica Bulmer of Topeka
Gary Whitesell of Hays
Maria Whitesell of Hays
Steve Shufelberger of Lawrence
Cynthia Shufelberger of Lawrence
Courtney O’Farrell of Mission Hills
Desima Dawdy of Topeka
Thea Rademacher of Topeka
Honored to Serve You in Washington
It is an honor to serve you in Washington, D.C. Thank you to the many Kansans who have been calling and writing in to share their thoughts and opinions on the issues our state and country face. I appreciate the words of Kansans, whether in the form of a form of letter, a Facebook comment or a phone call, who wish to make their voice heard.
Please let me know how I can be of assistance. You can contact me by email by clicking here. You can also click here to contact me through one of my Kansas offices or my Washington, D.C., office.
Very truly yours,
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