Kansas Common Sense
Jun 03 2019
An Update on Kansas Flooding and Disaster Relief Efforts
On Tuesday, following Governor Laura Kelly's request to President Trump for federal disaster aid for Kansas, I called the White House and wrote to President Trump urging him to take swift action on this measure and to expeditiously provide the aid that so many Kansans need. With state and local resources strained, additional federal assistance is needed to aid in recovery and help prevent further damage caused by the flooding.
On Tuesday evening, the president approved disaster relief for a number of impacted counties across our state – which was an important first step. To date, 33 counties in total are eligible for federal assistance after continued action late last week. I’m keeping in close contact with federal, state and local officials so that we can continue working to make certain that Kansans have the assistance they need to rebuild and recover.
Visiting the National WWI Museum and Memorial
Following Memorial Day, I visited the National WWI Museum and Memorial in Kansas City to spend time reflecting on the sacrifices of our brave WWI servicemembers as well as the many others who have died serving our country. I appreciated the tour from President and CEO Dr. Matthew Naylor. Thank you to all the staff members at the National WWI Museum and Memorial for their work to honor our veterans.
Touring Honeywell Aerospace
On Wednesday, I toured Honeywell Aerospace in Phoenix. This facility is one of their many assembly and manufacturing sites across the country, where employees design and manufacture engines for a variety of military and commercial purposes. As Kansas remains the anchor of the defense and aerospace industry, it was encouraging to see the work Honeywell does, and discuss their expanding presence in Kansas. Through my position on the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense and as co-chair of the Senate Aerospace Caucus, I look forward to continue to advocate for additional support so that our partners have the resources needed to defend our nation. Thank you to Honeywell leadership for the informative tour and productive conversation.
Supporting Our Military Mothers
Last week, I introduced the bipartisan Mothers of Military Service (MOMS) Leave Act, which supports military mothers by allowing maternity leave without the loss of pay or points toward retirement for women serving in the National Guard and Reserve.
Women who serve our country should not be inadvertently penalized for having a child, nor should they be expected to return to drill duties in the weeks following childbirth. This bipartisan, sensible legislation would support new mothers in our National Guard and Reserve by making certain that they receive the same paid maternity leave benefits as their active duty counterparts. This proposal is an important step forward in ensuring that women can both serve our nation and build their families without having to sacrifice their pay or credits. Read more on this legislation here.
Confronting Sexual Assault and Violence in the Military
I am proud to be part of a bipartisan effort to confront and prevent sexual assault and domestic violence in the military as an original cosponsor of the Military Special Victims Protection Act. This legislation would increase oversight in the prosecution of sexual misconduct and domestic violence cases by providing more senior commanders with decision-making responsibilities.
Those willing to sacrifice for our country by joining our Armed Forces face enough high-stress and high-stakes circumstances while defending our nation, and must be able to rely on their brothers and sisters in arms to keep them safe within the ranks and feel secure to focus on their mission.
This bipartisan legislation would provide counseling services and the correction of military records for servicemembers who have experienced assault or violence, while also requiring the Department of Defense to further develop strategies to prevent this abuse from happening in the first place. Sexual assault, domestic violence and child abuse must be addressed head-on, and I will continue supporting efforts to rid this violence from our society and our military. Read more on this effort here.
Now Accepting Fall 2019 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 the fall 2019 session are due June 14. 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 and to apply.
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.
Very truly yours,
Kansans in the Office
Sister Sue Andrew of Prairie Village
Valerie Beikmann of Minneapolis
Britney Bogner of Cimarron
Ford Calloway of Overland Park
Anthony Cooper of Cimarron
Cara Gerling of Olathe
Celina Gerling of Olathe
Cortney Gerling of Olathe
Cristin Gerling of Olathe
Kyle Gerling of Olathe
Dave Guyot of Overland Park
Laure Guyot of Overland Park
Chuckie Hessong of Pittsburg
Grant Hessong of Pittsburg
Greg Lemke of Overland Park
Harrison Lemke of Olathe
Zachary Lemke of Overland Park
Annabelle Morgan of Merriam
Erin Morgan of Merriam
Grace Morgan of Merriam
Travis Morgan of Merriam
Carolyn Nelson of Edna
Dareld Nelson of Edna
Natalie Nelson of Edna
Darcy Rhoades of Hutchinson
Jackson Rhoades of Hutchinson
Rion Rhoades of Hutchinson
Sydney Rhoades of Hutchinson
Trevor Rhoades of Hutchinson
Cheryl Sharpe of Olathe
Ella Sharpe of Olathe
Jett Sharpe of Olathe
Matthew Sharpe of Olathe
Wyatt Sharpe of Olathe
Sgt. Adam Smith of Baxter Springs
Jennifer Nelson-Smith of Baxter Springs
Adrianna Sweat of Wichita
Derek Sweat of Wichita
Eden Sweat of Wichita
Julie Sweat of Wichita
Mark Sweat of Wichita
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 letter, a Facebook comment, or a phone call, who wish to make their voice heard.
Very truly yours,
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