OPINION

GUEST COLUMN: Update from the people’s house

Rep. Pat Proctor/Leavenworth
Rep. Pat Proctor

It has been a busy few weeks for the Kansas State House of Representatives. I wanted to take just a moment to share the ways that I’ve been working for you in the people’s house in Topeka.

For years, local politicians have promised us a veterans’ home in northeast Kansas, but it never seemed to happen. So before I was even sworn in, I pre-filed bills to get this project started. And today I can report that, after years of empty promises, we are finally on a path to actually get this home built. Last week, my bill to provide Kansas’ matching funds for a federal grant to build the veterans’ home went to the governor for signature. And, while they were in Leavenworth, I sat down with Congressman LaTurner, Sen. Moran and Secretary of Veterans Affairs McDonough to discuss the approval of our federal grant request. They were confident that, because my bill to provide state matching funds is being signed into law, our grant request will be approved.

As a member of the Elections committee, I have also been working hard to better secure Kansas elections and keep our state’s election laws out of the hands of Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer. Last week, I voted with the overwhelming majority in the House to make it harder for out-of-state groups to harvest ballots and unduly influence Kansas elections. And I voted with an overwhelming majority in both houses to send a resolution to Congress demanding that they respect the U.S. Constitution and not federalize Kansas election laws with HR1 and S1, now under consideration in the U.S. Senate.

I continue to help our neighbors that are still awaiting unemployment benefits to navigate Kansas’ broken unemployment system. If you or one of your loved ones is having difficulty getting the benefits that you are owed, please contact me at pat.proctor@house.ks.gov or by phone at 913-250-5553.

But it is frankly unacceptable that, after 12 months, the Kansas Department of Labor is still so dysfunctional. The Legislature voted unanimously to provide more resources and more oversight to the department, but there has been no appreciable change in its dismal performance. That’s why I recently joined over 50 of my fellow representatives in signing a letter to the governor demanding that she finally begin to exert some leadership to fix this problem. 

I am honored to serve you as your state representative. Thank you for the trust and confidence that you’ve placed in me.

Rep. Pat Proctor represents District 41 in the Kansas State House of Representatives.