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NASA

A booster rocket failed less than two minutes after launching a Kansan and a Russian toward the International Space Station on Thursday, forcing their emergency — but safe — landing on the steppes of Kazakhstan.

It was the latest in a recent series of failures for the troubled Russian space program, which is used by the U.S. to carry its astronauts to the station.

Kansas News Service/File photo

Kansas utility regulators approved rates for Westar Energy that will lower many customers' monthly election bills.

The rate schedule approved Thursday by the Kansas Corporation Commission would lower monthly bills for residential customers by about $3.80 a month.

The rate decrease will not apply to most people who have installed solar panels or other self-generating devices. Those customers will be charged additional fees that Westar says are necessary so those customers pay their fair share of maintaining the power grid.

Nadya Faulx / KMUW/File photo

The Kansas Board of Regents is seeking $25 million from state lawmakers to fund a financial aid program for college students.

The board's budget request is part of a plan to funnel up to $50 million into need-based financial aid for Kansas students enrolling in universities and technical schools, the Lawrence Journal-World reported. The financial aid would also be available for private schools that aren't part of the Regents system.

Qualifying students could receive up to $5,000 each.

City of Manhattan, Kansas - Municipal Government / Facebook

Manhattan City Manager Ron Fehr says a flood over the Labor Day holiday weekend caused $17.2 million in structural damages in the city.

Fehr told the Manhattan City Commission Tuesday that four commercial and eight residential properties suffered substantial damage meaning more than 50 percent damage from the storm or 25 percent or more damage in successive storms.

Nearly 9 inches of rain fell, causing Wildcat Creek to overflow its banks and forcing more than 300 people to evacuate their homes.

Deborah Shaar / KMUW

A new report shows Kansas plans to spend more than $4.6 million in election grants to tighten cyber-security, modernize voting equipment, audit elections and safeguard voter rolls.

The U.S. Election Assistance Commission released on Thursday the state's plan for its share of the $380 million allocated by Congress to strengthen voting systems amid ongoing threats from Russia and others.

Congress.gov

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Thursday he did not write an anonymous New York Times opinion piece that said an internal "resistance" was working to thwart some of President Donald Trump's efforts.

Pompeo, a former Congressman from Wichita, spoke to reporters after a meeting in New Delhi with top Indian officials and said, "It's not mine."

Wikipedia, Facebook

Former moderate Republican Gov. Bill Graves has endorsed Democrat Laura Kelly in the governor's race.

Kelly's campaign announced the endorsement Monday and posted a YouTube video of Graves praising Kelly, a veteran state senator from Topeka. Graves says in the video that Kelly will bring Republicans and Democrats together to solve problems.

The former GOP governor's endorsement came after the union representing firefighters in Kansas endorsed Republican Secretary of State Kris Kobach last week. It previously has endorsed Democrats.

Stephen Koranda / KPR/File photo

Kansas is reporting that it collected $6 million more in taxes in August than expected to extend its longest streak of better-than-anticipated revenues in at least 50 years.

The state Department of Revenue reported Monday that tax collections were $494 million last month. The state's official forecast had predicted $488 million.

The monthly surplus was 1.3 percent.

City of Manhattan, Kansas - Municipal Government / Facebook

Heavy rain caused a creek to burst its banks and flood the Kansas college town of Manhattan, forcing more than 300 people to evacuate their homes, including some who were ferried to dry land in boats.

Nearly 9 inches (23 centimeters) of rain fell from Sunday night into Monday. Kansas State University's main campus in Manhattan wasn't flooded, but a help center has been set up for displaced students. Photographs posted on Facebook by the Riley County Police Department show buildings flooded nearly to their roofs.

LaRissa Lawrie / KMUW

A final count of all votes shows Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach defeated Gov. Jeff Colyer in the Republican primary for governor by 350 votes.

Final vote totals in the razor-thin race were posted Tuesday after the last of the state's 105 counties completed their vote canvassing on Monday. More than 317,000 people voted in the GOP primary.

Colyer conceded to Kobach on Aug. 14 and has said he will not seek a recount.

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