Kansas plan for extra nurses’ pay stalls over GOP concerns

Capitol Bureau

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A plan in Kansas to allocate up to $50 million in federal COVID-19 relief funds towards retention incentives for nurses and frontline workers has stalled.

Top Republican legislators voiced concerns Wednesday about which hospitals would receive the money and how those funds would be spent.

Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly’s bipartisan pandemic-response advisory task force delayed approving the proposal after GOP Senate President Ty Masterson proposed excluding hospitals that require employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Meanwhile, Republican House Speaker Ron Ryckman Jr. argued that the task force should allow hospitals to use the funds to address other pandemic-related issues including mental health.

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