Sedgwick County DA says nominating commission did not violate state law

By the Associated Press and KFDI News:

A prosecutor says a commission that screens applicants for the Kansas Supreme Court did not violate the state’s open meetings law in choosing three finalists for a vacancy.

Sedgwick County District Attorney Marc Bennett said Thursday that the nominating commission took a final vote during a public meeting in October with a unanimous show of hands. He says other votes by paper ballot to narrow a list of 19 candidates to three for Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly to consider were not binding actions.

Senate President Susan Wagle filed a complaint with the attorney general’s office this week over the paper ballots. The Wichita Republican argued that not announcing the results of each votes violated the Open Meetings Act.

Wagle’s office says it is preparing a response to the decision.

Kansas attorney general Derek Schimdt said two of the nominees were employees of his office, and that created a conflict of interest.  Schmidt asked Bennett to investigate the complaint.