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3 Kan. regents cleared to serve despite questions

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) -- A Kansas Senate committee has approved Gov. Sam Brownback's three new appointees to the state Board of Regents, but a Democratic leader questioned whether one nominee can legally serve.

Monday's decision by the Confirmation Oversight Committee means the three can serve on the board overseeing the state's higher education system until the full Senate considers their appointments next year.

They are Shane Bangerter, of Dodge City; Helen Van Etten, of Topeka; and Ann Murguia, of Kansas City, Kan.

Senate Minority Leader Anthony Hensley of Topeka, the only Democrat on the six-member Oversight Committee, questioned Bangerter's appointment.

Kansas law says only five members of a political party can serve on the nine-member board, which already has five Republicans. Bangerter switched from the GOP to "no affiliation" in February.