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Kan. gov. calls for a '50-year vision' on water

MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) -- Gov. Sam Brownback has ordered five state agencies and a council of economic advisers to begin work on what he's calling a "50-year vision" for water policy in Kansas.

Brownback announced Thursday that he's directed the agencies and his economic advisers to deliver their blueprint for long-term water policy by Nov. 1, 2014.

The governor announced his actions at the start of a two-day conference in Manhattan on water issues.

Brownback says the persistent drought in the western half of the state shows the importance of water to the Kansas economy.

He directed the Kansas Water Office and its planning counterpart, the Water Authority, to work on the 50-year vision, along with the state departments of Agriculture, Health and Environment, and Wildlife, Parks and Tourism.