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Prospects for new KBI crime lab improving

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) -- It appears more likely that a Kansas Bureau of Investigation forensics laboratory will be built at Washburn University after some lawmakers who had opposed it said they now support the project.

The House Appropriations Committee twice rejected pleas for $3.5 million in planning and design money for the lab.

On Thursday, some of those lawmakers announced their support. Rep. Mark Hutton, a Republican from Wichita, says Washburn had answered many of his questions, including that the state would own the building once bonds are paid off. And the $3.5 million will be repaid to the transportation department by being rolled into the KBI lease.

The Topeka Capital-Journal reports (http://bit.ly/Z6bZJx ) the KBI says it has a large backlog of DNA testing because the current forensics lab is inadequate.