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Three issues that just won't go away

* Before 2011 ends, Wichitans likely will see the adoption or death of a controversial new trash-hauling plan . Under the current proposal, Wichita residents would pay a $20 monthly fee for weekly trash service, biweekly curbside recycling and an annual bulk waste pickup. After many residents complained that they were already paying less than $20 a month, City Manager Robert Layton said he would meet again with trash haulers. Eventually, the plan is headed to a nice long round of hearings.

* The U.S. Air Force may finally stop the wrangling and decide who gets the long-awaited contract to replace nearly 180 Boeing KC-135 tankers, all about 50 years old. Boeing and the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Co., the parent company of Airbus, have bid on the contract, using Boeing 767 and Airbus A330 airplanes as platforms. Boeing Wichita would become a finishing center for the tanker if that company wins the contract.

* The Phelps family of Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka has spent years standing on American flags, picketing funerals of servicemen who died for their country. Those folks do not want to go away. The Supreme Court holds its nose and decides later this year whether they must.

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