Questions about where Phill Kline calls home have lingered since Johnson County Republicans Republicans handed him the District Attorneys Office in December 2006. Kansas law requires a DA to be a registered voter of the county, and everyone knew Kline wasn't exactly spending his nights in JoCo. So here, at last, is the sordid history of the House of Kline.
When Kline landed the DA job, he and wife Deborah lived on the outskirts of Topeka in a mint-green Victorian was appraised at $287,300 earlier this year. The sweet two-story features four bedrooms, three-and-a-half baths and a dominant gable pointing to the heavens.
Kline needed a place to claim that he lays his head in Johnson County. So in December 2006, longtime supporters Pat and Ernest Adair lent him an address: 19840 Floyd in Stilwell. Turns out, Kline's Stilwell address was a tiny, $400-a-month apartment above the office of Adair's Stor-It-Park-It-South mini-storage facility. In November of last year, a KCTV Channel 5 news crew stalked Kline home to picture.
On June 10, the Klines filed a contract deed to buy a ranch home in Shawnee from another longtime supporter, Robert E. Hodgdon. Paying $165,000, Kline got a primo deal on the house, which the Johnson County Appraiser's Office this year valued at $173,600. Hodgdon, his wife and his company, Hodgdon Powder Company, have given Kline more than $17,000 in political donations since 1997 — about twice as much as the difference between the Shawnee home's assessed value and its sale price. A spokesman for the DA's Office says Kline bought the place to return to his roots. But the spokesman wasn't sure if Kline planned to sell his Topeka home, suggesting that the House of Kline would remain an ongoing saga.