KCPD Warning regarding Package Bombs in Texas

In light of the recent package bombings in Austin, the following bulletin was sent to us by KCPD and asked to share:

As of yet, these incidents have been isolated to Austin, TX. NETF Awareness Bulletin Two Fatalities in Austin TX from IEDs Concealed …

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[VIDEO] General Meeting from March 10, 2018

  1. Special Guest- Councilman Kevin McManus and Councilman Scott Taylor
    • Update on PIAC sales tax renewal on the April Ballot
    • Update on what’s being done on Wornall Road and around Waldo.
  2. News and Updates:
    • 6th District Update by Karol O’Brien
    • CPAC Update by John Bozarth
  3. Special Guest- SNKC to give a short presentation on feral cat colonies and what we can do about them.
  4. Meeting Updates from around the Neighborhood – Angie Lile
    • Robeson School Proposal (Closing Date is March 21st) and we are working with the developer on a Community Benefits Agreement.
      • New plan includes affordable housing for 55+ in order to secure the level of financing needed to do the community center and athletic fields.
    • Water Main Replacement and Smart Sewer project happening within the areas of 77th Street to the north, W. 85th Street to the south, Summit Street to the east and Grand Avenue to the west.
    • Public Forum to Discuss Economic Incentives big success.
    • Town Hall with Missouri Representative Greg Razer
    • 85th Street Price Chopper renovation plan.
    • Bingham Update
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[VIDEO] KCMO Weekly Video Update

Here is the Weekly Report by KCMO on various projects and announcements:

The Weekly Report provides news and insight about Kansas City, Mo. programs and services provided by City departments. For more information, visit kcmo.gov/weeklyreport.

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General Meeting Coming up on March 10th, Saturday at 10am

Please join the Waldo Tower Neighborhood Association for our next General Meeting, happening on Saturday, March 10th, at 10am in the Waldo Public Library. We’ll be in Meeting Room A.

We’ll welcome a representative from Spay & Neuter Kansas City to have a conversation about the feral cat colonies in Waldo.

Visit https://snkc.net/ for more info.

Councilmen Kevin McManus and Scott Taylor will be joining us to chat about the new PIAC Sales Tax renewal coming up on the April ballot.

We’ll also talk about goings on in the neighborhood including a recap of public improvement projects including Wornall Road.

Refreshments and company are always free! See you Saturday!

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Wornall Road Improvements Announcement from KCMO

The following information is located on the city’s website at kcmo.gov/wornall but they do not include information for the CURRENT construction, which is actually being done by Infrasource, the contracting company for Spire. THAT work is scheduled to end in the next 3 weeks. Please reach out to them if you notice gaping holes or dangerous situations. Contact info for all parties is located at the bottom of this post.

Over the next few years, the City of Kansas City, MO is investing more than $45 million to upgrade basic infrastructure in the Waldo neighborhood. Currently, Spire Gas Company is on Wornall installing a new gas line. Following this work, the City will implement several infrastructure improvements along and adjacent to Wornall Road.  Below are descriptions and anticipated timelines for these infrastructure improvements.

Reconstruction of Wornall Road – 85th to 89th Streets
Public Works will reconstruct Wornall Road from 85th Street to 89th Street and add curb, gutter and sidewalks along this section. Anticipated construction start is late 2018 with completion in late 2019. This project, funded through GO bonds, has an estimated cost of $3.5 million.

Reconstruction of Wornall Road – 74th to 79th Streets
Public Works will also reconstruct Wornall Road from 74th to 79th streets. Work includes reconfiguration of the parking lot at the northeast corner of 75th and Wornall Road, extension of the Trolley Track Trail from 74th to 75th Streets, and improvements aimed at making the corridor safe for pedestrians. Construction is anticipated to start in early 2019 and finish in the fall of 2020. This project is funded in part by a Surface Transportation Grant and GO bond funds. The estimated project cost is $6 million. See more information on this project here: 75th and Wornall Improvements

Smart Sewer Program
Kansas City’s Smart Sewer Program will begin a sewer separation project within the Waldo area early this year. The areas affected include W 77th Street, W 85th Street, Summit Street and Grand Avenue. The work includes construction of new storm sewer mains and sanitary sewer mains, sewer rehabilitation and replacement of existing water mains. The project is part of the consent decree signed between the City, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Department of Justice which requires the City to make extensive improvements to its sewer systems to eliminate unauthorized overflows of untreated raw sewage and to reduce pollution levels in urban storm water. The project has an estimated cost of $26 million. Learn more about the Smart Sewer Program here: KC Smart Sewer

Water Main Projects
KC Water plans to replace water mains along Wornall Road in conjunction with the Public Works roadway reconstruction projects and the Smart Sewer Program. In addition, KC Water will upgrade outdated water mains along 75th Street from Holmes to State Line Road. The preliminary cost estimate for this project is $12.5 million.

KC Smart Sewer upgrades start spring 2018 and end at end of 2019. 85th to 89th street reconstruction starts in third quarter of 2018 and ends at the end of 2019. 74th to 79th Street reconstruction starts in first quarter of 2019 and ends in third quarter of 2020. 75th Street Water Main work starts in third quarter of 2019 and completes at end of 2020.

For more information on Public Works projects, please contact Public Works Public Information Officer Beth Breitenstein at 816-513-2612.

For more information on KC Water projects, please contact Brooke Givens at 816-513-0284.

For more information on the Smart Sewer Program, contact Project Manager Julie McNiff at 816-447-9892.

Added by us:  Infrasource, the contracting company for Spire – Alicia Summers. Alicia.Summers@infrasourceinc.com

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[VIDEO] Town Hall with Missouri State Rep Greg Razer

My phone wasn’t acting very well for me this morning so the video is broken up into two parts (below):

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[VIDEO] Public Forum to Discuss Economic Incentives in Kansas City

The public meeting we held last week to discuss economic incentives for big developers in Kansas City was well-attended with a number of folks showing up to learn how their tax dollars are affected.

We learned how each of our taxing jurisdictions (Public Schools, Public Libraries and Public Mental Health Services) were indirectly being impacted. There was a study that was referenced on a number of occassions which spurred much of the discussion.

That study can be viewed here in a presentation given by Dr. Terry Ward at Park University-

Some data suggests that the school district alone is missing out on $34 million each year which could provide much-needed maintenance funds or even help KCPS expand its extracurricular offerings including sports and STEM activities.

Jackson County Mental Health services serves 16,000 residents each year with a dwindling funding resource.

All of this would be easier for most voters to swallow if the incentives were being given to developers for responsible development in truly blighted areas.

However, we seem to be seeing huge incentives being offered with no questions asked to large developments in the luxury housing market which is showing signs of softening downtown.

Most people whose kids are impacted by diverted property tax from these large developments to KCPS can’t even afford to live in the housing that is being created by those incentives.

It was suggested that we contact our City Council and urge them to consider passing legislation that allows for our taxing jurisdictions to opt out of bad development deals which would drive incentives further east into truly distressed areas.

It was also suggested the definition of blight needs to be revised and clarified.

Stay informed about current projects that should not be getting incentives by signing up for KCTIFwatch alerts.


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Video of Public Meeting to Discuss Water Main Replacement and Sewer Rehab in Waldo

Click the image to read the full .pdf that was provided at the meeting, including the contact info for the project managers.

Should you have any questions or concerns it is recommended that you reach out to the project managers directly rather than trying to file a 3-1-1 or go through the City.

It was suggested that (a) you take pictures of your property before they begin. They have pics also but it doesn’t hurt to have your own, and; (b) look into the insurance that the city sells to protect you from any pipe ruptures as a result of being hooked back up to your line from the main water line. Some of these ruptures the city will repair, but from the property line to your home, they will not and some residents have found out that it is better to be safe than sorry.

We were able to also obtain the full renderings from the meetings which can be viewed by clicking on the image or clicking right here.

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Waldo Neighborhood Unites with Advocacy Groups in an Effort to Educate Voters about Economic Incentives

Millions of Kansas City, Missouri tax dollars are given away to developers each year in the name of economic development but does this help or hurt tax payers? This is the question that one neighborhood group hopes to answer with an upcoming public forum on Tuesday, February 27th, at 6:30pm.

“Our primary goal is to learn about the pros and cons from both sides and educate our neighbors in the process,” says Angie Lile, President of the Waldo Tower Neighborhood Association, the largest neighborhood association in the Kansas City area.

Lile continued, “Personally speaking as a parent with children in the Kansas City Public Schools, I have a real concern over the millions of dollars that could be used to help revitalize our schools and create better opportunities for all students. And as a property owner who pays taxes each year, I also want to know that my taxes are truly benefiting public schools, public libraries and mental health programs, rather than covering for developers of luxury housing units in areas that have already been redeveloped, who should also be paying for those things.”

Lile was referencing the up and coming Three Light project which is being discussed currently by the Economic Development Corporation of Kansas City’s 353 Board in which the developer, Cordish, is requesting 100% tax abatement for 23 years on new luxury condominiums. They already received similar abatements for the first two projects with Two Light just finishing completion and rumor has it that a Four Light and Five Light are already being discussed.

The public forum which will be hosted by the Waldo Tower Neighborhood Association along with the Coalition for Kansas City Economic Development Reform and Our Revolution Kansas City has also gained the support of Southtown Council, the Waldo Area Business Association and the South Kansas City Alliance.

“Many areas in our city that were considered blighted and unattractive to developers have been turned around by providing tax incentives which have spurred redevelopment,” said Stacey Johnson-Cosby, president of the South Kansas City Alliance.  “These new developments often encourage other private sector investments that have revitalized entire communities.”

“The new Cerner Innovations Campus by the site of the former Bannister Mall is a perfect example,” Johnson-Cosby said.  “Its first phase was just completed, and we’re already beginning to see nearby commercial revitalization and proposals for new residential development.

We want our neighbors to be informed about the process in which tax incentives are requested and granted; and informed when the projects are presented to the community for feedback. This panel is an excellent start towards educating citizens.”

Jared Wight is also looking forward to the public forum.  He is the Chair for Our Revolution Kansas City, a civic action group whose work is to effect progressive change at all levels of government by educating and informing voters about progressive issues, increasing voter engagement and participation, and supporting candidates and ballot measures.

“Income and wealth inequality are at levels not seen since just before the Great Depression,” says Wight. “We have an economy that is rigged in favor of the wealthy few at the expense of those most in need. I would like to know why we are subsidizing luxury apartments in areas where affordable housing is hard to come by.”

Tuesday night’s public forum is open to all and will include the following panel members:

Jan Parks, spokesperson for the Coalition for Kansas City Economic Development Reform stated; “CKCEDR is a community-based organization that has a committed interest in where and how economic revitalization happens in our city.  We are focused on educating our community regarding the use of tax incentives.  Our goals are to ensure transparency and racial equity and to lessen the abatement burden on the taxing jurisdictions”.

Interested parties can contact the Waldo Tower Neighborhood Association for more information about this event or any of the Co-Sponsors whose contact info is:

Waldo Tower Neighborhood Association
Contact- Angie Lile
(816) 559-7012 or info@towerhomesassociation.org

Coalition for Kansas City Economic Development Reform
Contact- Jan Parks

Our Revolution KC
Contact- Jared Wight

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[VIDEO] Really long but informative video from KCMO

This week we found a KCMO update that had a lot of little updates in one including an update on Go Bond projects, two announcements regarding the budget finance public feedback meetings, an announcement about the renewal of the PIAC sales tax in April and other events happening around the city. Watch below for the complete details and hopefully the KC in 60 segment will be back soon.

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Town Hall with Missouri State Representative Greg Razer

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Public Meeting to Discuss Sewer Main Replacement February 26th

Representatives from the City of Kansas City, Missouri, are hosting a meeting on Monday, February 26 at 6 p.m. at Keystone United Methodist Church to discuss sewer separation and water main replacement project.

The City is working to construct important improvements to the water and wastewater system in your neighborhood.

The boundaries for this project are: W. 77th Street to the north, W. 85th Street to the south, Summit Street to the east and Grand Avenue to the west.

When complete, the collection system in your neighborhood will be restored to like-new conditions, with a life expectancy of up to 80 years of service.  This meeting will be 45 minutes long, refreshments will be served. Please join us.

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Public Forum to Discuss the Use of Economic Incentives for Development in Kansas City

Please join us for an open forum aimed at learning the pros and cons of using our tax dollars for big development in Kansas City and how it affects us both in the short-term and long-term.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018
6:30pm to 8pm

Research Brookside Campus
Use Parking Lot B for
Curry Auditorium
6675 Holmes Road
Kansas City, MO 64131

Guests Include:

Sponsored in part by:

The Coalition for Kansas City Economic Development Reform (#KCTIFwatch)

Our Revolution – Kansas City

Research Hospital – Brookside Campus with the shortest ER times in KC.

The South Kansas City Alliance

Southtown Council

Waldo Area Business Association

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Please support local businesses affected by construction on Wornall Road.

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Robeson Re-Use Proposal Update [VIDEO]

The community center is still being planned exactly as it was originally. The new component is that they want to add apartments for folks that are 55+ and older who are aging out of their home. This helps them to change how they ask for money and qualifies them to receive the funding needed for the whole project.  There is also a new possibility that some of the building will have to come down, but they see that as a last possible resort, only as needed.  They will have 2 more public meetings to hold while they go through their planning stages, before they can ask for permits, etc.

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Free Tax Assistance

Tax season is here and all low- and moderate-income families and most retired families can have their taxes completed by experts for free if their household income is $60,000 or less. You can complete your taxes yourself for free onlineif you make less than $66,000. For a complete listing of all free VITA tax sites or to access a free online program to complete your taxes yourself, please visit the Money Smart KC Tax Topic.


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Citizen Feedback Requested on City Budget

The Fiscal Year 2018-19 budget was submitted to the City Council on Feb. 8, 2018. The Fiscal Year 2018-19 budget focuses on public safety as prioritized by residents through the Citizen Satisfaction Survey and the City Council’s Citywide Business Plan and Five-Year Financial Planning model. The $1.66 billion submitted budget increases public safety expenditures by $14.3 million, or 3.3 percent over the current year. Public safety accounts for 76 percent of the General Fund operating budget.

The budget transmittal letter from the Mayor and the City Manager to the City Council summarizes key points in the proposed budget. The City Council will be adopting the budget on Thursday, March 22, 2018.

The City invites residents to use one of several avenues to offer feedback on the proposed budget. The public is invited to attend one or more sessions which will provide an opportunity to interact directly with council members. The four scheduled budget hearings are:

  • Saturday, Feb. 17; 9 – 11 a.m. at Christ the King Church, 8510 Wornall Rd.
  • Saturday, Feb. 24; 9 -11 a.m. at Guadalupe Center Elementary School  Auditorium, 5123 E. Truman Rd.
  • Saturday, March 4; 9 – 11 a.m. at R.B. Doolin Center, 1900 Northeast 46th St.
  • Thursday, March 8; 12:30 – 2:30 pm at KCPD Community Room, 1111 Locust St.

Additionally, public feedback will be accepted during City Council budget deliberations. These sessions take place at City Hall, 414 East 12th Street, in the 10th floor committee room on March 7, 14, and 21 at 8:30 a.m., at the Finance & Governance Committee meeting

If you are unable to attend a budget hearing in your community, please let us know what you think by using our online town hall at KCMomentum.com. You can read the budget and leave your comments 24/7, at your convenience. Your feedback will be shared with the City Council.

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KC in 60

Check out the latest news from the City of KC in just 60 seconds – Planet Comicon, college hoops and the KC Auto Show are all back downtown. Need to know where to park? Find out about the Park Mobile App.

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City Council reaches understanding with developer on new KCI terminal

The modern and uniquely Kansas City, Missouri, airport that voters approved in November is back on track to open in 2021 now that the City Council has approved an agreement with the developer selected to build the much-anticipated single terminal.

The council voted 8-5 on Thursday to approve the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Edgemoor Infrastructure. The City Council voted 9-4 in December to reject the initial proposal.The non-binding MOU will set the framework for upcoming negotiations on the final development agreement and related documents.

“I’m happy, relieved, and, most of all, excited that we can finally move on to the next phase of this project and give Kansas Citians the airport they want and deserve,” Mayor Sly James said. “This wasn’t always a pretty process, but at the end of the day, when city officials trust the democratic process and act to serve Kansas Citians, we move forward as a community. Now, it’s time to get to work on the next steps.”

Those next steps include Edgemoor and the Aviation Department working together to quickly establish a maximum guaranteed price for the project. The agreement limits the City’s liability and makes Edgemoor solely responsible for any cost overruns.

Another important step will be the environmental assessment that the FAA requires for such projects.

The new MOU addresses 43 of 45 points of concern the council brought to attorneys representing the city in negotiations with Edgemoor. The new version includes a revised $28.9 million community benefits agreement with money for child care and free busing for those working on the project.

The Nov. 7, 2017, election generated strong regional interest and about 75 percent of those casting ballots supported the project, which is expected to cost slightly more than $1 billion to complete.

“Kansas City voters sent a clear message to us last November that they wanted a world-class airport for our City, and they wanted it done in a manner that was transparent and that would make our city proud,” Third District City Councilmember Jermaine Reed said.

Fourth District Councilmember Jolie Justus said the vote would “show that Kansas City is open for business, innovation and partnership.”

The new terminal will be built on the site of Terminal A, which has been closed for several years due to airline mergers. Terminals B & C will continue to operate as usual.

City officials have specified that the new terminal must have certain features that keep and improve the existing convenience of the terminals at Kansas City International Airport.

Edgemoor’s preliminary design features a two-level curbside drop-off and pickup area which will be more convenient and less crowded for travelers. Also, waiting areas at each gate will have room for the increased number of passengers on today’s planes.
The requirements to build the terminal include:

  • Private financing for a 750,000 square foot terminal
  • A 6,500-spot parking garage
  • 35 gates (expandable to 42 gates)
  • A local workforce
  • Prevailing wages for construction workers
  • Assurance that the City’s MBE/WBE goals as well as workforce development or job training for local workers are met or exceeded
  • 1% of the cost dedicated to the arts

Financing for the new terminal will be paid back from airport revenues, and the City will continue to own and operate the airport. More information about the project is available on the NewKCI site on KCMO.gov.

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Dr. Bedell Hosting Community Conversations

Superintendent Mark Bedell is hosting a series of Community Conversations across the Kansas City Public Schools system. In general, these events are an opportunity for Dr. Bedell to talk about how KCPS is responding to public input gathered during his 2016-2017 Listen & Learn tour, share information about the 2018-2023 Strategic Plan and have a discussion about how students, parents and neighbors can contribute towards the school system’s long-term success.

The upcoming Community Conversations are scheduled in order to give residents of those areas a chance to talk about their specific concerns and suggestions:

  • Northeast Zone – 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 13 at Northeast Middle School, 4904 Independence Ave., Kansas City, Mo. (This event will include interpreters for multiple languages and a special presentation for families that have immigrated to the U.S.)
  • East Zone – 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 22 at the Kansas City Public Library North-East Branch, 6000 Wilson Ave., Kansas City, Mo. (This event will include Spanish interpreters.)

Childcare and heavy refreshments will be available at each of these events.

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