March Neighborhood Meeting Minutes

Waldo Tower Homes Association

Neighborhood Meeting

March 12, 2016 10 p.m.

Earnings Tax Renewal, Jan Marcason (previously represented Waldo on City Council prior to redistricting). The vote is April 5. (This may be confusing as the federal primary election is March 15)

  • 1% tax, since 1963
  • City budget supported by enterprise fund (water, sewer, aviation = funds restricted for these uses)
  • Restricted funds (levies, designated funds)
  • $500 million operating/unrestricted account – 40% of this fund is from the earnings tax. 80% of the funding for police and fire comes from this fund.
  • 50% of the earnings tax comes from non-residents of KCMO that work in KCMO, as they use our services
  • Even when music and sports performers are in town and earn funds in KCMO, they pay the earnings tax
  • Both St. Louis and Kansas City have an earnings tax, and tax payers have to vote on a renewal every five years.

The dependency on these funds can affect the credit rating of the city. If it were to fail the vote, the legislation does not allow it to come up for a vote again. The loss of revenues would result in a need to increase property taxes. The major opponent to the earnings tax is a millionaire in St. Louis that is funding the campaign.

The other items on the April 5 ballot are school board positions. However, many are write in candidates. To learn more about the school board candidates, KCUR profiled those running.

Karol O’Brien – 6th District City Council District Meeting

Tree trimming – the budget for this has been cut. Much of the preventative maintenance has been cut, so now you need to call 311 (or report online) on an as-needed basis to report any trees in the city right-of-way that has dead limbs or other damage.

Kansas City Public Schools – Repurposing Initiative

Paul Robeson School, 82nd and Holmes – Status of school moved from “mothballed for future use” to “available for sale.” The district will hold public meetings as potential buyers approach the district.

Bingham School – 76th and Wyandotte- A contractor was selected for demolition. A public meeting is likely in April. An announcement will be sent via email.

Wornall Streetscape Plans – The intersection will be reconfigured to close part of Broadway between 74th and 75th, to move the parking closer to the buildings and allow the Trolley Trail to be continuous without cutting through the parking lot as it does now. A dedicated turning lane will be added on both eastbound and westbound 75th Street. Traffic will be slowed to create a more pedestrian-friendly environment. Learn more at waldokc.org  (link to plan)

Neighborhood Garage Sale – Angie Lile has volunteered to coordinate residents that may be interested in a neighborhood-wide garage sale weekend on either April 2nd or April 9, promoted on social media. A map will be created to link the sites together.

New restaurants in the neighborhoodNeighborhood Café, an all-day breakfast restaurant opening at 75th and Wornall where Wei Chinese Buffet was located. Also, a new ice cream shop called Betty Rae’s will be opening at 72nd and Wornall, where the Orange Leaf yogurt shop was located. Support locally owned businesses!

Waldo Water Tower Painting caper – A few months ago, an oil painting located here at the library was stolen and it was caught on video. The media covered the story (Fox 4) and it was returned anonymously via mail.

Tower Park – A new neighborhood resident voiced concerns about the play equipment and walking trail in the park. The walking trail is not inviting and the play equipment is aging and very hot in the heat of the summer. Angie Lile suggested crowd-source funding and other fundraising ideas. A dedication of the tower is planned for this summer, which was restored and new lighting was added.

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