Sunday, March 30, 2008

Politics of the Low Turnout

Much has been written this past month about the proposed Raytown School District Property Tax increase. And well it should. The increase is the largest ever proposed for the District. It is not a bond with life cycle that will eventually end, but a continuing tax that will be levied on the homes of all the patrons living within the Raytown School District indefinitely. One thing is all too clear, the current School District Administration has set aside the needs of the teachers. If what has been written to this blog is accurate, and much of it has been verified, they have needlessly squandered valuable tax dollars that could have gone to paying salary increases to the teachers. Purchases like the old Raytown Sewing Machine Building located next to Raytown High School. The building is in such poor condition that it is expected to be demolished rather than repaired. The annual Royals junket and other amenities should not come before paying teachers a living salary. Neither should the District be paying to hold annual “bonding outings" for teachers outside of the School District. They could bond just as well at either high school. The policy of rewarding school children with payments of $100 for perfect attendance during summer school also has questionable value. The huge cost over-runs the District is experiencing on new construction are not the fault of the taxpayers. Before the School District receives any additional money from taxpayers they should get their house in order. They should find a way to give the teachers a pay increase without raising the levy. The proposed property tax increase will hit hardest on those who can afford it the least – the elderly living on fixed incomes, young families just starting out, and small businesses. Walmart and HyVee will not be greatly affected. They have tax abatements in place to protect their bottom dollar. Proponents of the tax increase are using a time proven tactic in their campaign. They are targeting their voters and hoping against hope that a low turnout will allow them to sneak the election through. You will not see any offers for public debate this election. Look for a steady diet of “feel good stories” in the newspapers that read more like front page editorials endorsing the tax increase. A smattering of signs, a lot of telephone calls targeting their base – and before you know it, a new tax placed on the shoulders of the taxpayers. How to stop the tax increase and send a very clear message to the School District to clean up their act is equally as simple. When election day arrives, don’t forget to vote. Remind a good friend, your father, mother, brother, or sister, to take the few minutes needed to cast a vote. Your vote could very well make a difference for two reasons. With little else on the ballot (only a mildly contested school board race in Raytown) it will not take much to turn the tide. The Kansas City portion of the School District is another story. There is a lot on the ballot there. Including a tax question on the Metro Bus service and a controversial ban on smoking. How those issues will affect turnout and votes are yet to be seen. Hillary Should Stay in . . . In the waning days of the primary season before the August Democratic Convention, political commentators will have much to say about whether or not Hillary Rodham Clinton should stay in the race for president. Barrack Obama currently holds a 139 delegate lead (according to CNN News). But with over ten states left to make their choices, a little less than half of the super-delegates still unpledged, and party rules that allow delegates to vote contrary to primary results, it would be foolish of her not to finish the race. As Yogi Berra, that great master of the English language and former catcher for the New York Yankees once said, “it ain’t over until it’s over”. Win or lose, Hillary Clinton should finish the race she started.


mr. whig said...

I won't forget to vote. No, that is. Not this time. Open things up, Raytown School Board, and be a little more forthcoming about where the money is going now and we might be willing in the future.
Looks like you've had your cake, and now you have to sleep in it.

mr. whig said...

I mean, "Looks like you're made your bed, and now you have to sleep in it," although the other way kinda sounds good too.

Andy Whiteman said...

Since the school board has no bread, let them eat cake.

I hope those who wrote letters here also sent them to the local papers for the general public to read. I don't know about the readership of the Raytown Report but I think it is limited to a group with a sincere interest in the community. The general public needs to be reached too.

Dennis Rich wrote here a couple of weeks ago that the Post received only letters for the tax increase and none against. After he wrote that, I made sure that was no longer a true statement by sending in my letter. What is really strange is that the magority of posts here are against. It seems like two different groups of people to me. One group thinks money will buy anything and the other group realizes the problem is in management of the money no matter how much or how little it is.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Years ago the school system stated they needed a 2 to 4 million in tax dollars to upgrade various programs, provide computers and raises for the teachers. I went to a school board meeting where questions were spurned and the issue was railroaded through. That issue was approved and how many more have been approved since then? As recently as 2006 something was approved for more money for the schools.

We have lost terrific music teachers due to the Raytown schools having department budgets in the 100’s where other schools have budgets 1,000’s.

I agree that the school administration and board need to show they can cut back on all extras before they go asking for more money. Are their expenditures public record?

Where is the money that the riverboat casinos promised to provide for the schools?

Anonymous said...

If you wonder what has happened to state funding (casinos or otherwise), understand that the funding formula was changed several years ago. As a result, school districts in urban areas (such as Raytown) have lost millions in funding that has been reallocated to rural districts throughout the state.

As for the "something" in 2006, it was a bond issue for capital improvements including a new elementary school and renovation of an existing building to add a new middle school. Despite what 99% of the people on this blog believe, the additional space is needed. If you don't believe, go darken the hallways of the schools and see for yourself. Don't forget to go to the middle schools and take the trip outside to visit the trailers that are being used as classrooms.

Robbie said...

If Raytown hadn't give away the farm with the TIFs, we wouldn't need a tax increase!

Anonymous said...

Funny that someone mentions that now, I do remember going to vote on a school district issue that was for more money for programs, computers and IT upgrades, as well as for teachers salaries. And if memory serves correctly, the raises never came as promised.

The district is getting the additional room that they need with the new elementary school, building additions, and renovated middle school, so the trailers will disappear, while sacrificing safety of students and faculty. (Shoddy non union workmanship) you get what you pay for.

Darkened hallways??? Turn on the light switch Einstein. There used to be a lot more kids per classroom years ago than there are now, and the teachers still whine about there being too many in their class now. Give me a break!

I agree that the teachers deserve a pay raise/living wage, and the higher ups like principals, directors, assistant superintendents, superintendent, do not need raises. And the school board needs a new, clean slate of people who are RESPONSIBLE enough to handle million dollar decisions instead of the party that is there now.

Pat Casady said...

It won't be long before it is time to vote for that expensive
school tax increase. I have always been of the opinion that
schools, teachers and the children are the most important
thing in our lives. Without teachers we would all be lost.
I still believe this. I believe in the schools and the teachers.
I don't however have much faith in the school board.
It's as though they didn't pay attention in school themselves.
Particularly in math or social studies.

We, well, most of us learn the value of a dollar early on and
we are told time after time that money doesn't grow on trees.
It appears this was not learned by the Raytown School Board.
They know they can go back to the money tree and get a new
crop of your money anytime they put it on a ballot.
In a way they are like politicians. They will promise to use the money for teachers and equipment for the children to get your vote, then spend it any way they see fit. It has been proven
over and over again.
If this passes it is our own fault. We will be saying, go ahead
spend all you want and if that's not enough, come back in a few
years and we will give you more.
Shame on us!

Anonymous said...

Anon 3:45 AM,
Money for teachers' salaries has not been requested by the district in many many years. When money was requested for IT upgrades in 2000, that was a bond issue and salaries cannot be part of a bond issue. There was a .23 levy increase at the time, but that was for increased utilities because the schools would now have networked computers in all classrooms and up-to-date computer labs instead of just a handful of computers at each school. No promises for teachers' salaries were made nor broken.

I wasn't complaining about the number of kids per classroom in my post earlier, but noting the fact that the district has outgrown several of its buildings. I will be thrilled that the trailers will be gone at the middle schools.

Someone, please explain, with facts, why union work is SO much better than non-union work. Does a worker have to demonstrate certain skills before they are allowed to join a union? Or, is the real qualification having a paycheck from which union dues can be deducted. Also, I seem to see that most labor contracts force merit and job protection decisions to be based on seniority rather than actual performance - the reward is for those who stick around rather than for those who do the best.

Last, if so many people are unhappy with the school board, quit griping about it on this blog and do something about it. Push yourself away from your computer, get together and find some candidates that share your ideas and help them run for office. The people that continue to run for the board aren't going to quit because you complain on this blog.

Anonymous said...

The school board is just like the city. Gone are the days when the QUALIFIED candidates stepped up to run. The leaders that made Raytown GREAT are gone. Unfortunately they have passed away and the surviving leaders were smart enough to move away. No one was groomed to take these people's place, so now we are stuck with these unqualified leaders who are just on an ego trip. Most of them only care about getting their mugs on TV or their names in the local rags we call newspapers. Until we get QUALIFIED people to run for office we are going to continue to be a dieing community. New buildings are not necessarily a sign of a thriving community. When incumbent elected officials go unchallenged your government goes downhill very fast. The is NO ACCOUNTABILITY on the school board or at city hall.

Anonymous said...

Going back to the TIF statement - I concur! The school board supported Raytown City Hall's TIF project, so why are they crying for more money now? They GAVE UP up money with the TIF. Maybe they should have thought about those consequences before they supported the TIF. Actually - what the district is asking voters to do is to subsidize the Raytown City government on their TIF project. Is it fair to say this is because the teachers deserve better pay? NO - TEACHERS, you too have been deceived by the school board with their unwise support of the Raytown City government TIF project! EVERY school district tax payer is subsidizing the Raytown City government on their TIF project! NOT FAIR! Vote NO!

Anonymous said...

Duh! By all means union workers have to be trained through apprentice and journeyman programs. When you hire a union worker you are assured that they are trained and ready to perform the duties as required.

Anonymous said...

The Salamander is in error stating that the new school tax will amount to a 25% increase if it passes. It would be more accurate to say that the total tax increase would be 42% over a five year period.
The Salamander is correct when saying we get reassessed every two years. The result is that increased property evaluations geometrically pyramid to significantly higher percentages- 17% more in the next five to six years.
We will pay dearly if this proposed 25% school tax passes.
From reading the papers it appears our government is going to try to bail out many of the mortgaged homes. This action will not include lowering assessments.
Has anyone out there heard one peep from state and county officials indicating property assessments would be lowered if the government actually paid off mortgage loans?
More than likely assessment increases will escalate in the future. They have done so every two years in Jackson County during the past two decades.
Along with the Salamander, I would suggest everyone think twice before voting another ruinous tax on my home or business.
At the suggestion of the Salamander I drove past the property our school board paid $195,000.00 for. Please, tell me somebody was temporarily insane. There is no justification for paying such a huge amount of money for a small and quite valueless spit of land such as this.
-A former teacher

Anonymous said...

Kansas City Missouri voters will be asked to ban smoking in bars and restaurants on April 8th. This proposed ordinance is contrary to the concept of freedom that I believe in. I don't smoke and I hate to be around it, in fact I have grown to despise it. But this issue is related to a principle that is much greater than what I personally like or dislike.

Many of our freedoms have been taken away by politicians who care nothing about our freedom. It is seldom that we are able to vote up or down on such a clear cut issue as this one. Please cast a NO vote regarding Question 3 on April 8th.

Anonymous said...

The Raytown school district has been in a steady decline since 1974 when school superintendent Joe Herndon retired. The City of Raytown has been in a steady decline since about 1970 or even 1968. Our community was once a place where people desired to live and educate their children. We have gone from being a leader in the KC metro area to an example of mediocrity. Sadly we have had no leadership for decades and it shows. In today’s KC Star, I saw that the Raytown school district has a high drop-out rate – higher than the state average. We should be ashamed. Raytown should be a leader not a loser. Throwing good money into a bad situation will not fix it. Continuing to elect losers to our school board and city council will not fix Raytown. We as citizens should elect outstanding leaders for our schools and our city. To continue down the path we have headed means we have decided to fail. Raytown should not be the butt of jokes but a community that is respected throughout the entire metro area. Though it sounds radical, the truth is that the entire school board and city council should resign now and turn our community and school district over to the State of Missouri Trustees to restore professional government. Otherwise we are destined to fail. I have no confidence that our present crop of leaders is intellectually competent or are sufficiently skilled to lead us into the future. Keep these people aboard and you can say good-bye Raytown.

Anonymous said...

I couldn't have said it better. IT'S SO SAD

Anonymous said...

Quality, on time, on budget, the first time. A highly skilled workforce thru on the job training (apprenticeship). Adhering to job requirements, code and inspection requirements, and safety. Strength in numbers with collective bargaining yields positive results for its members (higher wages and fringes), customers (a safe, quality, and correct installation for their money), and companies(a decent profit not like most that will not reinvest in their workforce like their non union counterparts). That is what you get with a union workforce.

They will pay a living wage and fringes to those that are deemed worthy of such. An honest days work for an honest days pay.

Contractors paying BELOW the areas prevailing wage and paying no fringes, retirement, and health care are only hurting everyone else so that they may benefit in REAPING all the profits and undercutting all the other reputable union contractors while installing a sub par installation or product sacrificing safety, quality, and basic code requirements all in the name of faster, quicker, and get it done. Again, you get what you pay for. I have personally seen examples of shoddy workmanship that has been installed in direct violation of code requirements in other school districts buildings all because their school boards wanted to cut costs or the contractors brother or sister in law was on the local school board and helped them get the job to start with. (conflict of interest)

I am glad my kids wont have to go to school in any of these bargain death traps in the future. This was definately not a very wise or prudent financial decision on the school board's part.

That should answer the question.

Anonymous said...

I don't know much about building standards, etc. But if what you write is true, the voters in Raytown should turn down the tax increase the school board wants.

They should quit ignoring the complaints they hear and give reason for their course of action.

A yes vote will tell them that what they are doing is ok with everyone. That would be a mistake.

If you want real change in the policies of the school board, vote no next Tuesday on the property tax increase.

Anonymous said...

What does obewanknabe have to say about the school board's mishandling of our tax dollars?

Isn't he the realtor that made a nice hefty commission for selling the old sewing machine building to the school district?

I understand he also wants the city to give him a big tax abatement for buying a building in downtown raytown.

Talk about hogs at the trough!

Pat Casady said...

The trade unions used to come in and teach. This was done as a donation to the education and the cost was absorbed by the unions.
I doubt this will happen again in Raytown since they were shunned by the school board by hiring the non-union contractor.

I don't understand the school board or any of Raytown's elected officials.
There is on honor or loyalty to the people or businesses in this town.
Once they get in office they lose there minds and any common sense they ever had. That's assuming they had any in the first place.
Both spend money or give it away with no thought of, or for the very people that pay the taxes and supply the money they waste.
Raytown is going to be a town with one Hell of a school system with a
lot of property and land. But not only that, Raytown will only have one big retail store (Wal-Mart) and Raytown won't be collecting taxes from it for twenty three years.

In a time of higher fuel prices that make everything go up in cost from groceries to everyday needs these two seem to think it's OK to spend, spend and spend
some more or make decisions that will run both people and businesses out of town.

It just doesn't make any sense to me and the sad thing is, they can't explain it either.........or won't.

Anonymous said...

You've got too many people on the board like Big Barb Schlapia, Marilyn Fleming, Melson, that don't have a clue about business. The just know how to waste your tax dollars at every turn. It's so sad that all the good elected officials have moved away. Not much to pick from anymore when you go to vote. Many others are going to be moving on as soon as their house sells. Sign me: PRAYING FOR A BETTER REAL ESTATE MARKET IN 2008.

Andy Whiteman said...

Anon: April 1, 2008 4:13 PM, I think someone (or maybe all) on the school board are permanently insane.

Pat, I wonder is any of us will be here 23 years for Raytown to collect taxes from Walmart? I intend to leave this Fascist Fief of Raytown, State of Misery as soon as I can find a house.

It is too bad that the people who have to pay really big $$$$ in taxes (ie business owners) have no vote in the matter.

Andy Whiteman

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Andy Whiteman said...

My letter was published in the Raytown Post today. There was also a rebuttal bt the "Quality" School Board. Apparently the cost of the worthless building they bought has gone down. It was intended to be a parking lot. I ask, who in their right mind pays $160,000 for a parking lot (unless maybe it is in downtown KCMO)? This sure establises comps for land values of downtown properties should eminent domain be used!


"Dear Editor,

Writers have written in the Raytown Report that the Raytown "Quality" Schools have:
1)Not accepted the lowest bid on the new project on 350 HWY but instead selected a higher bid.
2)Purchased a building costing in excess of $180,000. The building full of code violations, is unsafe, and must be demolished. This will cost the district in excess of of $180,000 including demolition.
3)Executive box seats for Royal's games.
None of this extravagant expenditure is for the benefit of the students. How can the school board justify this wasteful spending and think the public should vote for a tax increase?

True the teachers and staff deserve a decent wage. Will the tax increase really go to the teachers and staff or is it to finance the extravagant and wasteful spending of the board? If I saw an affidavit that the money would really go to the teachers and staff, I would feel differently.

Please ask yourself as you vote if YOU can afford the tax increase caused by mismanagement of public funds?"

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Pretty funny that the old of town KC Star endorsed Kathy Mack for the school board because of her vast experience on the charter commission where she contributed nothing, knew nothing and did nothing to even get it in front of voters. Of course out of towners own all the papers alleging they serve Raytown. So discount all of them, vote NO on the school board issue and let elected leaders know that We're Madder than H--- and We're Not Gonna Take It Anymore!

Anonymous said...

I agree with you on the Mack endorsement by the KC Star. WHAT A JOKE!! Seems her only claim to fame was serving on the charter commission. I don't get the connection, I thought the only qualification to get on the charter commission was to get the most votes. Don't remember charter commission having anything to do with the school district. Of course this is the "Good Ole Boy" system alive and well. Remember she ran Mayor Bower's campaign for mayor. Now they're all supposed to support her for school board. What a corrupt system we have. I'm really tired of all these amateurs holding public office.

Anonymous said...

To Anon 7:26, I am in complete agreement, as soon as I can break even on my house I will sell and move in a heartbeat.

I have seen better run Federal Agencies then this town.

Anonymous said...

The Federal Bureau of Investigation should be advised to investigate the selection of the general contractor for the Joe Herndon building on M-350. Emails from the school district, that they were forced to release under the open records law, indicate the selection process was tainted and objected to strenuously by the architectural firm. Once again, the Raytown School Board is asleep at the switch and ignoring these problems or, sadly, involved in public corruption. This would not have happened on the late Joe Herndon’s watch; he was not lazy and would not have allowed the tax payers to be ripped off. The C2 school district has a great deal of explaining to do and unfortunately this will all result in federal grand jury inquiry and, once again, Raytown will be embarrassed. Where is Roy Cox, where is Minor Smith, where is Joe Herndon when they are needed? The adolescents that are in charge of our school district and our city should do the honorable thing and resign immediately. I am very concerned that our present school superintendent is leaving town during this financial controversy. It really makes you stop and think…

Anonymous said...

The quality of schools, business and government in Raytown is on a downhill slide. I have lived here for over 20 years. Hopefully there will be an upswing in the housing market and I will sell my house and move like the poster above.

The former school super went on a spending spree before his retirement. The only qualification most school board members have are that they have kids in the school district.

Local businesses are not supported in this city. Big boxes and corporate are taking over and will help kill what was left of local businesses in Raytown in addition to depleting our city's revenue.

There are no business owners or professionals running this city. It is apparent that the current group of leaders, the current city administrator excluded, do not have the ability to do what needs to be done other that tell everyone to dream of what could be. It ain't gonna happen.

All that is preached is hope and the future and give us more time and money. Fuhgetaboutit.

Pat Casady said...

I haven't talked to anyone that has anything positive to say
about the Raytown School Board.

To Anonymous 4:25,
You are right. There are no business owners or professionals running this town. Every time I moved I always looked in Raytown first. I have wanted to
be here since I graduated high school. Every time I looked there were few or no homes for sale. Wow, how things change.
Some people in the past administration did their best to run businesses and homeowners out of town. They tried their best to turn Raytown into a
blighted city so they could tear it all down. Some of us fought back
and fought for our right to be here....and will again if it comes up again.

Smith Brothers concrete was told by Beau Grossmen that Raytown no
longer wanted a concrete plant here. As of late people trying to start a business here are made to jump through so many hoops they give up and go to Lee's Summit.

It has to start in City Hall.
They can't run people out of town, give away income and waste taxpayer
dollars. They shouldn't have welcomed Wal-Mart here either. With that store becoming bigger and locating on 350hwy. all businesses around
it will leave and all the property values in town will fall drastically.
I don't think these elected officials understand what they have done to this town. Unfortunately all of us are about to find out.
There should be no more "Gateways" built before the streets are repaired.

If the school district thinks they need money now just wait a few years.
They will find out they should have spent taxpayer dollars a lot wiser and shouldn't have wasted it on worthless buildings and property.
When property values go down so will the school districts income.
This new tax increase should not be passed.
We should wait until the need is clear and they quit spending taxpayer dollars foolishly.

Anonymous said...

That's a curious comment about Smith Bros. Concrete and Beau Groceman, since the concrete plant was not owned by Smith Bros, but LaFarge when he came to town. Just another example of half (or more likely quarter) truths that are spewed on this website.

To all that are moving, where are you going? Anywhere in the KC area has higher taxes, and the same TIF issues and wasteful school districts. Good luck! I did find you several places, Utopia, AK or Utopia, NY and there are several Utopia's in Canada eh.

Salamander said...

It is worth your time to read the local papers.
According to the editor of the Post, the “broke” school district rents space at the exclusive Stadium Club for board meetings.
Why would they need to rent such accommodations when there are plenty of buildings and offices available for this purpose in Raytown?

We are told the rental is a bargain.
What is not a bargain, though, is the price you pay when you use one of the Stadium Club’s meeting spaces.
This club is strictly a la carte. You pay for everything you purchase at the Stadium Club, and you pay a high price. It’s just like going to the ball game, only worse. It might be cheaper to just meet at Starbucks.
As for that half-a-lot the board purchased. We are now told it was to provide more bus lanes and additional parking.
Why more bus lanes? Are there more buses than usual in use? No. Are there more students to bus? No.
The lot was appraised for $37,500.00. Why would anyone pay $160,000 or $180,000 or $195,000 for this piece of property?
When you strip away all the excess verbiage and rhetoric the simple fact is evident. Taxpayer funds were used to purchase the most expensive piece of vacant (to be) property in the city.
On April 2, The Kansas City Star said “If the measure fails, according to the district, it probably will return to the ballot in August.”
Who was it who once said “When it comes to voting taxes, ‘NO’ is temporary, but ‘YES’ is always permanent”?
The Star is right. You will be forced to vote again and again and again until you vote yourself another budget busting 25% property tax increase.
About 20-25 years ago a school district in one of the suburban St. Louis communities rejected, at the ballot box, a levy increase 16 times before the tax increase supporters gave up.

Anonymous said...

The key is that these other cities are offering BASIC CITY SERVICES for your tax dollars, something you don't get in Raytown. We get potholed filled streets, poor snow removal, flooding, and a city government that just doesn't' want to hear about your problems.

Andy Whiteman said...

I just received my election propaganda from the "Quality" School District. This is really a waste of taxpayers' money and someone should challenge it as an unfair election practice if this idiotic tax increase pases. If it doesn't pass, it is still a waste of taxpayers' money! Could these funds go to salaries or supplies?

If this passes, property values will go down! Buyers check taxes when buying property. When buyers check the tax bill, they are less likely to buy a property knowing that taxes will increase from that point.

Since the "Quality" District paid $160,000 for a parking lot about the size of a good sized residential lot that makes the value of my property $160,000 plus the house or about $275,000. What will our tax bills be after the next assessment? The "Quality" District quotes taxes on $100,000 homes. Now, who owns a $100,000 house? There are none that cheap in my hood. Those who vote YES better ask what their tax bills will be after re-assessment?

Pat, if you still want to move to Raytown; my house will be for sale about one year after I buy a house since it will take that long to pack and move. The price will be reasonable and not based on the "Quality" parking lot bought by a C-2 type "Qualty District". The other option is to make an offer before I find a house so I can find one faster and then it will take me only a year to move.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

If we get half-truths on this blog then that puts us 50% ahead of the normal information sources in this town!

I think that if the architectural firm was strongly opposed to the contractor for the new Herndon center and felt the bidding process was tainted, this tells us all we need to know about this school board and who they're really looking out for.

I'm voting NO on the levy increase. Things are going to get worse around here before they get better, hopefully there will still be something left when we drive off the "good old boys" who have decided to gut Raytown to line their own pockets from the spoils.

Anonymous said...

My Real Estate Taxes will go up $224.00 per year (that's almost $20.00 a month)if Raytown's new levey is passed. It's over a 12% increase--and these people get automatic increases every time Jackson County raises the value of property.


Andy Whiteman said...

Anon 8:19PM, Please call this to the attention of your friends and neighbors.

We need a good turn out at the polls to vote NO. I would like to vote HELL NO, but they don't have that option on the ballot. It would be a shame if this idiotic tax passed because of low turnout. As my mother said on school revenue elections, "Only the teachers and tenants vote. Homeowners don't take the time to vote." Both my parents voted but they were outnumbered by tenants. Tenants think they get the benefits but don't have to pay, but they have no clue when rents go up.

I wonder how many will be forced out of their homes edue to tax increases. To people with mortgages it is $10 or $20 per month, but to anyone who has their home paid off taxes are lump sum out of pocket paid yearly or in 1/2s. (very close together.)

Most people with mortgages have no clue how much they are paying EACH government entity because the county treasurer REFUSES to send tax bills on request. (Not every one has a computer to access this.)

I suggest everyone who does not oppose this tax, get a copy of you tax bill just to see what you are paying Raytown "Quality" Schools now. Add in the tax increase as well as increases in your assessment. Add it up and look at the total new tax bill and ask yourself, "CAN I AFFORD TO PAY THIS AMOUNT OF PROPERTY TAX EVERY YEAR ESPECIALLY WHEN THE TAX INCREASES DUE TO ASSESSMENT?"

Also look at your personal property taxes and ask the same question. If you own an RV, boat, SUV, etc. are you willing to pay this outrageous tax?

We need to have a Boston School Party in Raytown and vote out the idiots with no common sense who spend money faster than it is collected.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I am glad that someone finally brought up County Personal Property Taxes also as they will also be affected along with County Real Property Taxes, even though personal property taxes generally decrease over time, real property taxes will continue to increase when the county does their assesments on the properties every couple of years, thus additional windfall to the mis managed school district. I've got a bad feeling about this......

You Can Call Me Curt said...

I was surprised to read the Star gave Cathy Mack’s experience on the Charter Commission as a reason to re-elect her to the school board. The only thing of note that Cathy did was lead the 13 member Commission in absences. She added absolutely nothing to the debate as the Charter was written. At the very end she conducted herself as a perfect stooge for the former Mayor, walking out of the final meeting of the Commission after reading a prepared written statement condemning the Charter.

Thanks in part to the ill-informed and idiotic positions the Star has taken regarding Raytown, we now have a city literally run by absentee administrators, the city has become one of the largest owners of vacant property, and close to 20% of the city’s sales tax revenue will be gobbled up by the black hole being created on 350 highway for Walmart for the next 23 years.

How about them Royals and Chiefs!

The no smoking ban may not apply to them.

Let’s get this straight. Those same taxpayers who are underwriting the cost of the Royals and Chiefs, will not see the smoking ban enforced at the property they pay for UNLESS the Chiefs and Royals see fit to do so.

By the way, can anyone tell me who had the bright idea of buying the old First Baptist Church in the first place?

And, thank you, Mr. Salamander for exposing how the school district has gained tax increases every year without a vote by the people. You can add me to the list of voters who will be voting NO next Tuesday.

Pat Casady said...

To Anonymous 04/03 7:30am.
I was wrong in stating that it was Smith Brothers "Concrete" that was
told by Groceman Raytown no longer wanted any concrete company.

After LaFarge left town a "Smith Brother" and his nephew wanted to reopen under the "Smith Brothers Concrete" name and they were told this by Groceman.
Even though they (the Smiths) still owned the property. LaFarge never owned the ground.
The end result is the same.
I don't lie. Never have. Never will.
And I always sign my name.

Pat Casady said...

To, "You can call me Curt."
I was told by many city elected officials that it was Curt Wenson that came up with the idea of buying the old church.
He was the City Administrator at
the time.
He promised to revive Raytown.
Instead he was a big part of this towns problems we have now, and the attitudes at City Hall.

Anonymous said...

Pat, you are right Wenson convinced the board to buy the old church. He went around town bragging to people that developers would be standing in line to BUY this property from the city for redevelopment. What a liar!! Now we can't even give the property away and are spending millions of your state, federal and city tax dollars to tear down something that the city should never have purchased in the first place Just goes to show you how DUMB that these city hall people really are.

Anonymous said...

Who is Scott Walz?? Just read an article in one of our local rags that makes him sound like he is going to save downtown. I guess I have lots of questions about his motives and who has the "deep pockets" to finance this pipe dream? He mentions that Lee's Summit was much more expensive to locate in, maybe you get some real city services for your tax dollar. I'm sure he could have found a cheeper place to locate, maybe 27th and Prospect, but it's all about what you get for your money and where you want to bring your clients. My money's still on Lee's Summit, believe it will continue to grow, while Raytown is still just a pipe dream.

Andy Whiteman said...

Yes, personal properety taxes go down over time, but anyone buying a NEW car, RV, SUV, trailer, boat, other vehicle, or even business equipment is really going to be hit hard if this "Quality" tax increase passes. Voters need to think about this as they cast their votes.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Sure, everyone will get hit hard, even new vehicles. I didn't mean to exclude them either. Sorry!

Anonymous said...

If you read this week's Raytown Tribune April 3rd, It states that the Raytown School district is going to ask for bond and levy increases every 2 to 4 years! At this rate we will surely run all the small businese's and discourage new families from coming to Raytown. I just wonder what kind of contract the new superintendent received from the "brain dead" school board. I will bet he will get a HUGE bonus if he gets the district into the black in a very short time no matter who he steps on. VOTE NO ON APRIL 8TH! (Short time school district employee)!!

Andy Whiteman said...

The "Quality" school board needs to get some common sense. If they raise taxes every 2 to 4 years (for an unknown reason), taxes will be so high that homes will become vacant. Where will the students come from? With fewer or no students, the schools can downsize or close and the school district can be abandoned.

I can't remember the exact figure but something like 73% of Raytown students graduate HS. Pittiful but better than KCMO. No amount of money will change these numbers. We need competant leadership, parents who supervise their children, and children who want to graduate.

The state takes over school districts with poor student records. Is 73% bad enough for a state take over or can the state take it over for an incompetant board?

The voters need to take over the "Quality" school district and get rid of the dead weight. Kind of hard to do when only the same people run for school board every time. I was thinking of running but it wouldn't be fair to the voters because I don't plan on staying here.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

VOTE NO on All Taxes is my motto!!!!!!

I saw a bumper the other day I thought you guys would like. It said "IF VOTING MADE REAL CHANGES, IT WOULD BE ILLEGAL".

Still VOTE NO on Tuesday!!

Anonymous said...

There were already homes here that are vacant and cannot sell because of conditions which already existed before all the fly by night mortgage company scandals.

Common Sense already moved out of Raytown a few years ago. He grew tired of the 'white trash and the hood wanna be gangstas'.

Education should start in the home with the parents. (If the parents don't have common sense, guess what?)

Now look at what we have on the school board. They all lack common sense.

Look at the administration building run rampant. A superintendant that has only been here a couple of years at best, retiring. The ones before him have retired or gone on to greener pastures (Independence). Now a new one will be starting. How much more of our money is going to go up in smoke?

We had one superintendent for years. This district has become a mere stepping stone for ones resume. All of the assistant positions under the Superintendent are unneccessary. Cut out a lot of this top heavy chair warmer positions and get it back to basics like in the 50's and 60's then there would be extra money for the teachers salaries. They are, and should be the real focus since they are on the front line dealing with our children every day.

Until this administration and school board can learn to exercise and execute financial responsibility amung itself and its members they will eventually self destruct.

I have to adhere to a budget, why cant they do the same?

I will probably vote no on tuesday and encourage all my family to vote no as well. We need to tighten all our belts and watch our spending.

It is not that I do not believe that the teachers are not important, it is because of the ignorant leadership in power that needs to be put into check.

Anonymous said...

"At last week’s meeting of the Board of Aldermen, City Finance Director Jeremy Wilmoth let one of City Hall’s better kept secrets out".

How can it be a secret when the audits posted on your own city government website CLEARLY shows it?

Perhaps our elected officials should do a little more READING and a little less complaining - or do you want to blame staff for not printing the audits on big chief tablets????{D01339BB-BB3C-4A91-9886-5C29E98A21A5}