Sunday, June 22, 2008

Sewer Rates / Light Rail / The Public's Right to Know

Sewer Rates Raytown residential sewer rates are supposed to be based on wintertime water usage. A short discussion at a recent meeting of the Board of Aldermen points out that they really are not. Two meetings back, the Board approved sewer rate increases. During the discussion that followed I asked how residential rates were determined. I was told that the water usage bills from the local water companies were taken from the months of November, December, January and February to determine the average monthly wintertime usage of residential properties. At the time of the meeting, it seemed like a logical and fair way to determine where to set the rates for sewer bills. But is it really a fair test of how much water people use? On reflection, it is not. Wintertime averages should be just that – a wintertime average. Throwing the month of November (which is actually in the Fall) skews the usage to a higher amount than it should be. Especially for those who plant and maintain a second seasonal fall garden or do any type of seeding to improve their lawn. And, it is now an accepted fact that global warming has effectively lengthened the growing season and shortened the winter months. I have sent a memo to the City Administrator to include a discussion for changing the city’s policy on how wintertime water usage is attained to a more fair and honest system by eliminating the month of November from the formula. Light Rail A lot is being said and written about Light Rail. It is a popular concept of new age cities with clean, quick mass transit linking together neighborhoods, businesses and recreational venues. Three mayors (Kansas City, Raytown and Riverside) have jumped on the bandwagon. A couple of weeks ago Raytown held a forum on the subject. This past week it was Riverside’s turn. Most other cities and counties have shown a preference to a more reasoned approach to solving the riddle of light rail. They either sent a representative to the meeting(s) or in their stead or did not show at all. Most telling was a letter drafted by Independence City Manager Robert Heacock and supported by nearly all Eastern Jackson County Mayors calling for a two year study to find the best formula for light rail in eastern Jackson County One thing is certain, light rail will not be built without federal aid. The only plan that has even been considered by the feds is a starter line that runs north and south along Troost Avenue from Downtown Kansas City to Volker Boulevard. Public discussion is always healthy. But mindless “blue sky” babble and over-reaching by setting unattainable goals is not a pathway to a solution. In fact, it can have just the opposite affect by undermining popular support of light rail because of a lack of real movement on the subject. Eastern Jackson County leaders who signed off on the concept of a serious approach to light rail are on the right track. Those who have ignored that call should re-think their position and climb on board the effort to come up with real solutions to light rail. The Public’s Right to Know At the last Board of Aldermen meeting I raised some questions regarding some expenses that have not been thoroughly documented by the city for public review. One had to do with how the city has spent its money on computers. City Finance Director Jeremy Wilmoth was not at the meeting and City Administrator Mahesh Sharma was unable to provide a breakdown of how the money was being spent. Another topic of discussion was over out-of-state travel by city employees. Two trips have been approved that I am aware of -- one to San Antonio, Texas and one to Las Vegas, Nevada. The veil of secrecy over how much has been spent on travel this past year may soon be lifted. At the meeting I requested that City Clerk provide a breakdown of ALL the travel the city has paid for this year. As of this writing I have not received any information back regarding the money spent on computers or travel. Perhaps another week will give them time to decipher the 2007 – 2008 budget. A budget that long on bottom line numbers but extremely short on descriptions of how money is spent.

46 comments:

Anonymous said...

Lee Gray here.

Glad you're looking into sewer billing. I know there was an increase in rates a couple of years ago when voters approved a storm sewer plan. But I've never figured out how my two kids could be in college...leaving just me here...and my PWSD #2 water bills don't go down and neither does the city sewer bill.

There are at least 2/3 fewer showers, a whole lot less toilet flushes, a washer full of clothes, fewer dishes to wash, etc.

I remember here awhile back the someone said PWSD had been over-charged by a water supplier...but have heard nothing since about a rebate to customers.

Water will eventually be like gas: You use less but pay more. But that hasn't been the case regards water/sewer to the extent of gasoline.

Lee

Anonymous said...

The system is flawed at best. Just because the water meter moves when you are using water does not mean that the water is going directly down the drain and into the sewer system. And using a 'winter average' is not reliable either especially when you water trees, wash cars, water plants, and fill hot tubs, even in December. January or February is a better bet if they want to get the most accurate. I know that I grow tired of $57.00 sewer bills each month. If the water runs out on the ground, how is it going to get into the sanitary sewer system if absorbed by the lawn or garden, or evaporation? It is just a scam to get more money out of residents.

Andy Whiteman said...

Lee, Rush Limbaugh has made the same statement. Use less water at the government's request and they raise the rates because of lower usage!

I have Raytown Water Company. When I moved here in 2000, the water rate was approximately $5 per 1000 gallons. (You better be rich if you water your yard.) They have had several rate increases since. I looked at my last bill for 1000 gallons and was billed $11.89 plus tax plus 23 cents premise charge. Lee, check into the rates and that should explain why your bill is higher. Also I suggest that you try to determine when they read the meter. Go out there and read it yourself to make sure the reading is correct. I read the meter after I see the meter reader go by and found an error once. Also I had the same experience with the gas company billing much more than the meter read. I knew someone who was overcharged by about $400 that same month.
***********************
As for light rail. I lived in KCMO on 74th near Troost from 1994-97. There is a rail line running along Wornall. About the time Clay Chastain started talking about light rail, I thought thet would use that line which seemed logical since it was there. Now it is a running trail. The problem with light rail is getting an easement for it, condeming properties, etc. But when the line is already there, why not use it?

Andy Whiteman

Andy Whiteman said...

Is everyone aware that the BOA increased the number of liquor licenses to 30? It was impossible to have a second reading because someone was having a grand opening on July 1st and time for a second reading was not available. I wound think that a reasonable business person would have all licenses and permits before scheduling a grand opening! How dumb.

I am not against the increase in the number of liquor licenses but I AM AGAINST THE UNDERHANDED MANNER IN WHICH IT WAS DONE! The public was denied a chance to comment if they so desired. This is indeed the Fascist Fief of Raytown, State of Misery. The Board does as they damn well please.


Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Where are all the Baptists? In years past they would not have allowed the BOA to increase liquor licenses without a fight. John Caylor would have been leading the charge and probably would have won. Have the churches given up on Raytown too? We are rapidly becoming a haven for bars and liquor stores. Maybe that's why the board is afraid to tackle the no smoking ordinance.

Andy Whiteman said...

It was stated at the BOA meeting that in the past churchs have protested. I wonder if it was the intent of the board to stop protests? Not only were the churches unbable to protest, buy every citizen was denied this right!

I really wonder if Raytown has enough population to support 30 liquor stores? That is one per 1000 people. Maybe they expect buasiness from other areas.

Maybe Raytown will be known as a city of liquor stores. Not a good description if you ask me.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

What shall Raytown be known as? At one time there were six liquor licenses for more population than there is now. The first applebee's on 63rd was located in KC because a liquor license wasn't available. And Raytown lost all of that sales tax revenue. Pass the no smoking ordinance and the local bars will close so there will be even fewer liquor licenses. Then let the new Wal-Mart grocery carry booze and the rest of the groceries will close and that will take away some more of the liquor licenses. Most of us are ready to leave anyway so Andy can become mayor along with the remaining Baptists and legislate better weather to please him. Sounds like a plan to me!

Anonymous said...

Raytown is looking more and more like the inner city(downtown KCMO) every day. Title loans, pawn shops, used car lots, fried chicken stores, liquor stores, thrift stores, dirty streets in need of repairs, trash everywhere, loud rap music blaring from vehicles. It's about time to move and take our losses.

Andy Whiteman said...

Anonymous 9:26 PM, I don't plan on staying here any longer than it takes me to find a house plus one year to pack and move. Not interested in being mayor. Doesn't pay enough for me.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Mayor Bower has done nothing to change our negative image. Many people I talk to think that Frank and her cronies are still in charge. Many, many, people are selling and moving elsewhere.

Andy Whiteman said...

Anon 8:23 AM makes it sound simple to move elsewhere. I wonder how all of these many people find it so easy to move? I want to move, not because of city government, but due to miserable climate. I can't find a house and the expense of moving. How do these many people do it?

Trapped in the State of Misery

Anonymous said...

Can't understand why Mr. Whiteman cares what Raytown's image is if all he talks about is moving out of here. Understand there will be some cheap accommodations and wonderful tropical weather at Gitmo before long.

Anonymous said...

Gregg; your "accepted fact that global warming has effectively lengthened the growing season and shortened the winter months" is NOT an accepted fact at all and is pure B.S... You must have got your facts from the world renowned scientist Dr. Algore (or Al Gore if you must), or some other dupe who agrees with his non-sense.

Anonymous said...

Sorry Greg, I added an extra ‘g’ to your name on that last post, just goes to show you that we ALL make mistakes from time to time. I have spelled your name wrong and you believe the fairy tale about "global warming".

Remember all of the fuss a number of years back when we were told that there was going to be a “global cool down” and that it would have devastating effects on all of us? Wonder why that has been swept under the rug and conveniently forgotten?

Anonymous said...

Well anonymous obviously you don't watch the science or history channels. The global warming and temperature rise is real. It may be a natural earthy cycle or it may be greehouse effect causation. But please go ahead and show your ignorance (probably Republican). And CBS News tonight showed that our "trash" is now worth $6.1 billion in export to the Chinese, up about $5 billion in recent years. Of course we don't need to recycle. Wouldn't want to do anything to make life better for our children.

Anonymous said...

Obviously you buy into the nonsense generated by the ultra left, liberal (mainstream media), I don't! Bet you would fit rather well into any of the ultra socialist nations. I for one will do all I can to see we don't go that direction. That’s really what this battle is about; you just probably haven’t figured it out yet.

Andy Whiteman said...

Anonymous 12:08PM, to answer your question: I was forced to move here. True I am trapped in this State of Misery, but as long as I am forced to be here I have a concern for what is now my community even though I am not here by choice. I believe I already explained this to one or more city officials.

Raytown's image does affect property values.

Mr. Whiteman

Anonymous said...

So slavery still exists, Andy? "Forced" to be here? You could have chosen another job and avoided the move. Take some personal responsibility. And Anonymous 8:41 I was raised a conservative Republican. I suspect I've "figured out" and forgotten more about socialism, democracy and the likes then you've ever known with your one-sided fearful outlook. Keep listening to Bill, Shawn and Rush so your IQ remains the temperature of a winter day in Andy's "misery."

Anonymous said...

There! That is exactly what is wrong with Raytown and the rest of this country. REPUBLICANS! Enough said!

Anonymous said...

I agree, agree, too many REPUBLICANS are running city government. Bower, Fleming, Schlapia, Azier, all need to go. Probably some others too, but these are known Republicans.

Andy Whiteman said...

Anon 10:47PM, No, I couldn't take another job. I happen to be disabled and was limited to the time of day I could work and the type of work I could do. (And also required a living wage unlike city employees.) I think my employer was hoping I would find another job because they finally caused me to retire as disabled and I am now unable to work at all. So I am trapped in this State of Misery until one year after I buy a house elsewhere.

Anon 8:29AM, The Board of Alderman is non-partisan. They were not elected as Democrats or Republicans so how can you name the Rupublicans? One does not register by party when registering to vote. Are you making assumptions? We all know what that does.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Andy, you haven't lived in this town very long. I can tell you almost anyone's politics. They are elected as non-partisan, but they all have ties to a political party. That's what happens from being here too long. Not assumptions, FACTS.

Greg Walters said...

I realize there are legitimate arguments on either side of the global warming theory or theories.

My point in the article is that November is not really a winter month. People still use water for outdoor purposes. Those who take the care to beautify their lawns or grown their own vegetables are in effect, penalized for their practices.

The calendar only has 12 months. The city should recognize this and use true winter averages to estimate sewer bills.

Andy Whiteman said...

I will point out also that depending on when the water meter is read, the reading may actually be October's usage. If the reading is the first week of November, it is actually ALL October usage. My meter is read about mid month so actually my November bill includes 1/2 of October's usage.

I have seen a neighbor watering her lawn in December and January. I don't waste money watering lawns, but have watered my roses in December and January. I am not going to debate global warming. I will just say that it was warmer than normal.

Actually, for various reasons, I feel that I have more sewer usage in the summer than winter. Is billing for winter usage fair?

The Finance Director said the City pays a fixed price for sewer processing. Assuming his statement is correct, wouldn't it be more logical to divide the city's costs by the number of sewer users and bill a flat rate. My bill would be higher, but I don't understand why we are billed for estimated usage when the city has a fixed cost.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Actually Andy it is based on a 60 month rolling average, so it potentially moves quarterly (when the meters are read). And with you thinking, you could have say 1 customer that accounts for 1% of all sewer, and you would be willing to pay the same as them? Not likely. The only real accurate way would be to dig up everyone's sewer line, put a meter on it and read it monthly. Not sure what all that would cost, plus the manpower to read them. But hey at least you would only be billed for what your house delivers to the sewer system. Now when it rains and your groundwater connection puts extra water in for a couple of weeks, and you are charged for that water, cause you now have a meter that measures it, you'll really miss that 4 month winter average water bill.

It would be interesting to see what other cities do. And also, how rates will be effected when Kansas City has to start building their $2 Billion+ improvements, that will hit the rates they charge Raytown.

Anonymous said...

That is really not a fair way of dealing with sewer use costs, especially if one is on a septic system, and waters a lot of plants and grass, whereas it is absorbed into the soil and does not runoff into the storm sewer.

Even though they feel that the winter average is the best way to bill users for sewer usage it really is inaccurate. Like I have said, how can they break down whether you are watering plants, washing vehicles, filling up pools, and using that water to water plants, and it gets absorbed into the ground or evaporates? I feel that some bills would be half as much if they took those factors into account.

I also understand that we have to pay for the LBVSD Improvements and upgrades at Atherton, as do other participating communities. As it is right now I have to pay around $660.00 a year for the sewer because of the 'winter average'. That is a bunch of $%&#!

Anonymous said...

They assume that what goes in must come out and they are wrong!

Pat Casady said...

Qualifications, Honesty, Knowledge, Common sense and
Compassion are all that is needed in my opinion, to be a great
elected official. One that thinks more of the people and town
than how they look on TV or what monuments they can attach
their names to.
Democrat or Republican shouldn't make any difference in running
a small town government like Raytown's.

"Gateway" projects with their pillar monuments don't fix the streets.
Losing businesses everyday should never happen in Raytown.
Paying the wealthiest company in the world to come into town by
giving up a large percent the cities income should never have
happened either.
I don't know if people realize it but, I've been told, that tax giveaway will build the
building for this company so they will actually have no or little cost to be here. In essence welfare for a multi billion dollar company given
by one of the smallest towns in the area. Don't think for a second that the
new school building on 350hwy. is free either.

Trying to run businesses out of town should not be tolerated.
Unreasonable, codes or spur of the moment rules along with enforcing
codes on one and the same not on others are an embarrassment to the community.
Spending time on a commuter rail system while the town is
literally crumbling around us doesn't seem right either.

It just seems that City Hall cares more about trains, smoking rules
and raising taxes than the real problems that face this town.

Andy Whiteman said...

I don't understand the Anonymous who said something about quarterly meter readings. Maybe the other water dept. does that but the meters of Raytown Water Company are read MONTHLY. Sometimes it may extend to 5 or 6 weeks because of weather of staff problems. My complaint is when a winter will was much monger than a month.

I suggested sewer meters to a Public Works person and was told it is possible but the problem would be when the meters were blocked as sewer lines get blocked. Yes, it would be expensive but it could be required on new construction and optional to those property owners who want to install one.

At one time Albuquerque, NM had 2 water meters for some residences. One for home use and one for lawn use. That was because long ago, there was a much lower water rate for lawn use. Maybe the 2 water meter system would be a more accurate measurement of sewer useage. Could be required in new construction and optional for those who want to replumb.

Since businesses are billed for actual water use as sewer use (not using winter averages), I question What about:
1) business watering landscaping required by the city? This water is not going down the sewer.
2) business using water in manufacturing process?
3) business tanking water off premises such as lawn care companies, or employee drinking water?

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

The City has no ideal how much water/sewer usage you have. They only care about how many dollars does it take to pay all these high price department heads who take out of town vacations to exotic places and cover it up as training.
Take the new Finance Director, here less than 8 months and the city paid for a "conference" for him to attend in Florida. Now that's a bunch of BS. Thank him, the new City Finance Dirctor, for raising our sewer bills on his City paid family vacation to sunny Florida. Did'nt see that in the press did you?

Just look at the over paid, self important people on the payroll at City hall and the School District.

Better move while you can get a little for your devalued property, because City hall has flushed us down the toliet drain and increased the sewer rate to do it!

Anonymous said...

I'd like to know where you think you could move where City Department heads are paid less? And your finance director had really nothing to do with the increase in sewer rates, that was sealed by the public when they voted to stop ignoring the aging sewers, and start fixing them.
What is really sad is that people complain about $30 or $40 a month for sewer (which in reality for your overal quality of life is cheap) but they will pay $80-$100 a month for cable (which is not necissary). Heck $40 is only like $10 Starbucks, that's a week for some people.

Anonymous said...

What planet are you living on? Who can afford $40 a week for coffee? You sound like one of our "out of touch" city officials.

Anonymous said...

As usual, some of you have it all wrong. Some of us do not do Starbucks or the coffee shops, so we dont spend 40-50 dollars on coffee, and we do not have cable tv, which also saves 80-100 dollars a month, and we do not have sattelite tv either. But we would like to save some money in the area of the sewer bill. I think that the dual water meter system, one for outside watering and one for house usage like laundry, kitchen, and bath would be the way to go instead of the system that they have now.

Anonymous said...

I think the point of anonymous June 26, 2008 3:23 PM is that there is money being wasted on out of town trips that are nothing more than vacations at taxpayer's expense. When the city can show attempts to save me money, then I would show acceptance to a sewer rate increase.

sparky said...

I will say this much. The city is not in the sewer business. The LBVSD (Little Blue Valley Sewer District) is the entity that has to operate and deal with the raw sewage that comes from Raytown and several other Eastern and Southern Jackson County communities as well as a few communities in Cass County. They are the ones who set the rates for what each City has to pay according to the amount of sewage flow from these communities. the residents are the end users, the Cities are the middlemen handling the billing and money taken in, and forwarding said funds to the LBVSD probably minus a fee for personel to process the payments and mailing costs I suspect. With costs of electricity, water, and their overhead rising including workers wages at the LBVSD sewage tratment facility, plus the costs for the construction work to expand the processing capacity of the existing plant in Atherton.

Someone has to pay for this. I realize that. But I do not believe that it is fair to base it on ones average winter water usage using the 'what goes in must come out' theroy. The two meter system Andy mentioned would be by far a more accurate, and fair system for all, and would actually not penalize one for garden and lawn watering, washing vehicles, filling swimming pools and hot tubs. And, the water companies could offer a reduced rate for the lawn watering water, and combine both meters onto one bill. Sewer billing would remain the same, only slightly cheaper per user.

Andy Whiteman said...

To those commenting on paid out of town vacations for city employees, sewer billing, and any other matters of importance to you; please put your opinions and suggestions in writing and snail mail or email to your Alderman, Mayor, or other official.

There is a BOA meeting on Tuesday. Since the paid vacation issue came up at the last meeting, I have a few things to say.

I was told that blog comments are not considered by the city. I understand that not everyone has the time to go to board meetings but you can email or snail mail your representatives or call them. Of course you will not be anonymous.

PS. I think an email will take about as long as a blog post.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Andy, these idiots at city hall won't listen to you even if you do put them in writing. They can choose to ignore the blog, but that doesn't make what we're saying any less truthful. Only FOOLS ignore true citizens complaints.

Anonymous said...

trust me, they don't ignore the blog.

Salamander said...

Greetings From the Salamander

The new WalMart Center:

Everything’s up-to-date in Raytown. That’s what we’re being told by the Raytown Tribune.
According to the Tribune we should all just sit back and watch Walmart rise from the ashes of blight as about-to-begin construction incubates the New Raytown.

The scenario of what will happen once earthis turned for the New Walmart is incredible. It is majestic. It will surely rival the ancient Seven Wonders of the World.
Month-after-month the beat crescends on. Time and again we are regaled with glowing descriptions of how
“everything is falling into place.”

We are then told that all left is do is acquire another two or three dozen permits, hire a few more planners, have some more meetings, re-study architect plans. Oh, yes, it will speed things up if the Chiefs have a winning season.
When are those people in city hall going to wake up?

How long is this charade going to continue? Do they really think a successful company such as Walmart operates in this manner? Walmart did not become the largest retailer in the world by not planning the most minute move in detail.

If the Walmart project is to ever materialize there has to be a starting date; a deadline, at least some sort of target to shoot for if you hope to accomplish an end to any major endeavor.

Not Raytown, however. Not if you have a mayor who won’t pull his head out of the sand; a leader who publicly agrees with the senseless blabbering about waiting for this and that permit or the results of a study or a government handout.
The Salamander can only wonder if his honor’s employer operates in the manner as does our city.
Perhaps your correspondent is being overly impatient.

Maybe he should sit quietly and wait until Walmart gets rolling, the Baptist Church comes down. (It has only been seven years, folks), the school board gets its telephone lines hooked up and, we can only pray, the Chiefs have a winning season.

Something is amiss is my conclusion. As my daddy used to say, “this dog ain’t gonna hunt.”

Anonymous said...

Was your father Ann Richards? That Texas governor said: This dog won't hunt.
Sorry Sally (Salamander)

Andy Whiteman said...

It was stated in the business section of the KC Red Star that Walmart cut back on capital expenditures due to the poor ecomony. They already have a location on I-70. I don't expect them to start construction in the near future. My prediction was NEVER.

I wonder if the city has a clause in the TIF to protect the city encase Walmart defaults or backs out?

By the way, Walmart stock is up. They do well in a poor economy. I don't understand why. I went to Walmart last week for some only at Walmart kind of items. I checked Alpo canned dog food 13.2 oz. 58c at Walmart or 2 for $1 at Hy-Vee. I bought it at Hy-Vee. Generally I see very few items cheaper at Walmart. I wonder how they get business? Boy are people fooled if they think things are cheaper!

I don't get the Tribune. From what the Salamander says, they write science fiction.

I know Greg pays attention to the blog, but I wonder who else in city government pays attention to it?

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Just received my water bill from Public Water District #2. Is anyone else having a high water bill? Can't believe with no outside watering that bills are this high. Cheaper to buy water in Lee's Summit. Also noted on their web sight that they do not list the elected members of this board. Wonder why? Maybe it's time for some new faces on the board of Public Water District #2. What do some of you others think? Need some answers.

Anonymous said...

Mine was for 23 thousand gallons and it was 152.72 that was with hardly any outside watering because of all the rain lately. Normally with having to water plants and the lawn it is easily over 200.00 during this time period. Their water rates are definately too high.

Anonymous said...

Lee's Summit family of four, sewer and water are running around $50 a month for both. I think you Raytowner's are getting ripped off between your city sewer and Water District #2.

Andy Whiteman said...

Why doesn't everybody call the water company and ask the rate?

I received my Raytown Water Company bill. I seems high because they don't itemize. I was told that I sould know the rate because they mailed a letter when the rate went up. If they did I certainally don't remember it. The rate is $5.48 per 1000 gallons + slightly over $7 service charge + 23 cents for state clean water called a premacy fee + tax. I told them that they should itemize as the electric and gas do. The previous month my bill was $11.89 for 1000 gallons giving me the feeling that was the rate since they don't itemize. An itemized bill should be required. Next month, I will ask for the owner and after that I go to the PUC if there are no results.

I know nothing about Dist 2--only Raytown water company where I get my water. It seems to me that a phone call should get an answer.

If you are wondering why my bill is only 1000 gallons for one month, I don't waste money watering the yard. You have to be rich to water a yard. Besides that, there is enough humidity and dew at night to keep it moist. It is wet every night when I take Red Dogg out. It certainally isn't worth $200 a month to me to water so I will have to pay to have it mowed more often.

Andy Whiteman

Unknown said...

I totally agree about Raytown Residents getting ripped off on Sewer/Water! But when you don't have it and are still being billed for it is a real rip off and the other BIG RIP OFF IS the reason you don't have it is because of outstanding bill from a deceased relative and my husband is disabled!! So I think someone needs to really look into the finances of the City of Raytown and really on how they DON'T CARE about their residents it's about how much money they can rip off of their residents and put in someone pocket! And to stoop low enough to make a disabled man and his family do without running WATER and try to condemn his house for a deceased relatives sewer bill is stooping pretty low in my book! City of Raytown you need to get your priorities straight residents first yes men last including you Mr. Mayor who thinks people that break the law don't get water! But they didn't break the law or it was a invisible charge! Until the right caring people get in our chairs for the City of Raytown we might as well put your house for sell cause we the residents are SCREWED!!!