Sunday, August 29, 2010

In This Week's Raytown Report

On the Campaign Trail by Greg Walters

Traffic Hazard Brings Call for Help

Raytown Parks and Recreation to Offer Girls Volleyball

Pump It Up, Dining Buddies and Reality Bites by Jenn Walters

High School Football Report

Last Week’s Poll Results

Every Picture Tells a Story . . .

The picture shows a swampy area in the northern Rocky
Mountain chain in Canada. Though dry and arid during the summer, the higher elevations receive so much snow fall during the winter that the ensuing snow melt and springs keep the mountain sides lush and green with ferns, trees, mushrooms and moss throughout
the year.

On the Campaign Trail by Greg Walters

In the world of politics, the space between August and September is a time of planning for the big show in November. The crowded campaign races of the August primary are history. Those who survived the hot weather campaigns of late July look at new opponents and (hopefully) cooler weather in which to take their message to the voters.

As one of those candidates who did “make the cut” in August, I have been out walking the neighborhoods of the Sixth Legislative District in Jackson County.

This last week I’ve spent a good amount of time in Lee’s Summit. It has been an enlightening experience.

Here are some of my observations:

The Tea Party is alive and well in Lee’s Summit. Anybody that tells you otherwise has put on blinders.

From visiting with voters I can tell you the Tea Party is not so much an organization as it is a statement of frustration that things are not well. Adherents to this line of thought are opposed to continuing the failed practices of current office holders.

This philosophy of change reaches across traditional party lines.

I share many of the misgivings exemplified by the Tea Party movement. My opponent is a poster child for what is part of the problem. He is a well entrenched incumbent who seems satisfied with the status quo in Jackson County.

This is definitely a race in which differing philosophies are going to clash.

I hope you are all on board for the ride!

Traffic Hazard Brings Call for Help

John Howayek lives in the neighborhood of Hedges between 79th and 80th Street. It is a solid neighborhood. There are lots of families taking good care of their homes, and, of course, many children who sometime stray into the street to play.

Therein lies the problem.

The configuration of the streets in his neighborhood is such that encourages motorists to speed well over the speed limit. Many years ago the city recognized the hazard and had a warning message, “SLOW - 20MPH” painted on the street at 79th Hedges and on 80th and Hedges.

But that was long ago. The paint has since faded to the point where there is not a discernable message for motorists to read.

Last March, Mr. Howayek called city hall and asked that they repaint the message. He was told it would take two weeks "top" to put the work order in and get the markings back on the road. He has since called city hall every month to remind them of the promise. When he called in May he received a message from the Public Works Director, Andy Noll, and was told that the the city’s priority was “to repair of potholes”.

Howayek is understandably upset by the response. He says that there is something wrong with a city that places repair of potholes over the safety of children.

It is hard not to agree.

Potholes may be a priority. Nobody disagrees with having them repaired. But using them as an excuse not to repaint safety related signage, particularly where children are involved is unacceptable.

City Councilmembers, especially those from Ward 4, should step up and make it very clear that the safety of young children in our city’s neighborhoods are just as important as filling a pothole.

Then, do the obvious. Make sure the signage on Hedges between 79th and 80th Street is repainted.

Raytown Parks and Recreation to Offer Girls Volleyball

Raytown Parks and Recreation is offering a new program for girls in the 5th thru 7th grades. League starts Thursday, September 16 at Blue Ridge Elementary. For girls in 5th thru 7th grades, come learn the skills that could be useful in middle and high school sports, or as a lifetime pursuit. This is a 9 week session with 6 games for $55 per person. Call the Parks office at 358-4100 for more information.

To download a registration form click Raytown Parks and Recreation Girls Volleyball.

TO YOUR HEALTH by Jenn Walters
Loud tunes can get ya buff, whom you eat with matters, and foodie judges work hard to stay fit.

Play that Funky Music

And play it loudly. New research suggests that pumping your tunes up may help you to work out harder, longer—and if you’re lifting—stronger. In fact, the women studied who had their favorite music blaring could do more leg presses than when soft music was playing or when there was no music playing at all. This is one of a number of studies that show that music can help improve the quality of workouts. And we all know how much the FBGs love their cheesy workout tunes. Just be sure to not listen too loudly as too loud for too long can be bad on the hearing. And what good are compliments on your nice gams when you can’t hear them?

Dining Diets

Women really may be from Venus and men really may be from Mars when it comes to not just romantic relationships but also to our food relationships. According to new research in the journal Appetite, women tend to eat fewer calories when they’re dining with men than with women. The weirdness doesn’t stop there, though. In mixed-gender groups, women still eat less, especially if there are more males than females. Researchers believe the behavior all goes back to impressing your mate and fulfilling societal stereotypes that women eat like birds. (Apparently this researcher hasn’t seen me hit the salad bar with my husband. I can pile that plate sky-high, putting my husband to shame.) And the dudes? They eat the same no matter who’s around. Why am I not surprised…

Top Chef, Top Diets

I’m a huge Top Chef fan. At one point in my life, I even threw around the idea of attending culinary school. That was until I realized that my lack of coordination would probably dismember me in knife-skills class, let alone allow me to thrive in an entire career that is equipped with sharp objects, machinery and fire. So, instead, I cook at home (my husband does the chopping) and watch a lot of reality cooking shows. It’s fun. And it’s safe. But, I’ve always wondered how some chefs and foodie personalities stay slim when they’re around such delicious food that their jobs require them to taste. Turns out, The New York Times had the same question! So they asked Top Chef host Padma Lakshmi about it. Basically, she has to WORK OUT hard core when she can. And keep the nibbles to a minimum. But, she says she’s easy on herself, especially when she gains the normal 10 pounds a season. Hey, it’s tough work eating that delicious food and getting paid! Foodie judge…now THAT’S a career I could safely do.

To read more of Jenn’s musings visit her website at

Grandview Tops O’Hara 28 – 26 in Overtime

The Grandview Bulldogs won a game in overtime against the Archbishop O'Hara High School Celtics 28-26 on August 27th.

In the overtime period each team scored in one play, the Bulldogs on a run by Darion Moore, and the Celtics on a pass from Jake Fortin to Brandon Dennis. However Darion Moore ran in a two-point conversion while Raphael Spencer was stopped short.

The first scoring of the game came from a safety when Tanner Hull tackled Ryan Lee in the Bulldog end zone. Ronnie Jackson’s deep punt set up the opportunity for the 2-0 O’Hara lead.

For the rest of this story go to O'Hara High School

Last Weeks Poll Results

Should Willow Street be Designated as a . . .

One way Northbound Street . . . 4%

One way Southbound Street . . . 0%

Two Way Traffic . . . 96%


Anonymous said...


There is another problem in that neighborhood aa well. On the corner of 79th Ter. and Hedges there is a business run out of a home. That business is located on the nw corner of that intersection and is a lawn care business and has employees working for him. He has mutiple vehicles setting in the yard, on the street or where ever they can find to park. The neighbors have called the city several times over the years and have been told there is nothing they can do. Well, yes there is. First, they could see if they have a business license, if not make them get one. Second, we have ordinances these kinds of businesses that can be run out of your home and we also have ordinances regarding the amount of traffic that business will bring into that neighborhood. As an example, the ordinance on daycare for childern and adults. This business is also a hazzard not only for children but anyone who maybe trying to get around that corner in a vehicle to go west on that street.

I went past there yesterday again, there was a flat bed truck, a red tow truck in the yard and at least 8 other cars either in the street or in the drive. There is also an ordinance that states you cannot have cut wood like fireplace wood next to your house and if you do a wood pile you have to have it up off the ground to discourage rats and mice.

When this business started several years ago it was one person, now it is not and it should not be in a residential neighborhood. It is not any longer just a lawn care company it's year around. The neighbors are sick of it and have been for many years. I tried when I was on the board to get the problem fixed and so has Pat Ertz but all we ever got was a run around from city hall. These are the same kinds of things that make our city look junky, and I'm being kind. We need to have cooperation from city hall but it doesn't look like that is ever going to happen.

They will wait until someone is hurt or killed and then the city will get sued and then maybe they will start enforcing our ordinances. The board of alderman are at fault as well because they are not raising "holy heck" enough to get the enforcement from the mayor and the dept. heads to see that these things start to change and they start doing their jobs. The ordinances were passed for a reason but they don't seem to care.

Sandy Hartwell
Former Alderman Ward 4

Anonymous said...

When, oh when, will the bridge be finished?

Our Mayor claims it is open. Perhaps he considers this to mean the bridge is completed.

I sure don't agree with our crew cut leader's definition of "finished".

Where are the lights? Surely they do not intend to leave the power poles with their disconnected power lines to stay in place. One of them is in the middle of sidewalk!

Bower, I understand, is one of the principles of a company called Populus. They were an off shoot of HOK. That company builds stadiums, arenas and all sorts of BIG projects.

I wonder if Populus turns in half-baked projects, three months behind schedules and then has the temerity to call the project complete?

Andy Whiteman said...

Why is the speed limit painted on Hedges? What is wrong with a sign that is visible and won't wear off with weather and traffic? This whole issue makes no sense.

If Public Works is too busy to take care of a safety issue, how did they find time to put up a ONE WAY sign on Willow?

The City will have a liability of someone is injured or killed because of their inaction since they have been notified on numerous occasions.

If groups with grievances like this or Sandy Hartwell's code violation would show up and voice their concerns at the BOA, they might get attention. It seems like 15 people and not just 1 voicing the same concern seems to get attention.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Seems as though people like to use Hedges from 350 highway to 83rd street as an 'alternate highway'. For example, speeding 45-50 mph so that they can 'get around the traffic tieups on Raytown Road' and get home faster. These are the same 'idiots' that are blowing past my house not all that far away that we keep calling the law about. And they are the same idiots that do not know what a Stop Sign is about. They seem to believe that they do not have to stop if they do not want to. Sorta like the 'If a tree falls in the forest, does it make a sound?' thing. If a cop is not in the neighborhood, can we blow through all the stop signs and speed through the neighborhood while blasting your 'Rap Crap'?

It is somewhat suprising, the majority of the traffic offenders actually are Adults who should know better than to do this, and they actually live in the neighborhood that they do these things in. I also know where most of the offenders live at.

I have also been in contact with the authorities about the activity, and they are actively pursuing the culprits. Sadly, they are probably not smart enough to change their ways, and will probably end up hurting someone before they realize how stupid that they are. I hope they can live with themselves. Probably some of those irresponsible tea baggers....

BTW if there are cars parked on your side of the street, and the other side of the street is clear, and there is an oncoming car, you must yield the right of way, not the oncoming car... some of you need to go back to driving school.

79th Terr and Hedges is a mess. Seems as though every time you go through there now there are cars on both sides of the streets, constricting traffic flow down to one lane. Last time I checked these homes were zoned single family residential, not multi family. Why all the cars? Either sell some cars or make a larger driveway. And as far as the lawn service goes, it is time that they move on to a commercial property, and take the stupid extension ladder with you that is always propped up against the back of your house as well. The place looks like freakin trailer trash. CLEAN IT UP!!!! WE ARE TIRED OF THE GARBAGE!

Anonymous said...

Being promised to by city hall is like loaning
money to a stranger. You might, here from them
or get paid back in the distant future but don't
hold your breath. This is why nobody has any trust
in Raytown's City Hall and our elected officials.
If you think the out of town department heads care
about your neighborhoods....forget it! Or, maybe they
don't have the paint? I suggest they borrow some from
the chamber of commerce they've been painting up the streets
of downtown every year even though the last years paint
is still there. So, you know it's good paint.
You would think that since we live in one of the
highest taxed areas you could get at least a tiny bit of help
with safety items like this.
Maybe we should hang signs on the monuments that
state "This monument brought to you by city hall, we can't afford
safe streets for our children and we can't get the codes department
to do their jobs, but we have we have these pretty islands."

Andy Whiteman said...

Remember a group of fools just voted to keep the 1/8% sales tax to provide maintenance to the memorials and the approaches to them.

Only 23% of registered voters voted. 77% were fools for not voting.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

I read these comments and wonder if any of our city council or mayor would even dare to run for re-election.

If anyone out there has ever wanted to serve on the city council there is going to be some easy pickings next spring for any incumbent up for election.

You have time. Think it over.

Andy Whiteman said...

9:59 AM, Your logic is correct, but it doesn't work out the way is should. Good people have run in the past and not been elected because people DON'T VOTE. Therefore a small minority elects the BOA and Mayor. In the last primary election 23% of Raytown voters voted. I believe the stats to be much lower in city elections, so how on earth do you propose to vote out the incumbents?

In some cases, I think we have career politicians. It would be better to have career city staff. I have lost count of how many City Administrators we have gone through in the 10 years I have been here. Department Heads and CAs seem to have as high turnover rate simply because they are NOT required to live in Raytown the job is just a step to another job.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 9:59 is right.
The voters of this town and country need to take back
our town and country from the spenders and care not's
that are running and ruining our lives by runaway spending.
In Raytown's case you can add giving away this towns
tax income that in the end, has cost the people of Raytown
millions. Not to mention city services that the people
both vote in and deserve. For too long our elected fools have
spent our money the way they want, not the way the people
wanted them to. We need good caring people to watch over
our tax dollars and use them to serve the people not
million dollar super stores that make more money in two hours
than this town receives in five years. In most cases we would
be better off if we didn't even have any aldermen, considering
how much they do for the people of Raytown.
Please find some good people to run against these people!

Pat Casady said...

To Anonymous 9:59,
You are right we need a new bunch or people at City
Hall. There are two that seem to care about the people
of Raytown. Mr. VanBuskirk and Mr. Mock. I know at
least one of these gentlemen is a business owner.
This means they understand spending and how to make
that spending work for the people as should be. After all
the money the city spends and gives away is tax payer money.
We need new people that understand that when a tax is
promised to be spent on one thing, the promise will be kept.
We have had two tax increases that the voters voted for honestly.
It turned out to a bait and switch. The money went elsewhere.
I hope somebody in this town will run for office and represent
the people for a change.

Anonymous said...


Your comment about the city not having time to put up warning signs where children play in the streets but finding the time to change the direction of a street against the wishes of the people living on the street is right on mark.

I hear that Mayor Bower was outraged that the locals on Appleton were not asked about there opinion on whether or not the street shoudl be changed to one way.

He should be even more outraged about the speeders on Hedges.

He should also realize that he created the situation by not requiring department heads to live within the city.

These guys don't know which way the streets run because they do not live here.

The Mayor will be more outraged and disappointed as time goes on.

We will pay the price because he is stubborn and would rather be wrong and pretend he is right than admit the mistake of using out of town department heads to run our city.

It is why he and most of his Board should be replaced next year.

They are like their department heads. They don't care about Raytown. They care about their paychecks.

Anonymous said...

Mayor Bower cares about NOTHING but feeding his HUGE EGEO. This man won't deal with the incompetent department head in codes. WHY??? If anyone runs against him and points out his horrible record they surely will be elected. It's about time that all the incumbent aldermen,the Mayor and the Marshall are defeated.

Andy Whiteman said...

Anon 5:44PM, Why don't YOU run for office, but of course you can't run as Anonymous. If you run, you will need to get people to actually get off their butts and get out to vote! Something that people don't do in Raytown.

Andy Whiteman

Andy Whiteman said...

Alderman Aziere placed the one way Willow on the BOA agenda as a discussion item for this Tuesday 9/7.

Andy Whitman

Anonymous said...

The biggest concern for our town is CRIME. As long as we have Lynch at the helm, I don't see any future. He is the highest paid elected official in the state of Missouri who has no clue how to run his department. I believe most of the cops are great but the leadership in police department is at its worst. CRIME is what keeping our property value low and hurting us economically.