Monday, September 27, 2010

Every Picture Tells a Story
On the right is the Washington Monument with our nations Capitol in the background. The picture was taken early in the evening. At the other end of the National Mall, the Lincoln Memorial seems to light up the western sky at sunset.
Catching Up by Greg Walters

I’ve been out of town for the last week on a trip to Washington, DC so I am a day late with this week’s post. My apologies.

No doubt I have some catching up on what is going is on. So I checked out the comments from last week. I note that one writer wrote in that Sutherlin Lumber is moving to town. Tried to check it out, but ran into a brick wall. No one seems to know exactly what is going on with the old Walmart property. The only thing I know for sure is that the property has been repainted and appears to be cleaned up from the outside.

Took a drive around town and made some mental notes on some changes that impressed me. In the Gregory Heights subdivision the new “slurry seal” is finished. It looks good. Anyone who wants to know how much curb appeal a new street surface creates for a neighborhood should drive through one of Raytown’s oldest subdivisions (Gregory Heights, southeast of Gregory Boulevard and Blue Ridge Boulevard).

Some trees have been planted in the median at Raytown Road and 350 Highway. Those have been a long time coming . . . but they certainly do class up the intersection.

I also noted that one of the billboards for my campaign for the County Legislature has been replaced with a new sign. About two weeks ago vandals damaged the billboard – part of the sign was still showing – would you believe they came back and tore it down as well?!? Those billboards are very expensive. My homeowner’s insurance agent told me to send him the bill.

Finally, I see some progress has been made on the 63rd Street Bridge. The light poles have lights on them. One obstacle remains before we can call it finished. The light pole in the middle of the sidewalk on the southeast corner of the bridge has simply got to go.

By the way – if you haven’t been to our nation’s capitol, take the time and make the trip. It is well worth it. Watch for pictures beginning next Thursday.

What You Forgot to Ask Your Personal Trainer

7 Questions to Find the Very Best Trainer for You by Jenn Walters

You already know how personal trainers help you reach your goals and push you to the next level, whether you're a beginner or a seasoned exerciser. You probably also know a little about how to choose the right trainer with the proper qualifications. However, how do you find the absolute best trainer for you and your goals? I'm about to share a secret with you: Not every personal trainer—no matter how fabulous or talented he or she is—is going to be right for you. You may be dazzled by proven results, certifications and background, but by asking just seven questions, you can tap into exactly whom the personal trainer is and whether he or she will gel with you. Approach it as if you're in human resources and hiring for a big position in a big company. After all, you're pretty darn important, and you're handing over a big piece of your life here. When meeting with a personal trainer for the first time, most people ask solid basic questions, but these less traditional and less conventional questions really give you a sense as to why the personal trainer has chosen his or her career and what he or she can do for you. Read on to learn what questions to ask to find YOUR best trainer!

1. 1. How do you stay in shape? Most personal trainers will train themselves similarly to how they'll train you. If they love to run, then they'll probably suggest that you run, too, as long as you're able. If they swear by daily yoga to stay fit, then they'll most likely suggest that you try yoga. Although this question doesn't guarantee what type of exercises they might have you do in a personal-training session, it does provide a window into their workout soul. 2. What's your fitness philosophy? A personal trainer should—without hesitation—be able to tell you exactly what he believes when it comes to fitness. Does he train his clients for better health? To improve body confidence? To show off a six-pack? This question really gets into what makes a personal trainer tick and will let you know better what goals the trainer will have in mind for you to set and achieve. 3. Do you recommend supplements? Although healthy eating is key to losing weight and getting in shape, personal trainers are not registered dietitians, and therefore should never give out specific nutritional advice such as meal plans or supplement recommendations beyond a multivitamin. When you ask this question, if a personal trainer starts going on and on about what supplements (or worse, diet pills) he or she uses and recommends to her clients, beware. It is outside of a personal trainer's scope of practice to give specific dietary recommendations.

For the rest of this story go to Fit Bottomed Girls

High School Sports . . .

To catch up on O'Hara Sports use this link O'Hara High School

To catch up on Raytown South Sports use this link

Last Week's Poll Results

Where would you like the City to spend more money in this year's budget?



Anonymous said...

Who in their right mind came up with "slurring" some on the side streets in Raytown? I went on 72nd street next to O'Reilly's and thought I was back in the country! The neighbors are going to love the dust that flies up when you go over it and the loose gravel that will be hard to stop on (which you will slide) and speaking of the loose gravel, finding its way down to the sewers to plug them up (country roads don't have storm sewer on the sides of their roads).

Then comes winter when the snow plows will peel it up! They just kind of applied the slurry here and there, what a mess!

This shows we have NO leaders, department heads that don't have clue what they are doing. If we didn't give away all our money to Walmart and every Big Box store, we would have money to "pave the street right".


Andy Whiteman said...

I believe our new development director said at a BOA meeting that an inbound call center (no out bound calling) was considering the old Walmart building. He wouldn't mention company names in his comments for obvious reason. Greg, you might ask him about that location. Plans may have changed.

Greg, good luck with your home owners' insurance. I found that filing claims raises your premiums

Looking forward to the pics. I haven't been in DC in about 40 years.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

KCMO has been spraying pure oil on a lot of their roads to try to preserve the pavement. I don't like all the oil on the undercarriage of my vehicles. They slurry seal in Raytown is a lot better than the oil any day!

Anonymous said...

It's called chip and seal. It's a band-aid, not
an overlay like we voted for. Another way this city
opps to spend your tax dollars as they see fit.
You voted for overlay they chip and seal. Overlay
is actual pavement. Chip and seal is tar and small
gravel, it won't last through the winter. It may look good
now but, by next year it will just be a scar on a bad road.
Our leaders will give W-M five million taxpayer dollars,
and the taxpayer? We get tar and gravel! The city gets
their monuments "Gateways." We get tar and gravel!
In the old days the answer was tar a feather or run out on a rail.
These days we can only VOTE THEM OUT!!!!!!!!

Greg Walters said...


I placed a call to Mr. Tom Cole yesterday to find out what exactly is going on with the old Walmart location. As soon as (or "if") he gets back to me I will let everyone know.

Also checked with a couple of members of the Board of Aldermen as to what they knew. But struck out there as well.

I noticed the "clean-up" of the old Walmart location last July when they started by repainting the outside of the building. It was more than your typical "remove all signs off Walmart having been here" paint job.

But who knows, sometimes plans fall through, businesses change their plans, any number of reasons could have taken plans for occupation off track.

Anonymous said...

It is a sad to see that we vote in a public safety sales tax and it goes to pay the fat, stop heavy slaries in the Police Department. I'm referring to you Chief Lynch and the lynch mob. So Mayo Frank got you elected so you could promote her husband to Captain Good for you all, now get off your arse, quit taking all those out town fun-filled "business" trips and start doing the job you are overpaid to do. HIRE MORE STREET POLICE Your department and the City are watching you Lynch.

Andy Whiteman said...

We should be thankful that Walmart is maintaining its vacant property to enhance sale or rental value reather than the typical run down vacancies in Raytown.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

I watched a television program with great intersest last week. It was about a town in Georgia(I think I am correct about the state) contracting out their public works and their codes department. The mayor said they got much better service at a substantial savings to the city. Has Raytown ever consider doing this? IF we could get better service at a reduced cost why not look into it. I think it would we very wise to do the same thing for the police department also. We could contract it out to the sheriffs department. As it stands right now, if the police continues as it is it will brankrupt the city. Let's make some changes, before we turn out like California broke.

Anonymous said...

OK, one more time.
You voted in a new safety tax that was supposed to
go to the police department for equipment and new officers
only. We were told none would go into the general fund.
You also voted in a new street overlay tax to resurface the
streets with asphalt. We got a little chip and seal.
Now, you have to understand who controls your tax dollars.
it is your elected officials.
The safety tax money went into the general fund. The street overlay
tax money went to Wal-Marts parking lot. Who controls your tax
dollars? Your elected officials. We were lied to.
The police chief does not have his hands on the tax dollar checkbook.
He does not control the money. He has to go to the board for money.
Our leaders have spent and given away enough money to pave every
street in town and hire a dozen new officers.
It wasn't the police chief that just voted to give Wal-Mart five million
dollars of your tax money.
I'd bet real money that you never thought you would be financing
a multi-billion dollar a year profit company like Wal-Mart and we'd be driving
on bad streets because of it did you?
The people that we voted into office to represent "we the people" have
let each and every one of us down.

Anonymous said...

The poster who speaks about contracting out for city services has a good point. The greed of city employees has made this a necessity. They all want to draw a big paycheck, but do no work. There are millions of unemployed SKILLED workers out there that would love to take a crack at doing these jobs as contract employees. I would love to see the codes department done away with and hire contractual employees to work on a commission basis. I think we could be much more efficient and spend a whole lot less money. How about it Mayor Bower, get your head out of the sand and look into some of these suggestions.

Anonymous said...

The last post is right on the money in one respect. The final decision on all that happens at city hall rests with the Mayor and City Council.

No matter how much they wiggle and squirm, they are the ones in charge.

Our problem in Raytown is that we have a Board that does not have a clue on how to govern. And a Mayor who thinks that bullying people is some sort of leadership.

April gets closer with every second that ticks by on the clock.

If you have ever wanted to help your city out give some serious thought to running for Mayor or the City Council. We need new people at city hall.

Andy Whiteman said...

9/28 4:57PM, What good is contracting out? If it works in another city, does that mean it will work in Raytown. The plain fact is a contractor will have abudget. When the budget runs out, work will stop! Without a contractor, the department MAY receive more funding from the BOA. Could you imagine contracted winter storm street clearing? The budget could be exhauseted after one BIG storm and no street clearing the rest of the winter!

6:57, Isn't it typical to lie to the people? The people are gullible. The city lies to the people. Dictator Obummer lies to the people. Amazingly the dumb people believe it time and time again.

Andy Whiteman

Andy Whiteman said...

Greg, The pics are beautiful. Thanks for posting.

BTW The city just paved my part of Willow the same way others wrote about Gregory Heights. Cars are driving too fast, throwing up dust and causing me to have respiratory problems. I called Public Works and was told they would sweep it up tomorrow. When they do that kind of work they should post the speed limit at 15MPG but it would be impossible to enforce it.

Anonymous said...

I just read about the possible rule changes for
landlords. Doesn't it seem a little redundant that
our leaders are spending time on this? It would appear
that enforcing the codes we have in place now would be
enough. But, since those codes aren't enforced, I guess we
have to have a new set of rules that won't be enforced either.
Maybe the mayor will insist that neighbors of rental property
be given the landlords phone number so they can call to complain.
This way the codes people still won't be bothered by doing their

Greg Walters said...

I drove on the newly covered roads last night as well. The loose gravel sends up quite a dust storm even when driving under the speed limit. The Public Works Department made no mention of this bad side effect of the surfacing technique used when they proposed it.

You can tell where cars have slid on the street from the loose gravel and sand mixture let behind by the process.

It is hard to believe that they were not aware that this situation would arrive.

Time will tell if the re-surfaced streets will actually remain improved for a very long time.

I talked to one Raytowner last night who told me that the city has already come out and done some additional patch work AFTER the road surface was recovered!

I don't see how the streets are going to have the excess sand and gravel removed. A street sweeper wouldn't make it two city blocks without emptying.

Scraping the excess off the streets would be just as problematic.

Whoever wrote that we were promised newly over-laid streets when the transportation tax was sold to the voters was spot on with the remark.

Wouldn't it be nice if our local government kept its word for once?!?

Bryan Green said...

You should try the newly sealed streets on a motorcycle. I emailed Mr. Noll with copy to the mayor letting them know how dangerous these streets are. I also complained about the dust affecting the air quality. Of course I have received no reply.

I would rather have a few potholes than loose gravel.

I have never seen loose gravel on any street in any city I have ever visited other than Raytown.

Anonymous said...

This new street covering is a chip and seal.
It doesn't work, it never has worked and it won't work
here. Out in the country it is better than a gravel road
but not by much. To put this covering down on neighborhood
streets isn't smart. It's a another waste of our tax dollars.
It will be gone after this winter!

Andy Whiteman said...

I was told that his street covering was cheaper and better.

I was lead to believe that it would be vacuumed up today but it wasn't. I left a voice mail for Dave Haldeman asking when it will be completed? I also pointed out it is a health hazard. As Bryan said, It is a safety hazard.

One friend pointed out that after a heavy rain it will all end up down hill. I think it will clog the storm sewers. I am praying for 2" of rain!

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Check this out!

This is the proposed developer for the Aldi project. See what you think of him!

The parties met on March 3, 2005, at a commercial development in Junction City that was being built by Christie and Glen.
"At this meeting Christie boasted to Meyer and Pratt that he had convinced Junction City to condemn the existing building on the site, and then pay him $1 million in incentives to refurbish the space even though he already had signed leases from the future tenants," the complaint stated.
"He (Christie) stated that it was 'like taking candy from a baby.' It was determined by Meyer and Pratt, on the one hand, and Christie and Glen, on the other, that their combination would be very lucrative."

Go to the address below to read more. Very interesting!

Anonymous said...

Daid Bower has done enough to misslead our city.

Codes voiloations on every street do not help the property values.

Code violations on every street just tells others it is okay to live like rats.

Crime is on an increase and no new officers have been hired under the public safty tax that he worked so hard to get voted in.

Police budget on the other hand has increased. Which makes one ask why something has not been done to tone down the crime that is out of control in our city.

More and more store fronts are vacant and I don't see those stores that were going to pop up on the Southside of the 350 accross from Wal-Mart.

Again, who would want to bring a business to Raytown when crime is out of control and the issue still has not be addressed.

Do not forget the overall budget, but it came up in the election that Bower could not even manage his on household budget. I guess we all should have listen more carefully and look at the could be proven like his budgeting issue and less to how he would better the city.

Well the old saying is you get what you pay for maybe we need to decrease police salary and pay more of some leadership out of the mayor's office.

Andy Whiteman said...

They finally sent a large yellow piece of equipment to pick up the stones on Willow. This was pretty useless since there is still a lot of dust. In my opinion all that will remove it is the first snow and a snow plow but it will probably be left in piles in the corners and gutters.

There are still cracks on Willow.

This "work" is a waste of taxpayer's money. It would have been better to do nothing.

This is a piss-poor job. I am sure if our Public Works Director was required to live in Raytown, he would find the work unacceptable.

Andy Whiteman

Andy Whiteman said...

8:17AM, I have observed several new officers being sworn in after the Public Safety Sales Tax was passed. I have also observed equipment purchased at BOA meetings.

Andy Whiteman

Bryan Green said...

Mr. Noll did reply to my email. It went to my Spam folder and I just found it today.

He said there should have been Loose Gravel warning signs and they should have been using a water spray to keep the dust down.

Andy Whiteman said...

Bryan, I don't use my SPAM folder because I still have to deal with it. (Reporting SPAM etc.) I use my own filters to send what I don't want to TRASH. Sometimes the wrong emails go to trash. I check trash everytime I open my email. I suggest everyone check both trash and spam every time they open their email and definately DON'T delete either until you have checked the unread contents.

I emailed Andy Noll last night, but this being a weekend since these people don't work weekends, I doubt anything will be done in a timely manner.

Water spray to keep dust down? Dave at 737-7012 told me they couldn't do that. Has anyone observed a water spray? I haven't. How many times a day will they spray? I feel like I am living in the desert during a wind storm. I was having more respiratory issues last night.

This is another reason for requiring Department Heads to live in Raytown. Would Andy Noll put up with such a bone-head job on his street if he lived here? I think not. Also Community Development Department Heads would have an issue. When will this same poor quality work be done to streets by the mayor's home and the alderpeople's homes? Raytown is quickly becomming a ghetto thanks to Public Works.

There are many homes for sale in Raytown. If someone comes for a showing, will they even look at the home, or will they turn around and rule out Raytown because of streets that resemble unpaved desert streets? This reminds me of new neighborhoods in New Mexico.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

My husband and I were driving done 79th Street and Arlington street and noticed that the new stuff they have been putting on the streets has not only loose gravel when it rains it all rolls down hill right into the storm sewer drains. It seems to me that they are not caring what this could do the those lines in a big strom.

We have a friend that has a lot of that stuff in ending in her year and she has curbs but what about those of us who don't. Whose great idea was this anyway??

I keep hearing that Bower is a bully but he sure doesn't want anyone bothered about their codes violation. We all remember his statement about Gestapo (our codes dept.) not harrassing the citizens about their codes violations. Maybe if he had the Gestapo out there more then our city would look a lot better and we could once again have pride in Raytown. He's going to run for office again on the fact that he has bought businesses back to Raytown. Don't let him foul you he has no clue how to do that, it's his new Econmic Director, Bower has nothing to do when it. Mr. Cole is the only one at city hall who knows his job and does it. We need someone who cares about all of Raytown not just a few. I voted for him but I will NEVER EVER vote for him again he has a big L ON HIS FORHEAD. We must get rid of him.

Anonymous said...

Bower's bullying tactics are best shown at city council meetings. He interrupts anyone, a guest speaker, another elected official, and tells them they cannot discuss an issue because it is "off topic".

Most recenly he did this when John Wiley was speaking to the Board about the lack of leadership. Wiley was apologetic about what he was saying to a ridiculous level. But what he said was accurate.

Bower cut him off because it was damaging Bower's image of himself.

Andy Whiteman said...

In my opinion, Wiley was making a campaign speech. Everything he said was true!

As for code enforcement, please check out this link and then read the blog. People there don't want codes enforced. Maybe people here who are unhappy with codes could work out house swaps.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

guess what the city is going to buy me.... a new paint job for my car that has stone chips all over the paint now and a new windshield to boot!!!! try to get out of that one boneheads!

Anonymous said...

Whether Wiley was giving a campaign speech is irrelevant. Public comments are for the public to speak to anything concerning Raytown.

Bower pulling the plug on Wiley's speech is typical of a bully.

Bower could have just as easily said I don't like what you are saying. There fore you cannot talk.

Bower is no good and has got to go.

Andy Whiteman said...

8:02AM, Wiley wasn't speaking during public comments which proceed the discussion item about the one way Willow.

Wiley was speaking during a discussion secession exclusively to discuss the one way Willow. Wiley did not speak about the one way Willow per se but went into a dialog about the cause of the problem (city administration.) I feel he was off topic by not addressing the issue directly.

This discussion went on for close to 2 hours despite there were real public hearings on the agenda. I feel Mayor Bower was correct in exercising control of this "discussion" which turned into a debate.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

If Wiely had been praising Bower instead of bashing him Bower would have allowed him to talk all night.

Make no mistake about it. Bower is a bully. He has little tolerance for anyone who disagrees with him and is not afraid to show it.

Lee said...

Greg, chip and seal does provide protection for the streets, but it doesn't repair it if it's already failing. The primary weather factor affecting streets is water. Chip and seal is used to seal cracks and add additional material to the road surface. A similar process, on a smaller scale, is when you see the road crews sealing individual cracks on asphalt roads. The reason for the gravel, other than adding additional mass to the pavement, is to make the street usable quickly after the crew finishes without everyone getting tar all over their cars. Some dust and gravel will wash away, most will become impacted in the road surface.

Slurry seal is a better process, it is a mixture of sealer and sand. But if they use that they will have to close off a street for 24-48 hours. I have seen slurry sealed streets in Kansas City last for more than a decade.

Both are stop-gap processes to extend the life of an existing roadway. With transportation budgets what they are, it's not surprising that cities are looking at cheaper alternatives. Simply saying they made stupid choices in the past doesn't put money in the bank today. Having said that, I say we all go park in that fancy parking lot we paid for. It's going to out last our streets.

And I hate to feed all the anonymous trolls. (probably the same person anyway, they all seem to harp about the same things) But if you're going to constantly whine about code enforcement, how about pointing out some. I drove by the infamous 'Knabe Swamp' a while back and all I saw was an empty lot with a very small pile of dirt. And grass, and some trees. And nothing that even resembled a code violation. Maybe I just drove by at the wrong time of the year. And contracting code violations by commission? I'll tell you what, I'd almost sell my house (at a loss) to see you get that wish. Within a month, Raytown citizens would be looking to lynch (literally) city hall for that kind of decision. They'd be patrolling the neighborhoods looking for the slightest infraction to write a citation.

Oh, and Greg, isn't that kind of a limited poll? Democrat and two flavors of Republican? While I tend to vote Democrat, historically it has more to do with Republicans losing my vote rather than Democrats earning it. Although over the last few years the Party of No has lost me on fiscal issues as well. Then we have the Matt Bartles of the world trying to force their morality on us.

Greg Walters said...


Thank you for the explanation on the different sealing process for roads. I do know it is hugely unpopular whatever you call it.

As for the poll -- I thought about adding the Libertarian and Constitutional parties as well.

What I was most interested in how strong the tea party influence is with readers. As you can see, there are a good number of folks who are unhappy with both major parties.

Andy Whiteman said...

Chip and seal may provide protection to the streets but it is a health hazard. After inhaling all the dust on day 1, I realized I needed a mask but I already packed my masks and it would take hours of unpacking to find them. The city should have notified everyone in the area and provided masks for those walking the street.

There was less dust this weekend. I don't know if it is because of less traffic or if it is settling in. The school buses are so heavy and drive so fast that they cause the worse dust.

Andy Whiteman