Sunday, February 12, 2012


Greg Walters
Zoning Change Opposed by Residents by Greg Walters
Homeowners along one of Raytown’s most picturesque gateways are up in arms over a commercial developer’s plans to build a Dollar General Store in their residential neighborhood. The developer has requested that the zoning of the land area in question be changed from residential to commercial.

The location of the proposed store would be just east of Blue Ridge Elementary at 9109 East 63rd Street. The location is currently a large vacant lot.

Residents attended a recent meeting of the Raytown Planning and Zoning Commission to voice their opinion against the proposed store.

Planning Zoning Commissioners agreed. In a unanimous vote (9 -0) the Commission recommended that the City deny the request for the Dollar General Store. However, the Commission is only a recommending body. The final decision on the fate of the Dollar General Store rests with the Raytown Board of Aldermen.

The question of whether or not to approve the zoning application is scheduled to have its first reading before the Raytown Board of Aldermen this coming Tuesday evening (February 14th).

Raytown City Hall is located at 10000 East 59th Street. The meeting begins at 7:00 p.m.

The meeting is a public forum and residents will be allowed to address the Board during a public hearing on the zoning application.

Dollar General - Bad Fit for Residential Neighborhood Commentary by Greg Walters
The Raytown Planning and Zoning Commission made the right decision when it unanimously voted to deny a commercial developer from building a Dollar General Store.

Now the proposal is moving to the Raytown Board for Aldermen for consideration.
Homeowners near the proposed sit are in agreement. A commercial zoning application of a large retail outlet does not fit in the residential neighborhood next door to Blue Ridge Elementary.

Some have suggested that the developer look to a location in Downtown Raytown. Three specific locations come to mind that are vacant and very available:

  • The Raytown Plaza has plenty of space for a Dollar General.
  • If the developer is interested in building new – there is a similar sized area of land available in Downtown Raytown known as the Green Space.
  • Another spot would be the vacant store front next door to Sav A Lot. When the city granted the owners of that property a tax abatement for bringing Sav A Lot to Raytown it was with the understanding that the vacant property next door would be filled within a year. This is a good opportunity to fulfill that promise.
The Raytown Board of Aldermen should turn down the request for a zoning change on 63rd Street. The residential areas surrounding Blue Ridge Elementary School are fairly stable. Shoe horning an intensive retail outlet into the vacant lot next to an elementary school would only devalue surrounding property values and invite blight to one of Raytown’s more pristine neighborhoods.

The Planning and Zoning Commission and Raytown’s City Staff have gone on record in opposition to the zoning change. The Board of Aldermen should add their voice by saying “no” when votes are taken this zoning change request.

Homeowners surrounding the proposed zoning change at 9109 East 63rd Street would be well advised to attend Tuesday night’s meeting to be heard on this important issue. The meeting is a public forum and will be open to input and discussion from the public.

Park Board/City Memorandum of Understanding 
Mayor David Bower has requested a discussion of a controversial Memorandum of Understanding between City Hall and the Raytown Park Board at next Tuesday’s meeting.
The plan, which critics claim is little more than a veiled attempt to capture unspent Park Department tax dollars, was originally proposed by the Mayor last August.

This amended version of the original Memorandum of Understanding (MOE) is the product of work between the Park Board Governance Committee and the Raytown Park Board.
To view the MOE use this link*: Memorandum of Understanding
*Scroll down to the last item on the agenda to view the MOE.

Paul Livius
Blair's Law to be Voted on by Missouri House by Paul Livius
Missouri State Representatives from both sides of the aisle came together to create HB 1686, know as Blair’s Law.  This law will make it a felony to discharge a weapon negligently inside city limits in Missouri.  Currently, it is only a misdemeanor, with the maximum sentence of 180 days in jail.

HB 1686 states a person commits the crime of unlawful use of a weapon if, with criminal negligence, he or she discharges a firearm with or into the limits of any municipality, except

- As allowed by a defense of justification under chapter 563
- On a properly supervised range
- To lawfully take wildlife during an open season established by the department of 
conservation.  Nothing in this subdivision shall prevent a municipality from adopting an ordinance restricting the discharge of a firearm within one-quarter mile of an occupied structure
- For the control of nuisance wildlife as permitted by the department of conservation or the US Fish and Wildlife Service
- By special permit of the chief of police of the municipality
- As required by an animal control officer in the performance of his or her duties
- Using blanks
- More than one mile from any occupied structure
- In self-defense of defense of another person against an animal attack if a reasonable
person would believe that deadly physical force against the animal is immediately necessary and reasonable under the circumstances to protect oneself or another person

“Blair’s Law” is named for Blair Shanahan Lane who was killed on the 4th of July last year.  She was dancing in her yard with friends and family when she was suddenly struck in the neck by a bullet discharged from a 9 mm Glock. The shot came from a group of men firing the gun into a pond more than 1,100 feet away.

The man who turned himself in and pleaded guilty was sentenced to three years in jail for involuntary manslaughter.

City Administrator’s Report from City Administrator Mahesh Sharma
The Steering Committee for the Central Business District (CBD) Streetscape Design met on Thursday, February 9th to discuss and provide direction to the consultant and city staff on design of the sidewalks and pedestrian areas along 63rd Street, as well as changes to the street width along Blue Ridge Boulevard between 63rd Street and 59th Street and Raytown Road south of 63rd Street. The next Steering Committee meeting will be held on Thursday, March 15th from 4:00 to 5:30 in the City Council Chambers at City Hall.

John Benson provided a presentation on development and planning efforts in Raytown to students in the Urban Planning Program at the University of Kansas on Thursday, February 9th.

Board, Committee and Commission Meetings, and Events
February 13 – Park Board Meeting; Park Office (59th and Lane), 7:00pm
February 14 – Board of Aldermen Work Session; Council Chambers, 6:00pm
February 14 – Board of Aldermen Meeting; Council Chambers, 7:00pm
February 16 – Council on Aging Meeting; Council Conference Room; 4:15pm

What’s Up Doc? If it’s my Weight, Tell Me! By Erin for Fit Bottomed Girls
I heard a story on NPR awhile back that really made me think. It was about how patients say that doctors don’t spend enough time talking with them about losing weight. Some doctors apparently don’t broach the topic at all. One survey showed that a whopping two-thirds of doctors don’t discuss losing weight with their patients,... Continue reading

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43 comments:

KMCCLA said...

Dollar General should find a better place. For the first time I have sent an email to my Alderman to ask them to vote against this. Gres is correct, there are much better places for this. When reading this my first thought was next to the Sav A Lot, the site woudl be ideal for them.

Andy Whiteman said...

I agree the pod next to Sav-A-Lot is a better choice. There is more traffic on 350 HWY and the 2 stores will attract business to the other. Also if they want to build, there are are vacant lots and dilapidated buildings on 63rd St east of Blue Ridge Blvd starting east of the the spay/neuter clinic. This area is posted for sale and is unmowed in the summer.

I oppose this development unless another location is chosen.

What I don't understand is why they want a 3rd store when they have 2 other stores in Raytown within a couple of miles.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

We know too many on the Board of Alderman that are all about free enterprise, so I bet we some votes to let Dollar General build a new location in Raytown.

We also all know if they ask for a TIF, we will see a new Dollar General with no questions asked as the Board of Alderman love giving away those TIFs.

Andy Whiteman said...

I would like a new business to open Raytown but at a suitable location with NO TIFs. A business needs venture capitol. This is why I call this the Socialist Fascist Fief of Raytown. Socialism in Raytown has proven to be a dismal failure.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Your poll shows that most people have their head screwed on straight. I wonder if the four who think putting a dollar general next door to an elementary school is a good idea have the guts to sign their names!

Pat Casady said...

It's no secret that our city's elected
officials have given away more of our
tax dollars than anyone with a good
head on their shoulders would have. But,
pay attention to this please. Our elected
officials are thinking of ways to cut the
police pension. That's right cut what was
promised to them when they hired on. None
of us would like this deal. It appears, I am
told that after giving away over three million
of your tax dollars toward paying the bonds
for that place of City Hall worship, Wal-Mart,
this city finds that it's hard to live up to
it's agreement with the officers. I have an idea.
Why not cut the pay of our hired department heads?
Why not cut what is paid to the people that
put this city in a financial bind?
If there is any belt tightening to be done, why
not start with our elected officials and hired
department heads? After all it wasn't the
police that gave this town the problems both financial
and criminal. You only have to look to City Hall
for that one.

Anonymous said...

I think the four who voted yes probably work for City Hall.

Andy Whiteman said...

I bet those 4 have will profit in some manner if that store is built.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Four people wanting an additional Dollar General wouldn't be the four Board of Alderman members that I can think of whom always vote for the business and not for Raytown as a whole.

No need to name them we all know which ones do not want a single trash hauler or that have done nothing to stop the smoking in public places like bars and restaurants.

It is no wonder Raytown is known as the hole of Greater Kansas City!

Anonymous said...

You are so right about overpaid department heads. Two of them at city hall make over six figures!

Imagine that. A city of less than 30,000 handing out close to a quarter of a million dollars each year to two department heads.

No wonder our streets were not treated for the snowfall the other night.
Better to take care of the out-of-towners first!

Anonymous said...

Anyone with complaints about our police chief should have seen channel 41 news about Belton's chief of police.

It sure seems he forgets he works for the people and not the other way around.

Anonymous said...

enough with the dollar stores!
I would like to see some kind of a nice sit down restaurant in this damn town.
my god we are a fast food meca. where does it stop?
we lost medlins now we have nothing.
come on city officials get of your butts and make it so businesses don't leave.
lets keep them here.
all our businesses are leaving for lee summit.
do we have a square around down town? no. will it ever happen?
I doubt it.

Anonymous said...

I thought our city crew wonderful job taking of the streets

Pat Casady said...

You should be proud of your request for
a sit-down restaurant. Sign your name and
maybe City Hall will know we are Raytown
property owners that want more for our town.
I do agree, an Outback or another of that type
would be great for this town. Maybe they could
put it where that seven store mall that was promised
by Block when they proposed the Wal-Mart deal was
SUPPOSED TO BE!
A friend of mine is trying to buy the old Raytown
Plaza. He has great ideas for it however, if he does
buy it I wonder how much trouble this city will give
him? Other people that have tried to make the Plaza
work have been run out by stupid codes, made up as
the day went on. In fact almost all new businesses
that try to be here are foiled by someone in City Hall
or almost go broke doing what this city wants them
to do. Keep in mind there are NO written codes in
Raytown. That is other than the standard safety codes
for electrical, structure, sewer and pluming.
I do have to be fair about this and say, the guys
that ran businesses out of town and made it impossable
to live up to the surprise codes, I believe are gone.
Except for maybe one.

Anonymous said...

Anon 6:18

I wonder where you live. My residential street wasn't plowed. As I drove to work, I could tell where Raytown ends and Kansas City begins. How, you ask? Simple, Raytown's streets were snow covered and Kansas City's were clear.

Anonymous said...

Nice restaurants don't come to Raytown because they CAN'T survive. Don't you think these BIG, NICE, AND PRICEY restaurants have done the surveys and Raytown just doesn't add up to being a profitable city to locate in. That's why they just continue on down the road till they find a city where they can be profitable. Wake up people, Raytown is not coming back, it's still a backward, 4th class city that has been destroyed by it's elected officials.

PJS said...

To Anonymous Feb 14th, 10:57am -

I didn’t know Raytown was known as the hole of Kansas City. But I did notice that you prefer a government that sets/applies regulations on any business provided it’s “good for Raytown as a whole”? Using your though process the board of Aldermen should ban carbonated drinks and french fries.

And for the record, bars and restaurants are NOT public places and smoking tobacco products is legal. I find it interesting that you don’t have a problem with someone driving to a bar, consuming alcohol, and then driving home. Your problem is they drive to the bar and smoke?

Anonymous said...

Was in the new Sutherlands store today. What a nice store, but it's a shame it has so few customers. What did the city give this store in tax breaks? By the looks of things the taxpayers are going to be propping up another business that will not be able to survive in Raytown. SIGN ME, TIRED OF THE TAX GIVEAWAYS TO THE BIG CORPORATIONS.

PJS said...

Anonymous Feb 14, 7:59am – “come on city officials get off your butts and make it so businesses don’t leave”? You think the aldermen can stop a business from moving? You think the aldermen can just call the XYZ restaurant and say, come on over and open a store here in Raytown? Better yet, why don’t you open a restaurant?

Businesses move to other locations for various reasons. One of which is economics and profit - or the lack of it. If the residents started patronizing the local businesses more, they wouldn’t move. Plus if the business were making more sales, they would be collecting more sales tax, and the city would have additional revenue to use for city service – basically you, the residents.

The next time you leave Raytown to spend your money, or shop on the internet because you “saved a buck or saved paying tax”, think about the fact that you are just hurting your own community.

Andy Whiteman said...

Raytown has several sit down restaurants I am satisfied with, but "nice" is in the view of the consumer.

The plain truth is that since Raytown is not a destination point and the only real traffic flow is down 350 HWY, I think it is unlikely that a 5 star or even 4 star restaurant would open in Raytown.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

I was wondering if I was the only one show noticed that Raytown streets were not treated during our only snow fall this year. My guess is that the city administrator and mayor did not want to spend the money on overtime.

I really doubt that any of the city council has a clue as to what is going on when it comes to snow removal.

I've also talked with people who had businesses in Raytown that moved out to other communities. The one single complaint they had was that the codes people were very hard on them. So much so that many said they would not return.

The biggest complaint I heard over and over is that with Raytown City codes you are never done. They just keep coming back.

Safety codes and building codes are important. But if a businessman is feeling harrassed by inspectors they will start looking for more friendly territory.

Andy Whiteman said...

The streets were cleared of snow. My street was NOT supposed to be cleared but it was. The snow was light and melted so quickly that I felt it was a waste of money to clear it except on arterial and maybe feeder streets.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Alderman Mock and Van Buskirk you need to get out and pull signs again. Pitful that Alderman have to do codes jobs.

Anonymous said...

They may have cleared your street but they did not even drive over mine.

The snow did not last two long. Though it was apparently hazaardous enough to close down all the schools last Monday morning.

I don't think they closed the schools down because the streets were all cleared of snow!

Anonymous said...

Mock and VanBuskirk pulling down signs? Bully for them.

If the problem is so great that they can see it is not being done by city crews why don't they address the real problem?

They should go and tell the city administrator, mayor and city department heads that it is time for them to get on the stick and get the signs removed.

Mock and Vanbuskirk should step up and take charge.

They should be getting the city's ship in order by reminding city department heads of their responsibilities.

Pat Casady said...

Anonymous 9:15,
Everybody knows that our elected
officials read this blog. However,
if the see an anonymous sender they don't pay attention to them. What you said is a true statement and you shouldn't be afraid of City Hall.
When Curt Wenson was running this town he had his cronies ran business after business out of town. Well over thirty
small businesses went to Lee's Summit and other towns. His big plan was to make this whole town a blighted area.
The sad thing was the Board of Aldermen and the mayor went along with him.
I really don't think things have changed that much as far as the codes go. I used to
call them the T.T.U.R.D. "Tim Truesdale's Unfair Rule of the Day." Truth be told,
most of the time he was doing what he was told by the City Administrator, Mr.Wenson.
Both are gone now but, they left behind several people that they tought well and are still doing the same thing.
Both in the codes department and on the Board of Aldermen.

Andy Whiteman said...

7:13 AM, I suggest you call Public Works and ask why your street isn't being cleared.

There was a news story about why some schools in MO closed while schools in KS didn't close. I didn't understand the answer but apperently since the snow days are scheduled and haven't been used, it is time to use them. It was reported the kids enjoyed the day off and it pictured them playing. I would have enjoyed it too because I hated school.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Andy,
Why do you think your street was NOT supposed to be cleared?

Anonymous said...

I agree, if VanBuskirk and Mock know that there is a problem then they are not any better than the city employees that aren't doing their jobs. Why??? These aldermen are supposed to be in charge, all they have to do is fire a couple of people and I believe that the rest of them might get the message and decide that CODES REALLY SHOULD BE ENFORCED. I'd start with the city administrator (the guy that lives in Raymore) and whoever is in charge of codes. How about it aldermen, do your jobs and get rid of some of these lazy people. We are watching!!! on

Don said...

I'd love to hear about anybody's plans who is thinking about buying the Raytown Plaza.

Andy Whiteman said...

4:23 PM, Because my street and others were removed from the list of first to be cleared streets by the BOA. It then becomes a regular residential street after everything else. In all fairness, they should have cleared the street of the person whose street wasn't cleared instead of mine.

Andy Whiteman

Andy Whiteman said...

Would the 6 individuals voted "YES" in the poll please state your names so the rest of us won't vote for you if you run for any public office? If you are in office we will see that you are voted out next time.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

The Raytown Plaza is either in process of being sold or is sold to the person who bought Bowen Apartments.
I also heard that he is wanting to buy Amber Glenn apartments and rehab and clear out the thugs and non paying renters.
He is a young guy from Lees Summit

Anonymous said...

Sutherlands is not costing the city any money. You pay one cent extra sales tax when you shop there. That one cent is being given back to Sutherlands to pay their renovation costs up to $2.5 million.

I am sorry you have declared Sutherlands a failure because they were not overrun with customers when you were there.

Anonymous said...

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - 2012 Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul will appear at Union Station Saturday night for a speech.

The rally is being held to energize voters for the Show-Me State's March 17th caucus.

The rally starts at 7:00 p.m. at the Sprint Festival Plaza at Union Station located at 30 W. Pershing Road in Kansas City, Mo.

Andy Whiteman said...

I am shocked! I was answering a survey from Representative Tom McDonald. He stated that merchants keep 2% of the sales tax collection if they remit promptly. Now we know where are close to 9% sales tax is going. 0.18% is going back to corporations such as Walmart, Hy-Vee, Aldi, IHOP, etc. Such a small percentage sounds small, but when you consider the high volume sales from a places like Walmart and Hy-Vee it is really a tidy sum!

This is ridiculous! 100% of tax collections should go to the state. When I was in business in Colorado, I remitted the sales tax collection by the date determined by the state otherwise there was a penalty for late payment. I never heard of being paid to remit on time.

I know the city received a percentage from the county but that is a fee for acting as acting as a collector which is probably intended for those who want to pay that large sum in cash. This is the same as utilities paying stores a fee to collect utility bills.

Andy Whiteman

Andy Whiteman said...

I am glad to hear that Sutherlands isn't over run with customers because I don't like crowds. The Sutherlands on Wornall doesn't have crowds either but I haven't been there in a few years. I suspect the size of the crowd depends on time of day and day of the week as well as what is on sale. I normally go to Westlake because they are closer.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Depends on how you look at it, Andy.

The 2% is not on sales that you and I pay. It is two percent of the total of sales tax collected.

If you take away the two percent incentive for timely payment on sales tax doesn't that actually increase the amount of tax paid by 2%?

Shame on Mr. McDonald for twisting the facts in his newsletter. He knows better but rattles on anyway.

Andy Whiteman said...

5:58AM, I understood that is 2% of the sales tax collected which comes out to 0.18% of the total sale. As I said that doesn't seem like much but for high volume retailers such as Walmart, Hy-Vee, Best Buy, Sears, JC Pennys, etc. this mere 2% comes to a tidy sum. All tax collections should go to the state and then to the jurisdiction where it belongs.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Last time I checked on State Rep couldn't change the law by himself, but again I live in Raytown and I have seen the failed scores of our school district so who knows what they are teaching these days.

Anonymous said...

I would have to be paid a healthy sum of money to see Ron Paul

Anonymous said...

Sounds like someone feels threatened by real ideas and solutions. Probably one of those Obama/Romney clones.

Ron Paul 2012!

Anonymous said...

I thought his name was "Run" Paul as all this guy does is run for President every 4 years what a waste of time.