Sunday, September 30, 2012


Imagine you’re casually strolling through the neighborhood when you come across a little red button with a sign above it reading “Push to add drama.” Would you be able to resist? Likely not, and neither could passers-by in Belgium, where an ad agency planted a surprise.

. . . BREAKING NEWS . . .
Board of Aldermen Reject Appointive Judge Position

At Tueday night's meeting the Raytown Board of Aldermen rejected a bill to change the position of Municipal Judge from an elective to an appointive position. 

A motion by Ward 5 Aldermen Michael Lightfoot to table the bill indefinitely was unanimously approved by the Board.

Many saw the move to make the change as a move by Mayor David Bower to oust Municipal Judge Traci Fann from office. 

By voting to table the motion the Board collectively gave recognition to over twenty speakers, most of them Raytown residents and attorneys who work in Raytown, who came forward to speak against the proposed change. In fact, some members of the Board who had previously endorsed the change spoke against the change at Tuesday night's meeting. Others kept quiet and voted without comment.

In the two meetings in which the ordinance was discussed publicly, not one private citizen came before the Board in support of the change. 

Since the bill was tabled indefinitely it may not be brought before the Board of Aldermen in its same form for the next calendar year.

Raytown Firefighters Rescue Woman from Fire
Raytown Firefighters responded to a fire at 6828 Vermont Street early Sunday morning.
Firefighters David Andrews and Darren Summers saved the life of the homeowner, Lisa Smallwood.
For more information on this breaking story go to . . . READ MORE

Observations BY GREG WALTERS
If I live to be 100 years old I do not think I will ever understand how some politicians are able to convince other politicians to fall on their own swords.

Case in point is the current debate over making the position of Municipal Judge in Raytown appointive. As the law stands now, the voters choose the municipal judge every four years in a general election. Just as is done in the neighboring communities of Grandview and Lee’s Summit.

At its last meeting over one half of the members of the Raytown Board of Aldermen, led by Mayor David Bower, told of all the support they had from private citizens saying they wanted the position made appointive.

They said this in the face of 12 guest speakers who spoke against the change. They said it despite the fact that not one private citizen stepped forward to support the change.
A poll run on this website shows the idea of changing the position to appointive was trounced 78% to 22%.

Personally speaking, I have yet to have one person run up to me and say, “I want you to take my vote away!”

Next Tuesday, October 2, 2012, the Board is scheduled to have its second reading of the bill changing the Judge’s position from Elective to Appointive. The public meeting begins at 7:00 p.m. at Raytown City Hall. Interested citizens can address the issue before the meeting during Public Comments.

Professionalism? BY PAUL LIVIUS
Aldermen Christine White and Joe Creamer spoke eloquently about the high degree of professionalism at Raytown City Hall because of the appointments they have made. Other members of the Board joined in the chorus praising the “professionalism” at City Hall.

Oh my goodness! I have not heard this amount of gushing about the professionalism since former City Administrator Curt Wenson was in charge.

Quick, someone call the Guinness Book of World Records and notify them. A new high water mark for professionalism in city government has been reached in Raytown!

All joking aside. the argument put forth by White, Creamer and a few of the others was that their expertise at hiring employees at City Hall was one of the main reasons we should give up our vote on the Municipal Judge.

I watched the meeting (twice!) and can tell you that the really strong arguments came from across the room. It was the private citizens who addressed the Board that made the most sense.

Their message was very clear. You can be elected and be an asset to a community. Judge Fann is proof of that. It was also very clearly stated that both the public and members of the bar, including a County Legislator, took time from their busy schedules to come and tell the Board as much.
Incidentally, a number of speakers asked the Board that IF they made the position appointive to at least require the Judge to live in Raytown. Sounds like good advice. I wondered if any on the Board heard. Judging by the recent decision to NOT require City Administrator to keep his word and move to Raytown it is doubtful the Board would take the advice.

Mayor and Municipal Judge Spar in Budget Work Session 
Mayor David Bower has repeatedly commented that the effort to make the Municipal Judge position an appointive position is not a personal issue between him and Judge Fann.

After hearing reports from Board members of the Mayor’s conduct at a recent budget hearing it is hard to believe him.

During the hearing over the Municipal Court’s budget the Mayor loudly questioned portions of the budget concerning the Municipal Court.
Fann replied the portion of the budget (it had to do with salaries) was not under her control but under the control of the Finance Director. She also pointed out that each Finance Director has his own way of reporting and writing budgets. The city recently hired a new Finance Director.

Fann’s statement about the different methods employed by different Finance Director was backed up by Alderman Jim Aziere who reminded the Mayor that each Finance Director does have their own peculiar way of putting together a budget.
From what we have been told the Mayor did not look too happy about the exchange between Fann and Aziere.

The Mayor dropped the subject.

Fit Bottomed Girls

When I find something I like, I want it all the time. Tell me that it’s only available for a limited time? You can pretty much double that desire. Which might explain why I’m struggling with PSLA, also known as Pumpkin Spice Latte Addiction. Here in Florida, the weather is just beginning to cool down (meaning our highs... Continue reading

Our Lady of Lourdes will host a Craft and Business Fair Friday, October 5th from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Saturday, October 6th from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church.

$100 Cash Raffle, Vendor Gift Giveaways, Jewelry, Candles, Crocheted and Knitted hats and scarves, afghans, crafts, dance wear, bath and body, handmade pens and board games, survival bracelets, purses and much more.

Drinks and baked goods will be available for purchase all day long with sandwiches and chips available for lunch between 12:00 noon to 2:00 p.m.

To post a comment on this blog click on the word comments on the line directly below this sentence.


Anonymous said...

I should like to point out the there was NO working smoke detector at the home conflagration on Saturday morning.

I suggest everyone test theirs by by pushing the button. Also replace the battery if necessary. I mark the date of replacement on the batteries so I know how long they have been there.

If you don't have a smoke detector, GET ONE! If you can't afford one or or unable to install one, call the non-emergency number of the fire department. They usually give them away as a public service because it is easier for them and less hazardous to get to a fire before it is fully involved as well as saving your life.
Raytown has a Dictator and the board has little or no power since most, but not all, are good at obeying orders.

Mr Dictator, The Board was elected by the sheepole to represent them and the board members are not your personal dogs to follow your orders. You have it backwards. The board is to give staff direction not the other way around. The cart should not lead the horse.

Heil Bower

PS I hope the sheepole wake up for the next election and closer to 100% get out to vote you out.

Andy Whiteman

Pat Casady said...

Of all that Raytown has to offer, at
the top of the line is our
Firefighters and our Police officers.
They care more for the people of this
town than any elected official. I am
proud to say I am friends with several
of each department. Along with our city
employees in the garages that work on
the equipment that keeps this town going.
With the employees in City Hall, we
have a lot to be proud of.
If you want real "Professionalism" you need
only look at these people. Most of these people are
here for the people 24/7. What thanks do
they get from City Hall? They have their
wages frozen for three years while our elected
officials give their friend a huge yearly raise!
Speaking of our elected officials the only
praise they get is from each other!

Anonymous said...

Oomplain, complain is that all you have to do

doc summers said...

I have to say this article fails to include some of the other people that made this rescue possible.
first the dispatchers took the phone call and sent the info to us which set it all in motion
Dave and I had the backing of Keith Smith who was driving and pumping water to us, with out him we would never have made it in the door.
There were two police officers on scene trying to get into the house and were breaking windows to let some smoke and heat out.
Battalion Chief Gary Jones was in command of the scene and ordered proper resources and was in charge of letting Dave and i know of conditions we could not see.
Station two Capt Rodney Phillips Driver Jason Ramey and Firefighters Gaylen Beasley and Eric Ferguson made it inside with a second hand-line and assisted Andrews down the stairs with the occupant. They also tagged the plug and made sure we did not run out of water. Raytown EMS Medic James Forristal and Aronn Sharp who got patient packaged and ready for transport. Paramedic Rachel Tinnin and EMT Jade Chun who transported and provided care enroute to Research. I think she was in the er within 18 mins of us going on scene.
I am glad that we got some praise for what we did.
But i also want people to understand that it is a team effort
Everybody on the scene did thier job. This is what you pay for and is why we are here.

Thank You
Captain Darren "Doc" Summers
Engine 1 A shift

Anonymous said...


I had hoped you would have a transcript from the McDonald-Aziere debate the other night or at the very least a recap. of it.

Does anybody have an accurate and honest summary of the debate? I heard Aziere looked well-prepared and gave a very passionate pro-Raytown speech. Any truth to this?

Anonymous said...

Andy, I have three smoke detectors in my home. To make sure they are operating correctly, I follow the recommendation of the Fire Department and change my batteries when I change my clocks at daylight savings time. If you did that, you wouldn't have to guess how old your batteries are.

Raytown Resident said...

Doc Summers,
You are absolutely correct! Dispatching fire fighters to the scene is a team effort. I suggest you call the Kansas City Star and let them know they left out the unsung heroes. Those folks deserve recognition as well.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Raytown Fire Department and EMS for all you do

Anonymous said...

5:33 PM, Correct, but I date all of my batteries for 2 reasons:
1) Know when to expect battery failure for example in the thermostat. I don't want the heat to fail in the winter when I am away.
2) know battery life span. Some don't last as long as others.

8:41AM, You are oorrect correct. This blog was created for both complaints and praise. There is very little positive things about the Fascist Fief of Raytown except our emergency responding staff and the dedicated city workers. Can you post something that is legitimate and not an oomplaint?

Doc, Thanks for mentioning all who were involved. No media doesn't have the the space or time to get all the names and details. When I dispatched we logged every responder in the call log but no one ever inquired who they were. Generally any press reports named only our department unless the had a direct quote from the Chief, Capt, Lt., etc. It is good for the public to understand how many people are involved in a fire call. I don't think they have any idea of the resources and manpower involved when the mill levy comes out or there is a vote for funding.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Hey guys. Don't forget the alert neighbor that called in the fire in the first place.

doc summers said...

there was only one call from a passer by on a cell phone.that call pinged the cell phone tower in kansas city which alerted kcfd. they in turn sent it back to us via our dispatcher the calling party did not stick around when we arrived. there were no other calls on it.

capt darren doc summers

Anonymous said...

I listed my house today. My broker came prepared with comps in the area. Quite clearly many homes are assessed higher than they are selling for is revealed by the comps comps; hence the taxpayers are being ripped off!

She said that she has assisted people dispute their assessment with the assessor. Basically all anyone has to to is contact a Realtor and get comps to provide the assessor as documentation for your dispute.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

I too would love to hear Aziere's pro Raytown speech as I have not had a good reason to wear my hip boots for some time.

Anonymous said...

Exactly my point. That one call led to a sequence of events that saved the woman's life. There are not that many people driving around residential streets at 3:00 a.m. in the morning. They the Lord this unknown stranger took the time to make the report. Without his or her first step none of what followed would have happened!

Pat Casady said...

From the phone call until the fire trucks
were back in the station, we should all be
proud of all the events that lead to the
rescue. Of course it's not just the on scene
firefighters that made this all work out the
way it did. It is a team effort and the hard
training came through for a great ending to a
bad situation. Our fire department and police
departments along with our city services people
are the unsung heros of this town.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like several on here know the true Jim Aziere and his lack of ever getting anything done for our city.

He might be a talker, but Raytown as any government body needs people with the energy to actually get things done.

Anonymous said...

Reports conflict. One news story said the conflagration was reported by a neighbor. Obviously if the press can't get their facts straight (maybe it was an assumption).

The problem with cell phones is when you call 911 you may reach a tower in a different city, not where you are. Luckily KCMO 911 must have been having a slow time. I called 911 in KCMO once and counted the rings. It took over 50 rings to get an answer! I have previously reached KCMO 911when calling from Raytown Rd. a few blocks from city hall. For this reason I have a quick dial on my cell for the Raytown Dispatch number.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

I was at the forum and NO he did not look good if you really the man. Aziere gushed all over himself about how wonderful he thought he was even to the point of saying that he brought 70 new businesses into Raytown all basicly by himself. The truth is Aziere doesn't do anything for anyone but himself. I've delt with him before he says he'll do something but he always has an excuse for not doing it. Let's take the smoking ordiance he brought forward for example and was made chairman of that committee but never showed up for the meetings it was Pat Ertz who had to run the meetings on that ordinance. He also voted for the $30,000.00 raise to the city administrator just to name a couple of the things I no about. That's just an example of how he will represent Raytown at the state. Jim is all about Jim and the sound bites or TV time he can get. He's an embarrassment to Raytown. Don't be fooled.

Anonymous said...

Does it really matter who called in the fire, it only matters that they did and cared enough to do so. We need to be very proud of our Fire and EMS people, we are lucky to have those who are so dedicated to the jobs and this city.

Anonymous said...

Email from RFD:

Raytown Fire and the Red Cross to Distribute Free Smoke Detectors to the Neighbors of the Recent Fire Rescue

PIO Assigned: Matt Mace Fire Marshal
Follow up Info: Matt Mace 816-547-1931
Date: October 4, 2012
Location: In the area of 6800 Vermont, Raytown, MO 64133.
Time: 10:00
Additional information:
On Saturday September 29, 2012 the Raytown Fire Protection District rescued a citizen from a house fire at 3:30 in the morning. The home did not have working smoke detectors. The Fire District and Volunteers from the Red Cross plan to canvas the area near the incident to increase the number of homes with working detectors.
The Fire District currently has a program in place to install free smoke detectors to Raytown homeowners who could otherwise not afford them on their own. Citizens who meet these requirements should call 816-737-6034 to schedule an install.
According to the NPPA working smoke detectors reduces the risk of dying in home fires by fifty percent.

Remember to change your batteries regularly

Official Cause and Origin of the 9/29/12 Structure Fire

Posted: 01 Oct 2012 03:35 PM PDT

Anonymous said...

I agree. Aziere gave a phenomenal closing remark. And his answer to the question about specifics he has done to boost business in Raytown, "Most importantly, I do my shopping in Raytown." He then highlighted (and I have verified) that McDonald spent over 4000 dollars on signage from a place in Lee's Summit. Aziere's reports indicate his expenses were incurred in Raytown. The debate actually swung my vote to Aziere. It's worth a watch.

Anonymous said...

I voted for Aziere because he represents Raytown and also Jim spends much time on study and research! I was dissatisfied with some on Jim's votes on the BOA, but if a citizen calls him for help, he is there! McDonald represents a city with a casino.

Andy Whiteman.

Greg Walters said...

The Raytown Board of Aldermen have rejected a bill to change the position of Municipal Judge from elective to appointive.

For more information go to Breaking News in this week's Raytown Report.

Anonymous said...

Greg, Thanks for reporting the good news! I am curious what attitudes prevailed. Hopefully the empowerment of Dictator Bower has been broken.

Andy Whiteman

Pat Casady said...

I'm sorry, I don't like to talk bad
of name, but, Jim Aziere is
about as sharp as a basketball. Sad to say
that Charlotte Melson isn't much better.
Has anyone ever watched these people closely
and really listened to them? If you have you know
what I am getting at. Aziere is all about Aziere
and Melson can't comprehend. She can't leave a
certain department budget alone, even though it
has been approved and for the most part has the
same line items that are presented every year.
Here's an idea Charlotte, why not look into the
way you and the board spends and wastes taxpayer money?

Anonymous said...

7:43 It is worth a watch where?

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad the BOA finally got some gust and stood up to the Mayor it's about time. We'll see how well they do going forward.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Can't use a teleprompter for a debate. Will watch it on VCR after I go to bed. I hope the Dictator "puts his foot into his mouth."

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

I was very disappointed by Alderman Lightfoot at last nights BOA meeting. I know he is young and learning but he needs to figure out when people are using him to do his dirty work. You might be asking dirty work for whom? The mayor of course. If the vote had taken place to elect or appoint the judge the mayor would have lost. He doesn't like to loose so he uses people to do his dirty work for him. Just another example of what kind of mayor we hsave just like Obama he needs to go too

KMCCLA said...

A couple of comments.

Good job on all of those on the RFPD (Raytown, Fire Protection Dist.), you did a good job. As it has been stated, you should change and test the batteries in smoke detectors. But you should also test them, just do not push the button, but light a match and blow the smoke into it to make sure it works that way. Also they need to be dusted periodically.

Another of observation, from the KMBC web site -- for the High School game of the week -- one of them is Raytown VS Raytown South. At this time "we" are winning -- so everyone vote and perhaps our schools will be the KMBC game of the week. Go Cards....(even though I went to private school, I am still Ray South '88...on the other hand my father is Raytown '58)

Anonymous said...

You are correct in saying that the BOA took the easy way out on not actually voting down the Mayor's proposal to make the judge and elected job.

At least they listened.

I noticed Chrsitne White had very little to say. Make that NOTHING to say. She even left her micropohone off when she voted to table the bill.

Must have been a bitter vote for her.

Oh and Mr. Mayor. We do know better. Your reason for asking for the change was very personal.

Saying we have not studied making the judge elective in over 40 years is such a lie! Remember the charter? They tried to do it then too.

By the way. You never explained why you did not bring the Police Department's Chief of Police into the debate.

Charlotte Melson. Nice try. Next time see if you can get somebody to at least second your ideas so that you can have a real debate about them and actually vote on them.

Anonymous said...

just had a rare moment watching msnbc. One of the guests said that the unspoken thing here is that the President cannot speak well without a teleprompter.

The silence, the sense of acceptaance by the others on the set was so strong you could taste it.

Anonymous said...

One way the city could save a TON OF MONEY is take away the allowance given Alderman Melson for sticky notes!!!!

Anonymous said...

Be thankfull that Lightfoot wasn't conducting the meeting! I was going to comment during a Public Hearing he presided over. He never asked for comments and would NOT allow me to comment. He is a 2nd Dictator who should be voted out!

6:09 AM, Why should Christine White speak at all? She doen't speak loud enought to be heard. Anything she says is unheard and wasted time.

Andy Whiteman