Sunday, January 13, 2013

Ever wonder if you have heard that voice before? Listen to this audition from Britain’s Got Talent and you may recognize it as well. To read what Greg and Paul heard, go to the blog portion of the Raytown Report. Hope you enjoy hearing  . . .  Chelsea

A national debate rages over guns in America. This link provides one of the clearest debates on the issue. As the host says at the end of the show, "people can make up their own minds"  . . .  use this link  Shapiro vs. Morgan

About 60 principals, assistant principals and other Independence School District administrators who live outside the district are going to have to start house hunting. A policy passed by the school board this week will force administrators to live in the district by February 2015.  READMORE

Filing for the April 2nd General Election for public offices in Raytown closed today. 

The Race for the Raytown School Board, in which two candidates will be elected grew, by one candidate -- making a total of four candidates.

No new filings were reported from Raytown City Hall or the Raytown Water District. 

Following is a list of candidates filed for the various offices in Raytown.

Ward 1 . . . Josh Greene
Ward 1 . . . Richard Tush

Ward 2 . . . Jim Hamilton
Ward 2 . . . Jason Greene
Ward 2 . . . Jerry Kinman

Ward 3 . . . Janet Emerson
Ward 3 . . . Chris Merrill
Ward 3 . . . Mark Moore
Ward 3 . . . Christine White

Ward 4 . . . Rita Bennett
Ward 4 . . . William E. (Bill) Van Buskirk

Ward 5 . . . Steve Mock
Ward 5 . . . Efrem Z. Williams, Sr.

City Marshal . . . Jim Lynch
Municipal Judge . . . Traci Fann

School Board . . . . Rick Thode
School Board . . . . Bobbie Saulsberry
School Board . . . . Pam Arlund
School Board . . . . Ken Grist

Sub District #3 . . . . Gary Gillihan
Sub District #5 . . . . Jim McClanahan

Paul Livius
All In The Family BY PAUL LIVIUS
To the casual observer there are familial ties between two of the candidates running for election in two of the races for Raytown City Council. After all, Josh and Jason Greene do share the same last name.

Jason Greene is running in the Ward 2 race. He is an experienced candidate who most recently ran for the 5th District seat in the United States Congress.

His younger brother, Josh Greene is running in the Ward 1 race. This is his first campaign for public office. He is 23 years old. If elected, he will surpass former Raytown City Councilmen Greg Walters and Garth Bare who currently hold the “youngest elected” title in Raytown. (Garth and Greg were both 24 years old when first elected)

There is another couple of candidates who are related running for the City Council in 2013. Ward 3 incumbent Christine White is the sister-in –law of former City Councilman Jerry Kinman. Kinman served a couple of turns on the City Council years ago. He is running for election in Ward 2.

An interesting twist is that Christine used to serve as the representative from Ward 2. She resigned her post in Ward 2 and moved to Ward 3, was elected and is currently serving.

EDITOR'S NOTE: The Paul Livius Report will be published later this week. Check back to find out what happened at last Tuesday's meeting of the Raytown City Council.

Jason and Kristin Greene
Jason Greene seeks Raytown Alderman Seat 
Raytown, MO- Raytown educator and former 5th Congressional District candidate Jason Greene, has filed and expressed his intentions to become a Raytown Alderman, representing Ward II. “I’ve decided to run for many reasons, but ultimately to help facilitate a more accountable and transparent city hall.” Greene said. “I hope to have the opportunity to be a voice for all taxpayers, and stand for the responsible use of our dollars. In addition, I plan to promote and advocate for sound residential and business investment.”

Jason has been a resident and a Social Studies teacher within Raytown community for the past 7 years, serving also as a head coach for both Cross Country and Track & Field. He received his undergraduate degree from Northwest Missouri State University and attained his graduate degree in Political Science at University of Missouri – Kansas City. If you wish to contact Jason Greene, you may through email at

EDITOR'S NOTE: All Raytown candidates are welcome to send a press release about their campaigns to the Raytown Report. Please send copy and pictures to

Greg Walters
The Issues of the 2013 Campaign BY GREG WALTERS
Next Tuesday the filing closes for five of the ten seats up for election this year on the Raytown Board of Aldermen. It appears that the apathy that has gripped Raytown City elections for the past three cycles may finally have been broken – all seats are contested. A change from past elections where an average of half of the incumbents filed faced only token opposition in their races.
This past year has certainly given the candidates plenty to talk about. A look back over the year’s headlines puts this into perspective.
A COUNCIL IN LOCKSTEP: Most of the City Council has marched in lockstep on nearly every controversial issue that has come before it this year. This all for one mentality has effectively stifled debate at City Hall. “Transparency” is not a term you will hear used by incumbent City Councilmembers between now and Election Day.

City Council meetings have been reduced to little more than sessions in which members appear to receive their marching orders from hired staff and vote accordingly. Self-serving speeches in which members of the Council take turns saying what a fine job they have done does not make for good government.

Citizens who take the time to address the City Council are not given any feedback during the meeting. This makes the Council appear to be completely controlled by the Mayor – who is known to break this “code of silence” whenever it serves him. 

The City Council need only look in the mirror if they want to understand who should be blamed for the sorry state of their public meetings.

$30,000 MISTAKE: Up until this year the employees at Raytown City Hall have seen their salaries frozen for two consecutive years. 

That is “almost” every employee. One employee, the Raytown City Administrator, Mahesh Sharma, was handed a $30,000 pay increase. The increase was approved by a vote of 9 to 1. Only one Councilmember, Charlotte Melson, voted against the increase. She is not up for re-election this year.

When candidates come to your door and ask for you vote – ask them if they would have supported this outrageous pay increase.

RESIDENCY COUNTS: With the exception of Raytown’s two elected city department heads (the Chief of Police and the Municipal Judge), ALL of the remaining department heads at city hall do not live in Raytown.

Collectively, they take over half a million dollars in compensation from the city each year. 

That is $500,000.00 of our tax dollars that are sent out of town to other communities.

To add insult to this economically stupid policy, the one department head who is supposed to live within city limits (according to City Ordinances), City Administrator Mahesh Sharma*, promised the City Council on at least two separate occasions to move to Raytown. I each instance Sharma agreed to deadlines for making the move. Each time the deadline was reached, the Council backed down and extended it. 

Finally, they allowed for him not to move to Raytown and, gave him a $30,000.00 pay increase as well.

Mr. Sharma lives in Raymore, Missouri.

TROUBLE AT PARKS AND RECREATION: Raytown Super Splash is a public swimming pool managed by Raytown Parks and Recreation. Up until this year, nothing but glowing reports were given of the operation.

Then, without explanation, the long time manager at Super Splash was unceremoniously released from his job. Park Board Director Kevin Boji* instructed the City Council to hire an outside firm to manage the facility. When asked for alternative plans Boji told the Councilmembers that without the change, Super Splash would remain closed.

What followed was not pretty.

The City Council faced three consecutive meetings of angry parents and employees who told of poor management procedures and safety violations at Super Splash.

When the dust settled, nearly one half of the employees, most of them Raytown youths working summer jobs as poll attendants and life guards, were no longer employed by Super Splash. 

*Mr. Boji lives in Riverside, Missouri

Politics is by nature, a divisive process, but it is also the means by which compromise and tolerance can be used to find solutions.

Should ALL city department heads live within the city limits? In a perfect world, the answer is yes. But even in an imperfect world steps could be taken that would encourage that those who run our city become a part of the community. 

Unfortunately, the seated incumbents at City Hall have collectively turned their back on that common sense solution. 

Should there be more interaction between the public and the elected officials at Raytown City Council meetings? To paraphrase a popular national politician, “you betchya”. 

Up until the election of David Bower as Mayor, with rare exception the public was allowed to speak to the City Council members. The current policy, which has the blessing of the current City Council, leaves an image of a City Council that is aloof and uncaring.

that is not a good way to build trust in the community.

Next Week: Raytown’s Financial Condition.

The Paul Livius Report
Raytown Board of Aldermen Meeting – January 8, 2013

At the start of the meeting, Mayor Bower asked for a Moment of Silence to reflect on all the Blessings we have in our lives.

Martha Cockrall came before the board to say she was representing the Raytown Rotary and the Raytown Educational Foundation.  On January 18, 2012, at 7PM at the Raytown South High School, Mayor Bower and Police Chief Lynch will join other Raytown businessmen and athletes to play a basketball game against the Harlem Ambassadors.  Tickets can be purchased at the Hy-Vee.

The Board reappointed Pat Jackson to the Board of Equalization.

The Board passed the continuation of an existing service agreement with Med3000 for EMS Billing Services and supplies, integrated patient care reporting software, and hardware in the amount of $76,000.00.

The Board heard the first reading of an ordinance granting a conditional use permit to operate a vehicle sales and display business at 8910 E. Highway 350.  Greg Wagner was seeking approval of a conditional use permit application that proposes to operate a vehicle sale and display business at 8910 Highway 350.  The property is owned by Robert Gear and would be leased and/or sold to the applicant, Greg Wagner, upon approval of the conditional use permit application.  Mr. Wagner said he understood there are several requirements of the Zoning Board and agreed he would have to complete all items before opening his business.

Those requirements are:

1. The vehicle sales and display business shall only be owned and operated by Greg

2. The vehicle sales and display business shall be operated on the property and may not move to a different location or expand to another property without first obtaining approval from the City.

3. The vehicle sales and display business shall be in compliance with all applicable City and State ordinances and codes.

4. The conditional use permit shall be valid for a period of ten (10) years from the date of approval.

5. Light fixtures, poles and bases shall be repaired and repainted so that they match in appearance, color and show no signs of rust or disrepair.  In addition, Mr. Wagner will remove two existing driveways on Highway 350, the driveway on Lane Avenue will be relocated further to the north on Lane Avenue, the shoulder along Highway 350 abutting the property will be removed, and seeded with grass, the curbing will be constructed along portions of Highway 350 and Lane Avenue next to the property, storm water improvements will be constructed along Lane, and a sidewalk with a minimum width of five (5) feet will be constructed along Highway 350 and Lane Avenue.

6. Additional landscaping will be installed by May 1, 2013 on the property consisting of
trees and shrubs along the property next to Highway 350 and Lane Avenue. The number and location of trees will be in accordance with the Highway 350 Corridor Design Standards.

The Board passed an ordinance authorizing the City to enter into an agreement through the Inter-local Purchasing System for the Colman park tennis court project.

All By Myself (and that's just fine!) BY KRISTEN
I write a lot about how often I work out with other people. I take swim classes, I go on group runs, I’ve even joined in on some group bike rides (which is a new and slightly scary experience for me). Even when I work out at home, much of the time my husband can be talked into running or doing a yoga DVD with me. I firmly stand... Continue reading

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Anonymous said...

Jason seems to be referred to as Jacob a couple times for some reason. Mr. Greene taught and coached my boys a couple years ago. He is a very insightful and passionate man, I know he will represent our community with integrity and class.

Anonymous said...

There is a City Administrator who lives in Raymore. And department heads who live up North, in Kansas and everywhere else but Raytown. Why do our leaders lack pride and allow these so called 'professions' to take our money, but refuse to live in Raytown. Unfair, unjust and plain wrong. Vote em out of office and make it a requirement for department heads to Raytown and contribute to our proud community.

Anonymous said...

To beat any of the incumbents on the BOA all you would have to do is to remind the voters of the money given away to the Save Alot Store, the 30k given to the city administrator, the money spent on hiring a Public Information Officer, and the broken promise to the voters by not funding the additional positions in the PD. They should all be sent packing.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone received a notice from Voter's Registration asking if they still lived there? Mine said that the notice was being mailed to everyone. If you don't sign it and send it back, you will have to sign an affidavit when you vote and you will be purged at the 2nd general election. I sent mine in with my new address just to prevent someone from voting my name.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

I noticed the Independence School District is requiring approximately 60 of their top people to move into the district or be terminated. Maybe Raytown will follow suit. Not.

Anonymous said...

Maybe the public needs to be reminded what a mess the city as in when Sue Frank was mayor. We bought the old Baptist church for a small fortune,the sweet deal Walmart got, chief of police got a honey of a deal and I could go on. So get off of it this administration may not be perfect by hers wassn't either.

Anonymous said...

Actually, the Walmart deeal was finalized by David Bower. He was warned that it was a rotten deal for Raytown but he went ahead with it anyway.

Anonymous said...

That's right on the time line about the Walmart deal. Bower was mayor when it went down.

I noticed that you guys are listing Kevin Boji's home as being in Riverside. When did he move from Harrisonville.

You would think that if was going to move from Harrisonville he would try to get closer to Raytown or at least live here.

Greg Walters said...

Better late than never.

Dig out your old LP's or visit you tube to check this out.

The voice we heard when watching and listening to the Chelsea video was Janice Joplin.

Anonymous said...

I noticed on my HUD-1 Good Faith Estimate that Raytown gets a special assessment of $27.35 on the sale of my house. Does Raytown have a tax on property sales? What a ripoff. Fortunately it is not much but could add up on a high value property!

Andy Whiteman

Pat Casady said...

I was wondering if there is an oath taken by
our elected officials, mainly our aldermen?
If so could you post a copy of it on the Report?

Anonymous said...

Don't know for sure but would almost bet it's a tax obama put in.

Anonymous said...

After last nights board meeting it is quite clear that there are 5 board members who don't care what our city looks like. I'm talking about Gear Automotive. Wonder if any of them drove by and even looked at the mess. Well they will see it now every time they drive 350 Highway. Again good job Pat,Shane,Melson,White and Aziere you are making our town look like the inner city even more than it already does. It seems like all you want is your check every month if only you did something to earn it.

Greg Walters said...

Pat, in answer to your request. Following is the text of the Oath of Office as given on April 19th, 2005.

I, Greg Walters, do solemnly swear that I possess all the qualifications for the Office of Alderman, as prescribed by law; that I will support the Constitution of the United States and the State of Missouri; the provisions of all laws of this State affecting cities of this Class, and the Ordinances of the City of Raytown, Missouri an faithfully demean myself in office.

So help me God.

The thought has occurred to me that, given the Mayor's stance on public acceptance of the Christmas holiday season, ... he may have had the last sentence removed.

Anonymous said...

Well, one incumbent alderman is gone and four more to go. Please get you friends and neighbors out to vote against these lazy, wasteful spending aldermen. All we have to do is to remind them of the "$30,000 mistake" and these incumbents should all be voted out of office in April.

Anonymous said...

All the companies are in trouble because of the thieves at the top robbing the companies and gifting themselves with millions even at times when the companies are crashing...

Anonymous said...

8:09 AM, You are assuming people will get out and vote. I hope they do, but it is pretty typical for fewer than 20% of the people to vote in a local elections.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

someone mentioned the police chief getting a sweet deal. What was this deal? The last time I remember cronie-ism being so entrenched in Raytown is back in the 70's into the early 80's. We need a clean sweep across the board. Makes me wonder though, are people being bullied into showing support for the elected officials, like they were back in the Beeler days?