Tuesday, September 17, 2013


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Been Out of Town (again)!!!

So I have some catching up to do on what has been happening in Raytown.

I see that the BOA is holding a budget session tonight.

I wonder if there will be any serious discussion from Board members about how much the 350 Live Project is costing the city in lost sales tax dollars. The discussion is long overdue. It would be a good reminder to the Board of the dangers of selling the farm for a big box store.

It would also be refreshing to hear some discussion on ways to improve out street maintenance program. A change in attitude on code enforcement would be good change as well.

With three new members on the Board we can hope for some change for the better.

In the meantime, please take a minute to enjoy some photos from our trip to Portland, Oregon.

Oh, yes, almost forgot. After talking it over with my partner, Paul Livius, this week, we decided it was time to make a change. The photo I have been using is about five years old, and, as with all things, the wear an tear makes changes. So, with this issue I have unveiled a new photo!

Pretty exciting stuff.

Some may ask if we will be changing out Paul's picture. No, we will not. Paul does not age. He looks the same today as he did ten years ago.

Portland, Oregon and areas nearby . . . .

One of Portland's many bridges.
Portland is a city of approximately one million souls. The weather is generally rainy. We were extremely lucky, as it did not rain one day on our entire trip!
The city has the most efficient mass transportation system I have ever experienced. It is a system of light rail, trolley and bus transportation that makes owning a car within the city limits unnecessary. 

Tri-Met Max Light Rail.
We did not rent a car for our trip until our third day in Portland, which was the day we left the city and headed west to the ocean.

The light rail is above and below ground in Portland.
Share the road is more than just a catchy phrase. Bicycles are nearly as numerous as automobiles in the Downtown area. Parking a vehicle in Downtown Portland is outrageously high priced.
Some interesting facts as about Portland and Oregon.
Oregon does not have a sales tax. Though locals tell me the difference is made up in property taxes that are high by midwestern standards.
Self service gas stations do not exist in Oregon. By state law you are not allowed to pump your own gas. Only the vendor can do so.


Portland Japanese Gardens.

Lan Su Chinese Garden.
Light House.
The Oregon Coast is rugged. The water is cold.

Trail bridge over creek at Mount Hood.

Mountain trail along creek.

A cobblestone beach.
-- Zig --

-- Zag --

-- Trail and Falls --

Mirror Lake, Mount Hood.

Lunch Time!

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Anonymous said...

Nice pictures, Greg. Thanks for sharing.

Pat Casady said...

Greg, you are so right. There should be serious
discussions on the 350 Live Project. This was the
most serious mistake this town’s leaders have
made in decades. Not only in lost sales tax revenue
but forcing the Raytown taxpayers to pay the bond
debts too. This has cost taxpayers hundreds of thousands
if not millions of dollars. The people of Raytown were
lied to and the board bought the asinine deal hook
line and sinker. We were promised by the WalMart
people that their new box on 350hwy. would bring
with it many more new stores. Block told us they
had over seven new stores signed to come into
Raytown. None of this happened! WM got their
sweet deal and the taxpayers will be paying for it for
the next twenty years! Taxpayers could pay out
in excess of ten to fifteen million dollars.
WalMart and Block did not live up to their promises.
This should make that sweet deal null and void!
WalMart should start paying their fair of taxes
to cover the bonds and take the burden off the
shoulders of the Raytown taxpayers.

Anonymous said...

Welcome back! My youngest son lives I. Porand for awhile and loved it: he goes back every year for a visit Could tell you were gone by the previous excepted. Blogs; thank goodness now erased

Susan Dolan said...

Raytown Live - So why are taxpayers footing the bill? Show us the money! I'm telling you - this is another ICLEI/Agenda21 MARC deal. I've downloaded the plans MARC has laid out and fear Bower is getting ready right now to start swinging his axe on it through City Hall so get ready for still more tax increases.

from: http://www.costar.com/News/Article/Raytown-Live-Retail-Project-Receives-$45M-Grant/90739

"Raytown Live Retail Project Receives $45M Grant
Public Financing To Go Towards Improving Traffic, Schools
By Michael Nowicke
June 13, 2007

The proposed $100 million Raytown Live project, aimed at jump-starting Raytown's retail scene, received a $45.2 million grant from public financing. The money will go towards renovating existing school buildings and improving traffic in the area.

Block & Co. Inc. will develop the project, which is proposed for about 40 acres along Missouri Highway 350. The second and third phase of the project is expected to include about 225,000 square feet of junior box stores and restaurants as well as a Super Wal-Mart.

David Block's office confirmed the project is still in the development stage, while renovations to the existing school buildings are expected to begin later this month."

Anonymous said...

Amen to your words Pat.

If our City Council were serious about facing problems they would try to find ways to undo the damage being done by Walmart.

But it would be out of character for them. More than likely they will stumble along and ignore real issues while the elephant does a jig on 350 Highway.

We really need change in the town. The Mayor and his crew at City Hall with inaction on code enforcement and favoritism to large corporations.

Anonymous said...

Greg, Great pictures! Thanks

I frequently see city trucks labeled Code Enforcement driving around her in Alamogordo so at least they have a presence. I don't know if they have taken any action or not. This is a desert area but, especially after rains, people allow weeds to grow on their sidewalks, driveways, and graveled yards. I am hoping to see weeds come down because I keep mine under control.

I am having massive PC issues with a new PC. I gave my old one to Animal Village NM a 501(c)3 non-profit. The director reported she has taken to to 4 technicians who can't fix it. I wish the computer repair shop on 67th and Raytown Rd was here. They did top notch work!

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Code enforcement has really been out in full force in my neighborhood and my friends neighborhood. They give a warning with a 2 week notice. Then they come back to check up and if the problem is not solved the paperwork goes to City Ha and a court date is issued. Some people ride it out and don't solve the issue till just prior to the court date; which can be up to a month from the follow up. This can take up to 6 weeks. If we want something done sooner than the law allows then it is best to help our neighbor rectify the nuisance.

Susan Dolan said...

Andy, I do computer repairs, builds and training - You can call Elisa at Doughboy's to get my phone number. I'll tell her she may give it to you. Experience? Been doing this since mid-seventies and have a degree in networking.

Elisa Breitenbach said...

Greg so glad you got away! Even more glad you are back. Did you know about the EMS Open House from 4:00pm-7:00pm tomorrow night (Friday)? I sure hope everyone who can will take the time to go because this will be a good time to find out more about the Emergency Medical Services Consolidation that many are calling a take over. Also did you know we will be having a new paper in Raytown called The Raytown-Brooking Eagle. I already paid my $30.00 for my year subscription. They will also be sold at participating stores like yours truly. Sure hope to see alot of people at the open house!!! Pat Casady & Susan Dolan I like your blogs on WalMart & David Block!

Anonymous said...


When will the paper go on sale?

Anonymous said...

Elisa. Thanks for the info. It'll be nice to have a real paper again.

Greg Walters said...

Went to the Raytown Democratic Association (RDA) meeting last night to hear what their guest speaker, Economic Development Director Tom Cole, had to say.

The rains kept those in attendance to just nine people -- which allowed for some interesting give and take from those in attendance.

We will have more on this next week.

It was also noted that Sherwood Smith, who is said to have plans to run for the Jackson County Legislature, was in attendance as well.

Pat Casady said...

I have heard from a reliable source, the firemen
don’t want the dispatching to go to Kansas City.
I’ve been told they have the equipment to dispatch
but the powers that be in Raytown won’t use it.
This fire dept. has several light duty people that could man
the emergency calls and dispatch.
It’s all about the money! If you or anybody that reads this
have the chance to ask about this, if there are any fire
people there, let us know if this is true.
I have a friend that lives by some of the Blocks
and is good friends with them. I have asked him to
talk to them and get me some more detailed information
on the Raytown Live Project.

Susan Dolan said...

I am looking for either hard copy or a video of the oath Mayor David Bower pledged upon being sworn into office. Please help.

Anonymous said...

Have you READ the new 2012 International codes? I mean REALLY READ them? They're becoming increasingly restrictive. A huge question is: Why has the City adopted International Codes in the first place and why the frequent CODES updates? Just a short time ago, they updated to 2009 Int'l Codes and now to 2012 Int'l Codes. Beware of restrictions involving land use, i.e. (what you can and cannot build on your own property, new easements on your property that preclude your right to fair use of it, what materials you MUST use inside and out and the right of inspectors to enter your home 'at-will' to look for Codes infractions. It's coming folks.

Anonymous said...

The new paper ran by Diane Krizdek who owns a business here in Raytown and you might remember from parks and rec. has a web site on Facebook ; they are selling advertisement blocks; did you buy one Elisa? I understand they are going to team up with the Lees Summit paper. The web site has consolidated info from the county , city, etc sites and is very interesting

Anonymous said...

Raytown eagle.com has recent paper by page also Raytown Brooking Eagle on Facebook ; they are selling advertisement space and subscriptions

Anonymous said...

we currently have no members of the fire department assigned to light duty. Even if we had some it would take more than two people to cover 24 hour shifts on a dispatch table. Everybody has a opinion on how it works. Most people have no idea what is really going on in this city after dark.


Anonymous said...

Susan, Thanks for your offer but Raytown is a 3 day trip each way for me. It is not like a 1/2 mile drive down the street as it used to be for computer repair.

Since I am disabled, I have a number for free Microsoft support. They are very helpful but only know Microsoft products as one may expect. It got to the point of reinstalling Win 7 Home Premium. my PC was so badly infected that Windows wouldn't re-install and we had to clear both partitions in install Windows. That wiped out my OEM drivers. Of course Microsoft is not familiar with various manufacturers. Since it is a new PC under warranty I called the manufacturer. The techs are in Georgia, a state in the USA, but barely speak English. The last tech was angry at Microsoft and told me I had to send my PC in because Windows was not installed, something which he never checked. I open windows and he helped me install the OEM drivers. I got everything working. The first thing I did was install my subscription to AVG and 180+ windows updates. Had to call Microsoft back for a minor issue under advanced settings that I had no knowledge of.

GOOGLE WARNING TO EVERYONE: One of the 3rd party softwares installed Google Chrome. I ran Super AntiSpyware and discovered 24 Trojans in Google Chrome which I removed. That totally shocked me!

BTW: I am on Face Book as Andy Whiteman. My name is hard to find so it may be easier to find me as a friend of of some Raytown people or even the old Raytown Times, PD or FD.

Andy Whiteman

Elisa Breitenbach said...

Pat Casady I have not been told that the Fire Department could man the emergency calls and dispatch but I have been told by many Reliable Sources they don't want the dispatching to go to Kansas City. In dealing with Block and Co. I can tell you first hand they do not live up to their promises. They will just tell you what you want to hear but their words are worthless.

Elisa Breitenbach said...

Anonymous I don't have a date when the paper will go on sale and no I don't have any advertisments in this new paper.

Susan Dolan said...

Thanks, more info on Raytown Live will be interesting. The issues that bother me about the whole ordeal are 1) That $45M grant was awarded in 2007 (SIX years ago), what are the real reasons for lack of accomplishment. 2) Where's an accounting for the money to be found? 3) What conditions were attached to the grant 4) What will the resultant real cost be to taxpayers? 5) How much low income HUD housing is going in there?
I have downloaded the plans for Hwy 350 and do see areas designated for medium and, as I recall low-density housing. It seems to me that since the developers of that housing are going to get either 353 or TIF abatements, that those of us who own homes are going to be paying taxes for those new others and that it will further diminish the value of our homes. It's like getting smacked in the front AND the back of the head with a shovel.

Susan Dolan said...

You wrote, "BTW: I am on Face Book as Andy Whiteman. My name is hard to find so it may be easier to find me as a friend of of some Raytown people or even the old Raytown Times, PD or FD.
I will not use Facebook or Twitter and highly recommend staying completely away from both - will divulge why if asked. Same for Google Chrome. I do recommend the Firefox browser and ZoneAlarm firewall/antivirus. You may have antivirus installed but you really SHOULD also have a firewall running on your PC as well. I understand you're not local but my long distance is free Andy so if you want some free advice, call me any time and I'll call you right back on my free LD. As I said, Elisa @ Doughboys has my phone number.

Susan Dolan said...

Correction, my post on 9/20 @ 2:50pm

I had said MARC's plans for 350 indicated med & low density. MEANT TO SAY med & high density.

Anonymous said...

How does one order a subscription to the Raytown Brooking Times? I tried online with a credit card ans was told that I must correct an error but wasn't told what the error was.

Susan, I am on overload and may not see a post for some time or it may not register immediately mainly because I scan for what interests me most but I may see it later. For a video of the Mayor's oath, I suggest you contact the City Clerk stating it is a Freedom of information act request. There will probably be a charge, but I will tell you back when complete minutes were changed to summary minutes, I was offered a free DVD of each meeting but I stated I didn't have 2 or more hours to watch especially with certain alderpeople being inaudible. Being disabled I need written documents. I also suggest you check with Michael Downing. It seemed like Michael posted many BOA meeting segments of interest. I came across his business card recently but can't find it now.

Andy Whiteman