Sunday, October 13, 2013

RAYTOWN'S LEADING NEWS SOURCE


Yes, we have shown this video before . . . but it has been awhile and we do have many new readers. It is a testament of the will to win and one of the most inspiring sports videos ever made. So, even if you are not a track and field fan, and 10,000 meters may be longer than you even want to see anyone else run. Take a break and enjoy the show.

Use this link BRITISH RUNNER STEVE JONES


. . . . BREAKING NEWS . . . .

RAYTOWN, Mo. (by Greg Steele/KMBC) —Raytown police said they would like to find a witness in connection with an officer-involved shooting last Friday.  Raytown police are investigating a shooting involving one of its officers Friday morning.
          
Police said a woman was jogging on 79th Street near Hardy Avenue about 8 a.m. when an officer confronted an armed man and shot him.
The officer was not hurt. The suspect remains hospitalized in stable condition.Police said anyone with information about the woman jogging is asked to call the TIPS Hotline at 816-474-8477 or Raytown police at 816-737-6020. READ MORE



Controversial Letter from Ward 3 Alderman Stirs Up Fire District
The following Press Release was received by the Raytown Report this afternoon from Barb Schlapia, Vice President to the Raytown Fire District and Matt Mace, Raytown Fire Marshal.
The press release is in response to a letter from Raytown Ward 3 Alderman Charlotte Melson. Melson is Chairman of the EMS/FIRE Merger Discussion Committee.
The letter from Melson is unclear whether or not merger will go to the Board of Aldermen for a vote of if she and her committee have the authority to keep the merger from being presented to the Board of Aldermen.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 16, 2013
STATEMENT REGARDING RAYTOWN FIRE/RAYTOWN EMS MERGER

During the meeting of the Raytown City Council on October 15th, 2013, Alderman Charlotte Melson spoke on behalf of the City’s EMS merger discussion committee. She stated that the EMS/Fire merger discussion committee has decided that the merger is not advantageous to the city at this time and they will not be moving forward.

The Fire District continues to believe that fire based EMS in our community would provide better value to our citizens and improve service delivery. The Fire District presented a detailed proposal in May of 2013 to substantiate this assertion. This proposal was developed with the cooperation of the City of Raytown, who provided audited financial information. That information was utilized to develop the consolidation proposal. 

In July of 2013, the city’s Fire/EMS merger discussion committee held their only public meeting to discuss the proposal. At that meeting, officials from the Fire District were discouraged from participating in the discussion regarding the proposal. In fact, city officials have avoided any discussion with the Fire District regarding the details of the proposal.

Fire Board President Robert Palmer issued the following statement:

The Fire District was shocked and disappointed by Alderman Melson’s announcement at the council meeting on Tuesday. We were given no notice that the statement was forthcoming and were provided with a brief letter from Alderman Melson immediately after the meeting.
The letter, which follows this release, contains no explanation for the decision. 

The Fire Board is unsure of Alderman Melson’s motive, be we are hopeful that Mayor Bower and the other aldermen will intervene and bring this issue in front of the full board for a vote. Our citizens deserve the opportunity to have an issue of this importance discussed in a public venue. We remain interested in cooperating with the city to improve the value and efficiency of emergency service delivery in our community. Our door is, and will remain open when the city is ready to have a substantive discussion regarding this issue.


Alderman Melson’s Letter to 
the Raytown Fire Board

On behalf of the EMS/FIRE Merger Discussion Committee, I would like to notify you that the committee has decided that the proposed EMS/FIRE merger is not advantageous to the City of Raytown and its citizens at this time.

I want to thank the Raytown Fire Protection District for their work on the EMS/FIRE merger proposal and the opportunity to discuss this issue in 2013.

Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have questions. 

Sincerely,

Charlotte Melson
Alderman, Ward III Chair-EMS/FIRE Merger Discussion Committee



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INSANITY: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.Albert Einstein


Changing Times Require Realistic Changes BY GREG WALTERS

Have you ever noticed the tendency of local governments to develop a “crisis of the week” type of rhythm to address problems?

It is a clumsy way to run a ship of local government, but, as any observant person can tell you, “it is what it is”, so . . . let’s all jump into the pool and talk about SuperSplash.

For those who are unaware, SuperSplash is Raytown’s water park. It was one of the Kansas City area’s first municipally owned and operated water parks and was a successful operation when it first opened. Read “successful” to mean it made enough money to pay down the debt created to make improvements to what was once a private pool.

It never has been what someone might call a “cash cow”. But at least it did not operate at a loss.

That is not the case today.

City records show a loss of nearly a million dollars in the last five years.

A couple of years ago the city hired a private firm to manage the property. At the time the Mayor and Board, most of whom are still in office today, spoke in glowing terms of a bright future for the SuperSplash because they were bringing in “professionals” to manage the operation.

Two years later, the results point in the other direction. Attendance has dropped. Revenues have declined.

It may be time for a reality check.

When SuperSplash first opened it was the only game in town. Now there are water parks everywhere with newer and larger venues, higher visibility and large numbers of young people living nearby to use the facilities.

Some of those water parks are indoor and operate year round. By comparison, SuperSplash has a shorter season than other water parks and shorter operating hours. Another very important factor is that Raytown’s population has aged. Most of the city’s population has abandoned their swimsuits for other forms of entertainment.

The Mayor has appointed a new committee to find a solution.

They should take care in their deliberations to be realistic in their recommendations.
Sometimes it is best to meet the challenges of changing times with change.

Forget about the swan song suggesting you bring in another layer of professionals to set things right.

It was tried. It failed.

Accept the fact that times have changed. The game has changed and Raytown simply does not have the numbers of youth needed to make a water park viable.


Last week, Ward 3 Alderman Janet Emerson spoke of the need to stop the hemorrhaging of city dollars at Super Splash. 

Mrs. Emerson is right.  

The committee should look to new uses, both private and public, for the SuperSplash property.



FIT BOTTOMED EATS

KRISTEN

A Healthy Taco Salad Recipe BY KRISTEN

A well-made taco salad is one of my very favorite things in the world. I mean, I am a Mexican food aficionado in general, but the taco salad has really become my specialty.
 
And for good reason — it incorporates all the things I love about Mexican food in a way that’s really nutritious. At least, the way I make it, that is.
 
I’ve been perfecting my recipe for quite some time, but was recently inspired to change things up a bit by using some authentic Mexican ingredients — yucca and jicama. I tend to figure that, if an ingredient tends to be used in a culture, it’s always worth looking into how to prepare it and include it in dishes I already dig. READ MORE


Dead Trees.
WEEK 3 . . . Watch what they do, not what they say.

Walmart spends millions of dollars to create a shopper friendly, value-based store that cares for communities in its advertising. It's supporters in Raytown speak glowingly of its value to the community. 

Yet, the statement made by the picture on the left shouts a different message. It is one of city leaders and the city's largest retail store turning their head and ignoring an eyesore. The sad part of the message is that the problem can so easily be fixed.



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89 comments:

Andy Whiteman said...

The crisis of the week is an important government tool. It is also known as a distraction. If people are focused on codes, Police Pension Fund, City Audit, or anything else that is important; a crisis sure distracts everyone to a different issue!

Super Splash has been in crisis for a long, long time. I wonder is it has anything to do with the closing of the Raytown YMCA, the change in demographics as well as a change in peoples wants and needs. Obviously the YMCA being more like a business (even though a non-profit organization) recognizes this long before a local government realizes they have a big cash leak. I also attribute this to the recession with people not having money for Super Splash or the Y. I noticed many restaurants have closed, reduced staff, cut portion sizes or sold out. People just don't have $$$ for luxuries.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Greg do you know were I can get a copy of the last Council meeting? I heard that during the budget discussion portion, the newly elected alderman let them have it. I didn't get to see that and want to know what was said.

Anonymous said...

Andy, you are dead-on about the unfortunate ease with which this short attention-span theatre is redirected. This behavior in this microcosm perfectly exemplifies how the masses between our shores are manipulated on a regular basis. Our entire population is kept off-kilter by diversion; jumping from one chaos to another, nothing is resolved while the puppet masters do as they please behind the mirror.

Anonymous said...

I east on 350 Sunday afternoon and saw the dead trees on the Walmart property you guys wrote about. I also noticed that the properrty next door has dead ones as well. I am not sure if it is the school district's property or the utility company. But they are right next to the entrance on east bound 350 highway.

I agree property owners should take better care of their own. Don't know how you make them be responsible.

Paul Livius said...

You can get a copy of the meeting from the City Clerk. Her contact information is :

Teresa Henry
(816) 737-6004
thenry@raytown.mo.us

If you want the budget meetings that were held prior to the BOA meeting, you should specify that. There is a fee for the DVD.

Paul

Andy Whiteman said...

1:24 PM, Are you kidding? Who said what is a secret guarded by the administration. A few years ago full minutes were discontinued because they were said to be too costly (and in my opinion was not correct anyway since what I said was not stated properly unless I gave a copy of my comments to Theresa and even then they were still sometimes incorrect.) There are now only summary minutes. When I protested I was told that Teresa would furnish me with a DVD but being disabled, I wanted a written copy and certainly didn't have time to watch a 2-4 hour DVD.

I suggest you read Paul Livius' report usually published Sunday after the meeting. Also the Fascist Fief posts the summary minutes online but only after approved (usually the next meeting.) When I was secretary-treasurer of a fire district, we didn't have this secrecy and I posted the minutes the next day at Firehouse #1 where the meetings were held.

Andy Whiteman

Bob Loblaw said...

With regards to that abandoned house on 81st Terrace, it looks like the city is updating their Dangerous Building Code. Could it be in response to this case? I found the info at http://www.raytown.mo.us/vertical/sites/%7B418C71C3-E397-4C87-B464-C498EC8900F9%7D/uploads/10-15-13_Work_Session_Web_Packet.pdf.

I also read the resolution for an $82,700 pool filter in the regular agenda as a sign they're going to move forward with having Super Splash open next year. It's located at http://www.raytown.mo.us/vertical/sites/%7B418C71C3-E397-4C87-B464-C498EC8900F9%7D/uploads/10-15-13_Agenda.pdf.

Anonymous said...

The $82,700 for a new pump at SuperSplash is interesting. You would think they would at least wait unitl the special committee the Mayor appointed on SuperSplash had made their recommendations.

Does it take six months to order and put a pump in?

It the city council does this I do not want to hear them whining how they have no money when they throw it away like this!

Anonymous said...

That was the point made at the Parks and Recreation budget meeting that this was not a plan but just throwing money at something, but most the council approved it anyway.

Anonymous said...

1:55p thanks for the great info.
8:31 I agree with you! Surely that sales tax stuff will be coming OFF the upcoming ballot. That $82,700 would be better spent by giving it back to REMS so they can afford to keep both ambulances on the street than tossing good money after bad toward a Super Splash people don't use anyway.

Anonymous said...

"Last year only 24,000 people went through the turnstiles" at SuperSplash. "Over the past four years attendance has dropped about 5,000 each year."

Those quotes are from the Mayor's unofficial mouthpiece, The Raytown Times. The article was unsigned, but many believe that a good part of it came straight from city hall.

The City Council thinks it is a good idea to throw away $82,700,000.00 on new pumps.

They meet tonight and will vote on whether or not to authorize the purchase of the pumps.

An old politician once told me that sometimes people vote with their feet. Despite the efforts two years ago by the City Council to turn SuperSplash around the result has been a failure.

Accept what it is guys. Don't throw away more of our money on a lost cause.


Anonymous said...

Anon 7:53 am. Of course the attendance figures come from city hall. They are probably accurate. If you look at the pictures on the Super Splash web site, there are only about a dozen people in each picture. The park appears to be mostly empty. If the decision is made NEXT YEAR to keep Super Splash open, they can buy the pump then. There is no reason to spend $83,000 on a pump and let it sit idle for six months.

Anonymous said...

Let's add some of this up, shall we? A council appointed to look into SuperSplash with nothing to look into. $83K for a pump in a pool that is nothing more than a money pit filled with water. Money wasted on a pool management co., more to be wasted on a 2nd pool mgt. co. and pool operating losses too. If those Bozos think they're going to see sales tax approval on the Charter Ballot, they can kiss my grits. Kick 'em out and demolish the loser-pool. While we're at it, pull the purse strings shut on them since they obviously don't know the value of a dollar, OUR dollar I might add. 8:10 am "If the decision is made NEXT YEAR to keep Super Splash open, they can buy the pump then. There is no reason to spend $83,000 on a pump and let it sit idle for six months."

There is no reason to spend $83 on a pump period! I don't believe they're thinking with their feet but I can easily think of another part of the anatomy they're using. This is pure, simple waste.

Anonymous said...

Bob,
I would think that it's about time to up date the dangerous building ordinance to hopefully get this kind of work done faster. I'm sorry to say that this house on 81st Terr. may have helped but it's not the only one that needs to come down. On 350 hiway there is a house you can barely see because there is so much grown up in front of it. It's on the north side of the hiway across from the old service station that's a car repair place now and the old Wood oil(don't know the name of it now). A little farther east of that location they finely got another eye sour taken down after many years. Now it's a vacant lot but it sure looks better than it did.

I hope if it's true that they are re-doing the ordinance and that they put some teeth in it this time. I am tired of watching my neighborhood going to____ with rental houses that have owners won't do anything to maintain the property or who don't get the renters out if they are the problem and just plan property owners who have no pride in what they have and a city that doesn't see that codes are enforced.

By the way, the 81st Terr. house still is not completed, the tree is still down and the house damage has not been boarded up or repaired according to the neighbors. Here it is Oct 15th and this all started in June. How sad to think it takes this long to get something done that should have been after the first 10 day waiting period.

Sandy Hartwell

Peter said...

Does anyone remember Super splash when it was Raytown Beach? We would go as kids. Then in high school it was Raytown Swim Club and the High school swim Teams used it for swim meets ; then they built and used the old YMCA on 75th st and the pool became a place for my kids to go and take lessons and by the time my Grandkids came along it became a theme water park. It has had a long run. But agree with Greg; we now have so many of these now ; Indep. Lees Summit , the Hotel by the stadium. Maybe it could be used much like the YMCA was; don't know but as.a theme park for the young it just is longer working.

Anonymous said...

I watched the entire BOA meeting last night. The only word to describe is disappointing.

They voted to throw away $83 thousnad dollars on a sweimming pool that is losing 5,000 visits each year.

The Mayor appoints a committee to discuss the future of the failing pool. Good move. But they don't wait for the committee to make any recommendations before voting to spend the $83 thousand!

One Board member, Jim Aziere, suggested an alternative filter system that he says would save the city money. He asked Park Board Director Kevin Boji to look into alternative a week ago.

Boji said he had not looked into it.

Later in the meeting one of the BOA members makes a comment that he knows we have a tight money situation in Raytown.

He sure did not vote like it!

Kudos to Alderman Janet Emerson. She was the only one with the courage to vote no on the madness at city hall last night.

Anonymous said...

I watched the meeting too.

Teh comment I found so out of place was the one that said if we had a hot summer maybe it would improve attendance.

Talk about short term memory!

This summer has been mild. But the one before was pure misery with the temperatures in the 90's and 100's for a good part of the summer.

Attendance dropped that year.

I remember when the park board hired the professional management company to run SuperSplash. They fired most of the local help. Promises of brighter days ahead came fast and furious from Kevin Boji and the city council.

The result. Attendance dropped again.

The Raytown Times wrote that attendance has been steadily declining over the past five years.

The BOA is living in the past and closing its eyes to the future.

Anonymous said...

Sandy, I too had code issues in my neighborhood. Instead of writing about in on this blog, I went to city hall and scheduled a time to take Ray and John for a ride. this did more good than writing about it on a blog.

Anonymous said...

R Representatives
A Against saving
Y Your
T Tax dollars
O On-going waste
W While
N Not caring about you


Anonymous said...

The price difference between a season pass for Super Splash and Worlds/Oceans of Fun is less than $30. This is why my family does not visit Super Splash.

Pat Casady said...


I find it disturbing that our elected officials are spending
tax dollars on something that is losing money. That’s just
not good business practice. I know this is a town not a business
but waste is waste no matter what venue in occurs in.
I would rather here some plans to draw more paying customers
into the water park before big money is spent on a pump and filter
system for only a small amount people to use.
Throwing good money into a losing pit is just unforgivable waste.
Especially if there are cheaper options.
Our elected officials are supposed to watch over our tax dollars.
When they buy police cars they don’t use local dealers they get
bids from several dealers. I’m not sure what these cars cost
but $85,000.00 seems like a lot of money to just throw out
there without asking for bids. Isn’t that what the department
heads are supposed to do? Make sure the tax payers’ dollars
aren’t wasted.

Andy Whiteman said...

Why doesn't the city sell Super Splash to the school district for swim class and swim competitions? That would put the property to better use and take a burden off the city. If the public is allowed would be a decision to be made by the school district.
**********************
Sandy,

I remember when lightening struck a transformer (I believe on 66th between Willow & Harris) and burnt a nearby house so it was unfit for habitation. I walked past it at least twice daily with Hank Dogg and noticed nothing was done about it. Since it was an attractive nuisance, I made several calls to city hall pointing out the dangers and liability issues. After what seemed like a year, I was told nothing could be done because the insurance company refused to pay and the owner couldn't afford to raze the house. I suggested that the property be fenced which was finally done. It took two to three years to raze the house.

The house next door to me was abandoned, foreclosed, uninhabitable, with high grass and weeds, and a general nuisance. Finally thanks to Jim Aziere, the grass was finally cut down.

My point is that there are issues involved that are not known by the general public. Has anyone contacted City Hal, about the house on 81st for an explanation of what has been done and why there is no progress?

Andy Whiteman

Bob Loblaw said...

Super Splash won't work for the school district. It'd need to be heated.

Anonymous said...

Earlier this week someone said "not so Super Splash" attendance had dropped 5,000/yr over the past 4 years. That's means 44,000 gate traffic in 2010, which means 2013 traffic was only 55% of 2010's.

If your business was operating at that level of loss, you'd have to admit it was a dismal failure, cut your losses and close the doors.

If City Hall cannot see this simple but clear writing on the wall and respond in common sense fashion, then they should not be there. From most Board Members, to Boji, to Bower - get rid of the lot.

Anonymous said...

Let's see. The merger with the Fire Department would have saved money and improved service.

Charlotte and her committee voted not to take that path.

After the decision on the unnecessary pumps for the Super Splash swimming pool, why am I not surprised/

Anonymous said...

Hi 10/16. I beg to differ a bit. REMS operating capital has already been cut back to the bone thanks to their Dir, Jonesi's "dealings". That's why REMS was down to only 1 ambo of late ... they didn't have the funding to keep 2 in service, according to the whistleblower who posted here last week.

Can't you see where we're headed? I think we need to take a lesson from what happened in KC. The KCFD/MAST merger was completed in the spring of 2010. MARC's dispatch is a failure. Since inception the furball they made of dispatch and "money-saving" cuts to manpower and equipment has resulted in consistently reduced response times which do not meet the city's requirements.

In trying to understand what's transpired, I turned to video. Here's what happened in KC.

Funkhouser needed cash (sound familiar?) so HE wanted the merger. He was looking at cutting non-essentials such as the annual payment of $2 million dollars to the sports complex. I wonder at Bower's involvement with the sports complex as it relates to the proposed merger here in Raytown.

Video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lfQbbnd5caA

KCFD pushed hard to take over MAST and finally prevailed. The claim was "cost savings without reduction in service".

MAST was threatened by the Union.

Video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GQWJkesfmNA

Their wages were frozen, overtime was cut and their pensions suffered.

Funkhauser asked for the MAST Director's resignation and KCFD's director "retired".

2010 KCFD has a city-required response time of 9 minutes which they fail to meet 30% of the time (Our REMS response time has been 5 minutes). In 2010, one man in cardiac arrest died while waiting 21 minutes for first responders.

Early 2012 KC has 77% response time. 1 minute slower - extra questions asked by dispatchers are laid to blame.

Video > http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oA_2FyUTGx8


2012: KC has 87% response time but doesn't always have enough firefighters on responding fire trucks. The city wants "More Money - again" so wants to cut over 100 firefighter jobs.

Video > http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0IGkgZI1tjo

Spring 2012: MORE money 7+ million dollars cut from KCFD budget - firefighters have to work more than 53 hours in order to get overtime and 50 senior firefights jobs gone.

Video > http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1f9lQgXIRmY

Fall 2012: City comes up with another way to try to meet required response times without adding staff or units.

Video > http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1f9lQgXIRmY

This is a bit of a mash-up but should get you to thinking.

Firefighting and Emergency Medical Services are about saving our lives and property and should not be thrown upon the gauntlet of saving ANY city's budget. It isn't ABOUT money folks!

The one thing Funk had said that I agree with was that non-essentials need to go before fire and rescue. And given the way our city is blowing money out both ends it seems it would be apparent to anyone but a fool that there is no excuse for using monetary issues to move this horrid issue forward.

A city the size of KC should be able to handle their own fire and ems on their own. Yet, because they have caved to greed, they do not and have to rely on outside cities. They are the BEST example of how such a merger performs and it is a fail. Poor dispatch, lost jobs, lost pay and benefits, less equipment is the story in KC and the net effect is less effective life-saving and fire prevention.

That's what you get when you sell-out to Mammon. Life should NEVER take a back seat to money and if we allow this, we're got blood on our hands; our own blood.

If you disagree, please present substantiated facts to support your position.

Anonymous said...

It might be true that Raytown has a financial problem
and needs money.
Let’s see how our leaders handled our problem.
They gave a tax free ride to WalMart that will cost you
the taxpayers millions over the twenty three year deal.
They gave our City Administrator an over thirty thousand
dollar a year raise. They loaned Aldi’s and IHOP’s developer
over eight hundred thousand tax dollars. They have given
tax breaks to HyVee and now want to spend eighty five
thousand tax dollars on a swimming pool pump. A city
owned swimming pool that costs money and does not
make enough income to carry it’s own expenses.
I’m sure there is more but, I can’t think of more at this time.
Now let’s take a look at our streets. These streets
are something we all use and are in real need of having
our tax dollars spent on them. How have they handled
this problem? They have some of our streets chip and sealed
without so much as filling in the potholes. Now we have streets
in a shade of brown with potholes still in them. This is NOT
repairing our streets. This is not an OVERLAY as promised
when we voted in the street overlay sales tax increase.
I feel sorry for Alderman Emerson. It seems she is the only
elected person that has any smarts, too bad she gets
shot at by other aldermen that just can’t get it. They don’t
know what their job descriptions are.
Alderman Emerson, keep working for us and thank you.

Anonymous said...

Anon 8:17 You forgot to mention that the Finance Director told the Board last month that the city won't get the full 8% interest it was promised when it loaned the money to Aldi's. He didn't say why all the interest won't be repaid and none of the aldermen asked. It's just another unfulfilled promise.

Bob Loblaw said...

12:49, if you're going to make such claims, please at least sign your name as something.

I was going to say MARC doesn't have squat to do with dispatch. That's wrong, they administer the regional response, because heaven forbid we have a plan in case anything bad ever happens in KC. Here's what they do: http://www.marc.org/publicsafety/911services.htm. Don't see "maintain KC dispatch" anywhere on there.

Not sure how many people realize this, but KCFD had an ambulance stationed out of an RFPD station for a while. Might be one reason why their response time was slow - they had to travel over a mile just to get back into KC!

RFPD/EMS's consolidation would keep everything in Raytown. KCFD is a COMPLETELY different beast - they have something like 1,000 on staff. Tons of trucks (they have more at the airports than RFPD has active!). Many ambulances. They might spread those out poorly. MAST was even more of a joke - they didn't have a station outside of their garage, so you have ambulances just sitting around town waiting for a call. Pretty darn hard to have poor location in Raytown if you have two on duty; it should be nearly impossible to be more than 15 minutes from any point in Raytown. Especially if one's at a fire station. RFPD and EMS have something like 50 staff total, two fire stations, two ambulances on duty. If you're handling a 50 person group like they're a 1,000 person group, you're doing something wrong.

Wouldn't stationing an ambulance at each fire station improve service compared to having both ambulances stationed at a single location?

Anonymous said...

What pensions suffered? Mast employees didn't even get a penny; court records tell far more than You Tube

Andy Whiteman said...

I have served as elected official both on a fire board and on a village club board. During that time I noticed that people tend to make a big issue of trivial items and ignore the important issues. Has anyone notice that in Raytown?

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Bob
I agree with you,having an ambulance at each end of town makes a lot of sense. Also most of the firefighters are paramendics or EMT's. This would cut down on expense as well while mainting quality service to the residents. Too bad Ms. Melson had the power to barely debate it and kill the idea before the entire BOA had the chance to hear the complete proposal. I talked to one of the committee memebers and he had no idea she was going to make that announcement. There must be a lot going on behind closed doors that public doesn't know about. I thought we were protected from that by Sunshine?

Anonymous said...

Bob,
Sir you are lost and your analogy is way off base.

doc

Anonymous said...

Are the minutes for the EMS meger are available from the city?

Need To Know said...

Ask the average man on the street and he'll tell you he hasn't a clue about what's really going on at City Hall. Sunshine? Yes, nice concept but it cannot be effective when it is a non-govenmental agency which is, by its' very design, calling the shots by circumventing government at every level and using grants as the bait to gain the cooperation of government officials and keep them in line with their agenda. I'm talking about an agenda that has no interest in our well-being, financial or otherwise. It is Agenda21.

Anonymous said...

To Wouldn't stationing an ambulance at each fire station improve service compared to having both ambulances stationed at a single location?

October 17, 2013 at 9:50 AM

Not necessarily as long as EMS is centrally located. To what end would it serve to break up their cohesive operation from under one roof? If a thing works, don't fix it.

Anonymous said...

Raytown EMS was so short last week our newest employee was turn loose on his second shift. We could not find anyone to train him. Oh by the way he is a paramedic, that's the person in charge of patient care, gives narcotics, puts the tube in that helps you breath. What's the worse that can happen....Really....when is someone going to put an end to this. REMS_EMT

Sandy Hartwell said...


There seems to be some confu.ssion about whether I have contacted city hall about the house on 81st Terrace.

Yes, I have starting in June of this year.

Then in late September or early October I posted an article here on the Raytown Report. It was a timeline of events built out of frustration of inaction and excuses by city hall.

It appears you missed that issue.

Greg has asked me to keep readers up to date and that is what I have done.

Anonymous said...

When did we elect Charlotte Melson dictator for life?
Raytowna Beach Bum

Anonymous said...

REMS_EMT I was told the EMS audit didn't go as well as the story in the paper portrayed it. Can you verify this rumor?

Anonymous said...

REMS_EMT,
Raytown’s newest employee is just that – a new employee. He is not a new paramedic. He worked for MAST before it was KCFD and has tons of field experience. Quit being a drama queen and trying to stir these people up. They have other city business to worry about than your vendetta against the ambulance service and Doug Jonesi.
Megan Thurston, Paramedic at Raytown EMS since 2006

Anonymous said...

Anon 12:49 Please read my post in the other comment thread regarding the city's great ambulance service and allegations of being "cut to the bone". They are ridiculous and unfounded.

Those discussing having an ambulance at each fire station -
Theoretically it makes sense. However, Raytown EMS' response times average less than 5 minutes. I don't have the exact number in front of my face but I believe we meet the 6 min standard about 94ish% of the time - that's pretty darn good. Take that and compare it to KC's numbers that someone else posted previously and know that Raytown's citizens are well protected. At this time, due to the Raytown Fire District being dispatched by KC Fire, there is a lapse in dispatch time. Where the Fire guys used to beat us to a place that we were both called to, now we are beating them or arriving at the same time. If you were to merge the departments, you would be either keeping the response times the same - or possibly even increasing them. If it's not broke - don't fix it. Our response times are great!
Megan Thurston

Anonymous said...

Did anyone else catch what's going on that really stinks???

May, 2013 RFPD Director Palmer presents his written proposal for RFPD/REMS consolidation to City Council. I had questioned here, why such a recommendation for this questionable money saving (?) proposal had been spawned by RFPD and not the City. Now the answer is revealed and it turns out there was some slight of hand alright. The City helped to foment the grand design by giving Palmer the magic numbers he used and he presented those numbers WITHOUT revealing where they came from, as if they were his own work. Palmer did not disclose the fact that City Hall was assisting his efforts to destroy our EMS by absorption into RFPD.

This is yet another example (along the same vein as the Walmart deal) of the sleazy way City Hall operates. The only difference in this one is City Hall employed a different accomplice.

Bower, when you talk of transparency in government, the tails of your forked tongue flop in two different directions.

Per 10/17 blog headline: Controversial Letter from Ward 3 Alderman Stirs Up Fire District

The Fire District presented a detailed proposal in May of 2013 to substantiate this assertion. This proposal was developed with the cooperation of the City of Raytown, who provided audited financial information. That information was utilized to develop the consolidation proposal.

Andy Whiteman said...

Bernalillo County, NM where Albuquerque is located just started a new dispatch system where the closest fire or EMS unit responds whether or not they are leaving their territory. In my opinion, the fastest response is of the utmost importance regardless of who responds.

As for the EMS merger proposed by the RFD, I think there should be input from both EMS personnel and Firefighters before any decision is made. There are many issues such as seniority, salary, pension, and possibly cross training. From what I have read and seen on TV there was a lot of trouble with the KCFD/MAST merger.

Where I live in Alamogordo, NM there used to be no Fire Department and Police were cross-trained to be firefighters and EMTs. Finally it was realized that people wanted to be Police or Firefighters but not both; hence, a Fire Department was formed stating that insurance rates would be lower with a professional FD. Quite possibly employees in Raytown may want to be EMS or Firefighters but not both. If this merge happens it needs to be well thought out and planned to avoid a snafu like the KCFD/MAST merger.

Andy Whiteman

Pat Casady said...

It would be nice if someone we trusted would
tell us exactly what is going on with the ambulance
situation as well as the Fire Department dispatching
thing. Everything that has been written on this site
has someone write something different. It’s hard
to trust anybody at City Hall because most have their
own agenda and most don’t know what is going on anyway.
What are the real stories?

Anonymous said...


Shame on you! Maybe someone on the inside knows more about the situation than you and you're just wearing blinders. Even the City Admin. Sharma listed fiscal reductions to REMS as an 'accomplishment'.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous Anonymous said...

To REMS_EMT

Your report is substantiated by City Admin/Sharma who bragged about your reduction in funding as an accomplishment. A report about Alderman Melson's committee work regarding the RFPD/REMS proposed merger revealed that someone in the City had provided RFPD ammo in the form of the numbers that RFPD Dir. Palmer used in a proposal he presented to the City as his own work.

It seems apparent that if they weaken your operations enough through defunding, they can make you appear to be ineffective, lending erroneous strength to the City and RFPD's persistent attempts to liquidate REMS and absorb you into RFPD.

Thank you for whistleblowing on this.

Anonymous said...

10:05 AM Since you're so well informed on the topic. Please cite specifics so that we can all benefit from your knowledge.

Anonymous said...

I just saw an article in the Kansas City Star that said a Walmart employee was fired for coming to the aid of a female shopper who was being attacked in the parking lot. It seems Walmart not only has a policy against fighting with co-workers and trying to stop shop lifters, it also has a policy against coming to the assistance of anyone who is in imminent danger on Walmart property. In other words, if you get in trouble at a Walmart, you are on your own. They won't help you. Another reason not to shop there. It isn't safe.

Andy Whiteman said...

7:08 PM, That is why there is a city election every 2 years with each Alderperson and the Mayor up for election every 4 years. The real problem is getting people off their duffs and out to vote. I think most city officials are really voted in by their friends and members of groups they belong to since there are so few voters.

11:22AM, Is the Walmart policy new? I remember when I reported being approached by a panhandler when exiting my car at the Walmart on Hillcrest an employee offered to walk me out. Was this employee within Walmart policy or was it a false show of force?

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

To 7:47 AM You seem to want facts spoon-fed to you. You claim you don't know who to trust and what the real story is.

Turn off the t.v. where news is no more than the API censored propoganda regurgitated by your local 'news reporters'.

You're exhibiting learned helplessness, poor you - so confused. Do some research and convert that whine of yours into a voice that contributes to fact-based understanding. No whiners!

Anonymous said...


WALMART / KC ROYALS CONNECTION

David Dayne Glass (born September 2, 1935)[1] is the former President and Chief Executive Officer of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. He is currently the Owner and Chief Executive Officer of the Kansas City Royals.
Glass joined the company in 1976. In his position as Executive Vice President of Finance for Wal-Mart Stores, he administered the overall financial and accounting responsibilities of the company prior to his appointment as Vice Chairman and Chief Financial Officer. He served in that role until 1984 when he was named President and Wal-Mart’s Chief Operating Officer. Along with Sam Walton, in 1985 David Glass managed development of Retail Link program, Walmart's proprietary trend-forecasting software.[2] In 1988 he was named Wal-Mart’s Chief Executive Officer, stepping down from the position in January 2000. Glass was active in the company’s growth from 123 stores in 1976 to its more than 4,000 nationally and internationally in 2005.

Glass was named Retailer of the Year by members of the retail industry in 1986 and 1991 and was inducted into the Retail Hall of Fame in August, 2000. Glass has been a member of the Board of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. since 1977.
Career with Kansas City Royals

Glass became the interim CEO and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Royals on September 23, 1993, following the death of the founding owner, Ewing Kauffman. Under Glass' leadership, the board cut the payroll budget from $41 million to $19 million. During the Major League Baseball strike of 1994-1995, Glass opposed any settlement with the players' union without a salary cap, and supported the use of strike breaking "replacement" players, despite a court ruling that Major League owners were in violation of Federal labor laws.

On April 18, 2000, Glass became sole owner of the Royals, purchasing the organization for $96 million. The Board approved his offer despite a competing bid $120 million by Miles Prentice. MLB said that Prentice did not have league mandated net worth to buy the team. An original stipulation of the sale was that any profits from Glass' sale of the Royals must go to charity, but that clause has since expired.

During his tenure as owner, Glass has been criticized for using the same cost-cutting management style of the Wal-Mart company with the Royals baseball team, resulting in large personal profits for himself but a poorly-performing team. Glass' management is cited for transforming the Royals from a winning team in the 1980s to one of the worst teams in Major League Baseball during the 1990s and 2000s.

Glass created a controversy on 9 June 2006 by revoking the press credentials of two reporters who had earlier asked pointed questions to Royals management. The harsh move to avoid criticism infuriated many within the press and led to a backlash of articles that extended far beyond the Kansas City sports community.

White Goss is a local law firm whose clients include (interestingly) Jackson County Sports Complex Authority
AND
WALMART

Hal Goss, Becky Ziegler of White Goss et. al. AND Mayor David Bower are members of the Jackson County Sports Complex Authority.

Walmart Foundation is a big contributor to MARC (Metro Area Regional Council).

Bower sits on the Board of Directors of MARC.

I guess the fix was in when Bower pushed so hard for Walmart here. I can just picture good ole Bower, Glass and Goss White slamming back a few drinks in the Sports Complex while they cooked that one up together. This reeks!

This is a great example of your City leadership at work.

Anonymous said...

Anon October 17, 2013 at 7:16 PM, You should Ask Megan how it really went she was front and center. All I will say is that the story in the newspaper should have been in the fiction section. It was anything but flawless. As for her statement about the new employee, you will notice she did not refute the fact the could not continue the prescribed orientation program every other employee has completed including her. This decision was based solely on the fact nobody wants to work for our current director. Yes, our newest employee has experience with other systems and protocols, but we function under different medical protocols than his previous employers. We have had employees in the past with just as much or more experience not complete the orientation program because lack of skill. REMS_EMT

Anonymous said...

Andy, this is not a new policy. It was reported on KCTV 5 a few months ago that a Walmart employee was fired when he yelled at a man hitting a woman in the Walmart parking lot. Walmart absolutely will not allow employees to help a customer being attacked on Walmart property. If someone helped you out to your car, the employee could have been fired for helping you.

Anonymous said...

7:16,

I have no idea where the audit rumor came from. I heard that it started with a member of the fire board, but not really sure. We had two audits from the state. Originally we were only scheduled for a regular departmental audit. When she arrived she said that she noticed we were due for an audit of our training entity as well. The departmental audit was handled by Doug Jonesi and Kim Lesage. We passed that with no problems. She required no further documentation. I handled the training entity audit myself and can tell you with certainty that we passed that, again, requiring no further documentation. Seeing as how we were able to easily pass a surprise audit, I'm surprised at these rumors! We have the sheets that the auditor filled out available at our station should anyone be interested in verifying our success instead of passing along rumors.

Megan Thurston

Anonymous said...

Pat Casady,

You don't know me, but I would be hiding behind an anonymous name if I were just running my mouth. I'm just a regular old paramedic - I don't know it all- but I've been with Raytown EMS for 7.5 years and will answer what I know. As far as the financial situation, yes we have cut back the last couple of years, but not in any way that would even be noticeable to the public. 2014's budget that was just approved is basically the same as 2013's budget was. No big changes this last year. I am the medical supply officer for EMS and have been given no restrictions on the supplies that I order. I do my best to compare prices, bargain shop, consider different brands, but all of our equipment maintains the same standard and follows our protocols. I guess I'm not sure what the concern or what the question is? If this "REMS_EMT" could come up with some specific examples of how we have "cut down to the bone" than I could perhaps address those concerns specifically.

Megan Thurston

Anonymous said...

Megan Thurston:

1) Why was the previous REMS director fired? It was said he was well-liked, competent and highly-qualified? Who appointed Jonesi?

AND

2) Tell us, Megan, why the problems with Jonesi? Is he also eager to sell REMS out to RFPD?

AND

3) Please respond to blogger's statement about you (below)"As for her statement about the new employee, you will notice she did not refute the fact the could not continue the prescribed orientation program every other employee has completed including her. This decision was based solely on the fact nobody wants to work for our current director. Yes, our newest employee has experience with other systems and protocols, but we function under different medical protocols than his previous employers. We have had employees in the past with just as much or more experience not complete the orientation program because lack of skill. "



Need To Know said...


Video of:
The Raytown Board of Aldermen committee consisting of Charlotte Melson, Steve Mock, Jason Greene and Michael Lightfoot meet to publicly discuss a proposal by the Raytown Fire District to take over the City of Raytown’s Emergency Medical Service.

Can be found halfway down the page here. It's 1 hr and 20 minutes long so hunker down with a hot cup of coffee...

http://raytownonline.com/category/raytown-fire-department/

p.s. The same web page contains Palmer's retort to Melson's great decision (I agree with Melson on this one 100%) wherein he admits for the first time that the figures he used actually came from the city. Someone in the city and Palmer have an Agenda to destroy our EMS. In time, it WILL come to light. Hopefully, sooner rather than later.

Need To Know said...


It seems RFPD is having trouble with MARC's RAMBIS dispatch. Even their own are hard pressed to understand why automatic aid is leaving Raytown to receive Basic Life Support instead of Raytown's Advanced Life Support.

Below, a link to RFPD Board Meeting Minutes of June 11, 2013 (just following Palmer's REMS takeover proposal letter).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u6_r9oRhoTs

And to the blogger who stuck his/her nose up in the air about youtube videos, that was an ignorant response. Youtube has made it possible to see and hear far more first hand than ever before.

Need To Know said...


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They're called Americastrong

WWW.AMERICASTRONG.COM

How is AmericaStrong different than AARP?

They are liberal. We’re not.

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They favor big government. We don’t.

AARP is for more government. We think government spends to much, and wastes too much.

We believe in social security reform. They don’t.

AARP scares older people to get members. We believe we can reform social security to keep it solvent. And without effecting current beneficiaries.

We believe in The Constitution, they don’t.

AARP acts like it is out of date. We believe it is the single best governing document ever created, and that it is as relevant today as it was when it conceived.

They supported Obamacare. We don’t.

AARP pushed for Obamacare and gained hundreds of millions from their insurance sales. We know it will result in rationing and are fighting to repeal it.

They ignore to our national debt. We fight to reduce it.

AARP ignores the national debt. We fight to reduce spending, cut waste, and balance budgets.

You don't have to be retired to get their benefits.

In The Know said...

To Need to Know.... You Need to re read a comment from oct 17 ... It states about an instance of Mast employees and their pensions.... It reads... What pensions? Mast employees didn't even get a penny. Court records tell more that you tube. ... Well Need To Know did you take the hint and research court records on the Mast employee and their pensions...... Or did you decide you really didn't Need to know all there is to know about that subject?

Need To Know said...

In The Know:
When I post, I cite specifics and almost always provide a link to the source. The comment you refer did neither. Since you're plugged in to the facts, provide specifics as I don't have the time to dig through all the court records to find your needle in a haystack. Assuming you'll comply with this reasonable request I thank you in advance.

MeganEMTP said...

6:51,
Thank you for your questions, I will do my best. Understand that since I AM putting my name out there and am a city employee, I can only say so much. But I will never lie.
1 – You will have to clarify which director you are talking about. I assume you are referring to our previous director Matt Cushman, who resigned In October 2011. Brandon Buckman was the interim director from October 2011 to October 2012 when he resigned to take a position as the director at Air Evac Medical Service. Unfortunately, the Matt Cushman situation is one of those things that I cannot comment on. I think the city handled the situation poorly. He was and is a good friend of mine, so you may not want my possibly biased opinions anyhow. The official statement is that he resigned. I will say that he is now working as a paramedic for Johnson County Ambulance District and loving being out of the director’s seat and back on the streets taking care of people, as that was always his love. Doug Jonesi has been a paramedic with the city for I think 30 years. Could be 28. I’ll have to check my facts. Either way, a long dang time. He was appointed by Mahesh Sharma as the interim director after Brandon Buckman left and then promoted to a permanent position shortly thereafter.

2- Here’s the problem with Jonesi – he’s trying to make some changes. *sarcasm* You know how people just love change! We have always had a problem with getting coverage for an ambulance when a regularly scheduled employee takes time off, whether previously scheduled vacation time or last minute sick time. Even if Doug covers an ambulance he is only one person and can only cover one spot. There are a minimum of 2 employees to an ambulance and 2 ambulances. He has suggested the employees take turns being on call, he has suggested that we limit the amount of trade time we do so that we are less overworked to pick up other shifts, he has limited when we can use vacation time so that multiple employees don’t take the same day off leaving no coverage. He is in the process of filling up our 3 open medic positions (2/3 positions have been filled) and has hired a bunch of part timers that are getting ready to start the orientation process. People HATE change. They don’t like their trade time and vacation time messed with. They don’t like being told they have to work extra. I don’t like it either, but I can see the bigger picture. I don’t like change, but I can see how Doug is working to better the department thus ensuring coverage for the citizens of Raytown. Some people are having tantrums instead of coming up with helpful solutions or God forbid – picking up a shift or two to lend a hand while we get some new employees in here.
I absolutely assure you that Doug has been fighting merger talk from the Fire District since the 1980’s. He is not and has never been interested in a merger and thinks that it’s a bad idea for many reasons. If you call him directly I’m sure that he would be happy to talk about it – but as a representative of the city his answers will be very limited compared to his true thoughts. Trust me – he is NOT for this proposed merger, and neither is most of the EMS department.

MeganEMTP said...

3- When we hire a new employee, they begin the orientation process. Of course the first thing is all the paperwork, then onto the ambulance. Driving, learning the city and where the surrounding hospitals are, learning to read the map, learning the dispatch system and how/when to communicate on the radios, learning the protocols and putting them into practice, and learning our reporting system are many of the things that a new employee will do. Obviously, when we hire a brand new paramedic or EMT straight out of school, with no experience in the field, that process will take much longer. In the past, we have taken up to 3 months to train a new employee. However – a lot of that has to do with the field training officers not being real proactive. In the past we have been allowed to just kind of hang out on our shifts and waited for the calls to come to present a learning opportunity for our new employees. Doug has changed the process. He stated in our last staff meeting that we couldn’t afford (financially AND coverage-wise) to take 3 months to train these people. NO other service in the area spends that kind of time training a new employee. He has insisted that the field training officers become proactive in going over protocols, the reporting system, and all the things previously mentioned on our down time. We are getting paid, there’s no reason we shouldn’t be working on other things than strictly waiting for 911 calls. Another thing a couple people don’t want to do. So you can see how when we get a paramedic that already knows how to drive, read a map, where the hospitals are, etc, they can be field-ready a lot faster. Our protocols are pretty standard compared to other departments around the area – Yes he needs to know them well and is studying them – but honestly, I don't believe that there is need for concern here. He has worked with Jonesi himself, who has determined that he can work the streets alone without an extra paramedic on the ambulance 24/7. It is my understanding that he does still have an FTO with him most of the time. I work a different shift than he does so I don’t know the exact who/what/when/where – but there’s the “why”. He is still being monitored closely.

I’d also like to challenge “REMS_EMT” to state what specific problems there were during our audit? Seeing as how I was the only one in the room for one of them you have an awful lot of supposed inside information. I’m guessing what she is referring to is the fact that after the auditor left I breathed a sigh of relief and said something to the effect of “Holy cow, I can’t believe I got through that!”. She knows as well as I do that I was referring to the fact that I had literally been in the position of Education Coordinator for 4 days and wasn’t sure what to expect or where several things were off hand in the office. It absolutely did not indicate that our department was not up to standard. The auditor was very helpful in that respect. She made sure I knew and knew where to find all the state regulations and as she was a previous EMS instructor herself, gave me some good resources to use in our education department. It was a positive experience overall and I have the official documentation to back that up.

Sorry I’m so wordy, I try to be thorough.
Megan

Andy Whiteman said...

I cancelled my AARP membership when they supported Socialized Health Care. I was surprised that they even sent a refund! But I had to call their insurance carrier to stop the mailings.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Megan, I'm the blogger who posted the three questions. Thank you very, very much for shedding light on these points so thoroughly.

Please everyone, watch the youtube video of the RFPD June 11 meeting. It is extremely enlightening.

With the problems they're having, Palmer's proposal to take over our REMS is totally insane. I'm going to send the link to that video to my Alderman too.

Anonymous said...

It took a group of mast employees to form and work together in an attorneys office to document and procure multiple evidences and then yrs of court cases to finally recieve what was legally theirs to begin with. The whole process was put under the rug to the publics eyes

Anonymous said...

To need to know
No one stuck their nose up in the air about you tube merely said more info was to be found and to call it at Ignorant Response well is Ignorant . As you tube has made much available it does not cover anymore than what the people video and send in . And You Tube was only founded in 2005

Anonymous said...

Megan I have news for you, the citizens of Raytown who are open minded to any change which saves tax dollars, your statement that he has been fighting merger talks for since 1980 just makes him and you seem petty.

Anonymous said...

To anonymous ...... Nope you are petty and argumentive ; no part about that do you appear as such.... You just plain are

Anonymous said...

Charlotte Melson is up for election in April 2014.

Anonymous said...

To Anonymous 10/18/2013 @ 10:12 ..... 10:05 did answer you it just never was posted and maybe this one wont be either

Need To Know said...


TO REMS_EMT

I copied your original post in an email to my Alderman, Jason Green, who was on the committee that investigated the RFPD takeover.

In his reply he said, "I wish that whoever posted this would contact me so I can get a better understanding, I made it clear that EMS workers can privately speak with me if they wish and their identity would not be revealed."

Please contact him with your concerns.

Anonymous said...

With all the arguments about Wal Mart, swimming pools etc perhaps you are missing the biggest problem facing Raytown, Independence, Kansas City and perhaps most other metro cities. Raytown’s pension funds are underfunded by 10 million dollars. Independence is underfunded by 80 million, KCMO by 600 million. Since pensions assume an actuarial rate of return usually in the 7% - 8% range underfunding is compounding at that rate. What is required is for the underfunded amount to be repaid over a 20 year period. For Raytown that will require almost 1 million dollars EXTRA each year for 20 years. One million dollars is a sales tax of over 3/8 of 1%. I think perhaps the city is using most if not all of the last sales tax increase to fund pensions but I doubt even that is enough. Face it, the only way these cities are going to avoid bankruptcy is to raise sales taxes for pensions. These pensions were promised to employees and are legally binding. They may change the terms for the future but these liabilities are fixed. I also think there is some number where people will simply cry uncle and stop voting for sales taxes are at least change their shopping habits. Wasting that tax base on “translational research”, sports stadiums, the zoo, streetcars and a bunch of other pet projects may doom these cities.

Pension plans allow a city to put off bankruptcy for years like Detroit did. I would guess Detroit went over the cliff 15 to 20 years ago but with pensions it takes years to see the results. The media talks a little about pensions but for the most part they don’t really understand the problem.

Anonymous said...

10:31 "Pension plans allow a city to put off bankruptcy for years like Detroit did."

I believe you meant, ROBBING pensions plans allows a city to put off bankruptcy for years...

Yes, it's robbing Peter to pay Paul. It doesn't matter how you slice it, misappropriating sales tax revenues (Peter's money) in the first place and then raising and misappropriating them once again to cover the pensions (debt owed to Paul) that were also "borrowed from" is criminal. This is double taxation to cover what is quite simply, theft.

Our shopping habits have already changed out of necessity. We buy less at retail in order to be able to pay our bills. I barter and buy online in order to stay afloat. I will NOT vote for any more tax increases. Just say NO!

There needs to be an expose' regarding the mismanagement/embezzlement of those pension funds as well as some hefty fines and time served. And, agreed, the spending has to stop. No more TIF, 353 Tax Abatement, pool filters, city monuments with overpriced roses/trees in medians, DMU rail shuttle to nowhere, "sustainable" B.S. housing or the rest of it. The city needs to demonstrate that they get it. That we're not just here to generate income for them to blow on crap we don't need. They need to take care of what is essential to our city and that's it.

Climate warming has been disproved repeatedly so all this New World Order sustainable spending is a waste of our money. Pensions are robbed, streets are going to the dogs, taxes are going back on ballots, our city mall is a shambles, it's apparent these clowns are either clueless or crooks or both.

MeganEMTP said...

12:23,

I'm not sure how that makes us sound petty.... Just because I disagree with something doesn't mean that I'm close-minded. I DID consider it, and decided I wasn't for it. Just in the same way that if everyone just jumps on the bandwagon because it MIGHT save some money without looking it through - that would be pretty ignorant. We don't think a merger is a good move for the city for a reason - not because we just want to stomp our feet and say we don't wanna move! Would it save some money? Perhaps. But the level of service would fall. Eventually it may not be a money saver at all. Per the district's proposal, the city would be responsible for all EMS related costs. Even if the district estimates the cost to be x amount per year, what's to stop them from turning around every year and saying, we need more more more?
Megan

Anonymous said...

I do not think anyone is complaining so much about the EMS - Fire District Decision. It would have to be decided one way or the other. Somebody was bound to be unhappy about it.

it was the heavy-handed tactics used by Charlottee Melson that is unacceptable.

Not allowing peopple to speak at a public meeting? Laying down the decision without explanation.

Sounds like David Bower to me.

The two are cut from the same cloth.

What continues to amaze is how Bower is able to get others to do the heavy lifting for him.

We saw it with Walmart when Creamer got into trouble for denouncing private citizens from his seat on the Council.

Now you see Melson do the same thing.

Who is next? Ertz? VanBuskirk? Lightfoot?

Need To Know said...

Melson's conduct in this matter was inexcusable. I do believe we need to be more vocal about the contemptable way she handled things. Careful though, as Bower made have wanted this outcome exactly as it was so that he could twist it around and get his way in wanting a RFPD/EMS merger in the first place. Never forget for 1 minute that Bower serves 2 masters by also sitting on MARC's Board (which should disqualify him as Mayor as it is a huge conflict of interest). MARC is KS & MO's big government and they want to regionalize everything in Kansas AND Missouri. That includes repeating the mess they made of the KCFD/MAST merger. Everything Bower wants to do here has been laid out by MARC and if we don't stop him, we will lie in ruin and have no one to blame but ourselves.

MARC is an ICLEI NGO and Bower sits on the Board of MARC. "Local Governments for Sustainability USA, a.k.a. ICLEI, is a non-governmental organization (NGO) sponsored by the UN to implement Agenda 21 in America. By their own mission statement, ICLEI is designed to “build, serve, and drive a movement of local governments to advance deep reductions in greenhouse gas emissions and achieve tangible improvements in local sustainability.” They are responsible for the coercion and “consulting” that manifests the micro-apartments, sustainable living, and light-rail depots that will alter American living to reflect the controls of the global Elite as explained by the UN in a subversive march toward global governance."

http://www.occupycorporatism.com/

The heavy-handedness we're experiencing now is merely the beginning. First it will become Regional governance, then Global governance. How do you like it so far?

Anonymous said...

Charlotte,
I hope you have started working on a Labor Contract for the EMS.
They are Union Members and have worked for many years under good faith.
Since you have turned down the Fire District merger you need to reward the EMS crews with some job security.
This comes in the form of a work agreement which spells out wages ,hours and working conditions.
Come on Charlotte show them how much you appreciate them. Quit saying you do and stop talking start putting it on paper.
Doc

Anonymous said...


So why would anyone even consider a RRPD/REMS merger to SAVE MONEY? Sounds like RFPD is doing just fine - even "sustainable" with the $1.2 MILLION DOLLAR grant they got. What did REMS get? Wait, let me guess - zero.

"June 29, 2012
Kansas City – Congressman Emanuel Cleaver, II, announced today two huge SAFER grants for two area fire departments. Kansas City’s Fire Department will get more than $4.5 million, and the Raytown Fire Protection District will be awarded a $1.2 million grant. SAFER stands for Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response grant.

“Firefighters need to be on the job, not facing layoffs,” said Congressman Cleaver. “ With every city in the country facing severe budget challenges, I am pleased to help bring federal dollars home so our communities are safer, our response times stay efficient, and our hard working firefighters stay employed.”

Raytown Fire Chief Rick Mawhirter says it will prevent his department from having to eliminate nine firefighter positions over the next two years.

“It is our goal to utilize this grant to maintain our operation until we can restore our funding to a sustainable level,” said Chief Mawhirter. He also thanked the Congressman for his incredible support of public safety.

The Department of Homeland Security made initial notifications on the SAFER grants this week.

"Kansas City is exceptionally lucky to have Congressman Cleaver and the rest of our area delegation. The Congressman knows first-hand what it is like to balance budgets and make difficult decisions as Mayor. In these difficult economic times every bit of federal funding helps to address the critical needs that are important to our entire community. I cannot thank him enough for his efforts," said Kansas City Mayor Sly James."

http://cleaver.house.gov/press-release/congressman-cleaver-announces-huge-grants-area-fire-departments

Anonymous said...

Road salt is not under the transporation tax. But guess what is?

That dinky little ATA bus you see driving around town without any passengers in it.

Remember this next April when you go to vote on the Transportation Tax. The public was told it would be to repair roads. Instead they use it to maintain a bus for Walmart that is not used by anyone!

They got it all wrong at city hall. They think they were elected to represent MARC and corporate interests first.

Regular Raytowners are way down the list of the important things that need to be taken care of.

Anonymous said...

Here is what David Bower and Mahesh Sharma are doing to keep a lid on things at City Hall.

Committee meeting right before Council meetings. This is done for two reasons. One is to give them a heads up on what they may be facing in the Council meeting and be prepared for it.

The other is to keep honest discussion down to nothing more but feel good moments for the City Council members.

How many times have you heard Council members "echo" their seatmates sentiments. That is because there really has not been a lot of original thought or time for things to gel and take place. Half an hour and then you vote. Keep the interaction between Board members to a minimum. Those tactics are all about control.

For instance, it was not accident that Chartlotte Melson made her announcement after only one meeting of her committee. The Mayor saw the issue was picking up steam and support with the public. He did not want the merger, so he gets Melson to stop it for him. No one on the city council wants to butt heads with the Mayor.

They saw what happened to Jason Greene. The first meeting Greene publlicly embarrassed the Mayor when Bower tried to shove Christine White down the council's throat.

Greene held the vote up with a very clever procedural move.

His punishment from the Mayor. He is the only Councilman who has not been assigned to a committee.

Others, like Ertz, have three assignments, most of them with chairmanships.

Compare Bower's hands-off approach on the ambulance/fire merger to his activism on the doomed Walmart Store downtown.

If it is important to him he will wade neck deep into the swamp.

The question we should all ask is why is Walmart so important to him and ambulance care is not?

Good question. Only he can answer that one.

Raytown has had some good Mayors. It has had some bad ones. The one in the big chair now is the Darth Vader of Raytown Mayors.

Anonymous said...

And that grant is a big reason the EMS people do not want the merger. They get no credit for time served and would be the bottom of the barrel at the fire department. That means the if the grant goes away, so do their jobs. Oh and the city is still responsible for a lot of the EMS costs.

Need To Know said...

I have talked to a reliable inside source who said Bower wanted the RFPD/REMS merger 8 years ago and that he told RFPD to issue the proposals which explains why the proposals were augmented with City-compiled spreadsheets. Bower has also said that our REMS will be gone within the year. The source said Bower would be contracting our ambulance service to an outside vendor (and at what cost to us?).

True, Melson was knee-jerk in the way she handled things. She didn't know about Bower's intent. But when she got the gist of things she just wanted to stop us from losing our REMS. Her intent was good but reacting emotionally as she did served to demonstrate that she is not ready to sit as our Mayor, now or in the future.

Back to the original issue: Bower is clearly a tyrannical leader. Marching to the beat of the MARC drummer, time and again he as demonstrated his contempt for the Raytown citizenry, our local government, and our well-being.

Keeping in mind that he has said REMS WILL be gone, not MAY be gone within the year we need to become very vocal about this PDQ. Please call or write your alderman on this one and talk with your neighbors about it too. Thanks

Anonymous said...

Greg/Paul:

I take major issue you advertising VOTE YES ON 1 on this site. While you may enjoy the revenue from the ad, I believe it distasteful of you to allow promotion of what is a 1% hike in sales taxes upon your already financially strapped city.

Please don't be a party to this.

MeganEMTP said...

Thank you, Doc. We have been in need of a contract for a long time now. Hopefully now that the merger discussion is over, the city will stop putting us off. I'm tired of things with my department being so up in the air. Now that we finally have some answers, it's time to settle it.

Megan

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

9:59
That is not true. The EMS jobs were not included in the layoff. That would have been done through regular retirements. We have had three in last month and at least one more at first of year. Those positions would not have been filled.
Somebody is blowing smoke.
doc

Elisa Breitenbach said...

It's sad that Jackson Co has had County Executive Mike Sanders and the Jackson County Legislature rush this Forty to Fifty Million Dollar a year Sales-Tax Nightmare on the Nov. 5 ballot. This will last for 20 years. When you click on the hyperlink they paid to put on here. You learn nothing about how this tax will truly work. Mike Sanders and his friends need a permanent vacation out of politics. This is a Bad Cure for Jackson County. I don't have a hyperlink for this sales tax that can help you understand more about it but if you drop by DOUGHBOYS I will give you a free cup of coffee and let you look at all the info I do have on this. I also have a few yard signs left to be put out.