Sunday, November 17, 2013


We've linked to these "Top Ten" themes for some time now. This one is by far the best. There is something in it for everyone. You will recognize these songs, probably saw the movie, and will be taken back to another time and place.


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There will be a public meeting at Raytown City Hall on Monday, November 18th at 7:00 p.m. to discuss a Farmer's Market for Downtown Raytown.

The public is invited to attend and share their views at this meeting.

Raytown City Hall is located at 10000 East 59th Street.

The Paul Livius Report 
Raytown Board of Aldermen Meeting – November 12, 2013

The invocation was given by Pat Jackson.

Before the Aldermen gave their Committee Reports, Mayor Bower announced he had decided the only reports that would be allowed were the ones concerning Committees that are Board appointed.  When he ignored Alderman Emerson, she told him she wanted to give her report on the Farmer’s Market.  Mayor Bower told her the Farmer’s Market was not Board approved.  Steve Mock told the Board the Holiday lighting ceremony will be at the Pocket Park on December 6.  He also told the Mayor he wanted to hear Alderman Emerson’s report on the Farmer’s Market.  The Mayor again said the Farmer’s Market was not Board approved.

The Board passed a resolution authorizing the continuation of an agreement with Cochran Head Vick for the performance of professional audit services.  Alderman Josh Greene asked Mr. Loughry when this service was last bid.  Mr. Loughry said it was 2009.  Alderman Greene asked when it was going to be rebid.  Alderman Creamer said the Board shouldn’t worry about rebidding the contract until the staff said it was time to rebid it.  He said the City has won awards for its budgets, therefore, the Board should trust the staff in all things.

The Board passed a resolution authorizing a service agreement with Arista Print. Mark Loughry told the Board the City currently mails out approximately 12,000 sewer bills on a monthly basis.

The staff processes, prints, folds and inserts the bills and a return envelope into a billing
envelope. Because of the amount of mail the City generates it must be delivered to the main hub in Kansas City. This process requires equipment leases, bi-monthly address updates and a high-capacity printer. It also requires approximately 18 hours of staff time. Prior to the changeover in 2013 to bulk rate mailing, the process had an annual cost of approximately $97,000.00 not including labor. After switching over to bulk rate mailing the cost is estimated at $83,000.00 without labor.

Starting in February of 2014, the post office is changing the requirements for bulk rate mailing which will cost the City approximately $3,000.00 in initial setup with an ongoing charge of $1,500.00 annually to continue processing the mail in house. This cost is in addition to the current cost of approximately $83,000.00 plus labor. While this still represents a savings over the first class rate, staff decided to explore other options for utility billing mailings.

After reviewing the current process and issues it creates, staff explored other options for utility billing. It was determined that by outsourcing the actual printing and mailing of utility bills the City could receive additional savings over the bulk postage rate. Some of these savings would be realized through the elimination or downsizing of current equipment. Additionally, the bulk purchasing power of supplies by a large mailing firm is passed on to the City as well. City staff time currently devoted to printing and distributing bills would be repurposed to customer service related phone calls.

The Board passed a resolution adopting an Economic Development incentive policy for the city of Raytown, Missouri. It covers Tax Increment Financing, Tax Abatements, Neighborhood Improvement Districts, and Community Improvement Districts.  The policy can be found at

The Board passed a resolution approving information technology related services with MDL Technology.  In Fiscal Year 2012-2013, the Board of Alderman approved a three year agreement guaranteeing service pricing for three years, approved annually, with MDL Technology, LLC to manage the IT services of the Police Department. The agreed upon service plan is a monthly fee of $80.00 per workstation and $400.00 per server.

The Board passed a resolution approving a maintenance contract with Motorola Solutions.  The Police Department uses the Motorola radio system during its normal course of duties. To ensure the life span of the equipment having the manufacturer perform the maintenance will make certain the equipment has the best service available. Proper maintenance is necessary to extend the usable life of the radios. This is a recurring yearly contract between Motorola and the City of Raytown to provide maintenance and infrastructure repairs to the radio system in case of failure. Motorola is the sole source provider for this service.

The Board passed a resolution approving the purchase of two powered ambulance cots with mounting and associated hardware from Stryker EMS Equipment.  The three powered ambulance cots, purchased in 2006-2008, are reaching the end of their service lives; one of them has already irreparably failed. The remaining two are requiring frequent, costly repairs, and are not anticipated to remain serviceable much longer. The model we currently have has been redesigned by the manufacturer; consequently, replacement parts can be expected to become more expensive and scarcer, or cease to be available at all. This purchase has been reviewed by the Sales Tax Oversight Committee, and was found to meet the intent of the Capital Sales tax.

The Board passed an ordinance amending the Buildings and Structural Appurtenances, relating to the abatement of dangerous buildings.  John Benson said the Staff is proposing to amend the City’s dangerous building abatement regulations by which a building can be deemed dangerous.  The amendments are for issues relating to abandoned buildings and structures that may be structurally sound as determined by City Code, but are abandoned and have other code violations that have gone unresolved for an extended period of time.  These violations can contribute to lower property values on nearby properties.  For more information on these codes, go to

A moment of bad public policy was demonstrated at City Hall at the last meeting of the Raytown Board of Aldermen. If you have not done so, please read the bold face type in the Paul Livius Report to understand.

Here is the back story to Mayor Bower’s bizarre decision to forbid Aldermen from talking on subjects of which he does not approve.

Since her election last April, Ward 3 Alderman Janet Emerson has quietly been working to bring a Farmer’s Market to Downtown Raytown.

Originally, she took the idea to officials at Raytown City Hall. The consensus from that meeting was that the city would not take any active participation in the project.
Fair enough . . . she made the effort. They said they would help where they could but did not have the time or personnel to run a Farmers Market.

Alderman Emerson, along with other proponents of a Farmer’s Market for Raytown,  enlisted the help of Advocates for Family. This particular group is well known throughout the metropolitan area in Farmer Market circles. 

However, Alderman Emerson saw that progress was not moving along quickly enough on the project – she went to Steve Guenther, President of the Downtown Raytown Main Street Association. Guenther took a proposal to the Main Street Association Board of Directors – they gave their stamp of approval and are ready to move forward with a Downtown Raytown Farmer’s Market.

In fact, a location has been settled on for the project, just north of 63rd Street and Raytown Road on the west side of Downtown Raytown’s Green Space. An opening date in early May of 2014 has been established.

Things are starting to come together to make the Market a reality.

All of this time Alderman Emerson has been dutifully keeping the Board of Aldermen and the community informed by giving timely reports of the progress of the group. In short, she has been doing her job.

So it comes as some surprise that at the last meeting of the Board of Aldermen, Mayor David Bower announced he decided that Board members could only report on items, concerning city sanctioned committees.

Ward 5 Alderman Steve Mock objected to the Mayor’s decision, publicly stating that he would like to hear Alderman Emerson’s report on an upcoming meeting of the group (to be held this coming Monday evening, November 18th at 7:00 p.m.) at Raytown City Hall. 

Despite the Mayor’s attempt at absolute control of what his fellow elected officials could speak, Emerson did publicly state that she understood the Mayor’s decision not to allow her to announce the meeting scheduled for public input on Monday evening.

Emerson later told the Raytown Report that Mr. Guenther of the Downtown Raytown Main Street Association had planned to make the announcement during the Public Comments portion of the meeting but was called away on business.

What does it all mean?
Hard to say.

Is the Mayor opposed to a Downtown Raytown Farmer’s Market. In his short preamble to his ruling he mentioned that some Board members had objected to topics being brought to Board meetings that were not part of the agenda. But he did not say which Board members they were.

We did a quick check with Board members and we cannot find anyone who would own up to the Mayor’s reasoning.

There is history between Steve Guenther and Mayor Bower. At one time Guenther was a big supporter of the Mayor. That relationship soured when they split over the failed Walmart Neighborhood Market application.

For her part, Alderman Emerson has been keeping her eye on the goal of a Farmer’s Market. It looks like she is going to succeed. The Mayor and members of the Board opposed to those plans should follow her example of accomplishment.

We think a Farmer’s Market in Downtown Raytown is a splendid idea. Other cities like Overland Park, Lee’s Summit and Grandview are moving forward with this idea. It is time for Raytown to join in.

Mayor David Bower has a reputation as a control freak. He does not like surprises. Apparently, he does not like anyone else moving forward with ideas that do not carry his stamp of approval.

We have seen this in the past.

Remember when (former) Alderman Greg Walters pushed hard to improve Raytown’s efforts in recycling. Bower disbanded the Recycling Committee. What Walters was able to keep open for over ten years. One time, he led an effort to raise $9,000 to pay for expenses of running the Center.

Bower has since found a way to shut the recycling center down permanently.

Déjà vu!

At the last BOA meeting, Bower literally “banned” any comment from Board members on items that did not meet his approved agenda.
He has it so wrong

And those Board members who are sitting lamely by as this goes on should take note – they are just as wrong by not calling the Mayor’s hand in this outrageous display of public bullying. Only two members of the Board even commented on the Mayor’s ruling!

The ten Board members and the Mayor have one thing in common. They are equals. They were elected to represent the people of Raytown. None of them have the right to censor what they other says. They can disagree. They can argue. But they all deserve the courtesy of having their time to speak on matters during meetings of the Board of Aldermen.

The Mayor was not elected king. His job is to run the meetings. It is not his role to censor the comments of his fellow elected officials.
Have you noticed that while Mayor has effectively muzzled members of the Board of Aldermen, he still allows himself the ability to speak on any topic at any time?

He treats the Board as if they were school children given turns to make comments. There is no live debate at Board meetings. Give and take between Board members, even as simple sharing of ideas is a very rare event -- just stilted comments as to positions before votes.

We wonder what is next. Will Raytowners be refused time to discuss a proposed Charter at meetings of their City Council? Will Board members not be allowed to discuss what is being brought to them by petition from those they represent?

The Mayor has chosen a very ugly and dark path by refusing to allow members of the Board of Aldermen to speak.

What is worse, is the Board allowing this outrage to be played upon them.

I remember watching Board meetings when individual members announced plays at the local high schools and other public events unrelated to Council business. No one objected to those announcements.

Mayor Bower, and the un-named Aldermen who are opposed to even mentioning a Farmer’s Market in a public meeting have stepped over the line on this one.


Today is November 16.  I logged onto the City’s website to get the latest news.  I went to the City Administrators reports to find out what is happening at City Hall.  He usually writes good reports that are concise and informative.  I was disappointed to find he hadn’t filed a report since October 11.  That’s more than a month.  This from a man who was given a $30,000 pay raise for the fine job he was doing.  If he can’t do his job, he needs to be sent packing.

Beef Barley Soup

With the news media filled with the much-acclaimed benefits of natural foods, one would think that the quest for health through nutrition is something new, but it just isn’t so. Proof positive is my 1942 edition of the Woman’s Home Companion Cookbook. Editor Willa Robert’s forward reads much like poetry as she describes the importance of home-cooked meals made with a variety of farm-fresh ingredients: “A nation is as healthy as the food it eats.” Amen, Willa! READ MORE

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Anonymous said...

From what I am reading, the Mayor should be referred to as Dictator!

Now the country has Dictator Obama and the City of Raytown has Dictator Bower.

Sending sewer billing by bulk mail is pure stupidity. Bills should be sent First Class Mail. Bulk mail can be slow and is delivered when the Post Office gets around to it which will result in late delivery hence late payments and the collection of late fees. Also bulk mail is not forwarded which will result in the non-delivery of bills to those who have moved. When I moved from Raytown I didn't receive an important document regarding my 401K because it was sent bulk mail and trashed by the POst Office since bulk mail is not forwarded. My 401K was really messed up because I didn't know I needed to take action. Our local newspaper sends their bills by bulk mail from Illinois. As a result of this stupidity, I received the bill AFTER the paper expired.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Sharma's Raise

8:55 AM I could not agree with you more.

Sharma's threat to leave sounds like up or I walk. He should have been told to walk.

What could he possibly have possessed that was worth that kind of money? Was it the people and/or organizations he's connected to? Was it something he knew that City Hall didn't want us to know?

We, obviously, don't have that kind of money to be tossing around and for all the VALUE he's delivered, he certainly wasn't worth it to us.

If we had a City Charter with provision for Misfeasance (when a Public Official takes inappropriate action) a suit could have been filed, naming he who approved the salary increase in the face of Sharma's threat to leave.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for mentioning the CA lack of filing weekly reports. Per city for calendar year 2013
26 reports have been filed.

What happened to the other 20?

Mr. Cole, Thanks for the good vibes on a Charter City.

But, please SOMEONE, ANYONE, of all the very high paying "professional staff" at city hall PROOF READ documents found on the internet.

These sloppy mistakes are getting old.

Does anyone read this stuff?

Anonymous said...

Im happy the other Green made a comment to support his brother when it cam to the discussion of bids on an audit. Competition and oversight is a good thing, why should we not look at other bids every few years Mr. Creamer? Between him and Bower, I don't know who is worse. Ms. Emerson, had a bad deal as well. There is a huge disrespect issue toward the recently elected new aldermen at city hall.

Susan Dolan said...

That bulk mail expense was staggering! For all their puffery about being high-tech, City Hall sure doesn't seem to get it. The solution is simple....

From their website (sewer billing information page), Raytown should provide citizens a link to the the option of simply providing and email address where they can be sent their Sewer bill electronically. Even people who don't own a computer can set up a gmail, hotmail, yahoo mail account at the library!

It's time to ditch the horse and buggy. And, however is in charge of the City's website should have suggested this a loooooooong time ago.

Anonymous said...

All of the sloppy print from City Hall comes from the position Bower created of Public Information Officer. Another waste of our tax dollars.
And if they are going to outsource the sewer billing what will the person be doing who was suppose to do the billing? I would think that there should be a position cut if it really entails all of the work that they claim it does. Once again another example of WASTING THE TAXPAYERS MONEY. The BOA and Mayor should be proud of themselves.

Anonymous said...

Keep asking your questions Mr. Greene. Pay no attention to the nonsense that Joe Creamer spouts.

He is just like the Mayor.

Over-bearing, suspicious of everyone and everything, opposed to new ideas, and under some delusion that other people's opinions simply do not count.

You were right to question why contracts that pay out in five figures are not being bid.

At least of the Board is looking after the bottom line.

Anonymous said...

I sure would like to know which of the Aldermen told the Mayor they only wanted "board approved" items discussed at Council Meetings.

Guess we got a taste of that when Mrs. Emerson tried to tell the public about a public meeting at City Hall tonight.

It looks more like a personal vendetta....maybe those brave aldermen who did not want to hear about a Public Meeting of people interested in a Farmer's Market in Downtown Raytown will stand up an be counted.

I doubt it. They will tremble and hide behind the Mayor.

As for the Mayor, his action is just a continuation of what we already know about him.

Closed minds have no place in public service. The mayor and those hiding behind him need to go.

Anonymous said...

I wonder what would have happened if any of the BOA had asked the Mayor which of Board asked him to "no allow" some of their fellow seatmates not to speak.

Joe Creamer's mouth was in full gear when he took a rude cheap shot at Mr. Greene for his asking that the city's audit be put out for bid.

Guess the Mayor forgot his role as Chairman. Creamer did not ask to be recognized by the Mayor to speak. He just shot from the lip.

My guess is Creamer was one of the Board members who wanted to block other Board members from speaking.

Any other brave members of the board want to try to justify the Mayor's ill-conceived notion of reports from Board members.

I remember seeing VanBuskirk, Melson, Mock and Etz, reporting on city items that were not "city business".

At least Mr. Mock spoke up.

Is the Mayor picking on one member of the Board because he does not like her?

Shame on you Mr. Mayor for allowing Creamer's conduct. Shame on the Board members hiding behind you as well.

Anonymous said...

As a private tax paying citizen I don't think Alderman Emerson should make any announcements about the city market. She could however speak under public comments. These are my thoughts and I stick by them.

Anonymous said...

When the issue of Sharma's not living in Raytown and raise came up came up, I told the BOA he should be required to live in Raytown. I told at least one Alderman, "let him walk." If he gets a job elsewhere he will have to move anyway or have a longer commute.

Susan, I also was shocked that there are 12,000 sewer bills a month! There are people without internet access and a computer. Internet access as well as maintaining a computer can be very expensive. I recently spent $1200 on a new computer with issues that took me over a month to get around. Most people can't afford a computer and internet access and many don't have the technical ability. Also computers and internet access don't always work. I demand paper bills, statements, and documents for everything. I get over 200 emails daily hence many are not received or are filtered to trash. I had an issue where a credit union altered my account. When I called customer service, "I was told it has always been that way." I asked for a supervisor and received the same response. My only argument was, "I have a stack of statements in front of me that proves you wrong, "Someone combined my CDs without my permission." It took weeks to get it corrected but only because I had paper statements. True ebilling should be offered as an option to result in fewer mailings. Raytown Water and the other utilities offer ebilling which I have refused.

3:26 PM, I agree about PROOF READING but it will require extra staff. I can't see my own errors when I proof read my own material. After it is published and maybe I am in a different frame of mind or different state of being awake, I will see a typo.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

How much longer can the Raytown Sutherlands survive? It has no business, not the product I was looking for and a cashier that is off doing something else instead of checking out customers. Oh, I forgot I was the ONLY customer, so I guess she didn't really know what to do when she saw me. I suspect that the city of Raytown is proping up this business, just like the Walmart. SO SAD!!!!

Anonymous said...

Does watching the Board meetings remind anyone else of a bunch of high school kids jockeying for position? Bower, Bully & Not Too Bright (too many blows to the head) Jock - Creamer, Eddie Haskell-like (Leave it to Beaver) Weasel - VanBuskirk & Ertz - Bower's Posse (low achievers) , Melson, Wanna Be Homecoming Princess in perpetual blonde moment. When asked what they want to be when they grow up, none can answer the question!

Sure Bower's discriminatory! I watched him fall all over himself, tongue hanging out, as he and the local dance school owner had a public extended conversation during the Walmart protests in City Hall. She was the first to speak that night while the rest of us patiently waited for our 5 minutes and his inattention to what we had to say.

I'm guessing that, unlike Toronto's Mayor, Bower doesn't have it as good at home as that Mayor claims he does.

Anonymous said...

The sewer usage billing for city of Raytown has an automatic pay option which my daughter just set up 6 months ago. I prefer the online billing they have set up through there I can view my bill and pay it just as I do with KCPL and MGE. This info was sent in with the bill maybe a year ago. It also had an option to pay yearly and recieve a 3% savings.

Anonymous said...

The people elect the aldermen to represent them. Some do and some don’t. Some are good at their Jobs and some don’t have a clue therefore they do what they are told to do by the mayor and the City Administrator. Even the people that care to speak in front of the board are allowed to do so. My question is why the Heck isn’t a representative of the people allowed to speak? Alderman Emerson has every right to speak for the people! The mayor was elected but does not represent the people. His track record is for big business, not the people of Raytown. My count now is two or three good aldermen and the rest………….The next election can’t get here soon enough!

Anonymous said...

I watched last Tuesdays BOA meeting too. At the end of themeeting the picture went away but the sound stayed on. I could hear Alderman Emerson ask the Mayor why didn't he tell her before the meeting about his new rule? She said she could have gone down to the podium and made the announcement during Public Comments.

The micropone went dead or Bower did not answer. But I think it is a darn good question.

Why would an adult make such a rule and blind side someone with it like that?

Anonymous said...

I hear Creamer through another temper tantrum at the last meeting. Seems Josh Greene wanted to put the annual city audit out for bid. Creamer butted into his conversation with some nonsense about the professionals at city hall!

I was surprised the Mayor did not call Creamer down for speaking without being recognized by the chair. Then I remembered. Our mayor has two sets of rules. One for his friends and the other for his perceived enemies.

Anonymous said...

8:20 PM & 8:04 AM, Since I am not in Raytown now, I ask is there a Farmer's Market committee? If there is no such committee, it is not truly a committee report but is important to the community. If the Lord Mayor wants to censor and not allow it, Mrs. Emerson could make the announcement under Public Comments. Hopefully she will do that at the next meeting.

I am glad I am out of the Socialist, Fascist Fief of Raytown in the State of Misery!

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Fire Fighters calling tonight asking for money.

I will now be working to stop any tax increase you may be asking for if you are going to nickel and dime me.

Anonymous said...

To 8:46pm you might want to report this. Another city had people calling for money and they were not with whom they claimed to be. In other words it was a scam ( a ploy to implement a personal gain)

Anonymous said...


I am tired of all of these groups calling and asking for money.

I question how much money goes to the group they are calling for and how much goes to the marketing companies making the calls.

I always tell them they can mail me a request, but include how much they are charging the group and how much of the money goes to what they clam and not to administration cost as in the salary for some one in management

Susan Dolan said...

Maybe I didn't make myself clear enough. MGE and KCPL provide the option for me to receive an electronic vs. printed statement. It saves them money since they don't have to print and mail one for me. The same is true for my bank statement, etc.

I don't pay Raytown Sewer, or the IRS, a year in advance. I don't give any company carte blanche to automatically bill me. I don't want to pay my Raytown Sewer bill online and pay an extra buck or two service charge in order to do it (that is NOT a service - it's a dis-service).

I do realize not everyone wants an electronic or emailed statement. I prefer it and it saves money for the technologically up-to-date companies who offer it since they're not printing and mailing my statement.

Pat Casady said...

I have found in my many years that most people
using the phone begging for money are rarely the
people they say they are. I don’t think the actual
firemen and women take the time to call and ask for
These phone beggars wil take your money and to keep
it legal they will give something like 1% to their cause.
I never give money to phone beggars most are scams.
Please don’t hold these kinds of phone calls against the
actual Fire Departments and Police Departments.
By the way I am anonymous 8:20 AM.
I did sign what I wrote. I don't know what happened to my signature.
Maybe it was left out when Greg cleaned up some of the words I put in it. Sorry I was upset.

Susan Dolan said...

a 501(c)(3) charity formed as a foundation to fund charitable purposes must make "qualifying distributions" of a least 5 percent of the foundation's net assets each year or face an excise tax.

There is no legal restriction on the percentage of income that nonprofit organizations can use for administrative costs. A nonprofit's budget, however, is legally an open book, and decisions on how to divide administrative and program costs must withstand public scrutiny so some will do a lot of gaming in order to look good.

MARC, Kansas City's Regional Council is a non-profit. I once oversaw the legal end of a non-profit recipient's front-end sales office. Their administrative expenses came in at a horrid 85%. Their office sales manager was hired when I obtained proof that he was personally benefiting from the agencies sales.

If you want to contribute to a non-profit, you may want to research how they're handling their money and their political affiliations first.

Here is a link to KCMO non-profits:

Anonymous said...

There are numerous groups and scammers pretending to be groups soliciting money. The State Patrol Called me yearly soliciting funds to send kids to the circus. The last time I asked the caller for his badge number. He explained he was not an officer. I told him to take me off the list.

I also have a "Bouncer" which uses caller ID to screen calls and will send them to the answering machine, allow 2 rings, 4 rings, or hang up on unwanted callers. I bought this 20 years ago and wish I could find another.

KCPL takes online payments with no extra charge. I paid KCPL online with my credit card and received 1% cash back from the card. That meant receiving $2 cash back for paying my electric bill online.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Pat you are so right. Rarely are they legit; and the very few that are give a small percentage to the cause. Andy; I too like my paper statements as well. Also with a check you have the back for evidence when a company cashed it. I guess we have both had need to use an actual billed statement before. Computers are as good as the person inputting the info. I'm not one to use a public computer to put personal info on.

Anonymous said...

Susan we read and understood what you posted the first time. I like Andy and a few others were comm. enting on the Sewer Department and things we were talking about. That's what's good about the site here; we can all comment on various things and venues without any issues

Anonymous said...

So the Sewer Billing has Auto pay that's good to know I like using that for several of my bills one being insurance. Guess I did not pay attention to the newsletter that came in the billing. Thanks for this post

Anonymous said...

The gentleman or lady that is at the large counter when you go into Sutherlands is also a cashier. When they are there and not many customers they will send the person at the cashier to stock and do clean up. Hardware stores are much like garden nurseries and are busiest at certain times of the year. Sutherlands does far more contracting sales than say Westlakes so alot of that business is at 7 am. I don't live far from the store so I go in at all different times and some are slow some are not. I have a friend that lives a couple of blocks from the one on 40 hiway but prefers the blueridge one on her way home from work since it is easier in and out of the parking lot. I've found Home Depot Lowes Sutherlands and Westlakes all carry different things so for the hardwood floor care I use only Home Depot carries it. I just love hardware stores like most people like malls. As far as Sutherlands getting a TIF ; not sure but I bet we could look it up for clarification. Sutherlands has been around forever and is locally owned and operated that much I do know for certain. I hope they stay there on the ridge

Susan Dolan said...

Dear 12:27 pm:

You said, "I like Andy and a few others were comm. enting on the Sewer Department and things we were talking about." And that is what my post was about. Raytown sewer ONLY provides a paper statement, processed at great expense out of our tax dollars. If Raytown Sewer (the City) provided the option for people to receive an e-statement instead of a paper statement, it would provide us/the City, a potential substantial savings. KCPL/MGE were cited as examples of how the private sector excels in good business practices over the public sector.

Anonymous said...

Susan Dolan here is one for you to research it is called Agenda 21. It will scare the pants right off of you. Please do it.

Anonymous said...

Has anybody seen the huge illegal storage containers
along the 50hwy.E bound side of WalMart? If you or I put this type
of container on our property the city would be on us
like white on rice. But, we all know WalMart can do no
wrong when it comes to the Bower machine.

Anonymous said...

Sutherlands business is up over last year. Sutherlands does not receive a TIF from the city. Sutherlands charges an extra one percent sales tax, which goes to Sutherlands until they recoup the $2.6 million they spent on construction. Sutherlands is like every store in that they have busy and slow times. Spring is Sutherlands busiest season and winter is slowest.

Anonymous said...


On page 48 of the Adobe .pdf version for the 10/15/13 Board of Aldermen meeting under the title, RECITATIONS it reads: "WHEREAS,
the City is a charter city incorporated and exercising governmental functions and
powers pursuant to the Constitution and the Revised Statutes of the State of Missouri, with its legislative
power residing in the
Board of Aldermen.." (link provided below).

I was under the impression that we are a Class 4 city. Was it an error that the minutes reflect we are a Charter City? If so, would
that nullify anything?

Anonymous said...

11:35 pm as I re read several comments it is plain to see several people were stating their personal preference for online, e-bill , paper statements, and various options sewer billing does and does not offer. One person 6:50 said " there I can view and pay it as I do with KCPL /MGE. People were talking about different aspects of the sewer billing according to what They were centered on... No debate is really necessary when we all remember as one said. "We can all comment on various things and venues without any issues"

Anonymous said...

I agree with Susan that ebilling should be an OPTION for those who want it. Since I demand paper billing I treat my email address as more confidential than my SSN and refuse to provide it.

Andy Whiteman

Susan Dolan said...

To 5:48 AM

You're kidding - Right? What do YOU know about it?

Anonymous said...

Thank you 8:55 for the clarification on Sutherlands. Didn't realize the extra tax or what it was for

Anonymous said...

Andy that's funny about your email account and your SSN and what's funnier I feel the same about my email account. Odd how we all have same and different preferences with all the bloggers here

Peter said...

For years the sewer bill came every other month then it started every month and was double of what was billed before. Suppose to go by your water bill ussage however one of my children and their family have a much higher water bill than the two of us and their sewer bill is $12 less

Anonymous said...

Did anyone else in the community receive a community survey from the US Census Bureau?

Anonymous said...

10:46am....At the meeting they discussed that and amended the wording so that it did not say charter city.

Anonymous said...

When you have city employees who do not live in the city are you really surprised they don't understand we are a 4th class city.

Anonymous said...

6:33p Thank you for the clarification.

Anonymous said...

I got a flier with my sewer bill about the Lighting of the pocket park in downtown raytown. I noticed that we have gone from lighting downtown raytown to lighting a tiny corner of it. But what really surprises me was the time. 5:45 p.m.?!? Not much time to get home from work, round up the kdis and get to the pocket park in time, is there? Come on city hall. Even a high school football game doesn't start until at least 7:00 in the evening. Oh yeah, I forgot. We want to make a show of city department heads being in town for the ceremony. After all it is a long drive home for most of them to places like Basehor, Kansas, Riverside, Raymore and beyond. Don't want to inconvenience them, do we? "Let the public be damned" should be put on a sign above city hall.

Susan Dolan said...


I just got a statement dated 11/12/13
with total that is nearly double our normal rate.

The statement says, "Your Nov bill relflects your new winter average..."
Our sewer bill has actually been lower than last year, on average.

Did anyone else get hit with this huge WINTER increase?

Anonymous said...

The past few years a lighting ceremony hAs been held at pocket park complete with our elementary schools students singing Christmas Carole's around that same time. I noticed the holiday wreaths have been on the bridge now for weeks. Wonder if the umb bank will again put out their train decoration.

Anonymous said...

4:10 PM, There are many billing preferences. I feel that Sewer Billing ,as other utilities do, should accommodate personal preference. There will be a savings in billing some customers if they except electronic billing.

7:08 AM, I agree the highly paid city employees who chose not to live in the city where they work are being accommodated at the expense of us serfs in the fascist fief.

Andy Whiteman

Susan Dolan said...


Yes, 7:08a, it is an insult. Have not you noticed all the headlines about the assaults on Christianity at home and abroad? I suppose we're supposed to feel grateful that our city even has a little Christmas tree at all. But, if you want to get in the spirit, just walk into Walmart anytime from mid-October on!

Sadly for Scrooge Bower, he must have a cold hard rock in the place where those of us who love Christmas have a bright light.

Incidentally, I just quit my Sam's Club membership since they and Walmart are one and the same. I'm joining Costco instead and saw on the morning news that Costco will be closed Thanksgiving so that their employees can spend time with their families. We have the power of the purse.

p.s. The next time you even think of going to Walmart to buy their cheap goods made with Chinese slave labor, consider this: Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without (no, that's not original).

Tom Rigot, Sr said...

Yesterday a work crew spend the day boarding up the windows & doors of the old dry cleaner building at the corner of 63rd & Blue Ridge BLVD. There is a "for sale" sign in the parking lot and has been there since the cleaners moved out 2 months ago. Seems odd to have a commercial building for sale and boarded up at the same time. If this building looked bad before it really looks bad now! Another step down the ladder of decline for the old downtown district. I guess I backed the wrong horse when I purchased and rehabbed my downtown building 14 years ago and staked roots in the Raytown community. The sale value of my building continues to decline and this ugliness across the street doesn't help any!

Anonymous said...

Tom, You didn't make a mistake 14 years ago. Back then, folks fought to buy a house in Raytown. But the last two administrations have ruined the city. Code enforcement is non-existent, they promise more police, but the officers are quitting faster than new ones can be hired, the mayor is a bully, and the city council are a bunch of cowards. No body cares because no body makes them care. Your place is the one bright spot downtown. You always keep it looking nice. City hall won't make anyone keep their place up. Just look at the building across the street from the bank. It's a dump and it's going to stay a dump.

Anonymous said...

I see what you mean. The city's flyer refers to Christmas as the Holiday Lighting Ceremony. Lots of words about Santa Claus and Winter Wonderland but no mention of the real message in Christmas.

Anonymous said...

It is because of sue happy people like the ACLU that would sue the city or any other public group who uses the word Christmas. It might offend someone. And that would be more wasted money by the city.

Need To Know said...


Although unfortunately heavily immersed in Agenda21/ICLEI, Lee's Summit still acknowledges Christmas in a big way:
Mayor’s Tree Lighting
November 22, 2013
6:30 pm to 9:30 pm
The Mayor’s Tree Lighting takes place at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 22, at Howard Station Park in Downtown Lee’s Summit. Deck yourself out in lights to participate in this year’s “Merry & Bright: Wrap Yourself in Lights” contest. The Top 3 winners will receive a trophy and Downtown Lee’s Summit Gift Checks. Enjoy a musical performance by the Lee’s Summit Elementary Cougar Choir, then join Mayor Randy Rhoads as he lights the Mayor’s Tree and the Downtown. Santa and Mrs. Claus will arrive by fire truck to take photos with children so be sure to bring your camera. Enjoy free hot chocolate and cookies while supplies last. Carriage rides also will be available for a small fee. Kansas City Royals announcer Ryan Lefebvre will MC the event.

Wouldn't it be nice if our Chamber of Commerce took a break from their regular schmoozing long enough to plan something like this in our city? Folks, I guess if we want events that promote Raytown, we'll have to do it ourselves like our grass-roots beginnings of the Farmer's Market since the powers that be don't seem to have the aptitude to do anything that isn't tied to a Federal grant that's coupled with big money public-private partnerships that line everyone's pockets except ours. Mr. Rigot's report of the city boarding-up a business that's for sale on one of our main drags turned my stomach. That's across the street from his business, a block away from the 'Xmas' pocket park - and another -what- 2 blocks away from the new bridge and Raytown Monument. Our Mayor and Chamber of Commerce are certainly demonstrating the level of their lack of abilities as well as the strength of their ties to the United Nations. Left to their own devices, they and their comrades will continue to through us and our city under the bus.

Peter said...

Susan haven't gotten my sewer bill as of yet but will be checking out this winter rate. Crazy it should be higher in winter when it is supposed to be based on water consumption and I certainly don't water the yard in winter

Anonymous said...

To Need To Know thanks for the LSMO update maybe I can Gather the Grandkids and Go. LSMO is spreading out with all the new housing additions, Schools and churches. Lots of young "yuppie" families out there so it will probably be a crowed event so everyone get there early . I remember when LSMO was just a spec of dust on the map. But they had area to grow and bought up lots of farm land. Taxes are high there but it's up and coming

Anonymous said...

7:03 PM, I told the BOA that I was offended that they use the word "Holiday." What Holiday? What happened to Christmas? I would go to City Hall to drop off the paymentfor my Sewer bill and see a sign, "CLOSED FOR THE HOLIDAY." What holiday? Why can't the holiday be named? Why are city workers given a paid day off for an unknown holiday that can't be named?

Susan, As you may know your sewer billing for the entire year is based on winter water usage (November, December, January). If you watered your yard after the October water meter reading, it goes onto your November reading giving you a higher winter average.

I kept my winter usage under 1000 gallons by,
1) Not wasting money watering the yard.
2) Laundry is 1 or 2 loads per month. (I don't wear that many clothes.)
3) No baths.
4) One shower per month but only if necessary.
5) Limit toilet flushing to once per day (only after a BM). Any more flushing is unnecessary and wasting water.
6) Dishes: Stack in dishwasher and run only when full. Why waste water?

I suggest watching when your water meter is read so you can reduce your usage after the October reading.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Andy, if you are really serious about your water usage, you are a dirty and disgusting man. To shower only once a month, and to wear dirty clothes? I don't know how people can stand to be anywhere near you!

Anonymous said...

To 12:53 pm


Susan Dolan said...

To City Officials & Chamber of Commerce,

I grew up in Lincoln, Nebraska, just a block away from a city park that sported a swimming pool, tennis court, ball park and playground equipment. It was pretty much utopia for a kid. Back then, city officials demonstrated their regard for children.

In the winter, the city flooded that tennis court and we spent many happy hours ice skating there. Our first pair of skates were black ice hockey skates from the Goodwill so it didn't cost my parents a small fortune for me and my 3 siblings to get started. There, we also met other kids who came to skate. We devised our own games and became friends.

There was also a pond on Lake Street that had a stone picnic shelter and in winter, we'd also skate there, returning to the shelter's fireplace periodically to warm ourselves.

How affordable is it to flood a tennis court or two where Raytown's children could ice skate. My guess is very and this winter is supposed to be a very cold one.

How easy would it be to stage a snowman building contest? It could be announced on local tv and social media and would serve to promote Raytown. Serve free cider and cocoa and give winners in age groups from kids to adult, a ribbon. It doesn't have to be expensive but it might be a lot of fun and could foster good community relations. Hold it near one of those tennis courts you flooded for ice skating.

Simple, warm, thoughtful things like these are missing in Raytown. They're healthy, inexpensive and they build a sense of community. Take note!