They are the fantastic photos taken just at the right moment and at the right place. Here are many you will recognize and the truth about their origins.
USE THIS LINK . . . FAKE PHOTOS
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The Salamander Returns!
EXCEPTIONAL: (adjective) having or showing intelligence or ability well above average
City Hall honchos recently published a Fall/Winter Newsletter.
It wasn’t just a newsletter. It was a 16 page fluff piece which extolled the efficiency and general excellence of City Hall operations.
This exercise of meaningless verbiage was an attempt to bring residents up-to-date on where our tax dollars go.
This type of expenditure is apparently standard in most cities of the country. So Raytown is only following the common trend of senseless bragging.
However, on page 3 there is a report of a citizen’s committee rating of all city departments.
Every single department and everything the departments do was rated “E”.
The “E”, we are told, stands for “Exceptional”.
All this writer will say is this: “Get real, people of City Hall. This rating is ridiculous. It borders on being sarcastic".
Does anyone in reader-land actually believe that every single solitary facet of a city the size of Raytown and its operations are so smoothly running and so good they should be “E”? And “E” stands for Exceptional!
In light of last summer’s fiasco over City Hall’s Neighborhood Market scheme, and the ensuing lawsuit in which the City is now embroiled, I would think the rating should be “F” for an old term from my generation, FUBAR! You youngsters can ask a WWII or Korean veteran for a definition. Believe me, it would be a more accurate rating.
Or how about the mess that is Super Splash. The pool, by City Hall’s own accounting, has lost hundreds of thousands dollars in recent years. City Hall’s response has been to . . .
- Fire all of its employees and bring in a so-called “professional company” to straighten out things . . . AND THEN
- Fire the “professional company” to hire its own people to run things.
Talk about going full circle. Since the two moves by the City are contrary to each other, it would be hard to rate both of them as “E” for Exceptional.
Want a real taste of “Exceptional” Raytown City Hall style? Turn in a residential or commercial code violation. You will see the city’s exceptional gears grind to a stop.
If the ratings are accurate, one can only assume that our City Hall and its denizens have reached a quintessence of perfection seldom, if ever, achieved in the history of bureaucracy.
The report with all of its “E’s” reminds your correspondent of a talk he once gave to a group of school children.
They asked what grade I made in school. I told them, “I made a “D”. Then I explained in that in my case “D” stood for “Dandy”!
The report card is also interesting for one other reason:
According to the accompanying statement this report of Exceptional Achievement was issued by a Committee appointed by Mayor Bower in January of 2013. In light of this hard-to-digest fairy tale, your Salamander can only wonder . . .
“. . . if the report had contained a few “D’s” or, God forbid, an “F”, for any department or one of its functions do you really believe our Mayor would ever re-appoint any of the current members of the rating committee?”
The Salamander welcomes Raytown’s newest newspaper, the Raytown Brooking Eagle. Welcome to the party. We now have a choice of three excellent weekly news reports: The Raytown Report, the Raytown Times and the Raytown Brooking Eagle.
|BY GREG WALTERS|
April Election Ballot Getting Crowded
Earlier this week I decided to write a short informational story about the upcoming elections scheduled for early April, 2014. The ballot, which at one time, had only one issue for voters to decide has grown to a ballot of many issues:
RAYTOWN CHARTER ELECTION: Voters are asked whether or not to form a Charter Commission – and – elect a thirteen member Commission should voters approve the formation of the Commission.
So far, fourteen candidates have filed for the Raytown Charter Commission. The closing date for filing for the Commission is January 21, 2014.
RAYTOWN SCHOOL DISTRICT: Three members will be elected to serve on the Raytown School Board. The current School Board has also placed a property tax levy issue on the ballot. Supporters say it is not an increase, which is true, but in reality, the property tax levy could be lowered if the increase is not approved.
CITY OF RAYTOWN: The Board of Aldermen unanimously approved an extension of two sales tax questions for the voters to decide next April. Critics have complained that the taxes are not set to expire for two years and that the tax questions are premature.
Paul’s Rant BY PAUL LIVIUS
I really enjoyed The Salamander’s thoughts this week. His words have inspired me to share some of my own thoughts.
The Raytown School District has, through its actions, established a responsible and professional sense of decorum in how it handles matters of public interest.
On the other hand, the City of Raytown continues to act like a petulant child, a child that either through neglect or design is simply not conducting itself professionally.
Case in point:
This week we received not one, but two press releases from the Raytown School District regarding candidate filing for seats on the Raytown School Board. The releases, which are also published on the School District’s website, go into detail about who has filed and given contact information for the candidates.
More importantly, the release detailed the closing date for filing so that other potential candidates can determine whether or not to test the waters.
By comparison, the City of Raytown, has published nothing on its website about the upcoming Charter Election.
In light of the fact that the filing deadline is only about three weeks away you would think the city might break down and publish some information about it. After all, isn’t that what a news source is supposed to do? I wonder what the high paid Public Relation Officer has been doing lately if not dispensing information on the website.
Scroll through the city’s website. Nearly all of its so called “news stories” look back, not forward.
We all know a new Dunkin’ Donuts has opened. We know that those big trucks treating our streets for ice and snow are our Public Works crew at work.
But you cannot learn the following.
Where to file for the Charter Election.
(answer: Raytown City Hall, Office of the City Clerk)
When the filing for the Charter Election closes.
(answer: Tuesday, January 21, 2014)
How many and who has filed for the Charter Commission.
It is well known that many of our elected officials are not happy with the prospect of a Charter Commission being formed.Ward 1 Alderman Joe Creamer even voted against allowing voters to vote on the issue! He did so even though Missouri State Law mandates that since it was an initiative petition effort, the voters must vote on the matter.
That does not make it right for the city to have a virtual blackout on news about the upcoming Charter Election. After all, we pay a lot in taxes to support the website and the newsletter recently mailed to Raytowners from City Hall. That news should include upcoming elections and filing deadline information.
Maybe the Salamander has it right. All you can expect from City Hall is fluff about what a fantastic job they are doing.
*I have since learned that two new filings recently took place. Steve Guenther and Greg Walters filed last week.
Candidates who have filed for either the Raytown School Board or the Raytown Charter Commission are invited to send a short biographical essay about your candidacy to the Raytown Report for publication. Please include a photograph with your essay.
Stories can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org
FIT BOTTOMED EATS
Please don’t laugh at my latest healthy obsession. It’s been around for — well, forever. It can be found in almost every supermarket, is a big time saver and frankly not that expensive. Since my discovery, I can’t imagine life without it.
So now when I am in a pinch and scrounging for dinner, I make that mad dash to the grocery store and pick up — yep, wait for it — a rotisserie chicken! And they come in different flavors, too! Obvious right? Well, not for me. READ MORE
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