Sunday, July 27, 2014

RAYTOWN'S LEADING NEWS SOURCE

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BY GREG WALTERS
Back in the World
As many of you have no doubt determined, I have been out of town this past week to participate in the RAGBRAI (Registers Annual Great Bike Ride Across Iowa). It was a great ride full of a wonderful mix of experiences of visiting with old friends, making new ones and of course, riding my bicycle on old Iowan highways through a mix of small towns, lake communities and modern urban centers.

So, after a week of head winds so strong you had to peddle hard to go down a hill, tail winds so brisk I was able to reach speeds near 30 miles per hour (talk about exhilarating!), and near perfect weather for a couple of days (one day the temperature reached a high of 76 degrees!), it is time to get back to the business on the Raytown Report.

I see from Paul’s last Report that the city has dropped the ball on the re-broadcasting of City Council meetings. I wonder if the same will hold true for Charter Commission meetings? There is one scheduled for Monday evening at 6:30 this week -- guess we will find out then.

There has been a lot of finger-pointing and blame game going on at City Hall over the re-broadcasting of public meetings. The city has thrown the doors open to Google and more competition between the different broadcast providers. Perhaps now would be a good time to join the rest of the metropolitan area (not to mention the 21st Century) in providing up to date broadcasting and re-broadcasting of city meetings.

It strikes us a little more than ironic that ever since Mayor Bower created a Public Information Office the quality and quantity of information available to the public has actually decreased.

Hopefully, some of our City Councilmen will step up and help right the good ship Raytown in what is becoming an embarrassing situation for our community.


Paul’s Rant BY PAUL LIVIUS
Greg took some time off last week, so I did as well. With the exception of a column I published eight days ago, our page has remained unchanged. The blog portion of the Raytown Report, was, as usual, pretty busy with comments and give and take from readers. Just goes to show the need for a public space like that provided by the Raytown Report as a place to share ideas and build a sense community.

I had some time to reflect on what, from my point of view, is missing from the Raytown Charter Commission efforts to build a new form of government from Raytown.

The missing ingredient is participation.

By participation I do not mean by the Charter Commissioners themselves. I have watched some of the meetings and there is no lack of participation by the Commissioners. Their attendance record is pretty good too. Both are signs of a healthy democratic body.

What is missing is the participation of other city leaders. Not just elected officials, but also senior staff members of Raytown City Hall, members of the Park Board, the Fire District and the Chamber of Commerce should be invited to share their vision for Raytown with Charter Commissioners.

True, there are four members of the Raytown City Council already on the Charter Commission, but there are seven others (if you count the Mayor) who also have their viewpoint to share.

Wouldn’t it be interesting to hear what Ward 1 Alderman Joe Creamer has to say about rules requiring Aldermen to live within the boundaries of the Ward they represent? What would City Administrator Mahesh Sharma have to share about residency requirements for senior staff officials at Raytown City Hall?

These are tough topics to discuss, but at the end of the day, there will have to be a decision made on them.

I did some checking and found that the two previous Charter Commissioners in 1997 and in 2005 both had round table discussions with elected and appointed public officials.

It was a good idea then. It is a good idea now.


Vote NO on Amendment 7 

The campaign for the proposed Highway Sales Tax increase is long on emotion, short on facts and possibly one of the most misleading campaigns in Missouri’s history.

Amendment 7 comes at a very steep price and it is price that is targeted unfairly at those who can least afford it – our senior citizens and young families trying to get by with less disposable income.

The price tag is a three-quarter of a cent sales tax. In Raytown that amount is enough to place the total sales tax burden in the 10 cent per dollar area. At some of our more expensive stores that already have CID and TIF taxes, the sales tax will exceed 10%!

It should not come as any surprise that many of the contributors to Amendment 7 are engineers, construction firms and asphalt paving companies. Nor does it come as much a of a surprise that the ads flooding the airwaves and our mail boxes in support of Amendment 7 are long on hyperbole without any real detail as to how the money will be spent.

The special interests supporting Amendment 7 have put together a very clever campaign that does everything but tell you how much you will pay in tax increases.

Don’t be fooled by their political slight of hand. Vote NO on Amendment 7.
 
Oh, by the way, in case you were wondering, that strip of Highway 350 that goes through Raytown is NOT on the list of roads to be improved should the tax pass.



BY JENN
FIT BOTTOMED EATS
Banana Chia Pudding
We love dessert. And we’d eat it with every meal if it, you know, was an okay and healthy thing to do. But typically we save our sweet eating until dinner — or special events. BUT, with a Banana Chia Pudding recipe like this one? Well, yep, we say have dessert for breakfast!

This Banana Chia Pudding recipe comes from Doonya general manger May-Mei Lee. (If you haven’t tried or heard of Doonya yet, give it a look-see here because it’s a fabulously fun dance-inspired workout.) Made with all-natural sugars and rich in omega–3 fatty acids, fiber and protein, this is a sweet treat you can feel really good about. READ MORE

Raytown Charter Web Link 
The Raytown Charter Commission has created a webpage for the public to keep up to date on progress of the Commission.  The page has names, phone numbers and email addresses of Charter Commissioners. Use the following link to visit the page.


To view the page use this link . . . CHARTER COMMISSION



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40 comments:

Anonymous said...

Well, Mayor Bower and the Board of Aldermen have finally succeeded in destroying the last thing that Raytown could really be proud of, our parks. Where do I start, the shelter houses have half of their shingles blown off, the tables are so unstable that they are an accident waiting to happen, the rest rooms have been vandalized so bad that the doors won't even shut (graffiedy everywhere) and last but not least the shelter houses are so filthy that they are a discrace to our once fine park department. But no one seems to care, not our "out of town department head", not the park board and certainly not Mayor Bower and his bunch of "yes men and women." We only have this bunch of sorry people to blame for Raytown's demise.

Andy Whiteman said...

Paul's comment's on the non-airing of the BOA meeting makes me wonder if something was said that they don't want broadcast? Or could it be that the power outage caused the meeting to be cancelled? If the it was the latter, one would think that there would be a scroll or some type of announcement on the old rebroadcast.

Paul Livius said...

Andy, the power outage was only in my neighborhood. They had cut our power to hook up something for the new Google Fiber. The power outage caused my machine to not record the meeting. It had nothing to do with City Hall.

John said...

Anon 12:31 pm:
The Board and the Mayor aren't the only ones to blame. The blame should be shared by the voters in Raytown because they continue to elect this sorry bunch of do nothing losers.

Anonymous said...

I thought each ward was to be represented by two Alderman.

However, someone recently showed my records from the internet that prove three Alderman are living in ward 2.

This means from the names shared that only one Alderman is living in ward 1.

Is this allowed?

Doesn't the other Alderman know?

Anonymous said...

Oh, the other aldermen know but they won't do anything about it. So i guess it is fair to say they think it is acceptable. Who knows,next one of them may move out of the city and want to stay on the BOA.

All the new reformers elected last time are just like the ones they replaced. All talk. No action.

GADSDEN said...

No that is not correct, I think that we did elect two new aldermen that can be counted on. We just have far to many on the board that need to be replaced they have been on far to long, maybe people think they look cute.

Can anyone tell me who approved the PI officer and how much is she being paid?

I am afraid that the citizens of Raytown are no better than the lot that elected our present administration in DC. People are just to uninformed.

Look at the election in August coming. Just because we are being told that first responders are in favor of a tax of 3/4 % on nearly every thing you buy it is a good idea. How about increasing the gas tax in Mo.. This 3/4 % is going to hurt the retired and the poor. Do we not appreciate the fact that we will be over 10% on most of your purchases. One tenth of your bill is tax.

Anonymous said...

Gadsden,

I would agree the Board of Alderman are just like our US Senate and Congress.

As I watch the news and see the ads about Pat Roberts and not living in Kansas, I know I think about that Alderman who is living in ward 2, but was elected to represent ward 1.

Pat Casady said...

Come on people! Raytown’s leaders have yet to
find a rule that can’t be broken!
Oops! Let me clarify my statement. They have yet to
find a rule that concern them, their friends or department
heads, that can’t be broken.

Anonymous said...

Off topic... Is there any interest in using eminent domain to claim the YMCA building and grounds? I think that it needs to be turned into a joint venture between the city and the school district.

Any thoughts on this? Can it be started by petition?

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure why anyone would want to claim the YMCA building. They closed it because there were several million dollars worth of maintenance that needed to be done. If the city and/or the school district took it, who would pay the maintenance and upkeep?

Anonymous said...

6:25PM

You really dont pay attention to the meetings do you?

I personally started taking more of an interest in Raytown and this blog after some of these new aldermen were elected last year. I've watched the meetings on tv, not all though. I'm happy with the vote I made supporting one of the new guys. I see much more questioning and fight then I did before. Being said, if there is an Alderman not living in their ward, why has the state done nothing about it. Who is the election authority?

Anonymous said...

6:25,

The board has the power to remove, but as Pat says all the time they decided to do anything, but what they are elected to do.

Elisa Breitenbach said...

I am happy Frank White will be at Woodson Village shopping center this Saturday from 10-11:30 signing autographs. We plan on giving out some free donuts and having lots of fun.

Elisa Breitenbach said...

Today at work I was told that the 911 call center was down last night. I have no idea how long it was down and it's my understanding they do not know why it went down.

Anonymous said...

i just saw in the Raytown "Rag", in Randy's column that Mayor Bower is considering running for another term for Mayor next year. Someone "PLEASE" step up and run against him! I guess he wants to put the "final nail in the coffin" and erase this town off the map.

Anonymous said...

How long does it take for Neil/Raytown Water company to fix that "mess of a paving job" at 59th and Raytown Trafficway? Come on City of Raytown, grow some b..ls and have Neil get this fixed. Oh, I forgot, the city and Neil are in bed together!

Anonymous said...

So, Bower wants another term in office? Another reason why we need a charter! And one with TERM LIMITS. We can't afford four more years of Bully Bower!

Anonymous said...

I thought there were millions owed on the YMCA, not millions in maintenance that needed to be done. The facility was maintained and operating normally until the doors were closed. There may be repairs needed now, since it has been out of use.

To address, " If the city and/or the school district took it, who would pay the maintenance and upkeep?" Ideally it would become self sustaining. Until that goal is reached, the city and the school district would be need to maintain it. So, yes. Taxpayers. The same way community centers all over the metro are run.

Andy Whiteman said...

I think it would be a good time for Greg or run for Mayor! It would be an easy win as long as no other person enters and becomes an opponent. I don't know Paul but have only read what he writes. I think he would make a good Mayor. Or hopefully one of the conservative posters on this blog would step up.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Why not Bower!!!

I cannot be worst than an Alderman not living in his ward!!!

Anonymous said...

So, how come everybody knows Joe Creamer doesn't live in the ward where he was elected, but no body is doing anything about it? Hey Paul - your always ranting. Why don't you call the election board or the county prosecutor and have him arrested for fraud?

Anonymous said...

The YMCA was in need of major repair in the swimming area the roof leaked big time as the construction was not right. Also the air handlers ? were in need of repair, that was the major reasons they thru in the towel.

No way could the city or school pay for the operation. Right around Raytown you can exercise for 10.00 a month just no swimming.

They did operate it until the doors were closed but the time was coming.

Anonymous said...

It was KCFD 911 not Raytown 911.

John said...

If you know he's not living in his ward, why aren't you doing something about it?
__________________________
Anonymous said...
Why not Bower!!!

I cannot be worst than an Alderman not living in his ward!!!


July 31, 2014 at 2:07 PM
Delete

Andy Whiteman said...

3:32 PM, It was stated long ago when the YMCA closed that if the school district had an interest, it would be for the swim team. Sure people could exercise there, but why should the city and/or school district finance it with taxpayers' money? In my opinion, a private enterprise should buy it as a gym. Maybe a group of citizens or interested parties could form a corporation and operate the business.


Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Why would you pay three million dollars for a building where the swimming pool areas is in need of major work. Can you imagine how much mold will now be in the pool area after the heavy rains in the spring and the heat of a closed building?

The Y had a hard time keeping enrollment
at a decent figure to make a profit and when you compete with Hollywood exercise that is at 63d and Blueridge and the other at 40 High Way and Noland Road there is no way to make it break even.

A lot of old people that attended the Y had free membership because of the type of insurance they had thru medicare.

Pie in the sky thinking.

Anonymous said...

Andy you are dreaming, do you have a million dollars to contribute?

Anonymous said...

The BOA should take care of the business of the absentee alderman. Not the public. They have removed or forced members out of office before. Why not Creamer? An interesting question. There certainly is not any great love between him and most members of the Board. HIs closest buddy appears to be the Mayor. Maybe that is why no one on the BOA will stand up to such a definite abuse. The Mayor has them scared to the point they will not take a stand on something so blatantly wrong. Anyone else have a better explanation?

Andy Whiteman said...

4:15 PM, My point was that anything to do with the YMCA should NOT be taxpayer funded, but should be privately funded if anything is done at all. All any property is worth is what a willing buyer will pay a willing seller. The description sounds as if it would be best to raze the building and start fresh with a new business. Maybe if someone made an offer it would sell.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

The only person who will buy that building is one who has more money than brains.

Andy Whiteman said...

6:17PM, The land has value as a commercial property. That is why I mentioned, "raze the building."

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

I wondered how long Creamer would be allowed to live outside his ward. I find it so interesting that everyone on the city council has known this for close too a year and not done anything about it! Too many dirty little secrets up at City Hall. How anyone can defend Creamer's action and the Mayor andCity Council's inaction is beyond of me.

Anonymous said...

No comments worth reading???
Well then let's all cheer our first place Royals tonight.

John said...

I hear Bower wants to run again. That would put the nail in Raytown's coffin. He will win, however, unless someone steps up and runs against him. What about you, Greg? Oh, and no, I can't run. I'm confined to a wheelchair and I don't get around well enough to mount an effective campaign. I will help with mailings for however runs against Bower.

Anonymous said...

I do not know where Joe Creamer has been living this past year but I do know where he has NOT been living and that is in his house on 67th Street. The part that bothers me about this whole mess is that the Mayor and City Council have stuck their collective head into the sand. They have a responsibility to the public to follow the rules. Maybe Pat is right. If they are not going to have the City Administrator keep his promises to move to Raytown why should we expect anything more from them.

Now that all this information about Adlerman Creamer is public, I wonder if they will do anything about it?

Anonymous said...

I understand this is a very temporary living arrangement and Mr. Creamer will be back in his residence shortly.

Anonymous said...

Who is kidding who? Creamer has not lived on 66th Street for over a year! That may count as a temporary arrangement to some but any thinking person knows better.

As for him moving into his house in the near future, well, let's just wait and see.

But for all those Creamer fans, how about some input as to how long is acceptable. It has been over a year so far. That is 25% of his term in office. At what point does it become unacceptable. There are plenty of places in Ward 1 that have vacancies, apartments, homes, if you are reading this page and live in Raytown I would venture to guess that within two blocks of your house there is a vacant home.

Here is a question everyone should be asking. Why hasn't Creamer come forward already? This is not a new situation for him.

I read the article in this week Report. It does not say anything about Creamer's personal life.

Mr. Creamer is trying to act like a victim. That won't work. You know you are supposed to live should live in the Ward you represent on the City Council. The Mayor and his buddies up there may end up siding with you. But it does not make what you are doing okay.

Anonymous said...

I really find it hard to believe that some people are trying to justify Creamer not living in his ward for over a year but still remaining on the City Council. Mr. Creamer should come clean and give an accounting of where he has lived this last year. I have heard of three different places. One of them wss not even in Raytown! I doubt he will offer up the information but the city council should look into this mess. It is an embarrassment to our city.

Anonymous said...

I was thinking of other Aldermen who resigned for one reason or another. Gary Knabe and Pat Riehle come to mind. Riehle got a new job that took him out of town. Not sure whwat Knabe's story was but I think they did the right thing in stepping down when they knew they could not meet the requirements to serve. Should be a lesson somewhere in there for the current siutation with Mr. Creamer.