Sunday, December 21, 2014

RAYTOWN'S LEADING NEWS SOURCE

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We wish our readers a blessed and peaceful Christmas!



BITS AND PIECES . . . 
Discontent Voiced 
by Ward 4 Alderman
Last week’s Charter Commission meeting was not without its fireworks. During public comments Ward 4 Alderman Bill Van Buskirk* went on a rant of sorts when he addressed Commissioners. He said he was upset over the minutes not truly representing what he had said at a previous meeting.

He then took on the issue of Voter Recall – which has been endorsed by all but two of the Charter Commission.

He said the there will be “one hell of a mess in this city” if voters are allowed the power of Initiative Petition / Recall. VanBuskirk told the Commission that petition gatherers “can go out and find uninformed, uneducated people to sign petitions any day”.

Charter Commissioners amended the minutes of the meeting to reflect VanBuskirk’s complaint. However, there was no change made on the issue of Voter Recall by the Commission.
*Bill Van Buskirk is a member of the Raytown Board of Aldermen. His wife, Mary Jane Van Buskirk is a member of the Raytown Charter Commission. Bill made his comments as a guest testifying before the Commission.

Commission Attorney 
Challenged on Opinion
Charter Commissioner Greg Walters and the Commission attorney Allen Garner, exchanged strong words at the last Charter Commission meeting over the language limiting the use of Initiative Petition in the Charter.

Walters said the wording used was so prohibitive that it made a “farce of the initiative process”.

In retort, Allen made an off-hand remark that the language pretty much limited the petition process to issues concerning “dogs and cats”.  As written, the restrictive language forbids any petitions concerning zoning, taxation, or tax abatements.

Garner continued that he could provide lists of issues that could be used through the initiative process. Walters challenged him to provide the list to the Commission.

Garner demurred, saying that he would only bring the list if a majority of the Commission requested it.

Vice Chairman Jason Greene* indicated he felt there was consensus from the Commission to learn more on the subject and asked that the list be provided.
*Chairman Steve Guenther was not in attendance.
 
First Day of Filing 
Attracts Nine Candidates
Tuesday morning was damp and cold, but the weather did not deter nine Raytowners from throwing their hat into the ring for seven offices on the first day if filing for next April’s City Election.

Candidates are listed below, as is the order of their appearance on the ballot. Filing for public office in Raytown is open until January 20, 2015.

Mayor
Pat Ertz
Michael McDonough
Alderman Ward I 
Joe Creamer 
Alsderman Ward 2
Jim Aziere
Chris Rathbone 
Alderman Ward 3
Lisa Emerson 
Alderman Ward 4
Mary Jane VanBuskirk 
Alderman Ward 5
Barry Park
Eric Teeman
City Collector
No current filings


The Paul Livius Report
RAYTOWN BOARD OF ALDERMEN, DECEMBER 2, 2014

The Invocation was given by Alderman Bill Van Buskirk.

Boy Scout Troop 469 provided the Honor Guard and led the Pledge of Allegiance.

The Board passed a resolution approving the purchase of ammunition from Gulf States Distributors.  The Board was told the Police Department orders a variety of ammunition types from Gulf States Distributors.  The ammunition for training and duty use, for all weapons systems, is mostly purchased through this vendor.  Vendor pricing is from the cooperative purchasing bid for Missouri law enforcement agencies.

The Board passed a resolution approving an annual maintenance agreement with the city of Harris Computer-Global Software.  The Board was told Harris Computer-Global Software is the Records Management System and Computer-Aided Dispatch System vendor.  These systems were installed in 2005 and at the time of implementation included 5 years of support.  That plan expired in 2010.  The support plan is now an annual expense.  This support plan is critical to the Department’s function as these systems directly affect how the department responds to calls and investigate crimes.The Board passed a resolution approving the repair services of Wastewater and storm water infrastructure from Wiedenmann, Inc.  Jim Melvin said the Public Works Department received a complaint from a resident regarding slow flow on their sewer.  The complaint was received about the 15th of September, 2014.  Upon televising the sewer line, staff found that the sewer has several cracked and displaced pipes between the manholes near 7909 Hedges and 7919 Hedges.  The repairs are beyond the scope that can be handled by staff, and must be addressed in the near future to prevent collapse of some of the pipe.  The tentative price from Wiedenmann, Inc. for pipe bursting of the 275 linear feet of sewer line is $61,608.00, with the actual price to be determined by actual cost of the repair.  The price is based on using unit prices from the cooperative contract from the City of Lee’s Summit.  The unit prices are firm, but the actual quantities may differ from the estimate.  The final price is expected to be less than the estimate.


The Board passed an ordinance to grant a conditional use permit to operate an auto repair business on property located 8910 East Highway 350.  Jason Barton on behalf of H & H 350, LLC is seeking approval of a Conditional Use Permit application that proposes to allow tire and wheel installation and service (i.e. auto repair) in conjunction with a tire and wheel retail business.  The subject property is located at 8910 Highway 350 which is on the northwest corner of the intersection of Highway 350 and Lane Avenue.  The applicant is proposing to make improvements to the existing building and property, which include:

Renovations to the existing building;

Construction of an addition onto the front of the existing building;

Repaving the parking lot;

Removal of one entrance on Highway 350 and construction of new entrances;

Removal of a portion of the shoulder on Highway 350 and construction curb and gutter;

Construction of a sidewalk along Highway 350;

Design of sidewalk, curb and gutter improvements along Lane Avenue and placement of construction funds in an escrow account with the City for cost share of storm drainage improvements that City will be making in the future with which the applicant’s improvements will connect;

Installation of landscaping.

The Board passed a resolution approving a development agreement with H & H 350, LLC.  for improvements within the right-of-way of Lane Avenue.  John Benson said Jason Barton on behalf of H & H 350, LLC is seeking approval of a Conditional Use Permit application that proposes to allow tire and wheel installation and service in conjunction with a tire and wheel retail business.  The property is located at 8910 Highway 350 which is on the northwest corner of the intersection of Highway 350 and Lane Avenue.  The applicant is proposing to construct various improvements as part of opening the business on the property.  These improvements include construction of storm sewer lines and inlets, curb and gutter, and a sidewalk along Lane Avenue.  The storm lines and inlets necessitate the City to construct storm sewer improvements further downstream to convey the storm water runoff.  The City has not yet designed or budgeted funds for the construction of these improvements.  As a result, the improvements along Lane Avenue to be constructed by H & H 350, LLC need to be delayed until the City’s improvements can also be constructed.  The Development Agreement requires H & H 350, LLC to place the funds they would have paid to construct the improvements along Lane Avenue in an escrow account.  The City will have five years to have the City’s downstream storm water improvements designed and constructed.  When the downstream storm water improvements are constructed the City will also construct the improvements along Lane Avenue for which H & H 350, LLC is responsible, using the funds in escrow.

The Board heard the first and second reading of an ordinance approving an agreement with the Jackson County Board of Election commissioners to utilize city hall as a polling place for precincts BR 14 and BR 15 during the 2015 calendar year.  (The rules were suspended for this ordinance.)


Last Week’s Poll Results
Last week’s poll asked “Should the Charter Commission use Pull Out Questions”....

...TO DECIDE IF THE CHIEF OF POLICE IS ELECTED OR APPOINTED?
YES . . . . 80%
NO  . . . . 20%
...TO REQUIRE CITY ADMINISTRATOR TO LIVE WITHIN CITY LIMITS 
YES . . . . 70%
NO  . . . . 30%
 
This Week’s Poll . . .
During deliberations Charter Commissioners have the power to bring forth items to be included in the document. Two such items that will soon be decided by the Commission have to do with taxation and tax abatements.

Commissioner Greg Walters has proposed the City be prohibited from creating and Earnings Tax. This week's poll ask whether or not you support the prohibition.



BY JENN
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21 comments:

Anonymous said...

Nice to see someone reports REAL news in Raytown. Keep up the good work guys. We are reading it and we appreciate it.

Pat Casady said...

Mr.Van Buskirk doesn’t remember when he says
“ there will be “One Hell of a mess in this city”
If voters are allowed the power of Initiative Petition/
Recall. Petition gatherers “Can go out and find uninformed,
Uneducated people to sign petitions any day”.
Guess what Mr.Van Buskirk! that is exactly how you
were elected and most of your friends on the board.
Besides the fact that’s a little like the pot calling the
kettle black, on that uninformed and uneducated
people. Hardly anyone elected in this town has a business
background or how to run a city even as small as Raytown.
At least with a recall the people can, with cause,
rectify a bad mistake.

Andy Whiteman said...

Not living in Raytown, department heads are definitely uneducated uninformed as to what it is like to live in Raytown! Department heads should be required to reside inside the city limits.

Andy Whiteman

Mitchell said...

Your right Andy. Why should they have better living condition than we do. Did anybody see the news last Thursday morning? Lees Summit has a website showing where the snow plows are in real time. They had less than 2" of snow. So did we, but our streets weren't plowed. I bet if the department heads had to live here, the streets would be better taken care of.

Anonymous said...

Pat Ertz for Mayor

Police running the city is like the tail wagging the dog.

Anonymous said...

I beg to differ with Mitchell, do not know who it was but our streets were plowed and we live west of sterling near 72d. Do not throw all the city into your location.

Anonymous said...

I cannot believe people are complaining about streets not being plowed when it only snowed two inches! It was all melted off by 10. And from the ones I drove on it appeared the major arteries and collector streets were plowed. How much more do you want?

By the way. I am glad the Raytown Report is here too. It is the only news outlet that let's us know what is going on at icty hall. I don't think anyone would know there was even a charter commission if it were not for the efforts of Paul and Greg.

Anonymous said...

I agree with anonymous Dec.22 11:49 A.M. Pat Ertz for mayor. Let's get real people when someone says the only reason he ran for the charter is to make sure the chief of police remains elected is not a good candidate for mayor because his loyalty will remain with the police department. Think about it.

Anonymous said...

Pat Ertz has too much baggage to be running for mayor. I'm sure it will all come out as the campaign continues. Again as someone has already said, he is part of the problem, definitely NOT THE SOLUTION.

Pat Casady said...

If you want Raytown to keep going the way it has
for the last eight years, including bad streets, tax
giveaways, preferential treatment for big corporations,
giving outrageous pay increases to favorite department
heads that don’t even want to live here after promising
to do so and not listening to the people of Raytown
then by all means vote for an incumbent!
My suggestion is get off the nationwide police
hate squad and vote for who is best for this town.
If all you see in Mike McDonough is a policeman then
you don’t know Mike. Look past the uniform and
see all the good he has done in his life outside the
Police Department.
By the way to all the readers of this site, the people
that are signing “Anonymous” are probably running
for office too. Don’t pay any attention to them.
those of you that want Pat Ertz, it’s a free country.
But remember he has promised twice that he would not
Run for mayor, yet here he is. Do you really want a person
that tells stories? Seems to me like business as usual.
NO THANKS!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 6:19
Let's not tell lies
I spoke with him about why he was running for Charter Commission when he was campaigning
He ran to write a Charter that relects what the government is now which includes the Chief of Police position staying elected and the City Administrator position having to live here

Anonymous said...

I find it funny that Mr. Van Buskirk would have a comment/concern on the minutes of a meeting. when this issue was addressed with the minutes of the BOA meetings being incomplete and inaccurate he along with the rest of the BOA did not make a comment one way or the other.

Sorry sir you can't have it both ways. Either all aspects including the BOA meetings should be completely documented when guest speak to the group. If less than accurate information is okay for BOA meetings then it should be accepted by the BOA members as okay at other meetings.

The citizens of Raytown or the losers all around in this situation.

FRED

Pat Casady said...

Who’s lying?
Wanting the Police Chief remaining as an elected position
is the way most people think it should be. It’s not loyalty
it’s the way it should be. Heck the bunch at City Hall hasn’t
done such a great job of running this town. What makes you think
they should be in charge of the Police Department?
As for the City Administrator living in this town, that is what he
agreed to do. That is just one of the cities rules this bunch at
City Hall has broken. This bunch rewarded him for not living up
to his promise with a thirty thousand plus, dollar a year raise.
If you don’t agree with most people that, that was wrong,
then there is no hope for you anyway.
On a lighter side……I hope everybody has a very Merry
Christmas.
Even you “Anonymous” writers.

Andy Whiteman said...

Pat, I was told by an alderman at the time that the CA did NOT receive a $30K raise. It was an "adjustment" to be in line with other cities in the metro salary wise and to retain him since he had offers from other cities. My feeling was that if he accepted another offer he would HAVE TO MOVE which he didn't want to to move. He could have been replaced.

Merry Christmas to all:
http://www.jacquielawson.com/viewcard.asp?code=5181540445526&source=jl999&utm_medium=internal_email&utm_source=pickup&utm_campaign=receivercontent

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Andy. Someone sold you a lot of hogwash. Mahesh Sharma is paid way above scale compared to other cities. Use this scale to see the truth about how much he is paid.

Raytown: 30,000 people.

Raytown: only 10 sq. miles

Raytown: does not operate fire district or any utilities.

A more accurate description of Sharma's pay increase of $30,000 as an insult to every other city employee who saw their pay checks frozen that year becasue the city was so broke.

Gene said...

Anon 1:16 - Andy is correct. We were told the salary increase was really an adjustment. It was time to sign a new contract and he wanted compensation equal to other cities. The board granted him that salary increase.

Now - were they sold a bill of goods? Absolutely! Did they do their homework to find out if the compensation was truly equal, given all the things Sharma doesn't do? Of course not! The city clerk, on city time, did some research on behalf of Sharma. The board took Sharma's word the information was accurate. God forbid they should think for themselves!

April is fast approaching. We need to make some changes.

Andy Whiteman said...

1:16 PM, I made a public comment to the BOA at the time that one person should not get a $30K increase when everyone else has their pay frozen and especially since most city workers are underpaid.

I never understood why the CA pay should be in line with other cities. I agree with you that population, size area wise, and job duties are not equal so there is no comparison.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Any idea why Tom Rigot Insurance is for sale? Is he moving or retiring?

Anonymous said...

I fear the day the Michael McDonough is Mayor. Pat Ertz is no better. So sad that the majority of Raytown could care less what is happening in Raytown. You guys are complaining about shifting the Chief’s position from elected to appointed saying City Hall doesn’t need to be running the police department. Well voting Retired Sergeant Michael McDonough to Mayor will do just that without changing the Chief’s position. Also it was confirmed to me again by sources inside 10000 E. 59 St. that they will be freezing a few more positions that are paid for by the “looks like a bad idea now” public safety sales tax. More crime hiring and position freezes made by the police department. Great… Then to top it off possible former officer running the other side of the city, sounds like it is almost time to abandon ship. I love Raytown. Small town feel in the big city. There is nothing that any part of this government has done in the last 10 years to make this city better. Just keep kicking the can down the street and passing it off to the next who does the same. Oh and back to Michael McDonough for Mayor. I’m thinking this is a ploy by the police administration to get a head in the office upstairs to counter the tension between the police department and City Hall. So then less accountability for the police department not hiring more officers to protect our streets. I was told once that by an anonymous source from the police department that they have a less than 5% successful hiring rate from applications put in. This number of course may have been a little exaggerated, but the fact still remains. The police department is looking thin and they now want to freeze more positions so they don’t have to fill them.
Thank you for listening to my concerned rant.

Anonymous said...

To Pat;
Tell me what good Michael McDonough has ever done, besides being overly friendly. Yeah he has received BS awards from local groups because he sticks his hand in the pot and gives back the right favors. He may look good in the public eye. Why, because he is no different than every other elected official. He is a born and bred politician. Same old bag with a new name printed on it. I won't post any hard facts of that. Not right now. I have known thees two for a very, very long time. I know what is going to come. Believe you me it will be no better than what we have. Now don't get me wrong Pat Ertz is a not any better. I don't like the lesser of two evils argument either. There has to be someone out there who will actually be good for this city.

PS:
Because I have known them for so long this is an anonymous comment. I just don't like people tooting the Michael McDonough horn without knowing him.

Pat Casady said...

To “Anonymous” 8:28,
Since you want to blast both Mike and me and
then not have the intestinal fortitude to sign your
name, I have nothing to say to you except for something
I’m sure Greg would not print.