Sunday, September 25, 2016


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It is the Voters Turn to Decide
On November 8th, Missouri voters will cast their ballots for the next President of the United State. An equally important ballot issue is a Constitutional Amendment that would allow the State of Missouri to require voters to provide a government-issued Photo ID in order to cast a ballot.
The following language is taken from the Missouri Secretary of State’s page explaining the issue.

Official Ballot Title:
Shall the Constitution of Missouri be amended to state that voters may be required by law, which may be subject to exception, to verify one’s identity, citizenship, and residence by presenting identification that may include valid government-issued photo identification?

Fair Ballot Language:
A “yes” vote will amend the Missouri Constitution to state that voters may be required by law to verify their identity, citizenship, and residence by presenting identification that may include valid government-issued photo identification. Exceptions to this identification requirement may also be provided by law.

A “no” vote will not amend the Missouri Constitution regarding elections.
If passed, this measure will have no impact on taxes.

The effort to implement a photo identification card to vote in Missouri is not new. This year should be the final say on the matter. The reason it is going to the voters in the form of a constitutional amendment is because previous efforts were deemed unconstitutional by the Missouri Supreme Court. Should voters approve the amendment, the final stumbling block to guaranteeing the integrity of Missouri elections will be history.

Raytown Report encourages a YES vote for the proposed Voter I.D. Law.
Naysayers are quick to point out the difficulty some have in obtaining a state approved identification card as their base argument against the amendment.
To which we say “nonsense”.

Years ago the argument would have been valid. But now, as we near the second decade of the 21st century, the argument is without merit.

Missouri motorists are already provided a photo identification card when driver’s licenses are issued. The State also provides a state identification card upon request for anyone who does not have a driver’s license. The technology is in place and being used at all state motor vehicle license offices as well as state office buildings. This state of the art technology is truly “print on demand” . . . which means you receive your photo id when the picture is taken.

The question remains, is it really necessary?

Our answer is “yes”, and not just for reasons of voter identification.
Our world is changing. The use of photo-identification has become common place in America.
Try getting on a plane, opening a bank account, entering a federal office building, even (if you look young enough) purchasing a beer at a baseball game without a photo id. All we can say is “good luck”!
One of the ironies of this particular issue is that the Kansas City Star, which has time and again taken editorial stands against picture identification to vote, requires a picture id to enter their building!

All of which is necessary to keep our cities, our country, secure from those who would cause harm.
As Bob Dylan once wrote, “the times they are a’changin”. Requiring a photo id card to vote is simply one more step in taking advantage of the technology already in place to guarantee the integrity of our elections.
Vote Yes on Constitutional Amendment 6.

The Paul Livius Report
Raytown Board of Aldermen Meeting
September 20, 2016
The Board passed a resolution approving the purchase of computer equipment and supplies from Dell Marketing in an amount not to exceed $20,864.79 for the purchase of:12 Dell Workstations / 1 Dell Laptop / Dell Server Warranty Extension /  Dell UPS / Dell server memory upgrade.

The City utilizes an IT hardware replacement schedule, where eligibility is based upon a 5- year replacement cycle. In some cases, if equipment is failing and/or replacement of the equipment is preferable to repair, equipment may be replaced in advance of the scheduled replacement. This computer replacement program allows the City to forecast, budget and coordinate for leveraging current and newer technology, in an ever transforming business environment. Dell provides for government pricing through government contracts. The City utilizes the pricing in the Midwestern Higher Education Commission Contract # MHEC-07012015 This request was presented to the Sales Tax Oversight Committee on 07/19/16 and was found to meet the intent of the Capital Sales Tax.
The Board passed a resolution approving a memorandum of understanding for the purpose of developing the real property legally known as lots 2 and 3, Raytown Crossing East.  This Memorandum of Understanding between Raytown 350 Inv Group LLC and the City of Raytown is for the purpose of deferring construction of and identifying future responsibility for a cross-access driveway between the property of the proposed Freddy’s Frozen Custard and Steakburgers at 10019 E. 350 Highway and the property currently occupied by Bank of America at 10017 E. 350 Highway.

As part of the development of the site at 10019 E. 350 Highway that is proposed to include a Freddy’s Frozen Custard and Steakburgers restaurant, the City has requested that a Memorandum of Understanding be drafted between the developers, Raytown 350 Inv Group LLC, a subsidiary of Block and Company Inc. Realtors, and the City of Raytown, identifying the location of an easement that identifies the developer’s responsibility for construction of a future cross-access driveway between the Freddy’s location and the property currently occupied by the Bank of America. The future cross-access driveway is part of a planned connection identified in the Highway 350 Corridor Plan that would provide vehicular access all the way from Raytown Road to Walmart Dr., the road that connects eastbound and westbound 350 Highway and abuts the Wal-Mart Supercenter.

Walmart Dr. is owned and maintained by the City and used as a public road as part of the Highway 350 Corridor Plan, including the proposed connector between Walmart Dr. and Raytown Rd. As part of the execution of the Highway 350 Corridor Plan, the City has gradually been requiring properties to add their part of the connecting road as they redevelop.

The cross-access drive at the Freddy’s location would only be halfway completed should the City require its immediate construction; the Bank of America property owners would not need to complete their half of the connection until that property itself was redeveloped, which to the City’s knowledge there are currently no plans by its owners to do so. Instead of requiring that the developers at the Freddy’s location build their half of the drive now, the City instead is requesting a Memorandum of Understanding be drafted that states that should the Bank of America property ever be redeveloped, Raytown 350 Inv Group LLC would then be responsible for, and required to, complete their half of the cross-access drive.
The Board passed an ordinance amending chapter 4, alcoholic beverages, and licenses relating to the locations and other restrictions on licenses. Raytown staff is proposing to reduce the separation requirements in the Code of Ordinances that prevent new liquor licenses from being established within 300 feet of a school, church or other building regularly used as a place of religious worship. The proposed amendment would reduce the separation requirement to 100 feet, which matches the requirements for all liquor licenses issued by the State of Missouri.

The Missouri Revised Statutes grant municipalities the ability to increase liquor license separation requirements from their 100 foot minimum up to a maximum of 300 feet; as such Raytown currently has the most restrictive ordinance allowed by state law. The amendment would not change how the separation requirement would be measured, which is currently from the nearest point of the applicant building to the nearest point of the building of a school, church or other religious institution.

Approval of the amendment would immediately provide three known businesses with the ability to apply for a new liquor license that are currently unable to under the existing ordinance, and would also allow for potential new liquor licenses to move in to previously unavailable properties.

Raytown currently does not have a restriction on the number of liquor licenses in the City.  Alderman Van Buskirk proposed an amendment to the ordnance “No alcoholic beverage shall be issued for any premise when said premises are within 300 feet of a school, church, or other buildings regularly used as a place of worship measured from the nearest point of the enclosing wall to the nearest point of the school or church building except the alcoholic beverage license may be issued to an establishment located within 100 feet of the school or church if the establishment meets legal requirements of a bar as defined by state law.” 

Alderman Meyers said this is very complicated and will require tracking by the staff.  Right now he fills out his city form and sends it in.  The city gives him a license and there is no audit process.  With this amendment, there would have to be an audit process.  He won’t support this amendment. 

Alderman Teeman said the Board is picking and choosing.  There is this establishment and may be one more.  The ordinance was originally because churches didn’t want bars next door.  This will be cumbersome on the staff and he won’t support it.  The amendment failed to pass.  The Board passed the original ordinance as it was written.
The Board heard the first reading of an ordinance amending the benefit program of the Raytown employees participating in the Missouri local government employee’s retirement system (lagers).  Currently the City provides a pension benefit for all employees through the state-run LAGERS program. The current plan is funded 100% by the City and provides a benefit roughly equivalent to 1.25% of the average annual wage over the last five years in the system times the number of years of service.

This plan is near the bottom level of programs offered and is not competitive in the metro area. After reviewing the other options in the LAGERS program the Employee Benefit Committee asked LAGERS to perform an actuary comparison between the current plan and the L-12, L-14 and L-6 programs assuming mandatory participation.

After further review and feedback provided during the discussion in the department meetings, the Benefit Committee is recommending the City change the current LAGERS program. In reviewing the increased cost to the City and understanding that there will likely be a system wide increase for the City, the Finance Director is recommending a change to L-12 participatory. This will require all employees to participate in their retirement program and significantly increase both future and current earned benefits without a significant increase to the City. There is a 45-day review process so the second reading of the ordinance will not occur until the expiration of that time.
The Board heard the first reading of an ordinance establishing the annual property tax levy rate.

The City has received its notice of 2016 Assessed Valuation from the County. The Finance Department has recalculated the levy rates using the formula supplied by the State Auditor's Office. These calculations indicated the City could levy a rate of $0.3530 per $100.00 assessed valuation for general city operations and a rate of $0.1764 per $100.00 assessed valuation for park operations.
The 2016 proposed combined rate represents a slight decrease of .0001 compared to 2015. According to Zillow the median home value for Raytown is approximately $89,900.00. The total taxes collected for the City and Parks on the median home would be $90.43 compared to $90.44 last year on an equally valued home. The Adjusted Assessed Valuation:

• Real Estate values decreased by $915,183 or .46% from last year's amounts for a 2016 value of $239,023,007; 

• Personal property value increased by $183,672 or .30% from last year's amounts for a 2016 value of $61,606,366; Based on the assessed valuation and the proposed mill levy, the staff is projecting that approximately $1,100,000.00 will be generated for the General Fund and approximately $550,000.00 will be generated for the Park Fund. In accordance with State law, the City must hold a public hearing on the establishment of the levy rate prior to passage of the ordinance approving the 2016 rates.

Paul’s Rant!
The Rest of the Story.

Three items of note took place at last week’s Board of Aldermen meeting. They are all related to one topic. And, they all shed light on how and why things are done at City Hall. This is not a criticism of the action(s) taken by any of the principal players. But it does show why our Aldermen acted as they did. More importantly, it also shows who is really to blame for the debacle of which I will now tell the rest of the story.

NEWZ ROOM CAFÉ: The Newz Room Café was recently purchased by its current owner earlier this year. When the new owner bought the business, he decided to continue the practice of showcasing live music on Friday and Saturday nights. He also decided to continue serving alcoholic beverages at those events

So, he goes to the State of Missouri and asks to purchase a liquor by the drink license. The State directed the owner to apply for a city liquor license first. Which he did. The City of Raytown denied him the license. So he was stuck. No city license meant the state would not issue a license either. The problem was the city did not issue liquor by the drink licenses to establishment within 300’ of a church or school. State law requires 100’ feet.

The problem for the city was the previous owner had received a city license for the operation from Brenda Gustafason, the former Public Information Officer of Raytown. Brenda has since left the city’s employment.

So now the city decides to change their law to match the state law.

Ward 4 Alderman Bill VanBuskirk did not agree with this change and he pressed the issue to a vote. Bill proposed an amendment to the bill on the agenda (see the minutes in the Paul Livius Report for detail).

Mr. VanBuskirk was not alone in his opposition to having liquor by the drink establishments closer than 300’ to a school or church. When his amendment was voted, here is how fellow Aldermen voted on his amendment.

VOTING YES: Bill VanBuskirk, Janet Emerson, Jason Greene, Jim Aziere

VOTING NO:   Josh Greene, Mark Moore, Eric Teeman, Karen Black, Steve Meyers

Credit is due a number of the players in this issue. First, to Alderman Steve Meyers, for insisting the item be moved to the early part of the agenda to accommodate the residents of Raytown. This is not the first time Mr. Meyers has asked for this accommodation for the public. Truth is, this item should have been listed first since it had been carried from a previous meeting. All the same, Mr. Meyers deserves an “attaboy” for his effort.

Alderman Bill VanBuskirk was doing his job in bringing forth alternative language to keep the 300’ barrier between liquor by the drink establishments and schools and churches. As the vote shows, he was not alone in that position. We cannot help but wonder what the vote would have been if the late Alderman Steve Mock’s position had been filled by now. That appointment is up to the Mayor. The delay on filling Mock’s position is something only he can answer.

Finally, this whole episode would not have taken place if Brenda Gustafason, under the tutelage of former City Administrator Mahesh Sharma, had done correctly In the first place. So much for the vaunted “professionalism” we often heard about under Sharma’s watch.

Now you the rest of the story.

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Peter said...

I for one agree whole heartily for the photo I.d. To vote . Even senior citizens who no longer drive can get one and it is a safe hold for our votes. Thank you Greg for calling this to the attention of all whom may be considering not going to the polls on Nov because they care not to vote for a president. There is so much more involved in this election coming up and some are blinded by only a few concerns. People need to be involved in all election procedures. A great many do not see the big picture. It's Your Vote, it's Your Voice People, No one holds YOU back from it but you. Please Exercise Your Right To Vote

Anonymous said...

There was a story in the KC Star about what they called a "good samaritan" who shot and killed a man who was beating a woman in a robbery attempt at a Walmart in one of the cities on the Kansas side last week. The woman was unloading her purchases and baby when she was attacked. The attackers shot and killed another man who tried to intervene. The second good samaritan shot and killed one of the attackers of the lady with the baby. Conceal and carry does work. That woman and probably her child would be dead today if the good samaritan had not intervened.

Anonymous said...

The Good Samaritan who was shot did not die.

Anonymous said...


I love the story about the guy at a high school graduation and was playing with his conceal carry firearm and shot a lady with it when he dropped the firearm.

Maybe better yet is the number of conceal carry folks that have shot themselves will going to the restroom because they too were playing with their firearms.

Anonymous said...

How well does Conceal and Carry work? Let's ask William Corporon. Oh, wait, we can't because he's dead. He had a C&C license. He had his weapon with him. He's still dead. My daughter and her husband were visiting his family in Wichita when a guy with a gun came in the convenience store they were at. Bobby didn't have a chance to get to his gun. The robber shot the clerk and ran out before anyone could react. The only thing C&C does is let idiots who shouldn't be carrying a gun around, carry a gun around.

Anonymous said...

There wasn't a letter from Joe Creamer this week. I guess he fell off the wagon.

Anonymous said...

Alderman Van Buskirt is now willing to tell a free enterprise market what is cannot do.

Does this mean that he knows he was wrong in not bringing a smoking ban to Raytown.

Anonymous said...

Axe to grind writing is easy to spot. Blame the lack of a no smoking ban on one alderman when the rest do NOTHING! The last comment blames Bill Van Buskirk for the city not having a smoking ban. By doing so it exonerates the other nine alderman for doing nothing about it. Maybe one of your heroes or even the mayor will do something about it. Don't hold your breath. The great reformers have control of the Raytown city council. Why aren't they stepping up to make the social changes you yearn for?

Anonymous said...

Criminals do not get licenses for their guns. They do not believe in conceal and carry laws. They believe in carrying a gun despite laws banning conceal and carry. It is sad about the convenience store robbery. William Corporon was not killed by someone who pays attention to any law. If cold blooded murder was not on the killers list of things he should not do, is it possible he cared whether or not he was breaking a law forbidding conceal and carry? I really doubt it. Give law abiding citizens a chance to protect themselves.

Anonymous said...

The only winner in the conceal carry debate is the "Undertakers"!

Anonymous said...

Tell me why we need a smoking ban. All the eating places we have in Raytown are already smoke
free. I think that the only places where there is smoking are probably the bars.

I do not smoke but I think that a smoking ban is not necessary, just one more way government
can tell you what you can and can not do.

Come on let us talk about something that is important such as how can we get enough money to
pay for the Wal Mart store and maybe be able to resurface city streets.

Anonymous said...

I really don't care if we have a smoking ban or not. On those few occasions I want to eat out, I want to go somewhere that serves a nice steak, or maybe some seafood. We don't have anything like that in Raytown because the restaurants say they can't serve enough meals to make a profit in Raytown with a nice two or three star restaurant. So - I go to Lee's Summit to eat. Oh and by the way, the sales tax is less in Lee's Summit. That means I can get an iced tea with my meal.

Anonymous said...

Our next President, Donald Trump, would be so proud of me for I today followed his calling to make "America Great Again"

Come on Raytown you too can do your part by shopping Aldi's

I am sure this will help make "America Great Again" as following Donald Trumps example in buying from foreign owned companies like Aldi's we can all do our part.

I am sure that this plan for we all know Donald Trump has a plan a great plan for often he has talked about his plan to make "America Great Again" has us spending our money at non US companies.

I am so proud to be part of something more something that allows my money to go to oversea companies and to be part of the great plan.

Yes, this is what it takes to make "America Great Again"

Anonymous said...

I cannot understand the venom in some of these political attacks. Does not really matter who it is. Take Donald Trump for example. I will be voting for Trump on November 8th. I really think we need to change things in Washington, DC. I simply do not trust Clinton.

Anonymous said...

I really cannot believe anyone that loves this country and/or claim to be a Christian would ever vote for Trump.

Anonymous said...

Someone might want to remind Joe Creamer there are ordinances on the books about how long he can have his vehicles on jacks or ramp working on them.

Maybe he is too busy chasing after police cars that he doesn't have time to tend to his own property.

Anonymous said...

What is the obsession with this Joe C.???? Each any every weekly post there is mention of Joe C. I don't get it.

Gadsden said...

Well # 10.48, I must say that anyone that votes for a person that believes in the murder of a
baby before it is born is not a christian. If Hillary would be elected she would be the first that
would not be able to pass a security test. She has been involved in more evil doings than any
other person running for president.

If she is elected the constitution as true Americans know it will be changed by the end of eight
years. I have served in the military and would have died for this country and I do think that I
know the difference between an evil person such as Clinton and a true American such as Trump.

Anonymous said...

I will vote for Trump..

Anonymous said...

To Joe, the police/firemen simply don't have time for you by setting up a speed trap or driving by to get you. They call it paranoid. Could stem from your past addiction.
There was however a search warrant served on a drug house down the street from you.
Maybe one of your past suppliers gone out of business. Probably why you never called police.
You seemed to make more sense when you admittedly were smoking dope.
You at least told the truth maybe, now all you tell is lies.
What a guy! People are supposed to believe your alleged sobriety when in the middle of it you were "toasted at Slick Willie's"
Nice try, you admit you committed fraud and lied while at Board of Aldermen meetings. All your votes should be nullified.
Guess its good you have Randy he must be desperate to print your stuff.
You are the FORMER and Still are Disgraceful 1.

Anonymous said...

I had heard that Raytown Rag Randy had cut ties with Joe Creamer and was not going to run any more letters in his paper. That would have really been one of the few smart things Randy has done lately since setting up alliances with the 3 Amigos (Aziere, Creamer, Battigler). Well apparently that was just a hopeful rumor. While Joe thinks he has created a flock of followers in the footsteps of former Jonestown Guyana cult leader Jim Jones, the difference is no one is drinking his kool aid. More like KOOK AID... His weekly ramblings and now almost blatant physical challenges of the Alderman is nothing short of paranoia and a false sense of relevancy. His blatant untrue statements of sobriety and gun threatining social media statements awhile back to one of the current Alderman tells you everything you need to know about this false prophet...This physical threat was brought to the attention of the Raytown PD but decided to not be pursued. In hindsight that may have been a mistake. Joe Creamer is the type of individual that most of us have little tolerance, respect, and actually despise. HYPOCRITES like Joe Ceamer are the social trolls and leeches of our society and they hide in their own little behind closed door world I guess graduating from their parents basement at some point in the past.

Mary Wilson said...

Just remember, Joe Creamer was the guy that got so mad he was apoplectic when it was announced common citizens had obtained enough signatures to force the city to have a charter commission that David Bower made him leave the room. Those of us in the audience saw him get so red faced we thought he was going to have a stroke. He wanted to know what gave the common person the right to want a charter. That was the responsibility of the Board of Aldermen. The common person didn’t know anything about governments and couldn’t write a charter. A couple of weeks ago, he said the current BOA was a bad one because they keep forgetting they only answer to the people. The people don’t answer to the BOA. So – that begs the question – was he drunk and high and lying then, or is he drunk and high and lying now? He can’t have it both ways.

Anonymous said...

Joe still has a vehicle up on jacks.

I bet he is glad code enforcement is not done by the police or fire, which he says drives by his house to often.

Anonymous said...

Saw the notice in the paper. Sorry about your dad.

Raytown Newbie said...

Hello Raytowners.........

I owe someone an apology, I guess. As it turns out the new Dollar General is applying a masonry façade to their new store on the north side of Raytown. It still will be a pretty unattractive building but it'll be much better looking than just the plain metal cladding.


Anonymous said...

^ Amen👏👏👏

Raytown Newbie said...

Hey there Raytowners,

Had a long overdue breakfast at the Newzroom café across from Raytown High.

Great coffee, quick service and very good food. We'll be going back.

You should stop in and give them a try.


Betty said...

Dear Steve Meyers. Next time the mayor asks if there is any discussion about
a item before the board please nudge Bill and tell him to speak up. This was the 4th time in
6 weeks he's wanted to reopen the discussion because Bill wasn't paying attention and didn't get to speak his mind.
Somebody needs to keep him on task and you're closest.

Anonymous said...

I am currently a fireman in this city and have been one for 25 years.
I have no idea where Joe lives much less have the time to drive by his house on a regular basis.
We run 15 to 20 calls a day for service and believe me Joe Creamer is not even on my radar that is unless he makes a call for service then I will see him in about 3 minutes and 30 seconds.
Check your smoke detector/Carbon Monoxide batteries and have your furnaces checked winter is coming.
Be sure and thank a peace officer when you get a chance you just never now when you might need there help.


Anonymous said...

There is a world of difference between the light aggregate seal used on streets in Overland Park and Lee's Summit when compared to what has been done in Raytown. The light aggregate seal, which most people will recognize as hybrid of slurry seal as used in OP and Lee's Summit is used to overlay streets that are still in good condition. In Raytown they are using it on streets that are considered failed streets. When used on a failed street, the light aggregate seal literally locks in the huge cracks, areas of missing pavement and even small pot holes. This leaves Raytown streets looking worn, uneven and unsafe after the tar and gravel are put down.

In Overland Park and Lee's Summit the material has been used on streets that are still in good shape. By doing so it extends the life of the surface by up to ten years.

The light aggregate seal is not meant be used to repair streets.That is what they have tried in Raytown. It started under David Bower and continues under Mike McDonough. It leaves a legacy for both of a dis-service to the people they are elected to serve. The sad part is that the majority (if not all) of the Board of Aldermen have signed up for this bad street management decision.

Anonymous said...

I think I know why Mayor McDonough has not appointed a replacement for Steve Mock. By not doing so he does not have to worry about breaking any tie votes.