Raytown South Middle School's Elizia Garcia proving she can keep up with the guys
USE THIS LINK TO VIEW VIDEO ELIZA GARCIA
|BY GREG WALTERS|
The Board of Aldermen has amended the residency requirement for a City Administrator of Raytown. The amendment leaves the requirement in place, but allows the Board of Aldermen to set aside the residency requirement if they so choose.
Some Board members expressed the concern that if they found the best candidate for the position who only lacked one requirement . . . they feel they should be able to hire the individual.
The requirement they were referring to would be the residency requirement.
This is the point where Board members and many in the public disagree.
The “best candidate” would have the most important requirement needed for a successful city administrator. He (or she) would want to become part of the community.
The decisions a City Administrator would reach with the Board of Aldermen would affect their home and personal life. The position they fill is important. To understand the impact on the community of their work, they need to live here to experience the results.
That is the reason why the vast majority of communities that rely upon professional leaders have the residency requirement.
As it stands right now, the city has an interim City Administrator filling the position.
He lives in Basehor, Kansas. Basehor is a 45 minute commute (that’s 1.5 hours round trip!) from Raytown.
He lives in Basehor, Kansas because when he was hired as City Administrator he moved his family and home to Basehor.
|BY PAUL LIVIUS|
The Mahesh Sharma Myth and Darts
It has always amazed me how current office holders are held up as the best and brightest in the area. Once they are out of office, the glow fades and people begin to speak more openly (and honestly) about those who once held a leadership position in the community.
Last week’s meeting of the Board of Aldermen holds the above observation to be true.
Ward 3 Alderman Mark Moore spoke of the former City Administrator when he said “promises were not kept”. Ward 1 Alderman Josh Greene mentioned there were “bad feelings about the last City Administrator.”
No one will argue, the observations are accurate on both counts.
But the real problem was not just with the City Administrator. The Board properly shares part of the blame. Recent events show this last statement to be true.
The Board recently approved a change in the law as requires liquor-by-the-drink ordinances. Previous ordinances created a 300’ buffer between schools, churches and such establishments. Regardless of where you stand on the issue . . . the fact is the change in the ordinance from 300’ to 100’ was brought about because one of Mahesh Sharma’s department heads, Brenda Gustafson, incorrectly approved by-the-drink liquor license to a restaurant directly across the street from Raytown High School in direct violation of city ordinances.
This happened under Sharma’s watch. It was his responsibility to over-see the day to day operation of the city. In this instance, his failure was complete. That failure on Sharma’s part kicked open the door to those who will do anything in the name of raising more tax revenue.
It was Sharma’s failure to follow the rules that created the situation. Some on the Board felt compelled to allow the change in zoning law because the business had changed hands since the license was originally issued.
DARTS . . .
Zoning laws are in place to maintain order in how a community is developed commercially and residentially.
In a perfect world, single family residential areas are surrounded by multi-family dwellings.
Multi-family dwellings are a buffer between the single family areas and commercial office areas.
Those outer ring areas of zoning are supposed to encompass retail and commercial areas. The reason is to help control traffic flow, but most importantly, to maintain a quality of life for those who are the true backbone of any city, the people who make a city their home.
The Board recently approved zoning changes that placed a heavy commercial retail operation in the middle of a residential neighborhood on 63rd Street. The zoning application had been turned down three times by previous Boards.
The action was not a great leap forward for Raytown. It is a leap backwards.
It leaves a zoning map that shows as much order as would be attained by throwing darts at a map of the City of Raytown as regards zoning applications.
The Paul Livius Report
Raytown Board of Aldermen Meeting – October 4, 2016
Mayor Michael McDonough said October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women, except for skin cancer and the second leading cause of cancer death in women, after lung cancer. The chance of developing invasive breast cancer at some time in a woman’s life is about 1 in 8 and depending on the exact stage of cancer the survival rate is between 93 and 100 percent. More than 200,000 new cases of invasive female breast cancer will be diagnosed in 2016 and more than 40,000 will die from the disease. Death rates from breast cancer have been declining, and this change is believed to be the result of earlier detection and improved treatment. Mammography is recognized as the single most effective method of detecting breast changes that may be cancer long before physical symptoms can be seen or felt. He said he recognizes the month of October as Breast Cancer Awareness Month throughout the City of Raytown and encourage all Raytown residents, to join in activities that will help Americans understand what they can do to prevent and control breast cancer.
Police Chief Jim Lynch presented REAP with a check in the amount of $9,363, which are the proceeds from the 13th annual golf tournament.
The Board moved to a study group about the residency requirement for the City Administrator. Alderman Josh Greene said if the candidate is moving to the area from outside the metro, he would expect that person to move into Raytown. If, however, that person already lives in the area, he sees no reason to uproot the whole family. He understands there were bad feelings about the last City Administrator, but he was not properly managed by the former Board of Aldermen. This Board will give the City Administrator the direction and guidance needed. Alderman Mark Moore said the last City Administrator made a lot of promises that weren’t kept. Alderman Moore pointed out he was on the charter committee and there were several members who were adamant about the CA living in town. There was more than just the question of residency at issue there. The Board needs to hire a person who is honest and has the integrity to do what he/she agrees to do. Alderman Steve Meyers said the Board doesn’t run the city on a day-to-day basis. The leadership team of the City Administrator and the Department Heads run the city. The Board owes it to the residents to find the best person for the job. He doesn’t think it matters where they live. Alderman Meyers made a motion to modify the ordinance requiring the City Administrator to live in Raytown to read that the Board has the discretion to waive that requirement if a majority of the Board chooses to do so. The Board passed the motion.
Albert L. Walters
1931 – 2016
1931 – 2016
On Friday, September 30, 2016, my father, Albert L. Walters passed away at his home in Raytown. Many people have personally contacted me in the last week to offer their condolences. I deeply appreciate their sign of respect and caring for my father.
Albert Walters was a unique individual, the likes of which I will never know again. As a parent, he and my mother did an excellent job of raising their four children. He provided and cared deeply for us and his wife, Una Marie, whom we lost in 1999..
He had an extremely strong work ethic and was the consummate businessman. At the age of 85 he was stilling going to the office every day.
Al believed strongly that we all have a responsibility to give back to the community we call home. He often put his words into action. When funding was needed by the Raytown Girls Softball League for a proper score board, he took the need to Jackson County and gained funding for the project. As a Board member of the Cave Spring Park Association he personally spearheaded efforts to bring improvements to the Park that are use on a regular basis today in the form of a community shelter house.
Albert Walters was also active in local politics. He was elected to the Raytown Charter Commission in 1996. He also participated in local campaigns over the years for various candidates.
Albert Walters was deeply religious man. He was a major supporter and played an integral part in bringing the Society of St. Pius X to the Kansas City area. He was also a member of the Sovereign Order of St. John of Jerusalem Knights of Malta, one of the oldest orders of chivalry in the world.
Al will be remembered for this sharp wit, rye sense of humor, and ability to tell a great story. We miss him greatly.
Al was buried with full military honors at Mount Olivet Cemetery (he was a veteran of the Korean War) where he was interred next to the love of his wife, Una. No doubt, they are together today in heaven.
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