Sunday, October 23, 2016


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By Greg Walters
The Rest of the Story
While watching the video of the last Board of Aldermen meeting, my mind wandered. I noted similarities between the Board of Aldermen now and how it was years ago. In an extended sense, images of current pop culture and current national politics came to mind.

What brought these images to focus was the curious way the Mayor and Board of Aldermen show a reluctance to address things as they are.

For instance, years ago, when I first served on the Board, members used to refer to the Chief of Police as “the man”. They would not mention him by position or name. For those who wonder who “the man” was – it was City Marshal Marion Beeler.

Last Tuesday’s meeting showed a similarity between how things were then and how they are now.

The topic was pay increases. 

The Board wisely decided to forego a pay increase for themselves

As it stands they currently receive a combined $450 monthly in salary and car allowance for representing two square miles of Raytown.

The first topic for discussion was for the position of Municipal Judge. The Board indicated they would approve an increase totaling $15,047.00 over the next four years for the Judge.

Incidentally, Board members spoke quite openly about the position, how much it is currently paid and how much it will be paid in four years. There was not a problem with Board members talking out loud about the dollars and cents of the pay increase.

Then the Chief of Police salary came up for discussion.

All of sudden, all the details were gone!

Real numbers were replaced with percentages.

So much to the point that it became difficult to understand how much more the Chief of Police is currently paid and how much he will make in the future. This was because neither the Mayor nor the ten members of the Board of Aldermen used a real number in saying how much the Chief is paid, or how much his increase would cost.

It was all percentages. And, as anyone with a modicum of understanding of basic mathematics will tell you . . . percentages lie.

Harry Potter fans understand well who “he who will not be named” is . . . Lord Vordermort.

Those who follow the Presidential race can identify with those who refuse to say “radical Islamic fundamentalism”.

Since this is America, and the Board meeting is a public meeting where there is supposed to be true “transparency” (another political term from a campaign not so long ago), we thought, why not lend a hand and fill in some of the blanks.

Here is what all those current percentages really mean.

The Chief of Police is currently paid $96,743.00 annually.

He drives a tricked out Dodge Charger gratis of the City of Raytown.

The gasoline and maintenance for the Dodge Charger is paid for by the taxpayers.

The car insurance for the Dodge Charger is paid for by the taxpayers.

His increased salary was given a first round approval unanimously by the Board of Aldermen.

The salary increase for the next four years will cost taxpayers a total of $19,739.00.

Or, if you prefer, the position will pay $104,718.00 annually . . . and the Dodge Charger, and the maintenance, and the insurance.

As Paul Harvey was fond of saying . . .  “Now, you know the rest of the story!”

Watch for Paul and Greg's Commentary in the days ahead . . . for now, enjoy this week's Paul Livius Report. You will notice in Paul's Report some text has been stricken through with new text added in bold (red) type. This is an indication the text of the copy has been changed by amendment of the Board of Aldermen.

Prior to the Board of Aldermen meeting, Mayor McDonough, the Board of Aldermen, the City Staff, and the Mock family held a ceremony to honor the leadership of Alderman Steve Mock who died earlier this summer.  A tree was planted in Alderman Mock's memory and a granite marker, engraved to read "In memory of Alderman Steve Mock, Board of Alderman, April 24, 2009 - July 6, 2016" was revealed.

The Paul Livius Report BY PAUL LIVIUS
Mayor Michael McDonough issued a Proclamation to Raytown High School student Paul Lawless for scoring a perfect score of 36 on his A.C.T. test.

Mayor Michael McDonough issued a Proclamation to Paul Hansen.  Mr. Hansen is a lifelong Raytown resident, as well as a WWII veteran.  He declared Mr. Hansen “Mr. Raytown.”

Mayor Michael McDonough issued a Proclamation to Raytown Swim Coach Jim Aziere for his 500th swim meet win.

Mayor Michael McDonough issued a Certificate of Appreciation to Alderman Josh Greene who resigned his seat.  Mr. Greene said he has accepted employment out of the Raytown area.

Allan Thompson told the Board a balanced budget is when the Revenues equal the Expenses.  He went on to say this year’s budget has a higher deficit spending than last year’s budget.  He said revenues are down and expenditures are up.  He believes changes are in order and he thinks the budget needs a lot more work.

Joe Creamer told the Board he has been whining in the local paper about his grave concerns with the community.  This Board budgeted a $4 million deficit over the next two years.  He has spent a lot of the city’s time and money, under the Freedom of Information Act getting emails.  He claimed to have an email between former mayor Sue Frank and current mayor Mike McDonough where she asked the Mayor to divert salary funds to repave the street in front of her office.  He said the city is budgeting a $4 million deficit over the next two years, so why are they still dumping money into this project.

The Board heard the first reading of an ordinance establishing the compensation for the Board of Aldermen for the term beginning April 2017.  The recommendation of the Elected Officials Compensation Review Board relative to the Board of Aldermen was to change the monthly salary to a rate of $500.00 per month and continue the monthly car allowance to $50.00 per month.  Jason Greene said he would not approve an increase for the Aldermen and he believes none of the other Aldermen would approve it either.

The Board heard the first reading of an ordinance establishing the compensation for the Municipal Judge for the term beginning April 2017.  The Elected Officials Compensation Review Board recommends a 25% increase to the current yearly compensation for the term beginning in April 2017 with an additional 2% increase in April 2018, April 2019, and April 2020.  The Board of Alderman, recommended with regard to the salary of the Municipal Judge, a 10% increase to the current year compensation for the term beginning in April 2017 with an additional 2% increase in April 2018, April 2019 and April 2020. Alderman Van Buskirk said with the added duties mandated by State Law, he thought a salary increase for the elected official was warranted.  He recommended, however, the office receive $28,190 per year now and increase to $32,908 in the next four years.

The Board heard the first reading of an ordinance establishing the compensation for the Police Chief for the term beginning April 2017.  The Elected Officials Compensation Review Board recommends a 7½% increase to the yearly compensation for the term beginning in April 2017 with an additional 2% increase in April 2018, April 2019, and April 2020.  The Board of Alderman, recommended the yearly compensation with regard to the salary of the Police Chief, a 4% increase to the current year compensation for the term beginning in April 2017 with an additional 2% increase in April 2018, April 2019 and April 2020.  Alderman Van Buskirk made a motion, and the Board approved an amendment to increase the salary 2% per year for each of the four years.

The Board heard the first reading of an ordinance approving a free lease agreement with the Missouri Highway and Transportation Commission (the Commission) for a Free Lease Agreement for an existing Raytown Gateway placed in the MoDOT right-of-way.  Through a District-wide evaluation of the placement of signage and other items in the state Right-of-Way, the Missouri Department of Transportation found that Raytown placed a “Welcome to Raytown” gateway in MoDOT Right-of-Way.  It was determined that no agreement was put in place between the City and MoDOT during the placement of the monument. As a result, MoDOT has requested that the City enter into a Free Lease Agreement with the State to authorize the placement of this monument.

The Board heard the first reading of an ordinance amending Chapter 2, officers and employees, Sections 2-125 and 2-126, relating to the city administrator, appointment and tenure and qualifications.

1. Section 2-125. Appointment and tenure. A qualified person shall be appointed City Administrator for the City by the Mayor. Such appointment shall be approved by a majority of the Board of Aldermen. The person so appointed shall serve at the pleasure of the Board, for an indefinite term. The person appointed to the office of City Administrator shall become a resident of and reside within the city limits within six months of appointment. The residency requirement may be waived by a majority vote of the Board of Aldermen.

2. Section 2-126. Qualifications. The person appointed to the office of city administrator shall be at least 25 years of age and shall be a resident of the city at the time of the effective date of such appointment; and shall be a graduate of an accredited university or college, majoring in public or municipal administration or shall have the equivalent qualifications and experience in financial, administration and/or public relations fields.

Alderman Josh Greene said he commended the Board for meeting the issue head on and not sweeping it under a rug.  Alderman Steve Meyers said the Board owes it to the residents to put someone in place who is best for the job.

The Board passed a resolution amending the Fiscal Year 2015-2016 budget related to Emergency Storm Sewer repair. In September, a hole in the pavement at the intersection of 63rd & Northern was reported to Public Works staff. Upon investigation of the hole, it was found that the subgrade around the 48” storm water corrugated metal pipe under Northern had eroded due to pipe failure. Further investigation found that failure was occurring along the length of the pipe and needed immediate replacement. After work began for replacement, it was found that the alignment of the pipe (which was originally constructed before the mid-1960s), went under the corner of a nearby house. Due to this, the alignment of the pipe needed to be shifted to the west and a new junction box was required. Staff contacted Wiedenmann Inc. to perform the repairs. Work is estimated to come to a final cost of approximately $115,000.00.

The Board passed a resolution amending the Fiscal Year 2015-2016 budget related to downtown streetscape amenities. The Downtown Streetscape construction has wrapped up, and discussion has occurred regarding the addition of site furnishings within the Streetscape corridor. In response, Public Works staff has worked with Parks Department staff to prepare a cost estimate for the purchase and implementation of these amenities. The Downtown Streetscape project originally included the installation of trash receptacles and benches. When the bids came in high at the time the project was originally bid out for construction, the decision was made to eliminate a number of items to reduce the total cost of the project including benches and trash receptacles.  Alderman Meyers said the city is selling sponsorship for the benches and bike racks in the Streetscape area.

The Board passed a resolution amending the Fiscal Year 2015-2016 budget to reallocate various expenditures between designated funds. Throughout the year staff has been monitoring the budget monthly. The staff believes the transfers need to occur to adjust for the activity that has occurred throughout the year.

The Board passed a resolution approving the budget for Raytown for fiscal year 2016-2017 budget.  To review the 2016-2017 Budget, go to  Starting on page 45.

Mark Loughry said the city has significant reserves that allows for us to spend more than we bring in.  In the perfect world, Tom Cole would go out and recruit 25 more Big Box Stores.

Alderman Jim Aziere said Raytown spends $8 million more than Grandview or Gladstone.  Raytown spends $55 per resident more than these other cities for Public Safety.  He’s been on the Board 18 years and he thinks it time for the Board to stop rubber-stamping the budget and get more involved.  Alderman Steve Meyers thanked the mayor for appointing the Budget Oversight Committee, which included Janet Emerson and Eric Teeman.  The Board had several meetings concerning the budget.  He said he sent out plenty of emails asking for suggestions and wanted to know if anyone had any questions.  He got a lot of good ideas and comments.  He considers the things Alderman Aziere brought up tonight to be crickets.  They are a lot of annoying noise.  The Board had two work sessions for the Budget.  Alderman Aziere didn’t focus on the proceedings in the meeting.  What he’s bringing up now should have been addressed during the meetings.  He said he’s not questioning the validity of the information quoted, he just wanted to know why it’s being brought up tonight.  If these items are so severe, and Aziere‘s been an alderman for 18 years, why is he just now bring these issues up?  He’s had plenty of opportunity.  Alderman Teeman said there were meetings weekly to review the budget for some time.  The Board didn’t rubber stamp anything in the budget.  During the process, each department was forced to make reductions in their budgets.  Then the Board asked Public Safety to make more cuts.  The implication the Board rubber stamped anything is insulting, alleged by someone who didn’t even pay attention to what was happening in the meetings.  Alderman Mark Moore said people who made the decisions in the past didn’t make wise decisions.  Because of the poor decision in the past, there is $3.1 million unavailable to spend on the residents because it has to pay off the 350 Live TIF.  That’s money that could have been spent on asphalt for the streets or for storm water repairs.  The meetings were open to the public, and if anyone had questions, they should have come to the meetings and raised their concerns there instead of telling fairy tales in the local paper.  Alderman Jason Greene said he was looking forward to working with the Board in the future.  He knows how seriously the Board takes their fiduciary responsibility.  He is confident more scrutiny is on the way.  This Board will do the right thing for the right reasons, not for political gain or to tarnish the reputation of other people.  The actions of some of the members of this Board and the public are unfortunate, but it doesn’t define this community.  What defines this community is the willingness to do things the right way.

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Writing Desk with chair and lamp – excellent condition (not shown in pictures)........$55.00
Money Safe (not shown in pictures)………………………................…................….$300.00
Safe with compartments..............…………………..…........................…............….$300.00
Sofa / sleeper – converts to double size bed - excellent condition...….........…  …...$75.00
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INTERESTED? Call 816-517-6852 for an appointment to view the items in person.

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Anonymous said...

Hey, thanks for the article.Really thank you! Want more.

Anonymous said...

Thanks a lot for the article post.Thanks Again. Much obliged.

Anonymous said...

Just got thru reading the Raytown Times and the pathetic plea by Editor Randy Battaglier to have his decreasing readership pre-pay subscriptions. Who in their right mind would pre-pay for this bird cage liner?? This poor imitation and excuse for a newspaper is on FUMES!! Maybe if Randy would boot the Bible thumping Hickory County resident Bob Phillips who adds VERY LITTLE Raytown news each week and continues to give ex Alderman & SORE LOSER Joe Creamer a sounding board for his AA weekly updates, he might be viewed as a serious news professional. Until then the only reliable and true professional news publication is the Brooking Eagle and based on the number of advertisers it appears one (Brooking Eagle) is flourishing, and the other is dying on the vine!!!

Andy Whiteman said...

Will Randy deliver the Raytown Times to paid subscribers? He used to mail the paper before it became a free paper to pick up somewhere if you could find it. Apparently he had issues with the Post Office 2nd Class mailing. I asked him to mail the paper to me and even sent him envelopes with postage on them. He mailed one or two papers, then no more. He kept the rest of my envelopes with stamps. I emailed him asking why he didn't mail my papers with no response. It was too difficult for me to go hunting for his paper so a friend picked up a copy for me and delivered it weekly. Paid subscriptions are better than "free if you can find it" but only if he can complete delivery.

If I was still in Raytown, I would select one of the two local papers, but wouldn't pay for both.

Andy Whiteman

Betty said...

Just remember, folks. Randy was complaining his readership has fallen. (Gasp! Shock! Oh, no - what will we ever do!!??) The paid subscriptions are a gimmick to increase circulation. AND - the paid subscriptions will only come into play if he gets enough paid subscribers. He didn't mention what he would do if he received some paid subscriptions, but not enough to get the better rate at the post office.

Anonymous said...

I have paid subscriptions and get it mailed to my this a recent occurrence it doesn't get mailed

Anonymous said...

The best person for the City Administrator job will be someone willing to move to Raytown.

Anonymous said...

It was a lot worse than Greg tells in the old Beeler days. Members of the City Council would refer to the Police Department as "downstairs" but never the police Department. It was as if they were afraid to say police department out loud! I can see the parallels with the current Board. They talk about giving the police chief a pay increase -- but not one of Board members or the mayor could find it in themselves to get past talking about percentages instead of real numbers. Thank you guys at the Raytown Report for shedding a little transparency on city hall. We need a lot more of it.

Anonymous said...

October 26, 2016 at 9:07 PM


So the city council discusses giving a 2 percent raise to the Police Chief AFTER the suggested was over 7 percent and the councilmen are shills for the police? Give me a break.

Anonymous said...

I cannot believe they cannot find one of the cops to take the job of city administrator

Anonymous said...

Good article about the Police Chief. I agree 100 percent. HA!

Anonymous said...

The car driven by the chief is a six (6) year old car. It is the most cost efficient of all the police cars. It is a six cylinder. Nothing fancy not "tricked out" economical, fuel efficient, oh my! Every police officer uses a police car, the City insures it and is maintained by the City. You need to go back and talk to Paul Harvey, Good Day!

Anonymous said...

Yes that's funny how some people would think that's a tricked out automobile that the chief drives. Makes you wonder if a rust bucket hoopty mobile is a family sedan to them...

Anonymous said...

Anyone who tninks a dodge charger is an economy car should check out the mileage reports on the charger. In city driving under 20 miles to the gallon! Please don't try to tell me the highway miles per gallon make up the difference. There are not that many freeways crossing Raytown's ten square miles. Speaking of ten square miles, if you check it out you will find our Chief of Police is the highest paid in Missouri if you consider the small area he commands. By the way, the car he drives is a sharp looking vehicle. I've seen it up close. The car our chief of police is driving is a sharp looking vehicle. Very sporty. It shure is not an economy car by any stretch of the imagination.

So tell me, how many other members of Raytown's pd get a car of their own to drive to and from work every day?

Anonymous said...

If the chief was REALLY doing his job and doing it well I could see maybe a 7% raise. But the fact of the mater is he isn't. Crime is up and you hardly ever see police on the streets. He needs to restructure the department and get some of those chair warmers out on the street.

Steve Meyers said...


Your comments on our previous BOA meeting regarding the Board's discussion regarding Chief Lynch's salary adjustment for the next 4 years prompted me to review the video on the City's Website. I would agree that the actual financial increase in dollars and cents and impact to the budget was not discussed in that meeting and I would expect it will be brought forward in a more transparent manner when the 2nd reading and final approval will be on the Agenda Tuesday Nov.1st. In defense of that oversight after numerous Public Work Sessions and several Budget Review Comittee meetings which all the Elected officials (minus the Mayor) salaries were thoroughly scrutinized and analyzed in the manner you mentioned, we failed to bring that same discussion level to the BOA mtg. But rest assured it wasn't because at any point it was glossed over in the work study process.You know as well as anyone this particular group of Leadership NEVER walks away from the difficult issues or discussions. But your point is a fair one and you can expect the Board to share the financial logistics of the salary adjustments at the next BOA meeting. And I certainly invite you and our concerned community members to join your elected officials and other neighbors at the many public forums that are being held for the issues, community development, and exciting things that are happening in our hometown!!

Steve Meyers,
Alderman Ward 4

Anonymous said...

Steve thank you for you insight

Anonymous said...

Since we have a debate on what is okay and not okay for vehicles for the police department why don't the police department provide a detailed list of the make, model, year and millage for each vehicle the city owns and used by the police.

I also would like to know, which ones are taken how, what city that is and millage of that.

Some should also check that any city employee who is taking a city vehicle home is have those personal miles to and from and another non-city use reported on their taxes.

Anonymous said...

For those that say we cannot find a city administrator to move to Raytown should be asking is it the condition the last one left the city in lack of codes enforcement, gravel streets and over funded police department creating major lack of service from other departments like public works and EMS.

Anonymous said...

Your question about the police and use of police cars is a fair and balanced request. Unfortunately is does not really have a chance of being answered. I wonder about someting else. On occassion I have called 911 for emergency services. I wonder if anyone else has has the same experience as I have when calling 911 in Raytown. I feel like I am being grilled by the dispatcher. I can understand needing to know additional information. But sometimes it feels like the dispatcher is deciding whethyer or not my call deserves police attention. I have called for 911 service in Kansas City as well. They simply put the call through. Am I the only one that feels this way?

Anonymous said...

3:43 I don't think you are alone.

With the new laws going in Jan 1st maybe we just won't need law enforcement anymore