Current Issues for November 2013
KCI Airport: On April 4, during Business Session, the City Council heard a presentation concerning the study that is underway for the KCI Master Plan and its new single terminal option. For the past 18 months this study has been underway and you can see results here. On April 11, the Council voted 9-3 to adopt Resolution 130234 which added the New Terminal Advance Planning study as an amendment to the 2008 KCI Master Plan. Since this vote the Mayor has named a Task Force to study the new single-terminal concept and will report back in several months to the Mayor and Council on the need for a new single terminal as well as funding options and other considerations. This task force is expected to make a recommendation in Spring 2014.
Charter Review: The last Charter Review occurred in 2006. As a result of that effort the City Charter must be reviewed within 10 years. At the end of May 2013, Mayor James announced the formation of a new City Charter Review Committee made up of 13 individuals. Three members are from the 5th District and two from each of the remaining districts. Of particular interest to the Charter Committee are issues related to reconfiguring the number of districts within the city and the "Strong Mayor" form of government. The committee's work is complete with a recommendation that the Mayor be allowed to remove the City Manager at his/her discretion as well as recommending a realignment of the Council structure to 12 districts. Other recommendations include a change in election dates for Mayor and City Council.
Local Control of the Police Department: In March a committee was formed by Mayor James led by former Mayor Kay Barnes and former Police Commissioner Pat McInerney to investigate if and how the City of Kansas City, Missouri, should have local control of its police department. As a result of a state wide vote in 2012 the City of St. Louis received control of its department making Kansas City the only city in the United States without local control. Oversight of the Kansas City Police Department is maintained currently by a board of five Kansas City citizens, four of which is selected by the Governor of the State of Missouri with the fifth being the Mayor of Kansas City. Recently this committee on a 13-12 vote recommended state control with some changes in the number and composition of the Board of Commissioners.
Antioch Center: Redevelopment of Antioch Center has been a priority for the First District for several years. In 2011 a new developer was identified for Antioch Center. The first priority was to begin demolition of the south part of the old mall to eliminate the blight that has continued to develop there. We recently received good news that the Missouri Department of Economic Development has agreed to $2.2 million in Brownfield Credits that will be applied for the demolition project. The redevelopment plan passed and all economic development incentives, including SuperTIF, were passed on April 12 by the full council. Demolition is nearly complete. In December 2012 the Council passed Ordinances 121004 and 121006 which were amendments to the TIF and SuperTIF for the development. This allows the project to be financed through conventional bank financing as opposed to bond financing, which was the plan's original financing method. The change creates no measurable differences in the project and the city continues to have no obligations or guarantees with the project. Stormwater pipe installation has occured since June 2013 and road construction extending NE 53rd Street will begin shortly with expected construction of new structures for tenants to begin in November 2013.
Chouteau Parkway Improvements: If you’ve driven through Chouteau Trafficway from NE Parvin Road to the Chouteau Crossing shopping area lately you've noticed several buildings removed and a lot of open space. This is due to the over $30 million Chouteau Parkway project. When completed Chouteau will be four lanes from M-210 through NE 42nd Street with medians that will include rain gardens as well as a walking trail. Removal of buildings on either side of the street as well as 18 underground storage tanks on several properties was completed earlier this Spring. Construction began on April 16. Work was completed at the intersection of NE Parvin and Chouteau over the summer of 2012 and favorable weather has allowed work to remain on schedule. Major work is expected to be completed by the end of 2013.
If there are issues that you want more information on please contact my office by email or call 816-513-6503. You can also come to Northland Neighborhoods, Inc. at 4420 N. Chouteau Trafficway on the second Tuesday of each month at 8:30 a.m. to talk to your First District councilmembers and various City departments about issues important to you.