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City Communications Office

City of Kansas City, Mo.

http://www.kcmo.org

CONTACT: City Communications Office, 816- 513-1349

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Jan.18, 2011

City Attorney’s Office expands Neighborhood Improvement Attorney Project

City of Kansas City, Mo., City Attorney Galen Beaufort announced the assignment of former City Prosecutor Beth Murano to supervise and expand the Neighborhood Improvement Attorney Project. This unit creatively uses both civil and criminal legal tools to target areas of concern to improve public safety, economic viability and quality of life issues in Kansas City neighborhoods.

“Beth is an important addition to the project,” Beaufort said. “She possesses both excellent relations with key community leaders and the talent and vision needed to expand the project.”

This latest assignment for Murano and the recent appointment of John Wood to the position of assistant city manager for neighborhoods demonstrate the City’s commitment to focusing attention and City resources on our neighborhoods.

“By moving the development and supervision of community prosecution efforts into the project and including Beth as part of that project, we hope to improve public safety and the quality of life in our neighborhoods,” said Mayor Mark Funkhouser.

As city prosecutor, Beth introduced the concept of community prosecution to the City, focusing legal efforts on not only prosecuting criminal violations but also seeking sentences to protect neighborhoods from repeat offenders. She also worked with citizens and social service agencies to address the root causes of the criminal conduct. She began with unfunded, informal efforts coordinated with interested neighborhood organizations and the Kansas City Police Department and, more recently, was able to obtain federal funding to focus on areas within the Vineyard Neighborhood Association and the KCPD’s East Patrol Division. With this appointment, the city attorney hopes to combine the community prosecution concept with existing efforts to address dangerous buildings, vacant properties and other sources of blight in the city.

Media inquiries about this expansion of the Neighborhood Improvement Attorney Project should be directed to Dennis Gagnon, public information officer, at 816-513-2659.

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