Recent news from The Funk

Mayor Funkhouser:

Funk’s Front Porch
20 March 2009

Dear Folks,

This Week’s City Business

This is the final week to hash out the details for the upcoming budget. The budget will be adopted in the Legislative Chambers on the 26th floor of City Hall next Thursday, March 26, at 3 p.m. The Mayor’s main priority with the budget this year is to put Kansas City Families First. What that means to you is that your Mayor is against increasing your property taxes and, so far, he has been successful in taking that possibility off of the bargaining table. The Mayor is also against closing community centers and pools. In tough economic times, we have a greater responsibility to provide our youth and elderly with somewhere to go and something to do. The budget amendment before the council now protects these important facilities as well.

The Mayor continues to work on three major issues as the budget vote nears. He is trying to prevent any cut to your police officers, especially cuts to the police officers on the street. He is also trying to prevent the closing of three fire stations, which would effectively mean laying off firefighters. And last, he is trying to prevent the merging of the City’s development finance group from being merged with the Economic Development Corporation. To do so would render ineffective the watchdog that is charged with monitoring the EDC’s use of TIFs and incentives on behalf of developers. These three issues are not easy fights to win. But since they are worth fighting for, your Mayor is willing to keep leading the charge until Kansas City families are put first in the budget.

The Mayor was asked to testify in Washington again this week. This time it was before the Subcommittee on Water Resources and the Environment regarding Kansas City’s efforts to address urban storm water runoff. The Mayor spoke about how Kansas City has a seriously outdated system that was built over 100 years ago how our city faces the dual challenges of meeting modern-day demand and investing strategies required by the future. He said that our region, and this City Council, are committed to investing in green infrastructure not only to address our water quality issues but also to create jobs and enhance our citizens’ quality of life. He concluded his testimony by saying that the level of investment needed and risks are great, but that it was his hope that Congress and the Administration work hand-in-hand with local governments to explore and implement the green infrastructure approach. As usual, your Mayor was received very well in Washington.

On a More Personal Note

Our daughter is in graduate school in Atlanta, but her boyfriend is living with us until he can get established in Kansas City. So far, he has re-enrolled in college, but he is still looking for a job. His search is entering the fourth month. If the economy keeps up the way it has, I think we might see life reverting back to the days when extended families had to live together to cut costs. While we view families pulling together as a good thing, it is worrisome that the times are so tough that a vibrant young man cannot find a job within a normal amount of time.

The Mayor’s Public Appearances – Beginning March 21, 2009

Saturday
7-10 a.m. Pancake Breakfast for Chaumiere
4140 Walrond

Sunday

Monday
4:00 p.m. Chamber Board meeting 911 Main Street

Tuesday
11:30 a.m. EDC Cornerstone Luncheon
KC Convention Center Ballroom

3:30 p.m. A City that Works Weekly Public Meeting
414 E. 12th St. 10th Floor

5:40 p.m. KPRS 103.3 FM

Wednesday
6:30 p.m. Town Hall Meeting: 3rd District Residents
Clymer Center, 1301 Vine St.

Thursday
7:00 a.m. Raytown Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast
Sheraton Hotel, 9103 E 39th St.

1:30 p.m. Council Business Session
414 E. 12th St. 10th Floor

3:00 p.m. Council Legislative Session (Budget to be adopted)
414 E. 12th St. 26th Floor

Friday
7:40 a.m. Friday’s with Funk 710 KCMO

12:00 p.m. Financial Preparedness Working Group
4740 Grand, Ste 200

12:30 p.m. Jay Nixon Signing of Missouri Reentry Process Executive Order
Southeast Community Center, 4201 E 63rd St.

For more up-to-date scheduling information, please see his website at,www.funksfrontporch.com.

The Next Town Hall Meetings

When: March 25, 6:30 p.m.
Where: Clymer Center, 1301 Vine
Host: Open

When: April 1, 6:30 p.m.
Where: 6972 NW Chapel Woods Lane
Host: Chapel Woods Homes Association

In faith,
Gloria & Mark

You can respond by email to this newsletter at funksfrontporch@gmail.com.

If you’d like daily news updates, please check the Mayor’s blog site at www.funksfrontporch.com.

The Mayor’s top ten priorities:

1. Establishing a good working relationship with the Council
2. Getting the City’s finances in order
3. Making downtown work
4. Tending to our neighborhoods
5. Implementing the Housing Policy task force recommendations
6. Improving the perception and the reality of public education in Kansas City
7. Reducing Crime
8. Repairing our sewer systems
9. Establishing an excellent regional transit system, which includes light rail
10. Improving citizen satisfaction with City services

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