Dan Verbeck

Reporter

Dan has covered Kansas City area news since 1974. He began a career in journalism more than 40 years ago in Chicago’s suburbs. The switch from newspaper to radio came during two years in the U. S. Army, and by 1968 he was firmly convinced that radio was his medium. He has covered breaking news, blizzards, tornadoes & floods. The Federal District Court was his daily beat for years. He was one of the few radio reporters able to continue broadcasting during Hurricane Katrina and it’s immediate aftermath. He concedes KCUR is one of his passions. Dan has been honored by the Missouri Broadcasters’ Association, The Associated Press and United Press International. He is inducted into the hall of fame of the Kansas City Media Professionals. When not covering news, Dan is partial to reading American history and tinkering with an old tractor. His wife Sylvia is his best critic. They have two daughters and a son.

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Government
1:02 am
Tue August 12, 2008

Veterans Lining Up For Top Campaign

Veterans assess candidates . (LtoR) Don Mackey, Independence, Mo., Dave Denayer, Butler, Mo. and John Goodwin, Overland Park, Ks.
KCUR photo by Dan Verbeck

In the building race for President of the United States, Senator Barack Obama's veterans affairs advisors in Missouri have been listening to former military personnel at meetings around the state, while his GOP opponent, Senator John McCain's counterparts call their candidate a 'tireless advocate for our troops.'

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Government
11:09 pm
Mon August 11, 2008

Veterans Address Needs With Obama Advisors

Kansas City, MO – Senator Barack Obama's veteran affairs advisors in Missouri have been listening to former military members at meetings around the state. Ten veterans and soldier's widow told their stories Monday at the National World War I Museum in Kansas City.

The soldiers wanted assurances that veterans' benefits will increase, starting with a GI bill of rights.

The widow of a Vietnam War medic, Kathleen Aylward, said that families must be more involved in veteran care.

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Government
4:18 am
Fri August 8, 2008

Regional Rail Rout: Kansas City Is Not Unique

Mayors and coaches< (L to R) Jeffrey Schielke, Batavia, Ill., Mark Funkhouser, K.C., Mo., Rancy Pye, Centennial, Colo.
KCUR photo by Dan Verbeck

A bi-state light rail approach seems unattainable in the short term, so Kansas City's mayor has brought in colleagues from other states to coach.

Mayoral caucuses of the kind sought by Mayor Mark Funkhouser are in place in Colorado and Greater Chicagoland to lobby for state and federal backing on transit, air quality, water issues and crime. The transit issue got a lot of attention.

Kansas metro-suburban leaders aren't taken with Funkhouser's transit plan, and it was tough enough getting a lot of support on the Missouri side.

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Government
12:48 am
Thu August 7, 2008

In HST's Shadow. Dems Launch Fall Fight

The Man from Independence as backdrop for Missouri Democrats' unity rally. Scene is old Independence town square.
KCUR photo by Dan Verbeck

The Missouri Democratic Party picked a symbolic location to draw support for the Fall campaign.

Observers watched and listened by the statue of Harry Truman on the old Independence Square.

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Cops & Crime
3:24 am
Tue August 5, 2008

Fighting 'Streetsweepers': Attack On Killing Machines

machine guns and sawed-off shotguns are attention getters at K.C. Police HQ. The 'streetsweeper\" is a shotgun that fires fully automatic.
Dan Verbeck KCUR

After a weekend in which three people were killed by guns in Kansas City and another seven were shot, the police department becomes centerpiece for Mayor Mark Funkhouser's efforts to be part of the more than 320-member bipartisan group of mayors nationwide committed to getting illegal guns off the streets.

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Government
3:13 am
Tue August 5, 2008

Nixon Wins Democratic Gubernatorial Primary

Democrat Jay Nixon handily won his party's gubernatorial nomination Tuesday and starts his campaign with millions to spend.

With token opposition Nixon took 85 percent of the vote and had to spend around a million dollars to do it. He took the Uptown Theater microphone after U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill: "I don't know about you, but I like the idea of the next president of the United States Barack Obama, campaigning in Missouri with the next governor of the state of Missouri, Jay Nixon."

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Weather
1:41 am
Mon August 4, 2008

Heat Holds City Hostage

Blazing heat punishes metro region.
courtesy: emergency net news

Heat as stifling as it is right now poses hazards beyond mere temperature and humidity.

With heat shimmering off of 63rd street past Metro Patrol police station, the sergeant who leads investigations speaks from 17 years experience. Brad Lemon recalls having to go with the fire department up ladders, through second story windows to save heat victims.

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Government
11:52 pm
Sun August 3, 2008

What If You Held An Election.......?

For all the talk of interest in this primary election, voting- trend watchers in and around Kansas City say the general populace doesn't seem too "fired up."

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Government
10:34 am
Thu July 31, 2008

Trolling For Votes. How Many Are Employed?

Earlene Franks of Kansas City takes a yard sign at the local Obama office opening. She says she'd like to volunteer her time as well.
KCUR photo by Dan Verbeck
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Government
3:49 am
Fri July 25, 2008

KC Light Rail Will Carry Heavier Burden

Missouri Suburban leaders set their sights. Shown is phase one of a working document. A network of fast buses would be a rapid transit priority.
KCUR photo by Dan Verbeck

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Government
4:21 am
Thu July 24, 2008

Light Rail Transit Plan Swirls Around Overseers

KC Councilman John Sharp tells colleagues of need to put grand transit plan close to the carless.
KCUR photo by Dan Verbeck

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Cops & Crime
5:38 am
Wed July 23, 2008

Suburban Murder Mystery Dissolves: Guilty Plea

Missy and Greg Smith meet reporters after guilty plea of daughter's killer.
news pool photo

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Government
2:35 am
Tue July 22, 2008

Shakeup On City Development Panel: Seven New Are Named By KC Mayor

De La Salle Education Center students anticipate arrival of K.C. Mayor.
KCUR photo by Dan Verbeck

Kansas City, Mo. – Moving to instill his philosophy into more machinery of Kansas City government, Mayor Mark Funkhouser has exerted control over the powerful Planned Industrial Expansion Authority (PIEA).

The agency has power to give tax abatements to developers. Eight of the fifteen members, including the chairman, are now hand picked by the mayor. Funkhouser has complained that city agencies have directed too much development money to wealthier parts of the city and vowed to change that.

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Government
3:59 am
Mon July 21, 2008

Not Your Same Old Ways: Boosters Plot Blight Fight

Kansas City, MO – Civic, government and business leaders have tentatively forged stimuli to turn around distressed parts of Kansas City. Member of the loosely formed think tank intend to create a private investment fund as an umbrella under which to maneuver.

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Government
5:38 am
Fri July 18, 2008

McCain Rouses Union Station Crowd

Kansas City, MO –
Missouri is a state where votes may count more. It's a fact recognized by the campaign of Republican Senator John McCain in his quest for the White House. KCUR'S Dan Verbeck followed a McCain appearance at Union Station.


# # #

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Government
9:53 am
Thu July 17, 2008

McCain Talks Gas Prices, Gas Taxes, Offshore Drilling In Kansas City

Kansas City, MO – With a cluster of Obama supporters gathered on the Liberty Memorial hillside across the street, Union Station packed in some 800 people to hear Senator John McCain in Kansas City, Missouri. Dan Verbeck was there.

Entry to the station was open to all. There were no hostile questions for the Senator. Some from the floor dealt with gas prices, gasoline taxes and drilling offshore.

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Government
4:58 am
Wed July 16, 2008

Six Million To Troost Transit

Kansas CIty, Mo. – More than one hundred Kansas City Area Transportation Authority buses will be replaced over the next five years with $6.1 million in U.S. Department of Transportation funds. The expenditure was part of the 2007 Omnibus spending bill and just announced this week as being confirmed. The funds are destined for the Troost Corridor Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project. They were arranged by Congressman Emmanuel Cleaver (D, fifth dist.) and Senator Christopher Bond (R, Mo.)

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Cops & Crime
10:15 am
Tue July 15, 2008

Gang Leader Stopped By Federal And Local Partnership

Local and federal agencies have closed an infamous period in Kansas City illegal drug history. KCUR's Dan Verbeck listened in at police headquarters.

It took six years, but a group of Kansas City police detectives, dedicated federal agents and determined prosecutors brought down one of the most notorious gangsters in recent memory, says crime analyst Karen Shaw who detailed how enforcers arrested and convicted Steve L. Wright Jr., who ran the 51st Street Crips with Power.

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Government
10:49 am
Thu July 10, 2008

'Green' Tax Breaks In Missouri

It's now the law: The good part is there will be a one week tax break when you buy 'green' appliances in Missouri. KCUR's Dan Verbeck reports, the timing could be better?

The tax exemption won't do you any good this year. The Show-Me Green Sales Tax Holiday will run from April 19th through the 25th every year.

Under provisions, the first $1500 of Energy Star certified new appliances will be exempt from Missouri state sales taxes. These would include such appliances as washers and dryers, furnaces and freezers.

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Government
11:27 pm
Mon July 7, 2008

Highway Horrors Face Funding Flaws

Missouri highway planners say there is no funding available for road and bridge projects valued at $5.5 billion. Missouri Department of Transportation is already considering a twenty year projection of needs that will cost $31 billion.

The intake of revenue over the same period is calculated at $13 billion. Long term projects include widening of Interstate 70 to eight lanes and turning South 71 Highway into a portion of Interstate 49.

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Immigration
4:12 am
Mon July 7, 2008

Among Toughest In Nation: Missouri Immigration Laws To Begin

Governor Matt Blunt ( R.,Mo) signs comprehensive anti illegal immigration laws.
Dan Verbeck KCUR

Penned into law by Missouri's governor, a host of rules governing illegal immigration will go into effect in August. Another provision that will affect Kansas City law enforcement will become effective in January 2009.

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Education
8:36 am
Wed July 2, 2008

Waiting For The Blink: School Staredown Awaits Reasoned End

It has been more than a day of waiting with two metro area school districts at apparent stalemate over sending seven buildings from one district to the other.

After more than 24 hours of tension, the Independence district is still not allowed to take over the buildings. Voters ordered these schools moved to the Independence educational system. Both districts signed a pact in the Fall of 2007 to make the transfer, but then the value of the buildings became an issue.

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Government
2:44 am
Tue July 1, 2008

Grant Launches Habitat Home Extension

Shelly Allen (L) will own one of eleven Habitat for Humanity homes. Job site supervisor Duane Tyson is at right.
kcur photo by Dan Verbeck

Habitat for Humanity extends its program in Kansas City's core.

The Habitat for Humanity is assured of funds for 11 new homes in Kansas City's urban core. Federal Home Loan Bank Executive Vice President Nicholas Spaeth has presented Fifth District Congressman Emmanuel Cleaver(D,Mo.) with a check for $110,000. While the sum may appear low for 11 homes, Habitat spokesperson Rebecca Dye says it costs the agency $95,000 to build one house. The new owners pay a maximum $85,000. This grant will satisfy the balance.

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Headlines
9:59 am
Thu May 8, 2008

Stimulus Checks Ready To Go

U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson Jr. outlines mechanics of processing economic stimulus checks. He spoke at Kansas City Central Library Thursday.
photo by Dan Verbeck
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