Council Members Comment on P & L District Subsidy

Jul 15, 2010

Kansas City, MO – City Manager Troy Schulte's comments to the Kansas City Star that the city will have to pay millions of dollars for up to ten years to subsidize Power and Light District TIFs prompted responses from several Kansas City council members Wednesday.

Councilwoman Sharon Sanders Brooks said she was surprised that the expense could stretch out for five or ten years... and concerned about elections to extend expiring city taxes: "When we tell the people that we can't clean the city and tear down dangerous buildings and mow... spending ten to fifteen million to subsidize... I hope that that projection is wrong."

But the city manager says the projection is accurate. He and finance chair Deb Hermann said though the expense is disappointing it is outweighed by the benefits of a revitalized downtown.

Mayor Funkhouser told TV-9 reporters he wasn't surprised, saying, "At Power and Light you have a "Super TIF," a city-guaranteed debt. And I pointed out when I was the city auditor that the revenue analysis on that was basically completely absent."

The mayor said what is needed is a sports anchor tenant for Sprint Arena to bring more people downtown.

Mark Funkhouser audio courtesy of KMBC, TV-9