KCUR News
3:24 am
Fri October 23, 2009

Council Turns Focus To Urban Core

Kansas City, MO – The Kansas City city council took the power to do something about crumbling nuisance properties Thursday and heard an important report on reviving the urban core.

The council passed an ordinance based on a state law that lets cities get nuisance properties put into receivership for renovation and sale.

Councilwoman Cindy Circo said it gives the city the power to do something it couldn't do before: "...be able to say, "We've contacted you, we've contacted you, we've contacted you, we're done. We're not going to allow you to do this to our neighborhoods any longer."

The council also heard from the mayor's New Tools Task Force. Vice-chair Mike Chesser said today's tax incentives discourage urban core development.

He gave this example: "You can get the same incentive, basically, to locate a business at 44th and Main as you can at 39th and prospect. So if you're a developer, which... where would you invest."

In addition to creating incentives to encourage redeveloping blighted areas, the task force called for a Community Development Credit Union in the urban core to help finance new businesses there, earning interest for its members.