Funkhouser Decries Past Spending, Wants New Chamber of Commerce

Jun 18, 2010

Kansas City, MO – Mayor Mark Funkhouser delivered his State of the City address on Thursday. Many said it was a kickoff event for his campaign for reelection.

The mayor said the the city has made progress under his leadership, tightening the budget, reining in tax incentives and eliminating 90 percent of the metal plates covering uncompleted street repairs.

But he said the city has spent too much on the convention and entertainment industries in TIF projects that at worst cost the city millions and at best did not stimulate the economy. And he said not to expect him to compromise more often.

"Something has got to change," the mayor said, "but change does not come easy, especially not in Kansas City. Real change means real conflict."

Funkhouser specified four goals: renewing the public safety sales tax and using part of it to hire more police officers, creating a new chamber of commerce exclusively for Kansas City, Missouri, developing local businesses rather than trying to lure new ones, and spending more to support schools and infrastructure.