Kansas City Opens 'Dead Letter Office' | KCUR

Kansas City Opens 'Dead Letter Office'

Jul 8, 2014

Kansas City is trying to clean out outdated laws from the books.
Credit Google Images - CC

Last month, the city of Kansas City, Mo., opened what they’re calling a 'Dead Letter Office,' which is actually a website where the residents and business owners can petition to repeal out-of-date city regulations.

Assistant City Manager Rick Usher focuses on small businesses and entrepreneurship. He says due to Kansas City’s long history, some of the old rules are still in the books.

“Kansas City you know we’re over 150 years old. The city has weathered every economic, political, social, environmental crisis that has occurred through those times,” Usher said.

For example, there’s an ordinance on how to get a license to sell coal door-to-door from when homes were heated by stoves. And while that particular rule is harmless, some can hinder small business growth. The city has worked with the food and beverage industry to lower the cost of food handlers licenses, which makes it easier to hire new staff.

Usher says business owners usually know their industry’s regulations better than city officials, and the Dead Letter Office will allow city and business owners to work together to ensure the rules do not hurt businesses.

You can submit your own suggestion or see what others' have suggested by visiting the Dead Letter Office website.