KCUR News
1:40 pm
Thu May 21, 2009

KC Pools, Spraygrounds To Open On Time

Kansas City, MO – Wading pools and spraygrounds in Kansas City, Missouri will open on schedule this year, after a city council committee restored $250,000 the city manager withheld from the Parks Department budget.

Last Friday, a little over a week before the city's wading pools were set to open, the city manager's office put a freeze on the funding that would operate those facilities, "sprayground" play areas and the Night Hoops and Night Kicks youth programs.

The city manager Wayne Cauthen said he was confused about whether the funds should be applied to summer employment programs at City Hall... a comment that drew a dressing down from Finance and Audit chair Deb Hermann.

Herman said the funds freeze was another instance of Cauthen not following council orders, and "confusion around the budget might have been alleviated if you had been at committee meeting the morning we voted on it and understood the budget."

Parks board president John Fierro and board member Meg Conger came to the meeting prepared to defend the original assignment of the funds. They didn't have to.

The committee decided neither they nor the city manager's office had the authority to question how the parks board spends appropriated funds.