Kansas City, Mo. – Kansas City's city council still hasn't finalized a ordinance on community gardens and urban agriculture, but it did complete public hearings on the subject yesterday.
A number of center-city groups and businesses that help low income neighborhoods are emerging as supporting the ordinance to encourage better nutrition and economic opportunities in the inner city.
Jim Stacy, a board member of Operation Breakthrough quoted its founder. "Sister Berta challenged someone to find a fresh tomato or a gun faster. And guess what won," says Stacy. "The kids were able to find a gun faster in their zip code."
Red Bridge Homes Association member Sharon Hill questioned the need for expanded urban agriculture. Hill says, "If they want fresh tomatoes you can even grow it in a flower pot."
Council members are determined to come up with a final ordinance that is satisfactory to both sides. Mayor pro-tem Bill Skaggs will announce the next step in the process on Monday, May 17.