Economy

KCUR News
5:33 pm
Tue February 2, 2010

Worse Than The Numbers Show

Kansas City, Mo. – Some of the nation's top economics bloggers have a breathtakingly pessimistic outlook. The findings come from the respected Kauffman Foundation on February 2, 2010.

Economic growth numbers from the last quarter of 2009 may look promising but they don't impress many of 200 economics devotees surveyed by The Kauffman group. Tim Kane is senior fellow with the foundation and engineered the first-of-its-kind study for the organization.

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KCUR News
3:48 pm
Mon February 1, 2010

Kansas Sees Results Of Expanded Gaming Act

Jesse Urtiaga came up from Amarillo, Texas to check out the new casino in Dodge City. Photo by Bill Elder.

Dodge City, Kan. – Two years ago, Kansas lawmakers passed the Expanded Gaming Act, which would legalize gambling at four new casinos, all state-owned. Now that Kansas is facing a $ 400 million dollar budget deficit, it could use the casino revenue more than ever. But the only casino that's opened so far is in Dodge City.

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The Economy Project
1:36 pm
Fri January 29, 2010

Job Clubs: For the Unemployed and By the Unemployed

Overland Park, Kansas – This story aired as part of a series we've been doing on the local economy. Johnson County, Kansas has some of the fastest growing and affluent cities in the country. Thousands of layoffs at local corporations like Sprint/Nextel and smaller technology companies have created unemployment Johnson County isn't accustomed to.

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KCUR News
6:02 pm
Thu January 14, 2010

Disputed Nuke Plant Gets Tip Of Hat

Kansas City, Mo. – Plans for a half billion dollar nuclear weapons parts plant are
moving toward a vote of the Kansas City Council. The Transportation and Infrastructure Committee of the council today recommended full council approval of a development agreement.

The committee heard from anti nuclear weapon activists, from contractors and school districts, from health advocates and others representing individual viewpoints and groups.

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KCUR News
10:49 am
Tue January 5, 2010

Tough Recession Comes Late to Commercial Real Estate

Kansas City, MO – Ask just about anybody in the commercial real estate field in Kansas City how business has been affected by the recession, and very early on, they will emphasize that the market here has not been affected as severely as in some other cities.

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KCUR News
6:23 pm
Fri December 4, 2009

Kansas Bioscience Park In Olathe: Part II

Olathe, Kansas – Now there are officially two centers under construction at the Kansas Bioscience Park in Olathe. The Kansas Bioscience Venture Accelerator officially broke ground this afternoon on a windy field adjacent to the K-State extension campus that will become The Olathe Innovation Center. Both are part of the Kansas Bioscience Park aimed at promoting the biosciences in the region.

The public-private Kansas Bioscience Authority plans for The Venture Accelerator to turn research into products and take those products to the market.

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KCUR News
6:10 pm
Fri December 4, 2009

Kansas Bioscience Park In Olathe: Part II

Olathe, Kansas – The Kansas Bioscience Park in Olathe got a jump on its second main part this afternoon with the groundbreaking of the "Venture Accelerator." It's to be an incubator for business ideas and strategies that will take research and turn it into profit.
The center is to be located next to an extension campus of K-State where officials plan to do cutting edge reserach on food safety, food security, and animal health.

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KCUR News
3:26 pm
Thu December 3, 2009

Architects Selected For Green Building Project In Johnson County

Kansas City, MO – A Kansas City-based architecture firm has been awarded a $1.2 million contract to design a new, and green, public works facility in Johnson County, Kansas. KCUR's Laura Spencer reports.

Out of a field of six finalists, 360 Architecture, Inc. was selected to design the new $14 million Johnson County Public Works facility in west Olathe, Kansas. It will replace a small, and aging, building from the 1960s.

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KCUR News
8:06 pm
Tue November 24, 2009

$24-Million Federal Grant Powers Smart Grid Plan

One version of a new smart grid digital home electric meter. The meters are equipped to connect with other display and computer equipment, and offer two-way communication.
Photo courtesy of the U.S. Department of Energy.

Kansas City, MO – Congressman Emanuel Cleaver and officials of Kansas City Power and Light announced a $24 million federal grant for the Green Impact Zone on Tuesday. The money will be used to develop a state-of-the-art "smart grid" electrical power system in the central east-side district.

The stimulus money will pay half the cost of a $48 million project that aims to install the new technology in what has been a disadvantaged area of the city.

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KCUR News
5:39 pm
Thu November 12, 2009

Ground Breaking Today In Olathe For Bioscience And Food Safety Center

Kansas City , Mo. – Officials with the Kansas Bioscience Authority and K-State are breaking ground later this morning for an animal health and food safety center in Olathe. It's the first building of the so-called Olathe Innovation Center, funded with revenue generated by the one-eighth cent sales tax Johnson Countians approved last year. CEO Dan Richardson says the center will become be a destination spot for people interested in learning what's happening around animal health and food safety.

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KCUR News
4:20 pm
Mon November 9, 2009

Practical Not Pretty: Jobs In Water Works

Kansas City, Mo. – Water and sewer projects lead to jobs. As part of the "Get to Work, Missouri" program, Governor Jay Nixon went to a job site in Kansas City to herald a $266 million statewide initiative. More than a score of communities will get funds for sewer and drinking water plants.

Kansas City's share will be $24 million. Blue Springs will get $34 million.

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KCUR News
3:52 pm
Thu October 29, 2009

2010 Region Jobs View: Plus 4K, Or Minus 12K

Intent on absorbing numbers at C of C economic forecast gathering at Johnson County Community College.(click to enlarge)
Photo: Dan Verbeck/KCUR

Overland Park, KS – The Kansas City region is expected to shed fewer jobs in 2010 than thus far into the recession. But the message is mixed. Greater Kansas City Area Chamber of Commerce got its annual economic forecast from the regional council.

Analyst Frank Lenk believes, at best, economic output will be sluggish next year, but recovery in jobs and income will be slower. His best case adds 4,000 jobs. The longer recession scenario sees job losses added to the 31,000 lost this year.

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KCUR News
3:16 pm
Wed October 28, 2009

Era Ending: No Fix For KCI Repair Base

Kansas City, Mo. – There is no obvious fix, as American Airlines' KCI overhaul base has been shaved to the bone.' It will close next September. Kansas City will still be paid rent of $1.1 Million a year for more than a decade, as required by contract.

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KCUR News
10:44 am
Wed October 28, 2009

EBay Says No to Auction For Man Accused Of Killing George Tiller

Kansas City, MO – EBay has pulled the plug on an auction planned to raise money for the man accused of murdering Dr. George Tiller in Wichita.

A group of virulent anti-abortion activists had planned to auction artifacts of their movement to generate money for Scott Roeder.

Witnesses say Roeder shot and killed Gorge Tiller last spring.

Tiller had performed thousands of late term abortions.

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KCUR News
9:40 am
Wed October 28, 2009

American Airlines Overhaul Base Expected To Exit

Kansas City, MO – It's not officially confirmed, but an announcement is expected today that the once-huge KCI overhaul base, started by TWA in the 1950's, will close next year.

A group of Kansas City leaders met with American Airlines officials yesterday but refused on the record comment.

The base has dwindled in size as American moved more and more of it's overhaul functions to a Tulsa, Oklahoma repair base and its newest repair base at company headquarters in Texas.

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KCUR News
9:24 am
Tue October 27, 2009

Ford Workers At Claycomo Plant Vote Down Contract Changes

Kansas City, MO – Union workers at the Ford Claycomo Assembly Plant have soundly rejected contract change concessions and the Sunday vote has national implications.

According to UAW local 249 officials, eight percent of rank and file voted in favor of concessions, soundly rejecting company proposals.

Ford wanted the changes to cut labor costs to put them on par with Chrysler and General Motors.

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KCUR News
9:06 am
Fri October 16, 2009

Kansas Offers $230 Million In Incentives For Soccer And Office Park

Kansas City, MO – A new Wizards soccer stadium and Cerner Corporation office park is closer to becoming reality with an offer from the Kansas Commerce Secretary. It adds up to nearly $230 million in incentives.

Five weeks ago the Unified Government of Wyandotte County asked for $155 million in help from the STAR Bond program. The offer yesterday is ten million dollars short of that but includes $85 million in cash incentives and state tax credits.

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KCUR News
8:31 am
Wed October 14, 2009

Lawsuit Seeks To Overturn Tax Incentives To Stop St. Louis Development

St. Louis, MO – Two St. Louis residents have asked a court to strike down Missouri's latest economic incentives law in an attempt to halt tax credits for a massive redevelopment project.

A lawsuit against the state claims the tax credits for assembling large tracts of land violate a constitutional ban on granting public money to private entities.

The suit also claims the law expanding the annual tax credits, passed this year, is unconstitutional because the legislation included too many topics and went beyond its original intent.

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KCUR News
4:56 pm
Fri October 9, 2009

Bioscience Authority Give $50 Million To Venture Capital Firms

Kansas City, MO – The Kansas Bioscience Authority is providing $50 million to increase investments in Kansas companies. The funding will be split between eight venture capital firms. The groups are each required to raise at least $25 million from other sources, to bring the total capital available to $250 million. The money, in turn, will be invested in Kansas-based bioscience companies. Tom Thornton, with the Kansas Bioscience Authority says goal is growing the industry in the state.

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KCUR News
2:04 pm
Fri October 9, 2009

Kansas City Nonprofits Get Grants

Kansas City, MO – Two Kansas City nonprofits have been recognized for their efforts to address critical social issues. They'll receive $400,000 from the Bank of America Charitable Foundation's Neighborhood Excellence Initiative.

Communities Creating Opportunity provides tools and training to tackle issues like health care, housing, and economics. And the Charlotte Street Foundation supports the local arts community with annual cash awards, free studio spaces, and other opportunities.

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KCUR News
7:39 am
Thu October 1, 2009

Kansas City Breaks Even As Sprint Center Profits

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Kansas City, MO – Sprint Center is doing well, paying the Kansas City, Missouri a $1.8 million dollar bonus for the year. That's because the city gets 50 percent of the arena's profits after Anschutz Entertainment Group reaches its guaranteed profit amount. But AEG also manages Kemper Arena, and Oscar McGaskey, who is in charge of the city's revenue-producing properties, says the contract estimates on the older arena just didn't pan out.

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KCUR News
7:31 am
Thu October 1, 2009

Kan. Revenues Fall Below Estimates

Topeka, KS – September may have been a bad month for the Kansas budget as corporate and income taxes fell below estimate.

Kansas officials say the state's revenues in September came in $67 million below expectations. So far in the fiscal year that began July 1, state revenues are $65 million below the forecasts that formed the basis for the state budget.

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KCUR News
2:43 pm
Thu September 10, 2009

Auto Jobs Demise Exaggerated, Governor Nixon Says

Governor Jay Nixon meets reporters at Ford Claycomo Assembly Plant.
Dan Verbeck KCUR

Claycomo, MO – The Missouri automotive jobs situation is on sound footing, according to a panel drawn together by Governor Jay Nixon. He summarizes the task force conclusions as "poised for growth" and said so at the Ford Claycomo Plant.

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KCUR News
1:39 pm
Thu September 10, 2009

Soccer, Cerner Cited By Mayor: 4K Jobs

Proposed site of Wizards Stadium in Village West complex.(click to enlarge)
kcur photo by dan verbeck

Kansas City, Kansas – Kansas City Missouri's apparent loss is Wyandotte county's gain. Negotiations are free to begin between the Unified Government and owners of the Wizards for a soccer stadium at Village West next to Kansas Speedway.

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KCUR News
2:42 pm
Tue August 25, 2009

Is 'That New Car Smell' Dangerous?

Kansas City, MO – Anyone who has jumped behind the wheel of a brand new car might themselves saying, "There's just nothing like a new car smell!" In fact, go to the car wash, and "New Car" is one of the scents you're offered. But toxicologist Marcus Iszard wants us to think twice before we get too carried away with the fresh smell of new vehicles. Susan stopped by his office and he told her all about the hidden dangers of new cars.

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KCUR News
12:50 pm
Mon August 17, 2009

Investing During An Uncertain Recovery

Kansas City, MO – The recent recession has many people completely rethinking how they manage their money. KCUR's Susan Wilson recently caught up with certified financial planner David Jackson, of Waddell and Reed, to find out whether changes in the economy should prompt major changes in people's investments.

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KCUR News
11:53 am
Sat August 8, 2009

Panel Weighs Risks And Benefits Of Gardner Railyard

Olathe, KS – A panel of experts says the U-S Army Corps of Engineers assessment of the environmental risks posed by a planned shipping facility near Gardner is deeply flawed. They presented their critique at a public meeting in Olathe on Thursday. Kansas Public Radio's Bryan Thompson was there, and filed this report.

Find out more about the Kansas Health Series on Kansas Public Radio here

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KCUR News
11:52 am
Thu August 6, 2009

Freight Industry Still Reeling

Dee Jones has tough making now enough to cover expenses
Frank Morris

Kansas City, MO – First thing Saturday morning at the big truck stop out in Oak Grove, Missouri the restaurant is not quite half full of truckers.
Jones: My name is Dee Jones. Dee is a nick name that I've gone by for 66 years, and I'm known nationwide by it.

Like many of the other guys Dee Jones is here killing time, and making calls, looking for work.

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KCUR News
9:27 am
Mon August 3, 2009

Tips For Navigating The Housing Market

While many people are still trying to dig out from under bad mortgages, new data shows that foreclosures are actually down in the Kansas City area, compared to the first six months of last year. And some people are finding that it's a pretty good time to buy a house. KCUR's Susan B. Wilson spoke to Certified Financial Planner David Jackson, of Waddell and Reed, for his thoughts on buying, or keeping, a home.

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KCUR News
1:08 pm
Fri July 31, 2009

YRC Worldwide Faces Quarterly Loss

Kansas City, MO – Trucking companies are posting big losses as the recession drags on. One of the largest, YRC Worldwide, lost more than 300 million dollars in the second quarter, and may be headed for bankruptcy. KCUR's Frank Morris reports.

The amount of stuff shipped by truck, as measured in tons, fell off steeply last year, and hasn't come back. It was down more than 13% in June. That makes for a lot of idled or under filled semis and steep losses for trucking companies.

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