Kansas City Council

HDR, City of Kansas City

In less than a week, Kansas City, Missouri voters will go to the polls to decide on the makeup of their next City Council.

One of the most closely-competitive races is for the the Northland's 2nd District At-large seat now held by Ed Ford, who is not seeking re-election because of term limits.

Running for the 2nd District seat is Teresa Loar, former two-term City Council member and two-term member of the North Kansas City School Board, who says she has lived in the northland for almost 50 years.

With  city council elections fast approaching, two candidates for the 2nd District At-large seat face off on this edition of Up to Date.

Guests:

  • Teresa Loar is the former two-term City Council member and two-term member of the North Kansas City School Board.
  • Jay Hodges served as the senior advisor for economic development and public safety in Mayor Sly James' administration.

Julie Denesha / KCUR

The Kansas City, Missouri, City Council elections are fast approaching, and several of the races look to be closely contested.

One of those is in the 4th district, where former Jackson County Executive Katheryn Shields is giving incumbent Jim Glover a spirited run.

Both Shields and Glover joined Up To Date host Steve Kraske at the KCUR studios to discuss some of the city's most pressing issues.

Two seasoned politicians go head-to-head on this edition of Up To Date, leading up to this month's elections. 

Guests:

  • Jim Glover is currently serving as Councilman for the 4th District At-large. 
  • Katheryn Sheilds is the former Jackson County Executive and is challenging Glover for the 4th District seat. 

The Kansas City Council delayed a vote Thursday on raising the minimum wage to $10 an hour.

The council came to an agreement after nearly four hours of public testimony in committee. Petitioners in favor of raising the minimum wage had submitted a ballot initiative in conjunction with Councilman Jermaine Reed introducing an identical ordinance.

The issue is complicated by an Aug. 28 deadline for a bill on Gov. Jay Nixon's desk that would prohibit cities from raising the minimum wage. Mayor Sly James summed up the council's difficulty with the measures.

Elle Moxley / KCUR

A Kansas City Council committee gave initial approval to a plan for a new downtown convention hotel Wednesday.

The city's Planning, Zoning and Economic Development Committee approved an outline for a $300 million, 800-room Hyatt hotel. The plan puts the city on the hook for $35 million, which would come from the city's existing tourism funds that currently go to Kemper Arena.

Allagash Brewing / Flickr-CC

Craft breweries and distilleries in the Kansas City area could soon have a new venue to sell their libations.

The Kansas City council's Public Safety & Emergency Services Committee advanced an ordinance Wednesday that expands liquor sales in the City Market area near downtown Kansas City.

Currently, only wineries can bring their products to the farmer's market, but the new ordinance would allow state-licensed breweries and distilleries to do the same.

Some digital signs will be allowed in Kansas City, Missouri residential neighborhoods under an ordinance passed Thursday. 

The battle went on for nearly two years, according to ordinance sponsor Councilman Ed Ford. Churches and schools said the new signs were modern, convenient and efficient. Homeowners worried that they could be glaring, garish and constantly changing.

Ford said the compromise ordinance allows the signs at institutions with 15-acre sights (10 acres on busy thoroughfares).

Matt Hodapp / KCUR

Kansas City Council has approved a $15 million agreement with San Francisco based Cisco Systems Inc., to turn a two mile stretch of the streetcar line into a "Smart City" network. 

The project calls for the creation of interactive digital kiosks that share information about events and city services with pedestrians.

Data about infrastructure and traffic will be detected by sensors and sent back to the city in real time.

HDR / City of Kansas City

In just over two months, Kansas Citians will take to the polls to elect 12 council members that will lead the city for the next four years.

Due to term-limits, half of the seats held by incumbents will be wide open, which means that if Mayor Sly James is re-elected, which looks likely, he will have a council very different from the one he enjoyed his first four years.

Matt Hodapp / KCUR

The Kansas City Council voted Thursday in favor of a ride-hiring ordinance that Uber says will force them to suspend operations in Kansas City. The adopted legislation marks the end of Kansas City's long regulatory debate with ride-hiring companies. 

Spokespeople for Uber have re-titled the legislation an "anti-technology ordinance" and Uber's general manager for Kansas City, Andy Hung, says it creates a model that won't work for drivers.

Courtesy / Lyft

The Kansas City council committee for transportation and infrastructure unanimously passed a controversial ride-hiring ordinance Thursday.

Ride-hiring company Uber has said if the ordinance is adopted it will force them to suspend services in Kansas City.

Revisions to the ordinance decreased the vehicle permit cost for TNC (transportation network company) drivers from the already lowered $150 fee to $100 as long as the company pays a $40,000 base fee. TNC drivers will also have to pass a physical, complete exams, and acquire a business license and a chauffeur's license at their own expense.

courtesy: flickr user Kelly Garbato

Cultural organizations in Kansas City, Mo., such as the American Jazz Museum and the Kansas City Zoo, could be facing budget cuts.

The city’s proposed budget for the next fiscal year calls for the following reductions: 

Restaurant workers in Kansas City, Mo. say they are fed up with a requirement that they must have liquor cards to serve alcohol where they work. Now they are organizing to urge the City Council to eliminate the card requirement. 

Guest: Shannon Hickey, Executive Director of the Greater Kansas City Restaurant Association

A proposal presented to the Kansas City, Mo. City Council Thursday would make it easier for ride-hiring services like Uber and Lyft.

It would require drivers that work for the companies to get city permits. Also, it lowers the cost of the permits from $300 to $250.

Elle Moxley / KCUR

Updated, 5 p.m. Wednesday:

In the wake of Kansas City, Mo., Councilman Michael Brooks' resignation, Mayor Sly James says his focus is on filling the empty 5th district seat. 

"We're not looking for someone who can warm a chair. We're going to look for someone who can do the job," James said at a press conference Wednesday afternoon.

The Kansas City, Mo., City Council wants to know if current city rules regulating the taxi cab industry are unfair to women- and minority-owned businesses.

At issue is an agreement Yellow Cab has to act as an exclusive operator with most of the major downtown and Crown Center hotels. Councilman Dick Davis says that contract is keeping small taxi cab companies from operating in large swaths of the city.

MoBikeFed / Flickr-CC

Honking, cat-calls, projectiles and more get hurled at pedestrians and cyclists in Kansas City. The city council now is considering a law to crack down on that type of conduct.

Calling these actions “threatening and dangerous behavior,” the proposed ordinance seeks to protect “vulnerable road users.”

Councilman John Sharp is expected to recommend the ordinance at this week's council meeting. He and Kansas City Star reporter Mike Hendricks joined Steve Kraske on Up to Date Monday to discuss the details.

wikimedia commons

Of all the possible plans for Kemper Arena, the one that changes the building the least is also the least viable for the city.

"Doing nothing doesn't seem to work for anybody," Kansas City Councilman Ed Ford told members of the Planning, Zoning and Economic Development Committee Thursday morning, kicking off a series of meetings to discuss Kemper's future.

Noah Jeppson / Flickr--CC

 Updated 6:11 p.m.:

The Kansas City City Council has postponed the vote on the Power and Light building so city officials can conduct another hearing on the proposal's financial implications.

The original post begins here:

The Kansas City City Council votes Thursday afternoon on declaring the historic Power and Light Building and several blocks surrounding it a blighted area.

Kansas City City Manager Troy Schulte submitted his official proposed budget for 2014-2015 to Mayor Sly James Wednesday afternoon.

The plan calls for an overall 2.7 percent increase in spending. About 40 percent of that $37 million increase will go to start fully funding the city's share of its long underfunded employee pensions.

Basic services budgets remain at about 2013-2014 levels, but cuts are planned in the municipal court and in jobs at City Hall.

Schulte did include funds to meet a council commitment to increase spending for arts programs by $325,000.

Your Guide To The Kansas City Charter Review

Sep 13, 2013

Kansas City is known as a “weak mayor” town. That’s no slight on Mayor Sly James, it’s the way the city charter sets up our government, where the mayor is a glorified city council member, and the city manager really runs the town. It's also called a council-manager system.

MARC

It’s not clear by how much expanded Kansas City streetcar lines would  boost property values. A team of city planners and private analysts expects to know by late October. 

The panel is trying to narrow potential streetcar corridors from 7 to 3.

A committee of the City Council heard how blighted areas of Seattle sprung up new growth when a streetcar went in. 

The second phase of Kansas City’s planned streetcar system is being generated, even as phase one is in infancy.  

Dan Verbeck / KCUR

A Commission that will look for ways to change the foundation of how Kansas City Government operates has met just once and the opening session, Wednesday, heard wide ranging  recommendations that spread from finance to setup of Council Districts.

The first assurance came from Mayor Sly James who appointed the 13 member commission. He said he would not be looking over their shoulders. If the operating  charter needs change, he'll ask for proof when recommendations are written.

kccg

Some of the first aftermath data from two major and back-to-back winter snow storms is filtering out of Kansas City city hall.  Adding two agencies to the Emergency Operations Center was counted as a positive to the Public Safety and Emergency Services Committee of the Council.

Those private or quasi-private operations served public transit and distribution of electrical power.

The Ops nerve center stayed open 24 hours in the storm of February 21, another 30 hours during  last week’s heavy, wet snow.  

Cash For Liquor Consent Sent Packing In Kansas City

Feb 28, 2013

Acting on complaints that the operator of a center-city convenience store was paying residents for permission to get a liquor license, the Kansas City Council has banned the practice.

Julie Denesha / KCUR

More than 20 community meetings took place across Kansas City last week – morning, noon and night – to discuss the future of the city’s arts and cultural policy. It’s the first comprehensive review since 1997.

An ordinance allowing the city of Kansas City, Mo. to suspend or revoke the tobacco-sales licenses of stores  which sell illegal synthetic drugs or sell cigarettes to minors sailed through a final city council vote yesterday.

Top Of The Morning News: December 21, 2012

Dec 21, 2012
Dan Verbeck / KCUR

Thursday morning's snowstorm disrupted flights, schools and power, but by Friday Kansas City is getting back on track. That & more news from KCUR.

National Weather Service

The KC metro area experienced its first winter storm. Missouri Senators weighed in on legislation to curb gun violence. Kansas tied for last when it comes to public health preparedness. Those stories & more from KCUR.

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