NAG Letter  from The Neighborhood Action Group 

 NEIGHBORHOOD UNDER SEIGE-  Parts of two email letters are found this week under the "NAG did you know" section.
HERE THEY ARE. ---------

Hey Nag. Do you know ----(1)The Police are going to start patroling the Old Hyde Park Neighborhood and chasing the big cars and big sound systems to some other part of the city.

It seems that ZIN the SIN has a clientel that race in the neighborhood and generally raise hell before heading out to parties some where else. We have been complaining for six months now and finally the Police got the idea that things were getting bad. Lets all go down there and watch some Saturday night!!

Hey Nag. Do you know ----(2) ...........It is severely affecting parts of our community in detrimental ways particularly on weekends, including noise, traffic congestion, gunfire on the streets, altercations between residents and patrons on residential streets. Between 2 and 4 am on Fridays and Saturdays some streets are clogged with outsider traffic who have chosen our neighborhood as a cruising area. According to Officer &%$#(*&&, crime stats in the vicinity of Club Zen have gone up substantially since new ownership took it over a year ago and recently turned it into a hip hop club. Surrounding businesses and residents are very upset with the disruptions this club is causing. The Unicorn may move. One nice apartment building nearby is losing all of it's tenants. A bed and breakfast has guests who are checking out or cancelling their stays because of the ruckus caused by nightclub. Others including including myself are shaken out of our beds every weekend night by the traffic, screaming, and people firing guns in the air. Howard Fisher, the developer of the Hawthorne on Main is concerned about the success of his project should this club continue to operate as it does.

They are talking about the area between Broadway and Gilham from Linwood to 39th Street. The bar is on Main.
Yes, I know about my neighborhood being held hostage by a group of people susposedly having fun. I do not sit on my front porch anymore and I have quit calling the Police, as it is a worthless endeavor. My wife and I moved our bedroom to be more out of the line of possible gunfire and a little futher away from the noise. The old Grand Emporium location has a bar there that attracts a group of rather afluent individuals in expensive cars with sound systems that rattle my windows every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday night. It is the base range in the sound system that wakes one up. I called 911 for awhile. When we heard the woman screaming, when the bullets started flying, and when I woke up aggitated enough to walk to the phone and dial the number. NO ONE CAME and in fact the 911 operator argued with me one night that the Police couldn't do anything about the bass noise, it had to be music.

Please do not get me wrong if I was a Police Officer and I got called to this location and saw what I was up against I wouldn't come here either.

I asked one of the guys at Eggs and Enlightment about the Kansas City Police Department and this 65 year resident said that he had never seen a decrease in overall crime, he had never heard of any Police getting laid off because they got the job finished, and he only knew of one time when the crime in an area stopped and that was in an area on the East side when George Bush was going to talk at Metropolitian Baptist Church on Linwood. He said that these guys in suits cleaned the street corners of drinking and guys hanging out and for the only time in his mother's life she could sit on the front porch like regular folks. He said that a pistol in your face convinces one quickly to leave an area.

I attended a meeting with 30 of my neighbors last night. Beth Gottstein is going to solve this problem. The police and a lawyer attended. The Police said to keep calling 911 and they would count the calls. No promise of priority response attitude. I wondered why with computers the 911 system doesn't count "keep track and compile" for high call areas so that the Police can see where to maintain a bigger presence for awhile. This situation in my neighborhood is all ready so out of control that someone will have to get hurt pretty bad before it stops. Sure hope it isn't me.

NEIGHBORHOOD UNDER SEIGE-  Parts two -- Well it wasn't me that got killed at the Shell Station on 38th and Main last week.

We had the helicopters again this weekend, they add a little bit of third world flavor to our lives. Amazing that we fulfill the need of "helping" to direct the flow of patrons from the Zin Sin with the technology that usually is used to cause havoc in Iraq and earlier in Viet Nam.

As I waited for the departure of the helicopters, (they extend the time that one can't sleep as they stay around until the last car leaves) my mind started down a strange road of thought.

"Our society has passed laws to control the enviromental impact of American business. When the impact reaches a certain level (measured by certain quantative mathmatical parameters) a plan goes into operation. In Los Angeles there were smog days that were measured and when certain linits were reached certain industries had to impliment a different way of doing business. We have had fish kills in Midwestern streams that resulted in fines and eventually a mandated change in the manufacturing process in some industries. There are a lot of examples. "

"My hovering helicopter inspired thoughts at 3:00AM jumped to the term "Cost Benefit Analysis"."

In other words what is the benefit of having an alcohol establishment?

How much of an increase in crime does it take to offset that benefit?

What is the level of costs allocated to the containment and or correction of problems related to the existence of a particular alcohol establishment.

Has anyone done any analysis that allows a comparison of benefits, costs, and developing negative situations?

Does the Police Department even think about auditing itself in such a manner or do they just fly by the seat of the pants and demand more cars, more police, when response times rise.

Do they look at the specific allocated costs and any dynamic rise in costs being allocated to a particular location?

"With the City of Kansas City allocating containment forces to certain venues as an additional subsidy such as in the Cordish contracts, how does that change the allocation in a cost benefit analysis of the Cordish Fun Center. 

"Is the lowering of property values of a neighborhood such as mine part of the analysis? We already know that large allocations of manpower jeopardize response to neighborhoods, ie blackouts, etc.."

What does it cost in dollars and cents to hover a helicopter for an hour?

What does it cost in quality of life for my neighborhood, in the quality of life for my neighbors, when we have to hover a helicopter for an hour?