NAG LETTER Volumn #3

NAG LETTER who's trying to do what to whom in K.C.

Vol. 3 # 1

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Voting is important, Informed Voting keeps the trash out of office. The opinions found here are the opinion of the person who signed the article. Factual information will carry a reference as to origin.

Please send opinions to news@KCNAG.com Visit our website at http://www.KCNAG.com

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ISSUES COVERED IN THIS EDITION

TIF money be taken out and now there is a USE TAX??

BiState in the news---

"Right idea, wrong tax"

"I ran a few numbers"

You may want to consider---

The Bi-State Advisory Group sent in its --

Recent rumors--

and then

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ TIF money be taken out and now there is a USE TAX?? So are there any more suprises? The KCStar reported that Mr. Ford and Mr. Bacchus both were surprised to learn that TIF funds were taken outof the KCATA tax. Very convenient position to be "in the dark" about the proposal that you are backing on TV and at the Mayor's Press Conference. The less you know the more you can say and not be held accountable for your statements. This same type of misinformation was presented by these two gentlemen during the Cities Light Rail Campaign a few years ago. Mr. Ford appeared on Television and put words in Clay Chastains mouth that Clay had never spoken. The public presentation at the Gem Theatre found Mr. Bacchus side stepping and obfuscating to the point of hilarity. These types of disinformation events before an election need to be attacked strongly by the media. Why do the television and newspapers seem so reluctant to call a lie - a lie until after an election. Public discussion before an election has reached the point where the voting public is losing all faith in elected officials and their campaign chairmen. Where is the USE TAX going?

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------BiState in the news-------For more, please visit The Examiner :

http://examiner.net/stories/082702/new_082702008.shtml

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------"Right idea, wrong tax"--letter to the editor in KCStar by Nancy Jefferis calls for an earnings tax to support the bistate sales tax. If you are earning money you have money to attend the games. Sales Tax on food being used to keep one of our entertainments alive is really adding insult to injury, everyone has to buy food even if they can't afford to go to a game. Sounds a lot better than a 25 year tax on the purchases of the poor, retired, and middle class wage earner who can't afford to attend the games.

Seems that people are getting tired --KCStar had four letters in Sun.Dec. 14 metro from irate citizens.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------"I ran a few numbers" that are both startling and revealing.     It is safe to assume the average professional major league franchise owner is a billionaire. e.g. Minnesota Twins owner Carl Pollard has an estimated net worth of 1.8 billion dollars. There are 62 football and baseball franchises. Assuming that 2 of these billionaires own 2 teams, their total net worth is $60 billion. And these billionaires want the taxpayers to pay for stadium improvements.     The 2003 budgets for the states of Kansas and Missouri, respectfully, are $10 billion and $20 billion (rounded numbers). That totals $30 billion. The billionaire owner's total net worth is twice the 2003 budgets for our two states. And these billionaires want the taxpayers to pay for stadium improvements.      In Kansas City the Royals have agreed to pay $15 million and the Chiefs $50 million of the $354 million renovation costs. That means the taxpayers pay 85 % of the cost while the wealthy owners pay only 15 % of the cost and take home 100 % of the profits. Maybe that's why they're wealthy.   ***     NAG could help the average guy who has something to say about Bi-State taxes by putting on their website or in one of their letters, a list of email and US Mail addresses of all publications in the metro area that have any kind of letter to the editor column.   ***     .The citizens of Kansas City, Mo. might ask the politicians down at city hall what happen if they spent $177 million (1/2 of $354 M) on the worst school system in the country (KCMO of course). Ask them if they think the extra $7 million a year would have any impact. Better yet, ask the Kansas City School Board what they could do to improve education with an extra $7 million a year.   ***     I have no data but I'd but I'd be willing to bet a lot of money that if all the cities in the metroplex were audited, there are no worse stewards of the people's money than Kansas City, Missouri. Why would anyone want to give them more money to spend ?   ***     Hang in there NAG !   Please don't use my name. I'm saving it for the time when the Bi-State fight formally begins.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------You may want to consider--- The Bistate II proposal means more than $354 million for the stadiums.  A quarter cent sales tax, collected in Jackson and Johnson counties for 25 years, will raise well over $1 billion ($40 million/yr times 25 years) &. Assuming a 50/50 split with arts, that leaves $500 million for sports & plus ongoing subsidies from State of Missouri/Kansas City/Jackson County of roughly $7.5 million & or $187.5 million over 25 years.

That means a total taxpayer subsidy of $687 million over the life of the lease &. About double the $354 million everyone hears about.  Much of that will go to bond holders, since the improvements will not be pay-as-you-go but bonded.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------The Bi-State Advisory Group sent us its statement of existence.

" To provide information on the Bi-State proposal. What impact will the various ideas and proposals accomplish."

They learned that some Johnson County legislators were given Campaign contributions by the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce. While these contributions are not illegal, they do seem inadvisable, if for no other reason than to avoid any hint of conflict of interest. Johnson County elected officials should have the interests of Johnson County citizens foremost in their minds.These donations can give the impression that someone in Missouri is interested in getting help from some Kansas legislators on shipping Kansas tax money (AKA Bi-State II) to Missouri.

Question to Kansas legislators: 

"Is it worth a few dollars to have voters wonder if your vote can be influenced?"

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Recent rumors-- speak of over $5 million in misspent or missplaced funds in the community housing area. The changes that may be instituted because of this information will specifically impact our residential neighborhoods. Unless there is a full disclouser and a full and transparant accounting of this situation, showing exactly dollar by dollar where this money is or was spent, the Neighborhood Action Group will consider this situation to be another obfuscation on the part of the city. Nothing less than a complete presentation of the records by the City Manager on the community housing and community development funds is acceptable to avoid the conclusion that this situation is just another example of manipulation of the public similar to the recent lies told by members of the KCATA campaign committee, in order to pass that proposal.The public was mislead by misinformation --- that must not happen this time.

and then -- the finance and audit meeting on 1/7/04 was well planned to provide for presentations by several special interest groups. Neighborhoods were not invited!! They get to come down on Wed. 14th of January, but $180 Million has already been asked for. Neighborhoods should demand that all requests for funds be individualized and attached to the provision in such a way that after the election the funds can't be moved or loaned to other projects. The $200Million must NOT be used for start up projects or plug in projects for arenas, light rail, entertainment districts, baseball stadiums or streetscapes for downtown. It must not be used for projects that are doing OK already. These infastructure funds must be prioritized for use in residential neighborhoods. We were told when the $35Million bond issue took place that it was downtowns turn. Neighborhoods were susposed to get some of that money--so where is it. Well it now our turn It is the residential neighborhoods turn. Our turn is NOW or NO DEAL.

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http:/www.KCNag.com -------- what we do, what we've done, and what we would like to do.

http://www.NoNewArena.com ____watch them tear down small business downtown!!

"It does not take a majority to prevail..but rather an irate, tireless minority, keen on setting brushfires of freedom in the minds of men." Samuel Adams

"When you consider the story of the Pied Piper of Hamelin first think about the credulity of the rats." W.K. Peters

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 NAG LETTER 3 # 2

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ISSUES COVERED IN THIS EDITION

PLEASE - check the KCNAG.com Website --

SENATE BILL 1020 Sunshine Law

What Happened ??

A City Hall Management List

Correction--

Beacon Hill redevelopment--

On Kay's Watch--

Hello to all from MAINCORE- we need your help!

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------PLEASE - Check the KCNAG.com Website -- The website has 15 questions which were delivered as part of the testimony against the $300 Million Bond Issue given by The Neighborhood Action Group at the Finance Committee meeting . We asked that the questions be answered before the April election, so that embarrising situations such as the KCATA Lies not be repeated. The questions are on the web site --the answers will appear when they are received.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------SENATE BILL 1020 Sunshine Law will get some added teeth if Senate Bill 1020 passes. One of the first hurdles that a person seeking information encounters is the receptionist who says "We have a research fee of $50.00 an hour for compiling those documents you want." Documents that are right in the file drawer behind her. Fees will have new limits. This bill will also open some files which are now unobtainable. An example is the accured vacation pay records which for some reason are not available to the media. Call your Senator or email them and ask that S.B. 1020 be placed into law.

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What Happened??

The following information shows the attendance record for the last 4 months of 2003 for the City Council's Finance Committee.

TheDate----------- Dr.Eddy ---------- Rowland--------------- Brooks------------ Skaggs

9/10/03------------- Present------------ Excused--------------- Present------------- Present

9/24/03------------- Present ------------Excused--------------- Present------------- Present

10/24/03----------- Present-------------Excused--------------- Present -------------Present

10/08/03----------- Present ------------Excused--------------- Present --------------Present

10/22/03----------- Present------------ Excused--------------- Excused------------ Present

11/05/03----------- Present ------------Excused--------------- Present -------------Present

11/19/03----------- Present------------ Excused--------------- Present --------------Present

12/03/03----------- Present ------------Excused--------------- Present --------------Present

12/17/03----------- Present------------ Excused--------------- Present --------------Present

A quick review shows that three of the four council members on this very important committee had excellent attendance records. Council members Eddy and Skaggs had perfect attendance and Councilman Brooks had only one excused absence. What happened to Councilman Rolands and why did he quite the committee? Rowland resigned and the Mayor took over the position,

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------A City Hall Management List

9/02 No TIF controls. Per Mark Funkhouser.

12/02 Extravagant Retirement Incentive Program

5/03 Accounts Receivable in Disarray- City not collecting money for tickets and other amounts City owed.

9/03 TIF Expenditures of over $7 million without documentation. Per MarkFunkhouser.

10/03 MAST Ambulance going broke.

11/03 New sales tax money for ATA being diverted to fund TIF after campaign stated all money to ATA.

12/03 Parks Board using general fund money for boulevard maintenance. Instead increasing property tax levy.

12/03 1999 1-cent sales tax for capital improvements generates $60 million only $36 million projected to be spent in the future. Other amount diverted to general fund.

12/03 Fire Inspection fees discontinued for apartment and businesses. Taxpayers are stuck paying for services that business should be paying for.

1/04 City Housing Program spent $5.7 million it did not have.

Seems more like a City Hall Miss management list-- Who is minding the store??

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Correction-- Editing errors resulted in statements which were not made by B.A.G . being placed in the last issue of the newsleter Here is the correct statements as I received it from them.

The Bi-State Advisory Group sent us its statement of existence.

" To provide information on the Bi-State proposal. What impact will the various ideas and proposals accomplish."

They learned that some Johnson County legislators were given Campaign contributions by the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce. While these contributions are not illegal, they do seem inadvisable, if for no other reason than to avoid any hint of conflict of interest. Johnson County elected officials should have the interests of Johnson County citizens foremost in their minds.These donations can give the impression that someone in Missouri is interested in getting help from some Kansas legislators on shipping Kansas tax money (AKA Bi-State II) to Missouri.

Question to Kansas legislators: "Is it worth a few dollars to have voters wonder if your vote can be influenced?"

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Beacon Hill redevelopment district has a couple of houses that should sell for $700,000.00. Not that they are worth that but that is how much susposedly has been spent on rehabing them. A story in the media should appear next week according to a message left on my phone machine from an anonymous source. $700,000 unbelievable!

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------On Kay's Watch--  We have lost $4 million aviation funds, $7 million TIF funds, $6 million in Housing funds, $5 million Union Station, $1 million 18th & Vine, and we keep hearing an even bigger sucking sound from the Parks Dept. How about our first class zoo we were promised the last time? More and more money down the drain and still nothing for the Neighborhoods.

 The reason people are leaving the Southland {10%} is because of poor service. When is city hall going to fix what is broken? Now there is a $200 ($300 by the time you get this newsletter) million Bond Issue. Who will come out on top? Who will transfer a little here and a little more there? One guess, that's it's TIF. More money taken away from the Maintainance funds. Downtown TIF's promised jobs and new businesses and more new tax money and actually all Downtown TIF'f have done is bred, they have made more TIF'S. {check out the map at city hall} 40 TIF'S in Kansas City, more than in Chicago!

 The success of the Crossroads improvements ended up causing another TIF district, can you believe that. Do the ART's people really believe the TIF boy's made the walk way from the Union Station for them. The TIF boy's had plans before you came. Only they don't include you. Your taxes are going up! They will tax you out of ownership of anything in the Crossroads district and then get abatements and TIF subsidies on property you used to own. Make sure you vote for the $200 Million Bond Issue that will help it happen faster and your pain will be over faster.   Larry Thrasher

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Hello to all from MAINCORE, we need your help! I have contacted most of you previously about the funding cut. If you have any questions, please call me at 753-3820 or e-mail me. As promised, I've attached background information as well as phone numbers and e-mail addresses for City Council members, the Mayor and City Manager. What you can do:

1. After reading the attached information, if you are willing and able, PLEASE contact all members of City Council, the Mayor and City Manager ASAP. (It's OK with me if you ask your friends and neighbors as well . . .) A one or two sentence message asking them to include MainCor in CDBG funding so that we can continue implementation of the Corridor Plan is all you need send. I have previously sent them background information. I would appreciate if you would cc or bcc me, so I can keep track of our support, but that is entirely up to you.

2. We need people to attend the hearing on Jan.21, 11 a.m., City Hall, 26th Floor. If you can come, you do not need to testify. We just want to have a group of supporters stand up at the appropriate time. I will get there early to get MainCor on the list to testify. Hopefully, we will have you out of the hearing in a reasonable amount of time. Let me know if you can be there. Again, THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT! We intend to make Main Street the very best it can be!---------------Clara Vaughn

Mayor Kay Barnes -----------513-3500 -----------------------mayor@kcmo.org

Wayne Cauthen --------------513-1408 ------------------------manager@kcmo.org

Deb Hermann ----------------513-1624 -------------------------terri_wolfe@kcmo.org

Bill Skaggs ------------------513-1619 --------------------------lisa_minardi@kcmo.org

Bonnie Sue Cooper-------- 513-1601 --------------------------karen_rhyne@kcmo.org

John Fairfield-------------- 513-1622 --------------------------amy_schneider@kcmo.org

Troy Nash------------------ 513-1605 -------------------------troy_nash@kcmo.org

Saundra McFadden-Weaver 513-1608 -----------------------joe_nero@kcmo.org

Jim Glover ------------------513-1616 -------------------------charles_monroe@kcmo.org

Jim Rowland ----------------513-1617 ------------------------dana_laiben@kcmo.org

Becky Nace -----------------513-1633 -------------------------tom_wyrsch@kcmo.org

Terry Riley------------------ 513-1629 ------------------------diane_charity@kcmo.org

Alvin Brooks--------------- 513-1602------------------------ ramonda_doakes@kcmo.org

Chuck Eddy ----------------513-1615-------------------------- charles_eddy@kcmo.org

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http://.www.alianzas.us/naag fostering awareness of issues that affect the Latino community.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Scheme #1 The gutting of our MAST ambulance system- On Jan.20th the public demanded that the Budget and Audit Committee pass out of committee the ordiance to provide $3.3 Million in additional funding for this year, but the committee tabled the ordinance that would allow Mast Ambulance to directly operate the ambulance system until June 2005. At the last minute the committee pulled out a prepared committee substitute for the ordinance which no one except the committee had seen before. More shenaginans. A simple phrase was added that Mast could operate the service until the city pulls the contract. So what type of stability does that provide. This is why the Neighborhood Action Group is claiming that Mr. Rowland is part of the reason for the almost constant turmoil that has existed for the last nine months.

IF you want this situation handled with fairness you must attend the Budget and Finance Committee meeting at 1:30 on the 10th Floor of City Hall on the 27th of January. On Jan. 20th one of the critisms of NAG was that we sent out an email which said that Mr. Rowland and Kay Barnes were responsible for this continuing turmoil. Amazingly the reason given for tabeling the second ordinance was because Mr Rowland promised the Mayor (Kay Barnes) that she could be present and she is out of town. So who is responsible for the tabling of this ordinance for another week ?? So what does NAG want --An independent ambulance service, NOT one subjugated to the fire department.

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"Now you see it, Now you don't, it's either smoke and mirrors, a grifters shell game or just plain stealing" a comment about the use of magic during the Pendergast days made by W.K.Peters and he was there!

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NAG LETTER Vol. 3 # 3

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ISSUES COVERED IN THIS EDITION

Sports Audit-

This past week-

$300 Million Christmas Tree--

Lost Money -

If you re trying to keep up with the projects and the promises--

Call them or email them --

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Sports Audit- This issue we sugest that you take a quick look at the Sports Audit. The complete audit is located at http://www.auditor.state.mo.us when you get on McCaskil's page look on left, click to audit report, when it comes up click on 2003 and look for the audit on 7-25-2003 that is the yellow sheet which is an overview. At the bottom of the yellow page is a link to the complete audit.

Our attachment is the first two pages reprinted for you with permission from the auditors office, which included a verbal "Good Luck"!!

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------This past week we have had contact with quite a few people who all share the same conclusion -- dastardly plans are afoot. The Neighborhood Action Group has been inundated with email and phone messages even from some of our former opposition. The next few weeks will be very hectic for us trying to get out as much information as possible so that some of you can help to off set the intended results that the Mayor's office is anticipating. Remember the only reason that democratic processes can be lost is when good people do nothing. So good people please bare with us as we try to explain what has been happening in private meetings. Some people are putting their jobs on the line, some are commiting political sucide, and a lot of people have had the wool removed from their eyes just in time to foil the schemes.

So what do MAST ambulance, Housing losing $ 5.8Million, $300 Million Bond issue have in common?

A lack of public disclouser, a lack of providing necessary information even to those councilmembers working on the problems in a timely manner, and perhaps as Dennis O'Neill said at the Budget and Audit meeting on Tues. and Yael Abouhalkah refered to in his column on Thursday--things are talked about behind closed doors.

The drawing in the Star said it all Do Not Disturb those in the smoke filled back room.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------$300 Million Christmas Tree of giveaways must be recognized as just phoney promises. If you think that the $300 Million Bond Issue means that your street with out curbs or sidewalks will be fixed, your gravel street will be paved, your septic tank will be replaced with a sewer, you better think again --it is the projects like the one reported in the Advocate this week that are in line first. Roundabouts ie traffic circles like the one on Ward Parkway, four of them at 87th Street. Even that may not be funded if great minds downtown decide to "channel" the money to another project.

The $300 Million Bond Issue is an "authorization" only. There will be another resolution, promised to appear this week which will list the projects that are susposed to be covered by the bonds. Don't hold your breath --nothing will be added tothe ballot language in the way of a time line and the $300Million is to be spread over eight years. So when new councilpersons and a new Mayor come in, will they have to do what this council suggests? NO.

Kay Barnes had the choice of leaving a Legacy that would be spoken of in endearing terms for years to come--instead she decided to build downtown by bleeding the neighborhoods, move the control of housing to the EDC's new Housing CDC, and allow Mast Ambulance to be emasculated.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Lost Money will be found where it has been hidden. Actually most of the money that is susposed to be missing is safe and will be "discovered" when it gets time to fund some downtown project or downtown club!

Handouts given to those who attended the work session right before the Neighborhood Devlopment and Housing Committee Meeting on 21st included a letter from H.U.D. and figures that show that a lot of the money hasn't been spent yet, it is still available. It is pitiful that the City Manager's Office has drug their feet on delivery of documents and a resolution had to be passed to do an audit. which has taken two weeks to get started. Why so slow, well if the audit is held up until after the budget is passed then--- draw your own conclusions.

Now what about the rumor that the Downtown Council needs three years of funding in order to qualify for receiving Federal funding. Then they can get their own money to do within the downtown what they want and they don't have to get city approval every step of the way. But did you know that if they get Federal money that the amount they get will be subtracted from the entire amount that the City of Kansas Ciy could qualify for. So who would help such a group get some funds to start this game? How about $5 Million to start.

Call the city councilpersons and the Mayor and tell them that you want all of the information out, you want to see the audit of the City Managers Office, you want the budget to reflect what is found in that audit. You might also go to the work session Wed. at 10:00. You will get a chance to see the sloppy way that the testimony is presented to the two members of the committee that attend the committee work session. You will definitely acquire new respect for Councilpersons Glover and Hermann. Their patience is amazing. So where are Nash and Weaver?

Financial integrity in the housing program is what Glover and Hermann are fighting for. Help them!! Ask the following questions

Where are the 35 Contracts that represent the 5 Million shortfall?

Is the City Managers office trying to keep the Finance Dept. quiet?

Is the City Managers office interfering with the Finance Dept.?

Why isn't transparency an automatic feature when reports are requested?

Was the scope of the audit set to avoid finding the money?

Is this an Off Balance Sheet shell game?

How diligently are collectable revenues being pursued?

and the really big question WHY IS THIS OBFUSCATION GOING ON??

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------If you re trying to keep up with the projects and the promises that are for new construction only , not rebuilding infastructure, lots of luck. They are now appearing in the press sort of like public relation announcements in an attempt to get Neighborhoods to vote the $300 Million for infastructure. Something for North something for south trying to buy enough votes from each area of the city to pass the Bond Issue.

Community Centers instead of streets, a Swimming Pool up North of the river instead of water diversion, Traffic Circles instead of sewers, and of course a note here and there about the PIAC projects ---remember the $35 Million Dollar Bond Issue? --same game plan. They got it to pass on the second vote. NAG told the public before both votes that the money would go downtown.

Unless it is part of the ballot language they do not have to do anything that is promised. Jim Glover testified at a committee meeting that he had seen the street funds moved to other projects and it was one of his fears this time on the Bond Elections.

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Call them or email them --Let them know that too much is going on at City Hall behind closed doors!!

Mayor Kay Barnes------------------ 513-3500 -------------------mayor@kcmo.org

Wayne Cauthen---------------------- 513-1408 --------------------manager@kcmo.org

Deb Hermann ------------------------513-1624 --------------------terri_wolfe@kcmo.org

Bill Skaggs ---------------------------513-1619 --------------------lisa_minardi@kcmo.org

Bonnie Sue Cooper----------------- 513-1601 ---------------------karen_rhyne@kcmo.org

John Fairfield------------------------ 513-1622 ----------------------amy_schneider@kcmo.org

Troy Nash---------------------------- 513-1605 ---------------------troy_nash@kcmo.org

Saundra McFadden-Weaver --------513-1608 ---------------------joe_nero@kcmo.org

Jim Glover ---------------------------513-1616 ----------------------charles_monroe@kcmo.org

Jim Rowland ------------------------513-1617 -----------------------dana_laiben@kcmo.org

Becky Nace -------------------------513-1633 -----------------------tom_wyrsch@kcmo.org

Terry Riley -------------------------513-1629 ------------------------diane_charity@kcmo.org

Alvin Brooks-----------------------513-1602---------------------- ramonda_doakes@kcmo.org

Chuck Eddy -----------------------513-1615 -----------------------charles_eddy@kcmo.org

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"Its an arena, Hey Fool, It's an arena, there's no fixing anything, this is the money for the arena!"- --- when discussing the $300 Milion Dollar Bond Issue on April's Ballot--W.K. Peters

"Is there any other public testimoney, - Mr. O'Neill do you have any conspiracy theories to share with us today" Councilman Rowland acting as chairman of the Budget and Audit Committee noticed Dennis O'Neill sitting in the audience.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------NAG LETTER Vol. 3 # 4

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ISSUES COVERED IN THIS EDITION

Sports Audit-

Audit Questions

This past several weeks-

Lost Money -

More stories in the news

Vicki Walker sends--

ATA Nonsense

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Sports Audit- So the audit gives us a good idea of how the whole deal is looked at.What really disturbes NAG is the arrogance that is between the lines. After reading the audit you should read the memorandums that were signed by Kathryn Shields. Be very precise at studying them and you will find things like the giving away of the naming rights. Remember how much Verizon paid for the naming rights at Sandstone. If we would simply reign in the Sports Costs and the TIF costs this city would have money in the bank, not always looking for ways to cut basic services. http://www.auditor.state.mo.us

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Audit Questions

The current leases were signed in 1991 and a master plan was agreed to but with no price tag or cap on the costs to the Jackson County Sports Complex Authority.

In 1994 projected costs of the master plan improvements were $56million.

As of Dec.31, 2002 $61 million has been spent. that is 5 million more!!

While 44 per cent of the master plan has not been completed.

Also there is an estimated shortfall of revenue between $35 million to $47 million. This information is from an audit by State Auditor of Missouri; Claire McCaskill released on July 25,2003.

1. What are the master plan projects not yet completed and there estimated cost?

2. In the audit on page 19 what are the $257,958 in 2001 and $207,276 in 2002; lease negotiations expenses actually for?

3. In 2002 the Royals received $2,794,173 in management fees and utility cost reimbursement. While only paying $450,000 in rent and $666,331 in percentage rent, for a total of $1,096,331.

So, it seems that the taxpayers are actually paying the Royals to be tenants, besides the yearly payments from the city, county, and state!

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This past several weeks-the city council passed the resolutions necessary to allow Mast Ambulance to define it's own destiny. But just like the story of Little Red Riding Hood the big bad wolf, there are cronnies at city hall waiting for a chance to pounce. Several of you NAG Newsletter readers need to step forward and start watching what is going on with this situation and keep the rest of us advised. Mast needs to continue to function under a Medical Model and we need to remember that in Kansas City we want three individual independent services, Police, Fire, and Ambulance.

How many of you watched Channel 2 and saw how the Budget and Audit Committee treated citizens who came down to give testimony? One of the citizens who showed up to talk about another subject was disgusted at the rudeness and got up to tell the Councilmen about their behavior. That citizens name is Mr K.B. Winterowd. He is a gentleman, a real man who stands up for his fellow citizens.

Interestingly there was a rather revealing conversation between Rowland and Nash. Mr. Nash asked the lawyer present if there was any reason why the "Oversight Committee" should have private meetings. The lawyer said it was the committee decision. Mr. Nash then suggested that they be open to citizens. Rowland did not like that idea. Remember Jim Rowland was also in favor of taking away some of the publics petition rights.

If you are interested in the way that real leaders chair a committee you might sit in on Wed. 11:00 with Neighborhood Development and Housing Committee chaired by Deb Hermann or Wed. at 9:00 for Finance chaired by Councilman Eddy.

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Lost Money - A little of the story was told in the Pitch a couple of weeks ago and their critism of the Kansas City Star on this subject is well founded. Perhaps there is just to much for the Star to cover, they dropped the ball on this one --unless they are working on a larger more definitive story --which just might be the case. The City Manager is still not cooperating like he should with the Neighborhood Development and Housing Committee. Call the Mayor and tell her that political theatrics are not needed at city hall. The committee meeting is at 11:00 A.M. tomorrow--check it out, in person or on T.V.

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More stories in the news on the use that the $300 Million Dollars will be put to. Is everyone in Kansas City going to get something "NEW" and the old infastructure will just keep crumbling? So far there is the swimming pool, the community center, the 87th street roundabouts, etc. etc. The Bond Proposal has been held for a week, actually the Mayor couldn't fine the votes to get it out.

Why is there a n "Oversight" committee appointed by the Mayor? other bond issues get out with out special people to "guide" it.

Call your councilperson and tell them that it should go on the August ballot when everyone knows what it is all about.

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Vicki Walker sends out an interesting email letter. Here are a few things that you might want to call and congratulate her on making people aware of.

The legislature passed a bill out of the House today that will give corporations a road map to avoid paying Missouri taxes. Now,I dont' know about you,but I know small business owners pay their fair share,and so should large corporations. This bill allows them to set up dummy corporations in Delware or Nevada - two states that have no corporate taxes - and avoid paying their share.

I've filed a bill that will give ALL the money we voted on for the recent ATA tax to the ATA! Remember, because of a state law, part of the sales tax must go to developers in TIF districts.! This is absurd. I have no problem with certain TIFs. I think they are a good tool, but they have been misused in this city. So I filed this bill. I've also filed a statewide bill to address the problem on a statewide basis.

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ATA Nonsense

The Kansas City Business Journal(Jan.26,2004 issue) is falling for the Mayor's spin on the recent KCATA tax increase.  The campaign was misleading about were all the  money was going to be allocated.  The Mayor, Ed Ford and Ken Bacchus repeatedly said that all the money was going to the ATA to keep the busses rolling and Kansas City working.  The Mayor is desperate to continue to find money for TIF funding needs.  The public needs to call the Mayor and ask why TIF expenditures are the fastest growing expenditure.

Sincerely,

Terrence Nash

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The Greater Downtown Development Authority met on Monday, February 9th, at 4 p.m. in the EDC Board Room, One Petticoat Lane. The agenda for the meeting was as follows:

- Consideration and approval of minutes

- Financial Report

- Kansas City LIVE! Update

- DESA Update

- Proposed Parking Garage Update

- Committee and Project Updates

- Public Improvements

- Active Projects

- Parking Authority

- Legislation and Finance

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Who said last week - "We didn't count on the Council people not believing us!"

"Do not separate the life you live,from the words you speak" Sen.Paul Wellstone

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NAG LETTER Vol. 3 # 5

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ISSUES COVERED IN THIS EDITION

Naming Rights--

KCATA Tax

Lost Money - NO--

Thanks to NAG for showing up at the County meeting---

AS SEEN IN THE STAR--

Will someone please tell me under what law--

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------------Be sure and attend the Citizens Advisory Commission on Combat----------------

Monday March 1st 9:00A.M. 2nd Floor Downtown Jackson County Court House

--Remember what the KC Star said on 2-25-04 --"The current panel, handpicked by Shields, will have little credibility if it decides to plow ahead. It is inappropriate for a public official to control a commission that would be expected to scrutinize her actions.

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Naming Rights--   Once again, Jackson County is betraying the public trust. If Jackson County official, Shields, gives away the naming rights to the stadiums to the team owners, it is just one more step in an ongoing effort in the county's  "Support Your Local Billionaire" program.     Those naming rights belong to the people and giving them away is the same as stealing money from the treasury and giving it away. I am bothered that the people aren't on the courthouse steps with pitchforks and flaming torches, demanding that this giveaway of public assets be stopped. Even more, I am appalled that the KC media doesn't seem to care either.    

I can understand public apathy in the sense that people work all day and deal with the personal problems of trying to make a living.

I can understand it, too if they are just plain tired of beating their heads against the wall by trying to make public officials do the job they were elected to do.    

I cannot, however, understand when avowed public watchdogs, as the media is (or should be), sit by and watch a miscarriage of justice continue unquestioned.     Sandstone, and stadiums across the country, raised millions of dollars selling naming rights. Why is Kansas City different. When the Sports Authority is $47 million (or so Missouri Auditor Claire McCaskill says) behind on agreed to maintenance, why are officials determined to give away money?     I can't think of an answer to my questions, can you?  

go to: http://espn.go.com/sportsbusiness/s/stadiumnames.html The money paid for naming rights is mind boggling. And it is all paid per year. Wayne Flaherty

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KCATA Tax -The bill Rep.Vicki Walker and Rep. Bob Johnson filed at the State Legislature that will fix the ATA tax was heard in committee this week and received well. It to fix the snafu that the city council did by passing the KCATA tax without the people knowing that $1.5 million would go back to TIF developers! Honesty in government is vital if we want people to believe what we say and do! Remember that Bacchus and Ford the cochairs of that ballot measure

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Lost Money - NO it's not lost - Shields admitted that she has spent millions of surplus anti-drug tax money. Jackson Couny Anex in Independence was a hard place to find a parking place on Mon. There was one group with signs that said Resign Shields. There was a lot of talk about budgets and it appears that the Jackson County Legislators have become lax in overseeing the dispersal of funds. There was talk of criminal proscution and supoenas!

The Neighborhood Action Group made a simple request--a full scope audit from one of the top five national audit firms going back at least six years. The audit must be removed from the influence of everyone working for or connected to Jackson County.

Nine members attended with signs sayng AUDIT NOW.

Additional comments made on NAG's behalf included:

Take a close look at the percentage of Combat funds to be allowed to stay in a reserve fund.

The present amount kept in reserve is 50%, which is equivalent to half of the amount of yearly revenue,in dollars that's $10 plus million dollars, which is exorbitant. Somewhere around 5 to 7% is sufficent.

The Commission suggested by Shields to study the structure and make suggestions for changes to Combat should be tabled for the time being. Several of the people suggested for this duty have interesting connections. It's a fox watching the hen house scenerio.

 

The legislators appeared to have been left partially in the dark on some of the material presented we thus entered a criticism that they as the electd officials with the final say, need to step up to the plate and straighten out this funding situation for now and the future.

Reliable sources say that pressure is being placed on members of the legislature to limit the scope of the audit so that some things will fail to be seen, thus letting Shields off the hook.

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Thanks to NAG for showing up at the County meeting. As I work during the daytime, I was not able to attend. Our Legislator, Scott Burnett is a Shields supporter in a big way. His unassuming niceness may cloud some people's resolve to ask the tough questions.

The county seems to have NO accountability because we as residents do not follow closely. Thus, MILLIONS of our dollars are squandered.

Let's keep asking the relevant questions, such as what type of government would keep back 50% of it's yearly budget to use as a discretionary fund?

Where in the COMBAT legislation passed by the voters does it state that Shields has the right to allocate funds without legislature approval?

AND last as far as the Star is concerned, our daily paper has consistently supported her administration. To say that the Star reporter fabricated a quote is classic Shields.

Her ambition to be Mayor is real. Let's make it unrealistic.

As far as this being a political witch hunt, hey, man, hand me my broom.

Bridget White

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AS SEEN IN THE STAR

"I have yet to see the financial discipline that it will take for us to do what we say we're going to do." said Rowland, when speaking about the $250,000,000.00 Million Bond Issue. The debt service would pose an extra burden he noted that issuing the bonds will affect the budget for the next thirty years.

"The debt service would be payed for by the city's deferred maintenance fund" Kansas City Star said reporting on conversations with Councilperson Becky Nace when speaking about the upcoming Bond Issue.

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Will someone please tell me under what law does the Board of Parks and Recreation Commissioners believe that they have the authority to lease park land to to any person, firm or corporation for any purpose?

There are several sections of the City of Kansas City, Missouri Charter that concern the building on, leasing and selling of park land.

In summary:

The board of parks and recreation commissioners shall have the powers and perform the duties provided by the Charter. Sec 2-331.

The Charter states that:

The lands obtained under the provisions of this charter for park, parkway or boulevard purposes shall remain forever parks, parkways and boulevards for the use of all the inhabitants of the city. Sec 58.

"No structure shall be erected or maintained in any such place [park, parkway or public ground under the control of the said board [board of park commissioners]] except such as may be erected by the board for park uses. . . except such public memorials, museums, art galleries and other public buildings as are authorized by this charter." Sec. 66

No part of any park under supervision or control of park board shall be leased to any person, firm or corporation for any purpose." Sec 66 Annotation.

Land, building or parts of any park may only be leased for park and recreation purposes. Sec. 67 (Section concerns concessions.)

The city may only sell land and buildings that it no longer needs for public use. Sec. 463.

Dona

The full text of the sections follow.

Sec. 2-331.  Powers and duties of board of parks and recreation commissioners.

The parks and recreation department shall be under the control and management of the board of parks and recreation commissioners. The board of parks and recreation commissioners shall have the powers and perform the duties provided by the Charter.

Sec. 58. Lands selected to remain forever for parks and boulevards.

The lands which have heretofore and which hereafter may be selected and obtained under the provisions of this charter for park, parkway or boulevard purposes shall remain forever parks, parkways and boulevards for the use of all the inhabitants of the city; provided however, that Holmes Square, having an area of 2.792 acres, located between 18th and 19th Streets, Cherry and Holmes Streets, may be sold, if the sale is approved by the unanimous vote of the board of park commissioners; and provided further, that the portion of Pershing Road, having an area of 1.42 acres, lying between Broadway and West Pennway, may be vacated by the city council, with the unanimous approval of the board of park commissioners. (Amend. 11-8-60)

Sec. 66. Structures within parks.

Neither the council nor the board of park commissioners shall have authority, except as in this charter otherwise provided, to permit any person, association, firm or corporation to build or maintain any structure within any park, parkway or public ground under the control of the said board. No structure shall be erected or maintained in any such place except such as may be erected by the board for park uses, and such statues, monuments and works of art as may be approved by the art commission and erected by or under authority of the board, and except such public memorials, museums, art galleries and other public buildings as are authorized by this charter.

Annotation-- Modern day public library is within category of public buildings which may be erected and maintained in park, parkway or on public grounds under control of city park board pursuant to city charter provision prohibiting erection and maintenance of any structure within any park, parkway or public ground except such as may be erected by board for park purposes and such public memorials, museums, art galleries or other public buildings as authorized by charter. School Dist. of Kansas City v. Kansas City, 382 S.W.2d 688, holding also that school district is political subdivision devoted to public education, and is not "person, firm or corporation" within city charter provision that no part of any park under supervision or control of park board shall be leased to any person, firm or corporation for any purpose.

Sec. 67. Use of parks .

The board may lease any land, building or parts thereof in any park for any park and recreation purposes to any person undertaking to serve such purpose, in the manner provided by this charter, and may grant concessions in a park for the sale of refreshments to the public using such park and for other park purposes, upon such terms and under such regulations as the board may prescribe; provided however, that the sale of spirituous, vinous or malt liquors or other intoxicating beverages shall only be permitted within any park , parkway or public ground under the control and management of the board or at special permitted events by civic, religious, school, service, fraternal, patriotic, political or professional clubs or organizations, provided they have secured all other required permits, or at other locations as prescribed by the board. No concession shall be for a longer term than five (5) years. No concession shall be granted for any purpose not within the objects for which such parks , squares and grounds or buildings are held by the city; and in every such lease or concession the board shall reserve the right to enter at all times into and upon the premises so demised, and any breach of any such lease, in violation of the provisions of this section, shall be sufficient ground for the termination of such lease at the option of the board.

All moneys derived from any leases or concessions or from the sale of the products obtained from any park , or of any personal property in use by, or belonging to said parks and recreation department, shall be paid into the treasury of the city, and be credited to the parks and recreation department funds designated by the board and be used and expended by the board for park purposes, and none other. (Ord. No. 56904, 9-6-84, eff. 11-6-84; Ord. No. 64877, 11-30-89, eff. 2-6-90)

Editor's note: Section 67 was ratified by the voters on Nov. 6, 1984. Ord. No. 64877 was ratified at an election held Feb. 6, 1990.

Annotations--Under its charter powers city can provide rules for management and government of parks and secure by contract someone to serve refreshments therein for service of public; control of city is discretionary one and matter of local concern, park being held and owned by city, not in its political or governmental capacity, but in quasi-private capacity, in which municipal authorities act for exclusive benefit of corporation whose interests they represent: State v. Schweickardt, 109 Mo. 496, 19 S.W. 47.

Municipalities are liable for negligence in maintaining public parks :Bagby v. Kansas City, 338 Mo. 771, 92 S.W.2d 142.

City liable in damages for injuries in pavilion in park :Kuenzel v. St. Louis, 278 Mo. 277, 212 S.W. 876.

City liable for drowning in pool on park property. See Capp v. St. Louis, 251 Mo. 345, 158 S.W. 616, 46 L.R.A., N.S., 731, Ann. Cas. 1915C, 245; Nation v. St. Joseph (Mo. App.), 5 S.W.2d 1106.

City liable for injury from pony rented out by department: Longwell v. Kansas City, 199 Mo. App. 480, 203 S.W. 657.

City's leasing of land and dwellings acquired for extension of park , until plans should be formulated and necessary funds procured, held not illegal: Heger v. St. Louis, 323 Mo. 1031, 20 S.W.2d 665.

Sec. 463.  Title to city property inalienable.

 

The title of the city to and in its waterfront, wharf property, land under water, public landings, wharves, docks, highways, parkways, boulevards, streets, lanes, alleys, parks, public grounds and public places is hereby declared to be inalienable; provided, that nothing herein contained shall prevent the city from vacating any street or highway, or part thereof, in the manner provided for in this charter, nor from disposing of any building or parcel of land which the city may lawfully sell, no longer needed for public use; provided further, that such disposition shall be made on open and public competition and pursuant to ordinance passed by the affirmative vote of at least nine (9) members of the council. (Amend. 6-23-70)

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Support Your Local Billionaire  He needs your Bi-State money

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Those interested in helping to defeat the Liberty Memorial and the Zoo Bond

Issues please send an email to bonds@KCNag.com

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 NAG LETTER Vol. 3 # 6

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ISSUES COVERED IN THIS EDITION :

Jim Rowland's Budget &Audit Committee

Convention Tourism Budget

Here's how to do it-

$250,000,000.00 Bond Issue

From the Lee's Summit Post-Tribune

IMPROVEMENTS NOW ?

Bi-State is not a cross state cooperation!

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Jim Rowland's Budget &Audit Committee --has been a topic of conversation in certain offices lately. The tenor of his oversight has been generally one of ridicule, interruptions, and overall a heavyhanded antagonistic manner towards public testimony. The general public perception from Channel 2's coverage of the committee meetings at city hall have generated comments such as "a spoiled little boy", "listens only to his own voice", "needs to deal with his childhood trauma" and "this guy is out of it"

But the major voice was heard on Channel 9 when Mahoney reported on Mr. Rowlands's threat to have a citizen removed by security because Mr. Rowland didn't like the way events were described by the person giving testimony. Does this mean that if the information given in testimony is contray to the belief of the chairman that the right to give public testimony is cancelled?

The Budget and Audit Committee video tapes need to be looked at with one thing in mind. Does the process of government need ridicule, interruptions, and snide comments? Does the average individual need to sacrifice their dignity in order to be heard at City Hall.

When the Mayor removed Jim Rowland from a committee a few years ago several of us tried to get him re instated. What fools we were. Since then he has argued for restrictions on the Petition Process which was a way to silence the voices of the public and now he is using his position on a committee to bully the public into silence.

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Convention Tourism Budget- The Convention & Tourism budget is a dedicated tax.  The current and previous budgets have a deficit.  The deficit is made up of an allocation of $2 million from the general fund.  The Jackson County Sports Authority is receiving a $2 million subsidy from this fund.   In other words we pass $2 million from the General Fund through Convention & Tourism to the Sports Authority!! Is Lee's Summit, Blue Springs, Independence, Raytown or any other city writing a check to the Jackson County Sports Authority?  Why should Kansas City taxpayers be the only city to subsidize the stadiums?  Lets fix the streets first not the stadiums!

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Here's how to do it- The Neighborhood Action Group suggests that a format like the one presented below be used to determine what are the balances in each of the programs in the COMBAT Tax.This will show which have a surplus and which do not.

 

                        Police    Prosecution       DARE       Treatment Programs

 

allocation        40% 20% 20% 20%

Beginning balance

1/1/95       800,000 400,000     400,000 400,000

resolution

11111 KCPD (650,000)

11112 Prosecutor (100,000)

 

balance 1/31/95      150,000 300,000 400,000      400,000

 

sales tax remittance

from state

for 10/1/94 to 12/31/94 1,200,000 600,000     600,000 600,000

 

11140 Independence Police (550,000)

grant received for DARE 200,000

11152 DARE (300,000)

 

balance 2/28/95       800,000 900,000 900,000   1,000,000

This shows a monthly reconcilation

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$250,000,000.00 Bond Issue --is on it's way unless you get your neighbors out to vote it down. The ballot language by law must contain the following sentence:

"The authorization of the bonds will authorize the City to maintain tangible property tax rates sufficent to pay the interest and the principal on the bonds until fully paid."

What that means is if something happens and the economy falters, YOUR TAXES WILL BE RAISED by law to pay for these bonds. So the NO Tax Increase they promise, should be stated as, "No Immediate Tax Increase". They can not guarantee the next twenty years. Couldn't they be a little bit more honest. It seems that they think that all they have to tell the people is that there is no tax increase and the public will vote for it.

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From the Lee's Summit Post-Tribune)  by Bob Gough ----On Bi-state II. 

Are you concerned about your taxes?  A recent (11/03) „agreement‰ between the County Sports Authority and the billionaire team owners regarding our Jackson County stadiums will cost your family big dollars.  The „agreement‰ should be of interest to all families in the Kansas City metro area.

In addition to the „agreement‰, Mayor Messerli, Mayor Barnes, and other mayors of Kansas City metro cities just attended a private meeting to plan a campaign strategy for the one billion dollar Bi-state II tax. 

The proposed 25-year Bi-state II tax hands over $354 million of our money to  enhance the sports viewing experience for stadium visitors.  In order to make this tax appealing to the folks who don‚t visit the stadiums, Bi-state II will require another $354 million of our money to be handed over to some unnamed and undefined „Culture Commission.‰  This reminds me of the Union Station debacle.  Actually, Union Station also wants another turn at your wallet in Bi-state II.  They have an insatiable appetite for your money.

Another $300 million recently has been added for interest and vague „construction costs‰ for a total Bi-state II tax of over one billion dollars.

One billion dollars!  Assuming that the population of the metro area is two million, the cost for each person for the one billion dollar tax is $500 per man, woman, and child.  For a family of four, the Bi-state sales tax will cost $2,000.

For folks in Lee‚s Summit , the sports „agreement‰ calls for a continuation of the Jackson County ballpark subsidy of $3.5 million per year or an additional $350 for a family of four in Lee‚s Summit for the life of the agreement.  That‚s a total of $2,350 for every family in Lee‚s Summit! 

The billionaire team owners say that they need fancier ballparks to attract more attendance and make our ball players feel good.  I believe that the team owners want upgraded stadiums as bargaining chips for their negotiations with other cities.  

The billionaire team owners, the chambers of commerce, our mayors, newspaper editorial writers, and artsy folks tell us that we will live in a second-class city if we don‚t hand them one billion dollars.   I disagree with this threat.

The best way to keep the teams in Kansas City is for the owners to have their own money invested in the Kansas City stadiums.  Then, if the owners move away, they have lost their own money.  They want our money in Kansas City stadiums, not theirs.

Taking a billion dollars out of the pockets of Kansas City metropolitan area residents and giving it to the team owners and a culture commission will not improve our quality of life.  The best way to improve the culture for our families is to let each family make their own decisions about their own culture.  Some like tractor pulls, some like opera, some like sports, and some like fishing on the lake.  We already have numerous venues for these activities.  

Again, the total cost to your family in Lee‚s Summit is $2,350 over the life of the Bi-state II tax. I propose that Bi-state II tax be shelved.

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IMPROVEMENTS NOW ? is what we all want, but we do not want a bond authorization.

With a bond authorization you just get to say spend money, you do not get to say how it will be spent.

With a bond issue the amount and the specific projects are spelled out.

Kansas City has done bond issues hundreds of times. So why is it different this time.

Obviously certain financial institutions want to circumvent the usual way of doing bond elections. What we usually get to say with our vote is what the money will be spent on--this time we do not get any say.

Who gets the say? Five unnamed men will get to make decisions, P.I.A.C. will make suggestions on the merits of different projects, someone will pick the projects that are suggested to PIAC, and the city council will vote on the suggestions.

So if you trust all of these different people, some of whom have not been appointed yet, some of who have not been elected yet, some of those in office now will be gone, some people who are behind the scenes must also be trusted, without knowing who they are.

If you don't trust all of these people thenvote NO. Your first grade child will be out of high school and probably have a kid in first grade before this is all over.

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Bi-State is not a cross state cooperation! It is local Missouri politicians targeting Johnson County taxpayers!

Exerpts taken from the web site http://www.Bi-State.info

The Kansas View of the Bi-State proposal

Dear Editor,

Johnson County leaders should do what they were elected to do, protect their taxpayers from Bi-State. Cattle are led to slaughter by a cow who appears to be part of the herd. It is this "Judas Cow" that calmly leads the rest of the group to their fate in the slaughter house. Any Johnson County leader not fighting for Johnson County taxpayers is a "Judas Cow".

According to Missouri Auditor, Claire McCaskill, the Jackson County Sports Complex Authority has been planning for over a year to make up a $47 million shortfall in stadium maintenance and improvement projects with Bi-State funds! That clearly shows Missouri regards Bi-State as just a slush fund for their personal use!

All we get is to buy a ticket and pay 20 bucks to park.

I say to Johnson County leaders, "Let's use our $440 million share of Bi-State right here in Johnson County, and let Missouri pay its own bills."

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W.K.Peters said "Liberty Memorial has $18,000,000.00 in the bank and they are asking for $20,000,000.00 more money? They have some kind of sickness, right above their eyebrows.

Overheard from a reporter covering City Hall, "I'll be glad to get back to reporting murders, robberys, and assualts on the crime beat. You meet a much nicer class of pepole."

http://espn.go.com/sportsbusiness/s/stadiumnames.html The money paid for naming rights is mind boggling. Katheryn Shields wants to give ours away for nothing!

"Now it's the Mafia that is somehow or other at fault in the Jackson County money hiding deals." heard in the elevator at city hall.

 

NAG Letter from The Neighborhood Action Group Vol.3 #7

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In This Issue:

Stop the Abuse

Cost of Playing Games-

Transformed

APRIL 6th--This is not a bond issue it is an authorization.

Watch Out Penn Valley

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Stop the Abuse

Speaking of a council members threats to throw out a person in the audience, last spring I witnessed a councilman / person?  attack a citizen and is/was totally arrogant and rude.  I guess the people don't matter in kcmo, just the elite.  Will we ever get the good people to run for office or is it to odorious and cruel a process for them?   RL Painter

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Cost of Playing Games

In 1990, the Sports Authority entered into agreements with the billionaire team owners. In addition to maintenance,the Authority was to make regularimprovements to keep the stadiums "state of the art". It was estimated that the total cost to meet this contractual obligation through 2007, would be $56 million. After spending $61 million the authority finds itself with a $47 million shortfall in money needed to pay these costs. These costs are shared by the Jackson County, Kansas City, Missouri, and the State of Missouri. Jackson County pays $3.5 million, Kansas City $2 million, and Missouri $3 million for a total of $8.5 million per year. In 2002, Jackson County issued bonds to replace the seats in Arrowhead. Those bonds now cost $3.5 million per year to pay off. That brings the total Stadium maintenance and improvement costs to $12 million per year. Jackson County Financial Advisor, Jack Holland estimates the current yearly shortfall at $6 million per year. That brings the total to $18 million per year.

In Bi-State terms, it means $6 million per year (15%) of the projected $40 million per year tax, will go to pay Missouri politician's existing stadium contracts.  Assuming Johnson County is paying 44% of the Bi-State tax, it means Johnson County will pay $2.6 million per year to prop up an existing Jackson County contract. This is a bad precedent. Once the hog has been to the trough, he will return for more. From the web site www.Bi-State.Info

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Transformed

One of the media points of light in Kansas City is eKC. They are not publishing in print form anymore. They are now on the internet. Bruce might not have agreed with some NAG positions but he always listened and even printed some of our concerns. Take a look at http://www.kcactive.com A quote from Bruce Rodgers "we invite comments, essays, etc. from area activists (including yourself) and politicians but please query first to Bruce Rodgers, email publisher_editEKC@kcactive.com.

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APRIL 6th--This is not a bond issue it is an authorization.

You are asked to authorize $250,000,000.00 in bonds being issued over the next eight years.

You are being asked to place your trust in :

a five person board that you do not know --who have not been appointed yet!

a city council and mayor who have not been elected yet!!

various people who will recommend projects to PIAC

You are being asked to place your trust in the present

City Leadership who have admitted in public meetings that $250,000,000.00 is in the bank waiting to be spent on projects already promised, planned, and funded. and that the most that can be spent this year is $63Million which means that we have four years of money for infastructure in the bank and the leadership can't get the money spent. They can't get the projects constructed any faster than that.

You are being asked to place your trust in the present

City Leadership who have a spotty record of protecting the public trust.

You are being asked to place your trust in the present

City leadership that have a poor record of honesty in past elections

In past elections this

City Leadership tried to turn over 4000 acres of commercial property to developers.

In past elections this

City leadership tried to acquire more personal power through changing the City Charter of Kansas City.

In past elections this

City leadership have tried to restrict our petition rights to the point of uselessness

In past elections this

City leadership's had co-chairman of the KCATA Bus tax who lied at neighborhood meetings and even at one of the Mayor's press conferences about the removal of TIF funds.

Now that Vicki Walker has intoduced a bill at Jeff City to stop th TIF from being taken out of the KCATA tax, guess who is lobbing to stop the passage of this bill. You are correct our city leadership!!

So these people ie. city leadership, that you are asked to trust, how do they try to fix this honesty problem?

City leadership says they have "fixed" the Kcata TIF debacle of the last election by transfering 2 million from the Use Tax to KCATA fund . They are taking money from the General Fund to fix KCATA. Robbing Peter to Pay Paul

With that type of thinking what will they do if we give them $250,000,000.00

The Neighborhood Action group recommends a NO Vote on Question #1

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Watch Out Penn Valley - Dona Boley

In the 100 year existence of our world famous parks and boulevard system we have have never had a mayor who wanted to give our historic park land away to a developer for housing. Now we do. Mayor Kay Barnes supports giving away most of Penn Valley Park along Broadway to DST to develop $220,000 per unit condominium-type housing. DST's proposal is proudly included on her list of River-Crown-Plaza Projects. In addition Mayor Barnes personally pitched the condominium development to the Federal Reserve. Wasn't it nice of the Mayor to exclude the citizens, who own this land, in the decision to do this project and give the land away to developers? And aren't we luck to have such enlightened civic leadership which is incapable of recognizing our existing amenities. Maybe it is time to ask Clay back to protect our parks from such mindless, insensitive elected leadership and greedy developers.

 

Watch out Loose Park. Now that the Mayor has moved north of the river, this prime real estate could be next.

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www.kcactive.com Online eKC Check it out!

www.KCMOHotline.com free newsletter on Neighborhood Issues

www.KCNag.com archive of the Political Issues that N.A.G. has defeated

www.TaxHog.com whose trying to get into the Hog Trough now!!

www.NoNewArena.com against a downtown arena

www.Bi-State.info against bi-state tax proposals

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Always Looking for Truth and Justice

 

NAG Letter from The Neighborhood Action Group Vol.3 #8

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In This Issue:

JACKSON COUNTY GAVE OUR NAMING RIGHTS AWAY--

Jay Stock has a precautionary note to all neighborhood leaders and residents--

Post Script from Jay ---

Improvements Now Contributors 3-28-04-- Who is paying the bill---

Dallas Texas passes $575 Million in Bonds---

NO on APRIL 6th--This is not a bond issue it is an authorization.

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JACKSON COUNTY GAVE OUR NAMING RIGHTS AWAY

this some idea of how much was given away in the letters of Memorandum The public needs to take the Naming Rights back.

Team - Avg. $ Per Year - Year Contract Expires - Total $ from2004

 

Anaheim Angels - $2.5 million - 2018 - $35 million

St. Louis Rams - $2.65 million - 2013 - $24 million

Tampa Bay Buccaneers - $3.1 million - 2026 - $68 million

Houston Astros - $6 million - 2030 - $156 million

Cincinnati Reds - $2.5 million - 2033 - $72 million

Pittsburgh Steelers - $2.9 million - 2021 - $49 million

Arizona Diamondbacks - $2.2 million - 2028 - $53 million

Carolina Panthers - $7 million - 2024 - $140 million

Detroit Tigers - $2.2 million - 2030 - $57 million

Washington Redskins $7.6 million 2025 - $160 million

Cincinnati Reds - $2.5 million - 2033 - $72 million

Denver Broncos - $6 million - 2021 - $102 million

Philadelphia Eagles - $6.7 million - 2022 - $121 million

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Jay Stock has a precautionary note to all neighborhood leaders and residents   We hear much propaganda in favor of the $250,000,000 bond proposal, but proponents are certainly not emphasizing a few basic facts which should also be considered by the voting taxpayers. Honesty requires that, as Paul Harvey would say, "the rest of the story" be presented in a factual manner. To quote a famous statesman of many years ago " an informed electorate will make good decisions".  I ask your assistance in continuing to inform our Kansas City electorate.

 

• These bonds will be ultimately repaid by using funding sources now directed toward annual  infrastructure maintenance. In amounts like 10/11 million dollar per year. Thus,the city will borrow money to repair and create new facilities today and then will have no money tomorrow to maintain these facilities as they again needs service. The also will result in additional interest costs that will reduce our city's total ability to make repairs or purchases. Great idea or stupidity???

• Without any legal constraints, this council, or any future council may expend these funds in any way that they wish. Remember the E-tax and the commitments made by Mayor Davis then, and compare this to the reduced services now being delivered. To quote an ex-councilman: "times change, and past commitments have no validity unless spelled out in the ballot language".

• Or do we recall the current fiasco with the ATA tax and the rape of the general fund to compensate the ATA for funds siphoned off for downtown development projects? A couple million dollars which could have been used to fix streets, provide youth activities, health care, and a whole litany of current needs greater than subsidizing developers. And, adding insult to injury, this was done under the astute leadership of two ex-councilmen who as attorneys should have either known or researched the project. I am sure that this encourages the taxpayers to have faith in elected representatives who say "Trust Me" with $250,000,000 tax dollars. 

• It's worth considering that over the next ten years,  our bonds might be spent to give us a new downtown arena  while we reduce funding for pothole repairs, bridges, streets, community center repairs, traffic signals, and other capital needs.This bond issue is billed as "to repair infrastructure" but a significant part will go to new capital expenditures which will require additional repair and funding in the future. Is this something like the old circus shell game or the bait and switch tactics ruled illegal in commercial markets?

•  But for all of these dollars, we are promised fantastic aquatic centers to be used by a privileged few, and other massive        projects which very few taxpayers would be willing to support as individual issues, if given a choice. 

• "No tax increase" is a bold faced lie!  If we are required to remit more tax dollars in the future than you would without bonds, our taxes have been increased. The tax rate may remain unchanged but the total tax dollars collected from us have been  increased. It does not require a Harvard MBA to figure out  that any levy issue which collects more tax dollars is an increase!

• In the commercial market, this would be considered false advertising and would make the advertiser subject to civil penalties and perhaps criminal prosecution. Martha Stewart should be a good example of the requirement for integrity in the public arena. 

•  A group will be appointed to make recommendations regarding expenditures but what isn't said is that "we don't have to follow those recommendations, and can do whatever we want with the bond proceeds.

 I hope that all of us as Kansas City voters will recognize this bond campaign as poorly conceived, ill  timed,  misleading      at best, and that we as taxpaying voters will resoundingly defeat it

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Post Script from Jay It is being said by proponents of the $250,000,000 bond issue,that since Kansas City has such good bonding capability, we should rush right out and use it.   This is no less absurd than saying that since those individuals who pay their bills promptly have almost unlimited credit today, then they should rush right out and "max out" their credit cards.   Credit is not a perishable commodity, it is a tool which should be used sparingly and judiciously.

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Improvements Now Contributors 3-28 Trying to buy your vote with TV ads!!

Home Builders Assoc of KC                        500

Heavy Constructors-Industry Advancement Fund 90,000

Civic Council of KC                  25,000

Schutte Lumber                         250

American Century                      10,000

Sly James Firm Trial Lawyers                 150

Builders' Assoc                       5,000

Associated General Contractors               5,000

HDR Engineering                             500

Burns & McDonnell                                10,000

Kansas City Southern                  10,000

Bucher Willis & Ratcliff               2,000

Levitt Enterprises                     250

1701 Main St.                       1,000

J.E. Dunn                           2,500

KC Chiefs                           2,500

E. Crichton Singleton FAIA Inc                100

Civic Council of KC                       25,000

Hunt Midwest                        2,000

Greater KC Chamber of Commerce      50,000

Berkebile Nelson Immenschuh McDowell          500

MWH                             10,000

Black & Veatch                       10,000

HNTB Architecture                       10,000

State Street                        1,000

Charle Garney                        1,000

Delich, Roth & Goodwillie PA                500

Hrrington & Cortelyou                      200

Downtown Council                          5,000

 

Total campaign contributions on 3-28:                   $288,450

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Almost $300.000.00 is being spent to convince you that we need to give city hall a blank check for $250,000,000.00 Hey that means that these guys are willing to spend 1% to acquire control of the largest bond authorization in the History of Kansas City. Means that someone is planning on getting some of the money. People and companies do not spend money with out thinking that they will get something out of the deal. So, the question is what are they getting out of the deal?

REMEMBER VOTE NO on QUESTION # 1 on APRIL 6th

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Dallas Texas passes $575 Million in Bonds- Yes they passed 8 bonds issues without a tax increase and 9 bond issues that would require a tax raise. When I called the Finance Dept, in Dallas, a Mr Cook said that he felt that the reason they passed was because the City of Dallas was honest and forthright with public. "We had one bond to improve streets and we told in the ballot what street and how many blocks would be fixed." I told him that it was a matter of trust. The voters could trust the bond issue since the law would require that the funds be spent on the specified street. Dallas seems to have included everyone in these bond issues. So the people know what they will get. In Kansas City we get promises--an "Authorization". NO bond issue --NO VOTE on April 6.

Congratulations to Dallas Texas for not asking for a blank check like City Hall is trying to do with our "Authorization". No blank check -Vote No on Question #1 onApril 6th.

 NAG Letter from The Neighborhood Action Group

SPECIAL

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On February 18, Councilwoman Becky Nace sent the Mayor an amendent to the resolution for the $250 Million Dollar Bond Authorization. The resolution was an attempt to acquire a modicum of honesty in the upcoming April 6th election.

Councilwoman Nace stated" The changes to the resolution include 100% of the $250Million dollar bond issue to be used for deferred maintainence instead of 80% as stated in the resolution passed out in Finance Committee today." Plain and simple she wanted all of the money to go for crumbling streets, curbs, catch basins and bridges! NO NEW PROJECTS

Nace also stated" I am also striking the list of project exmples. The projects will require funding in excess of the $250 million dollars available through the bond issuance." In plain words the projects listed, add up to more than $250 million dollars. Nace knew that they were promising everyone everything so that the vote would go through.

Nace continued, "The wording "projects may be funded in part or whole" does not demonstrate the likelihood that these projects will be built......."

In plain words here again was a well crafted lie, which Nace wanted the Mayor to change. There is NO likelihood that these projects listed will ever happen!

The letter closes with the words, "It is our duty to present a bond package to the voters that represents outcomes we can deliver. Likewise, we must use tax dollars wisely and as they were intended by voters. Using deferred maintenance funds for deferred maintainence and capital funds for capital improvements will keep faith with the voters."

Councilwoman Nace was asking for honesty and truth in the bond issue! With her letter she included a packet that include the actual costs of the examples and explanation of how her amendment addressed deferred maintenance. If the Mayor read the packet she knew that they made a mistake and promised too much, to too many!!

The answer from the Mayor's office was silence. Well not exactly silence, but you get the point.

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All of you Neighborhood Leaders that attended the Neighborhood Roundtable meeting heard the Mayor tell me that my statement that the "total cost of projects was more money than the $250 million dollar bond authorization would provide", was "a lie"-- well now I have a copy of the list with the totals and a quick read, lets all of you know who is fond of prevarication and deceit. The same statement was made at the Northland Neighborhoods Meeting. So do you believe that you will get your neighborhoods project?

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Why is it asking to much to have an honest city adminstration? In Dallas they can pass 17 individual bond elections in one vote. In Dallas they give you the amount and the actual project and let you make up your mind what you want. NO authorization.

In Kansas City they give you smoke and mirrors. We get lies and things get worse.

They want a blank check, they promise everything and then do what they want. Well I say stop. Lets do it one bond issue at a time, with truth.

Mark Esping

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 Improvements Now campaign misstates facts on This Week in Kansas City with Nick Haines.

  Aggie Stackhouse claims that the city is spending the taxes from the 1999 1-cent sales tax on deferred maintenance as promised she doesn't know her facts.  The Kansas City Star on December 14,2003 had an editorial titled "Broken promises on KC Repairs" that explains that City Hall used that money for other expenses.  The Pitch on February 26,2004 had a article quoting Troy Shulte, Kansas City budget director stating that $8 million from other departments is inappropriately charged to basic repairs each year.  Aggie Stackhouse is a person who doesn't do her research but acts like she is a expert.  

Terrence Nash

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APRIL 6th, this TUESDAY VOTE NO ON QUESTION #1

Please send this to all of your Kansas City Email list, Help defeat the blank check

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 NAG Letter from The Neighborhood Action Group Vol.3 #9

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In This Issue:

WHO CAN YOU BELIEVE?

UNION STATION FINANCIAL ANALYSIS

Towing can be a racket?

SPORTS ARENA EMAIL from Larry Thrasher

Here is an email sent to my Johnson County 'protectors':

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WHO CAN YOU BELIEVE?

The Kansas City Star thinks that Bi-State should be wrapped up and presented to the voters. The Kansas City Business Journal has had two editorials saying that we need to "Delay Bi-State 2 Vote" and "Bi-State 2 is Worthy Idea Led Astray By Bad Planning".

On Mon. a coalition of groups alerting the public of the gliches imbedded in the Bi-State proposals met at the Westport Library. The Jackson County Taxpayers Association, Johnson County's Turn It Off, Kansas City Neighborhood Action Group, UnHoly Alliance, the Organized Opposition and several individuals with personal opinions about the ideas bandied about in the press as being proposals from the Bi-State organizers were present. Two minute presentations were given, including, "We Told You So", Bi-State Arts is B.S.", "Turn It Off, No more money down the drain", Are Your taxes Too Low?", "Stadium Leases! Excessive Public Assistance for Wealthy Owners" "They Couldn't Run Union Station". A general dicussion on the way the Kansas City Star has been running what was generally stated as "What's Good About Bi-State Articles" for several months also ensued. It was noted that a ratio of twelve paragraphs in favor of an issue to one against is the typical Kansas City Star reporting position. A radio reporter reminded the group that radio reaches more people.

 Personal statements were made about incorrect information regarding Bi-State which is already circulating in Kansas City. Not only does the Bi-State Coalition have to counter all of the Bi-State Proponent propoganda they also have to counter the rumor and inuendo that is circulating.

So the public better get informed on this subject, they better find out for them yourself.

 First rumor --- all smoke and no fire All lie, No truth is-------------------------------------

"IT's the only way to keep the teams in Kansas City."

 They are not going to leave , there is NO PLACE TO GO.

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UNION STATION FINANCIAL ANALYSIS Deficit shrinks upon close scrutiny.

On Monday May 10th we attended the public hearing on Union Station.  Union Station management states that the annual operating deficit is between $5 million and $6 million a year. According to the Kansas City Star(May 9,2004) Union Station is to receive $1.7 million for leases to the IRS and U.S. Postal Service.   The Pitch(February 19,2004) reports that leases for the IRS and U.S. Postal Service are expected to bring in $2.5 million.  Union Station is requesting $2 million a year from the Bi-State II proposal.  Union Station receives other financial support in the form of grants and pledges.

In the Statement of Cash Flows for the Year ended December 31,2002, their was a Net Decrease in cash and cash equivalents of  $2,971,328.

In the Statement of Cash Flows for the Year ended December 31,2003, their was a Net Decrease in cash and cash equivalents of  $2,379,881.

Union Station Financial Recap

                  KC Star

Operating Deficit       ($5,000,000) ($6,000,000)

IRS and US Post Office Leases $1,700,000       $1,700,000

Bi-State II             $2,000,000        $2,000,000

Operating Deficit       ($1,300,000) (2,300,000)

                   Pitch

Operating Deficit        ($5,000,000) ($6,000,000)

IRS and US Post Office Leases $2,500,000             $2,500,000

Bi-State II             $2,000,000              $2,000,000

Operating Deficit        ($500,000)              (1,500,000)

Union Station's financial numbers need to be more throughly examined.  Financial forecasts for 2004 and for the next 3 years with the additional revenue being included in the calculations so a more accurate result can be presented.

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Towing can be a racket? A friend of mine slid into a guard rail in Feburary's snow storm. She was told that the car needed to be towed off of the road to a repair shop. When I went to inquire about the bill it was for $576.00 included two tows and listed a lot of miles. After paying the bill the car was driven by the owner to Johnson County to get it repaired. No repairs were done first, they just got in and drove it to the repair shop. After looking at the lies that had been told and refuting each falsehood including the actual towing mileage with signed letters from each person involved, after numerous phone calls, the tow company refunded $207.00 .

This type of flagrant theft should not be tolerated in Kansas City. I met with Clay Ancell to ask about the oversight programs that might be used to penalize such abuse. An hour later I had some idea of the problems that the tow people have. Mr. Ancell is the person who got the Mayor's program of picking up abandon cars going with overnight notice from city hall. He says that those tow operaators that are listed by the Dept. of Transportation do not have to have a City License, in fact there is some controversy as to wheher they have to have a Business License. This city is always looking for revenue sources and we are always talking about The New K.C. well here is a place that both a revenue sourse exists and we need to really get rid of the "Old K.C. the one that rips off citizens and tourtists that have car trouble in our city."

 We need to levy a $10.00 tax per vechicle involved in a traffic accident and the tow operators must collect the money - but they may not collect unless they are registered as an accident tax collector which requires their insurance numbers and other registration info be provided to the city. They are not registered as tow operators, only as tow tax collectors. We can't have just anyone collect the cities money.

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SPORTS ARENA EMAIL from Larry Thrasher

Arena Financing will be on August Ballot. But who will pay off the $30 million on Kemper Arena and th parking lot.

Don't forget the tax payers will also have to pay off the Gateway Tif now

that they are not doing well.

It won't stop The Uptown,Linwood &31 St,18th & Vine, Union Station $5 million in the red,and giving the President Hotel a $15 million TIF when 200 rooms will be built at Harrah's, and pay$750,000 for the Marriott because it can't make it. With such a hole in the budget no wonder we lay off city workers and can't get are streets fixed.

Don't worry KC Bi-State tax,personal tax,water & sewer increase,Arena tax,Performing Arts Tax{any ticket sold in the downtown would have a $4-$5 dollar tax added.don't forget the New Baseball Stadium, with gas at $2 a gallon you won't be planning any vacation soon.

Larry Thrasher

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Here is an email sent to my Johnson County 'protectors':

 Dear Commissioner Peterson:

 Please take a moment to consider these facts about Bi-State:

 

1) The Funding mechanism is inherently unfair. The team owners and players have received a significant income tax windfall that could more than finance any required upgrades. They instead wish to impose a regressive sales tax upon many either uninterested or unable to afford interest in attending their games.

2) Remerging inflation will only serve to exacerbate this inequity. When the basic price of goods and services increase, the sales tax will riseaccordingly. A similar increase in team-associated income will only increase the income tax windfall.

3) Rising interest rates will render all current estimates of stadium finance costs too low. Likewise, climbing commodity prices, particularly for steel and other building materials, insure that the money will run out even if we just focus upon stadiums and the Performing Arts Center. But, we are likely to see a number of half completed projects when funds are exhausted. Then, voters will be 're-approached' to finish the job.

4) Those same rate increases, coupled with rising medical and energy costs, will impose a further burden upon the average person being tapped for the benefit of billionaires. Think of those athletes with million dollar salaries assaulting single moms to grab spare change. That is Bi-State.

5) The Jackson County official most directly involved with Bi-State is now under investigation for diverting public funds.

6) The Downtown City Hall supporters have already questionably diverted funds from Bartle Hall bonds to the proposed Performing Arts Center by overpaying for land. This action not only clearly violated required voter approval for Performing Arts Center support, but also locked architects, engineers and contractors into a suboptimal design envelope thereby increasing tax payer costs.

7) The positive economic impact of the major league teams has been consistently overstated. H&R Bloch was convinced to stay in KC because of the teams! and a seat on the board of the STAR, and naming rights to an arena, and a half billion dollars! Every serious study shows that the benefit for such stadiums is extremely localized, in this case, taking Johnson County money to Jackson County. There is little difference between home and away game related expenditures (for example: grocery, beer and sports bar sales).

8) Other funding mechanisms are available. Revenue Bonds would make an excellent, self-selecting investment. Let interested parties buy bonds to finance improvements with their return contingent upon increased team-related revenue, not some general taxpayer obligation. If it is too poor an investment to succeed on that basis, then why are we considering it? TIF-financed (another subject altogether) public parking could generate targeted revenue streams with appropriate time-of-day and license-plate-state based pricing.

9) This funding really serves to bail out Downtown's poorly considered public investments and mismanaged services. 'Free' economic development from the arts community is insensitively smothered by new taxes. Too many public employees with too high a pay scale are not supervised, but rather succored as strategic voting blocks. Their first Bi-State Board failed: Union Station is not self-sustaining. Another Bi-State will only encourage and perpetuate this behavior.

10) Meanwhile, Johnson County continues to lose jobs and experience high prime office space vacancy rates. If Downtown commuters could be diverted to suburban satellite offices, there would be immediate benefits to all concerned. Employers would have given their associates a free 'raise', freedom from the commuter tax and related commuter expenses. They could reap a deal in the office buyers' market. Commuters would spend less time on the road burning gasoline and polluting the environment. The County sales tax receipts will receive a lunch-time boost to help offset the decline in growth expected from new ex-County retail venues. Aggressively pursuing this plan will relieve anticipated commuting pressure from I-35 construction. Instead of hearing how this construction underlies the need for a multi-billion dollar commuter rail system to support an obsolete urban model, we can curtail traffic by having more people work closer to where they live.

11) We bring growth to all the metro. We do it with schools and high quality yet affordable suburban life style. There are undoubtedly ways we can improve upon that. I, for one, would love to see a suburban retooling to approach a more new urban environment. But, that's a long way form backing tired center city urban models with regressive tax policies supporting poor management.

Thanks for your consideration.

Sincerely,

Tom Stroud

Those wishing to contact Mr. Stroud about helping with the defeat of Bi_State in Johnson County send your phone number to news@KCNag.com

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NAG Letter from The Neighborhood Action Group Vol.3 #10

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In This Issue:

Recent Writers On Ball Teams

Bob Gough Jackson County Taxpayers Association

Towing can be a racket? In Kansas City It Is

BI-STATE II MYTHS VS. SALES TAX FACTS- Here are the numbers

ATTENTION CLAY, PLATTE, AND WYANDOTTE COUNTY RESIDENTS----

BlogKC Kansas City's Weblog ----- http://blogkc.com

PRESS RELEASE from JOHNSON COUNTY FIRST

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Recent Writers On Ball Teams

Showing You The Money by Michael K. Ozanian, Forbes September 15,2003

The small-market Chiefs, worth $601 million, thrive because they have among the best fan support in the league, along with a lease that gives them most of the revenue from Arrowhead Stadium at modest expense.  But team owner Lamar Hunt, who paid $25,000($158,000 in 2003 dollars) for the Chiefs to be a charter member of the American Football League in 1960, wants more from Kansas City-area taxpayers.  Hunt wants the citizens of Missouri to finance $100 million in stadium renovations for the Chiefs.  So far the taxpayers have had the good sense to say no to the multi-millionare.

Sports vs. the public USA Today April 12,2004

Public demands. When baseball's Milwaukee Brewers were begging local taxpayers to build them a new stadium, they pledged that a modern ballpark would enable them to boost payroll, hire better players and field more competitive teams.  The public put up more than $300 million for Miller Park, which opened in 2001. Since then, the Brewers have slashed payroll to the lowest in the major leagues, traded their most popular player and waved goodbye to the team president who fought such moves. Another losing season is in prospect.  But Wisconsin's legislature and Milwaukee business leaders have demanded to audit the Brewers' books to see why the public's investment isn't getting the promised return. Two somewhat-limited "financial reviews" are due to be completed within a few weeks. And the overdue demand for accountability could be catching on.  In Pennsylvania, similar requests are being made for an audit of the Pittsburgh Pirates, who also made grand promises, got $300 million for a new stadium and have since cut payroll and performed woefully.  Sports moguls who enjoy taxpayer subsidies shouldn't expect to be exempt from scrutiny by a public paying the freight.

Books of Interest

Field of Schemes, Joanna Cagan and Neil deMause

Sports,Jobs and Taxes, Roger G. Noll and Andrew Zimbalist

Pigs at the Trough, Arianna Huffington

Websites of Interest

Naming Rights:  www.sportsvenues.com -- How much Sprint should pay us?

Bi-State II: www.bi-state.info ---a JOHNSON COUNTY Perspective

www.taxhog.com ----- Whose gotten into the Money trough NOW

www.kansasmeadowlark.com a lot of research into Johnson County Politics

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Bob Gough- Jackson County Taxpayers Association

If all five bi-state II Counties approve the $1.1 billion tax, 596,000 households will be taxed, If only Jackson and Johnson County approve the tax, 424,000 households will be taxed.  The cost to your family is $1,845 or $2,534 depending on the Clay, Platte and Wyandotte voters.  Jackson County families will pay an additional $200 stadium subsidy for the life of bi-state II tax because of a recent „agreement‰ between the Jackson County Sports Authority and the billionaire team owners.

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Towing can be a racket? In Kansas City It Is

It's surprising that so many people still aren't aware of the tow truck problem in Kansas City, and don't know what they need to be a prudent consumer. This issue has had so much media attention. It seems like at least one the local TV stations does an "expose" story on tow trucks every year. Mark Funkhouser has done some audits. The Pitch did a big investigative story back in 2000:

 http://pitch.com/issues/2000-07-27/feature.html/print.html

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BI-STATE II MYTHS VS. SALES TAX FACTS

MYTH: Bi-State funding is $380 million dollars for the stadiums.

FACT: The best case scenario for Bi-State funding including interest is $550 million.

MYTH: Bi-State sales tax will only run 12-15 years.

FACT: Bi-State sales tax will have to run 16 years if all 5 counties pass the sales tax.  If Johnson and Jackson are the only counties that pass the tax it will have to run 20 years.

Bi-State Sales Tax Projections

Only Jackson and Johnson cumulative   All 5 counties    cumulative     year 1.03 total           year 1.03 total

1 43,680,000 21,840,000         1 56,000,000 28,000,000

2 44,990,400 22,495,200 44,335,200 2 57,680,000 28,840,000 56,840,000

3 46,340,112 23,170,056 67,505,256 3 59,410,400 29,705,200 86,545,200

4 47,730,315 23,865,158 91,370,414 4 61,192,712 30,596,356 117,141,556

5 49,162,225 24,581,112 115,951,526  5 63,028,493 31,514,247 148,655,803

6 50,637,092 25,318,546 141,270,072  6 64,919,348 32,459,674 181,115,477

7 52,156,204 26,078,102 167,348,174  7 66,866,929 33,433,464 214,548,941

8 53,720,890 26,860,445 194,208,619  8 68,872,936 34,436,468 248,985,409

9 55,332,517 27,666,259 221,874,878  9 70,939,125 35,469,562 284,454,972

10 56,992,493 28,496,246 250,371,124 10 73,067,298 36,533,649 320,988,621

11 58,702,267 29,351,134 279,722,258 11 75,259,317 37,629,659 358,618,279

12 60,463,335 30,231,668 309,953,926 12 77,517,097 38,758,548 397,376,828

13 62,277,236 31,138,618 341,092,543 13 79,842,610 39,921,305 437,298,133

14 64,145,553 32,072,776 373,165,320 14 82,237,888 41,118,944 478,417,077

15 66,069,919 33,034,960 406,200,279 15 84,705,025 42,352,512 520,769,589

16 68,052,017 34,026,008 440,226,288 16 87,246,175 43,623,088 564,392,676

17 70,093,577 35,046,789 475,273,076 17 89,863,561 44,931,780

18 72,196,385 36,098,192 511,371,269 18 92,559,467 46,279,734

19 74,362,276 37,181,138 548,552,407 19 95,336,251 47,668,126

20 76,593,144 38,296,572 586,848,979 20 98,196,339 49,098,169

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ATTENTION CLAY, PLATTE, AND WYANDOTTE COUNTY RESIDENTS------ If you do not send letters to the newspapers in your area voicing your opposition against the BI-STATE TAX, the Arena Nonsense and the upcoming "UNION STATION gimmie some more money deal" you do not have any gripe coming when they are rammed down our throats. The number of persons attending the public meetings is pitiful. If those against would visit one meeting and voice opposition the schemes would fail before they got to the ballot. Drive over to Johnson County and let them know that some Jackson County residents are not trying to pick their pockets!

Johnson County commissioners will hold apublic session with the bistate proponents June 7 at Johnson County Community College at the GEB Building in room 233 at 6:30PM. If you are against Bi-State here is the place to let people know NOW.

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BlogKC Kansas City's Weblog http://blogkc.com The place to keep up with what is happening in Kansas City. It is well organized and contains links to sources. This internet site is recommended with out reserve. Read it and cancel your newspaper subscriptions.

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PRESS RELEASE from JOHNSON COUNTY FIRST

Johnson County First objects to and opposes the Bi-State II Tax. Advising the public to contact their elected officials asking that the Bi-State II proposal NOT be placed on the ballot. Speakers will present the truth behind the new Bi-State proposal at Johnson County Square at 111 South Cherry Street at the gazebo in the Plaza between the Johnson County Courthouse and the Commissioner's Office at 10:00 A.M. on Monday June 7th.

Additional Information Contact Phillip Klein at 913-642-8247

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NAG Letter from The Neighborhood Action Group Vol.3 #11

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In This Issue:

WHAT THE ARENA SUPPORTERS ARE NOT TALKING ABOUT----

ARENA TAXES OPPOSITION---- Citizen'z Opposition Coalition

From Jackson County Taxpayers Association

There was a  Anti-Arena-----

Steve Rose has asked------

Kansas City's Weblog ----- http://blogkc.com

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WHAT THE ARENA SUPPORTERS ARE NOT TALKING ABOUT

 There are a lot of things Mayor Barnes and the other boosters of the so-called "Sprint Arena " are not talking about.

 The arena supporters want us to vote to increase our taxes when we still owe millions of dollars for Kemper Arena and the city is facing ongoing budget problems. They think it is a great idea to build a huge arena in downtown Kansas City that probably will end up sitting empty most of the year.

  A recent article in the Kansas City Star pointed out that an analysis by Convention Sports & Leisure International said it made no sense for Kansas City to have two large arenas.

 That same article also said the city still owes about $19 million on the bonds it issued for the Kemper renovation and another $15 million for the Kemper parking garage.

 There is little chance that Kansas City will be able to land an NBA or NHL franchise given the lack of fan support for the Kings. Also, there are only a limited number of rock concerts and other special events that can come to the Kansas City area each year. Do we really want to build another arena that will be competing with the Kemper Arena, the Verizon Amphitheater, and Arrowhead Stadium for concerts and other events?

 Two years ago, we increased the city s hotel and motel tax increase by 1 percent, and the restaurant tax by 25 percent. Now, city officials want us to add a $1.50-per-day hike on the hotel tax and increase the cost of renting a car by $4 a day. Why in the world would we Kansas City taxpayers want to dig ourselves deeper in debt for an arena we don't need?

 Question 1 is bad tax plan for a dubious arena. If Mayor Barnes wants to increase taxes the money should be used for repairs to our streets, sidewalks and other city facilities.

 And why do the average taxpayers of Kansas City have to pay more than 50 percent of the cost for this area, while Anschutz Entertainment gets $62 million off the top from Sprint. Why didn t Mayor Barnes demand an agreement with Anschutz that would give the city all or at least part of the money for the arena naming rights?

 Last year we had to close city swimming pools because we didn"t have enough money, city employees have lost there jobs, and the city is facing a $20 million shortfall on revenue.

 Question 1 is a bad idea because it calls for most of the financing for the proposed arena -- $143 million out of the total $250 million cost -- to be paid for by Kansas City taxpayers. It was rushed on to the ballot without public hearings and with little thought about the consequences if the arena doesn t generate enough revenue to pay for its operation every year.

 But we all know if this arena ends up losing money because of competition from Kemper and the other entertainment facilities around the Kansas City who will end up picking up the tab.

It will be Kansas City taxpayers. That is why we should vote NO on Question 1.

Mark Esping

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ARENA TAXES OPPOSITION from the Citizen'z Opposition Coalition

 There are at least four good reasons for those of us of modest means to vote "NO" on Kansas City proposition 1, the downtown arena tax.

 #1 There is no reason, today, to have a downtown. In the past, when many of us did not have cars, downtown made sense. Today, when most of us have cars, and when shops have moed to the neighborhoods, there is no reason to go downtown. Therefore, the justification of voting new taxes upon ourselves to build another arena and locate it in the old downtown is without merit.

 #2 Much, if not most, of the new taxes will be paid by local people. My family rents vans about 3 or 4 times a year to take weekend trips to funerals, weddings, family reunions, and to decorate my parents graves.

 #3 To be competitive with other cities for convention and visitor business, Kansas City should lower prices and taxes, not raise them. To raise taxes in Kansas City will send more business and jobs to Raytown and other cities beyond our city limits and off of our tax base.

#4 Finally, there has been no vote taken to reflect the will of the people of Kansas City that government should be responsible for entertainment, in addition to the police, fire department, and fixing potholes. People should pay for their own entertainments, and should not impose entertainment costs on the taxpayers.

For these reasons, those of us of modest means should vote"NO" on proposition 1, the downtown arena tax.

former City Councilman Richard Charles Tolbert

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From Jackson County Taxpayers Association

Dear Editor,

I note with concern the ill-conceived arena tax proposition 1 on the ballot in Kansas City.  Taxes placed on any organization or enterprise diminishes or reduces the enterprise.  Tax subsidies given to any organization or enterprise cause the recipients to be inefficient. 

The proposed arena tax punishes tourists and visitors to Kansas City.  Our visitors are not stupid or people of unlimited wealth.  The typical tourist or visitor to Kansas City is here for a VFW convention, Barbershop Quartet convention, cat or dog show, a quilt show, a church convention, or similar event.  These conventions can easily be moved to another city

The plan for a downtown arena is a disaster.  Parking and traffic will be a nightmare.  The taxpayers will be stuck with another Union Station debacle costing the taxpayers additional millions.

I urge a No vote on proposition 1

Bob Gough Executive Director, Jackson County Taxpayers Association

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There was a  Anti-Arena tax rally Thursday July 29 Noon in front of KCMO city hall at 12th and Oak. The wide variety of participants definitely showed that there are more than just a corporation from St. Louis asking questions about the feasibility and the fairness of this arena proposal. The Coalition had to get a permit for their loudspeaker. Two hours after filing the permit, emails started flying getting those who worked in the city and convention areas to come over on their "lunch hour" to heckle the opposition press conference. Seemed very tacky for a group to stand and heckle speakers trying to exercise their right of free speech on an election proposal. I bet old Abe Lincoln wouldn't have put up with that type of attempt to restrict free speech during an election!

This seems to be typical of the Mayor and her helpers, they do not want any dialogue on one of their proposals that is why they push their proposals through the city council with out public discourse first. Now they heckle and harass people that disagree.

Where is Voltaire when we need him? "I may not agree with your statements, but I will fight to the death for your right to make them."

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Steve Rose has asked that people email Mary Bloch and tell her what they think about the way that Union Station was run. Mrs. Bloch is under the impression that things were done correctly and it is just a bunch of naysayers who are protesting. The email address is msbloch@sbcglobal.net

also send a copy to the Union Station Board -- mcopeland@olatheks.org and voice@unionstation.org

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There is an Anti-Arena forum at Bluford Library today Sunday at 2:30 The Forum is of and for the average citizen. Media also are invited.

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NAG Letter from The Neighborhood Action Group Vol.3 #12

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In This Issue:

A Little Clean Up After the Arena Election

From Jackson County Taxpayers Association

BI-STATE II FORUM

Taxpayers Against Bi-State II are a group of Missouri citizens--

Call HOK

Kansas City's Weblog ----- http://blogkc.com

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A Little Clean Up After the Arena Election Jay & Mary Ann Stock North of the River

Hey, what's happening here?   It appears that a legitimate company is being severely chastised for protecting their own interests in the arena campaign. This seems very strange when we consider the highly vested interests contributing to the campaign for the issue. I do not have any interest at all in, or, for Enterprise, but fairness and equality in government is a vital issue to me.   This includes the campaign process. One need only to look at campaign disclosures to see that most races include "non-local" money. What makes the arena campaign any different from mayor/council races which received more than $25,000 in contributions from non-resident individuals or companies and untold thousands from local contributors with vested interests in the election outcome?   Isn't it time to finally say no to another project which is taking more property off the tax roles and subsidizing it with a new tax on selected parts of our business community, and incidentally, if history repeats itself, probably with other public tax dollars like the Zoo, Union Station, A possibly vacated Kemper Arena, etc,etc, etc.   The attached file pretty well illustrates the result of past actions of a similar nature. -- ie. the file was a video that I couldn't open.

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From Jackson County Taxpayers Association We filed the following on the Partners for Community Progress Disclosure Report.

This Ethics Commission complaint refers to the Quarterly Report for July 15 2004 filed by the Partners for Community Progress (MEC C041385). This campaign disclosure report fails to convey required information.

 Attachment C (Report Summary) Line 4 is in error. I request that the committee's checking account records be compared with this entry.

 Attachment C Lines 16 through 20 implies that the committee has contributed $28,163.90 during the reporting period, but no supporting documentation is provided. I request that the committee's checking account records be compared with this entry.

 Attachment C line 27(b) indicates that $9,473.04 in disbursements for the period was made in cash. Packets of envelopes containing thousands of dollars in cash given to unknown persons are inconsistent with providing the voters and citizens of Missouri campaign finance disclosure information. Even if these payments were make in cash, they need to be documented. The report fails to do so.

 Attachment D (Contributions and Loans Received) column 4 fails to provide the Date Received or Aggregate to Date information for contributions from the Missourians for Accountability and from Saundra McFadden Weaver. I request that the committee's checking account records be compared with this entry.

 Attachment E (Expenditures and Contributions Made) fails to provide any coherent information. Section A provides for reporting expenditures of less that $100 but not payments to campaign workers. The items "Payroll" and "Operating" were entered with bogus numbers. It is not conceivable that $6987.22 were spent for items less than $100. I request that the committee's checking account records be compared with this entry.

 Attachment E Expenditures of over $1000 were made to Ashley Turner and Maurice Glover at 3029 Prospect. This is the address of a campaign headquarters, not the recipient's address. Ronald McFadden is listed as receiving $1250 with no address. I request that the committee's checking account records be compared with these entries.

 Attachment E line 13 refers to attached pages. The attached pages (Attachment F, G ,H, I, J, and K) appear to detail payments to campaign workers. The attachments are not titled. Any payments to campaign workers are required to contain the aggregate amount and date paid and these data are missing. Line 13 fails to reflect the correct total of the Attachments F, G, H, I, J and K.

 All 86 campaign workers are listed with an address of 3029 Prospect. This cannot be the true address for all 86 workers. See Attachment L for a photo of 3029 Prospect. I request that the committee's checking account records be compared with these entries.

 Attachment E column 20 lists Monetary Contributions made to Missourians for Accountability and Saundra McFadden-Weaver totaling $28,163.90. I believe this is in error and I request that the committee's checking account records be compared with this entry.

 Missouri voters are entitled to a clear and accurate reporting of campaign finance disclosure information. This PAC has violated both the letter and spirit of the law in its financial operations and reporting. Thousand dollar packets of cash, gross errors and misrepresentations on the campaign disclosure forms are an affront to the voters and the law.

 Campaign Treasurer Marcus LaRue signed his name to this report certifying that this campaign disclosure report with all attached forms is complete, true and accurate. This report is not complete, not true, and not accurate. I believe that Marcus LaRue has knowingly committed perjury by preparing and signing this sham and presenting it to the voters of the State of Missouri.

 I request a complete audit of the campaign disclosure report in conjunction with the campaign bank account records.

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BI-STATE II FORUM

 Wednesday the 15th of September at Johnson Community College at 7:00 PM a forum on the Bi-State II proposal will be held. The proponents were to have Mr. Jack Craft present information in favor of the proposal. but that has now been changed to Mr. Fred Logan. The opponents position will be presented by Terrence Nash, an accountant from South Kansas City.

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Taxpayers Against Bi-State II are a group of Missouri citizens committed to the defeat of the proposed 1/4th cent sales tax increase for sports and arts on November 2nd.

Bi-State II is not a reinstatement of Bi-State I. Bi-State I taxpayers contributed 47% to a public building for public benefit only, with a specified amount. Bi-State II taxpayers are expected to contribute over 90% for stadium improvements for the private subsidy of two wealthy team owners. As an open-ended tax, Bi-State II can easily go above $1.4 billion and last for 15 or more years. The tax rate and the minimum amount to be collected are known facts. The only other significant fact is that, no matter what happens, the team owners have zero financial liability to the taxpayers.

 Before we "think big" we should THINK carefully. Where is the information needed to really understand what we are "buying" with these tax dollars

Proponents should be honest with voters and make public the following information about sports funds:

An independent financial review and evaluation of the stadium leases.

Detailed explanations of all projects in the renovation proposals.

Detailed explanations of the 25 year repair and maintenance projects.

Sales tax projections used in their estimates, including years and projected growth rates.

An explanation as to why the two years in which sales taxes declined were not used for revenue estimates.

Public disclosure of individuals and organizations who have, are, or will promote the Bi-State tax, who stand to gain financially from passage of the Bi-State tax.

Explain why the sports team owners pay nothing toward the Bi-State II tax.

Explain what will be done to make the Jackson County Sports Complex Authority open their meetings and make public records more available to the public.

Explain how Bi-State tax money will be kept separate from the owner's luxury suite money.

Disclose remedial measures and procedures available to residents outside of Jackson County in the event of disagreements on the spending of taxpayer money.

 

Proponents should be honest with voters and make public the following information about arts funds:

Disclose the organizations and individuals who have decided they should determine who gets arts money.

Disclose who, beside the Performing Arts Center, will be the major recipients of arts money.

Disclose the criteria to be used for determining who gets arts money.

Disclose the criteria for defining a "regional" arts venue.

Disclose how "regional representation on governing boards" will be guaranteed.

Disclose remedial measures and procedures available to residents outside of Jackson County.

 The taxpaying public must educate themselves about the Bi-State II entertainment tax, and do so with facts, not just catchy slogans and feel good phrases. They must determine who pays and who plays. Then, decide if the tax is a tax they can support. If they can't support it, they should work against it.

TAXPAYERS AGAINST BI-STATE II P.O. Box 480685 Kansas City, MO 64148-0685

contact --- 816-753-7585

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Call HOK SPORTS VENUES ask them to see the plans for all of the additional projects hidden in the BI-STATE II proposal. Usually when a new project is planned there are models and plans shown at every public meeting possible. What are we not being shown?

 http://www.KansasMeadowlark.com They fill in some of the blanks check them out

 http://www.Bi-State.info They fill in some of the blanks check them out

 http://www.TaxHog.com They fill in some of the blanks check them out ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 NAG Letter from The Neighborhood Action Group Vol.3 #13

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In This Issue:

Kansans Against Bi--State II Meeting--TONIGHT

Call HOK

Kansans Against Bi--State II

DON"T "THINK BIG"

Kansas City's Weblog ----- http://blogkc.com

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TONIGHT--- 7:00 PM Monday evening, 9/20 A Kansans Against Bi-State Rally will be held in the Town Hall, in Old Shawnee Town, 11600 Johnson Drive:

 It is between Neiman and Quivera. Park next to the Hall.

The meeting starts at 7:00 PM and we must be out of the building by 8:00 PM.

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Call HOK SPORTS VENUES ask them to see the plans for all of the additional projects hidden in the BI-STATE II proposal. Usually when a new project is planned there are models and plans shown at every public meeting possible. What are we not being shown?

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Kansans Against Bi--State II

This past Wednesday, September 15, a Bi-State debate was held at the Johnson County Community College. Kansans Against Bi-State takes strong exception to the manner in which the debate was arranged.

 

It was created by Jackson County proponents in much the same manner in which the Bi-State II proposal was created, in a backroom with only supporters of the Bi-State tax present. Only after arrangements were complete did they reveal the plan to Johnson County.   We condemn the fact that Johnson County Bi-State opponents were excluded from any planning for the debate. Mr. Nash did a good job representing the viewpoint of Bi-State opponents, but he did not, and does not, have a Johnson County perspective on the issue. Debate moderator, Dave Helling, also did a good job. . We condemn the fact that Johnson County Bi-State opponents were not invited to participate in the debate, even after Mr. Nash made a specific request that we be included.

At the June 7, 2004 meeting of the Johnson County Commission, I publicly challenged Jack Steadman, Mark Gorris, and Pete Levy to debate the issue. None accepted. I now challenge, Jack Kraft, who was originally scheduled to debate Mr. Nash, to a public debate on Bi-State II. In the interest of fairness, details and rules for the debate should be negotiated by both proponents and opponents of Bi-State.

We are the people. We have no $100,000 lawyers, no bonding company employees, no millionaires, and no paid political consultants to advocate our cause. We have only the truth. Except for keeping $3,000 of our own tax money, none of us will gain financially from the defeat of Bi-State II. Our strategy is simple.

 For every lie the Bi-State proponents tell, we will tell the truth.

 For every fact they try to conceal, we will reveal it. Every time they try to hide something, we will expose it. Every time they twist the truth, we will straighten it out. No claim will go unanswered. It may go unreported, but it will not go unanswered.

We, the people, are not impressed by slogans and promises of intangible benefits. We will not exchange our hard earned money for the privilege of watching someone else spend it on their dream. The local gambling casinos don t take worthless slogans and promises. Bi-State taxpayers shouldn t either. We urge all taxpayers to Think Carefully before they vote.

Kansans Against Bi-State is dedicated to exposing the truth about the $1.2 billion tax. Today, we begin our expose series on proponent s claims about the Bi-State tax. The truth will be revealed in press releases and emails. We may not be heard by those sitting in the halls of power, or in the backrooms of influence, but we will be heard by the people, because we are the people. To view the Bi-State ballot or HR4700 legislation, visit www.Bi-State.info

 Wayne Flaherty Treasurer,Kansans Against Bi-State PO Box 2641Shawnee Mission, KS  66202

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Press Release #2 Monday, September 20, 2004 - For Immediate Release

Today, Kansans against Bi-State will begin a five day expose of the false claims made by the proponents of the $1.2 billion Bi-State tax. Each day this week 2 more claims will be exposed. We urge the media to call the Bi-State proponents to account for their continued use of these claims.

  This press release will be emailed to the entire Kansans Against Bi-State Email Network. I am asking KAB network recipients to watch for, and respond to, any of these claims reported in the media.

 We begin with claims 1 & 2.

 Claim #1: Proponents claim the Bi-State tax is necessary to keep the teams in Kansas City.

 The Truth: The phony attempt at blackmailing the Bi-State taxpayers will not work. When asked if they would leave if Bi-State II fails, both Lamar Hunt and David Glass said they would not leave. When Columbus, Ohio taxpayers rejected Lamar Hunt s request for a new soccer stadium, he didn t leave, he spent over $25 million to build it himself. 

 Claim #2: In the September 15 Bi-State debate, tax proponent, Fed Logan, claimed we must pass Bi-State II to keep the teams here until 2030 as called for in the new leases.

 The Truth:The teams have 10 years left on their current leases. If current leases cannot keep the teams here, new leases will not hold them either. The legal community knows there isn t a lease made that can t be broken. The teams could leave anytime they want - with or without new leases. They don t leave, and won t leave, because they are making huge profits here, and will continue to do so.

 Wayne Flaherty Treasurer, Kansans Against Bi-State II PO Box 2641 Shawnee Mission, KS  66202

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DON"T "THINK BIG"

Think Carefully after you have all of the information

Taxpayers Against Bi-State II are a group of Missouri citizens committed to the defeat of the proposed 1/4th cent sales tax increase for sports and arts on November 2nd.

Bi-State II is not a reinstatement of Bi-State I. Bi-State I taxpayers contributed 47% to a public building for public benefit only, with a specified amount. Bi-State II taxpayers are expected to contribute over 90% for stadium improvements for the private subsidy of two wealthy team owners. As an open-ended tax, Bi-State II can easily go above $1.4 billion and last for 15 or more years. The tax rate and the minimum amount to be collected are known facts. The only other significant fact is that, no matter what happens, the team owners have zero financial liability to the taxpayers.

 Before we "think big" we should THINK carefully. Where is the information needed to really understand what we are "buying" with these tax dollars

 Proponents should be honest with voters and make public the following information about sports funds:

An independent financial review and evaluation of the stadium leases.

Detailed explanations of all projects in the renovation proposals.

Detailed explanations of the 25 year repair and maintenance projects.

Sales tax projections used in their estimates, including years and projected growth rates.

An explanation as to why the two years in which sales taxes declined were not used for revenue estimates.

Public disclosure of individuals and organizations who have, are, or will promote the Bi-State tax, who stand to gain financially from passage of the Bi-State tax.

Explain why the sports team owners pay nothing toward the Bi-State II tax.

Explain what will be done to make the Jackson County Sports Complex Authority open their meetings and make public records more available to the public.

Explain how Bi-State tax money will be kept separate from the owner's luxury suite money.

Disclose remedial measures and procedures available to residents outside of Jackson County in the event of disagreements on the spending of taxpayer money.

 Proponents should be honest with voters and make public the following information about arts funds:

Disclose the fallacy in the sales tax projects caused by not counting the last two years in the projection.

Provide a compresensive "possible" recipent list of those meeting the regional guideline. Is the zoo includable, are the historical museums?

Disclose the grant criteria, the requirements that will be used to keep the grant process out of the "political plum" arena.

Provide criteria that will be used to protect the public sensibilities from obscenity or the maligning of cultural or racial standards.

Disclose how "regional representation on governing boards" will be guaranteed.

Disclose remedial measures and procedures available to change the direction of a particular aesthetics emphasis on the part of the appointed boards.

 The taxpaying public must educate themselves about the Bi-State II entertainment tax, and do so with facts, not just catchy slogans and feel good phrases. They must determine who pays and who plays. Then, decide if the tax is a tax they can support. If they can't support it, they should work against it.

TAXPAYERS AGAINST BI-STATE II P.O. Box 480685 Kansas City, MO 64148-0685

Terrence Nash, Treasurer

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------http://www.KansasMeadowlark.com They fill in some of the blanks check them out

http://www.Bi-State.info They fill in some of the blanks check them out

http://www.TaxHog.com They fill in some of the blanks check them out ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

NAG Letter from The Neighborhood Action Group Vol.3 #14

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In This Issue:

The number one problem with Bi-State.............

False claims for the Bi-State tax....

The Reverend Ike Arguement...................

DON"T "THINK BIG"--Think Carefully ......

Is this the new sports business model ...............

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Kansas City Business Journal finds interesting study-- http://kansascity.bizjournals.com/kansascity/stories/2004/10/04/story7.html

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The number one problem with Bi-State

The Bi-State II Tax has been mathicatically figured using a sales tax projection.

The problem is the base years used are 1990 to 2000 which are the most favorable years in terms of economic growth ever seen in the United States.

No one ever does a projection using the most optimum conditions. Real accountants understand that growth patterns must include down years and medicore years, not just the best years out of the last two hundred years. Mid America Regional Council did the sales tax projections at the request of the Chamber of Commerce. The client evidently set the parameters--ie. did they say leave out the bad years!!

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False claims for the Bi-State tax

Claim #1:

Proponents claim the Bi-State tax is necessary to keep the teams in Kansas City. The truth is when asked if they would leave if Bi-State II fails, both Lamar Hunt and David Glass said they would not leave.

Claim #2:

We must pass Bi-State II to keep the teams here until 2030 as called for in the new leases. The truth is the teams have 10 years left on their current leases. If current leases cannot keep the teams here, new leases will not hold them either.

Claim #3:

The teams contribute $65 million toward the Bi-State tax. The truth is the teams contribute nothing. Their $65 million is only for luxury suites, from which they keep all the revenue. Whether they contribute twice as much or half as much, the Bi-State tax remains exactly the same, because their contribution is to themselves and not to Bi-State.

Claim #4:

The Bi-State II tax will be paid off in 12 to 15 years. The truth is Bi-State will take closer to 17 years to pay off. Using the best sales tax years and including all 5 counties are unrealistic assumptions.

Claim #5:

The arts share of the Bi-State tax money will be $360 million. The truth is his claim was made before all five Bi-State counties when proponents asked the commissions to place Bi-State II on the ballot. The arts share will be _ of all Bi-State tax revenue. Arts will actually get $720 million.

Claim #6:

We need $50 million for the Performing Arts Center (PAC). The truth is when asked if the PAC really needed $50 million, Julia Kauffman, said they didn't need the money, but they would take it.

Claim #7:

The Bi-State II expenditures will be extremely accountable to insure that the tax is correctly spent. The truth is the ultimately accountability for individuals spending public money is the legal power to remove those people from their positions. Kansans have no legal means to remove or control any appointed Missouri official.

Claim #8:

There will be a regional oversight committee to insure that stadium money goes for specified projects. The truth is the leases and work lists are contractual agreements between Jackson County and the teams. Kansans have no legal power to interfere with those contracts. Only the state of Missouri can grant that legal power. The Bi-State ballot is not a contract with the teams or Jackson County. It only provides for the collection and distribution of a sales tax.

Claim #9:

The teams are sharing revenue from naming rights. The truth is this claim is only a half true. The teams agreed to share revenue from naming the stadium structures only. They retain all revenues from naming elements within and around the stadiums.

Claim #10:

The teams generate $300 million per year in economic activity in the region. The truth is, in the last 20 years, no independent economist has ever found any significant positive impact from the presence of a major league sports team. Only self-serving studies by local teams or cities, ever find any financial benefit. Money spent at stadiums is discretionary money not spent at other venues.

Citizens Against Bi-State II T. Nash, Treasurer

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The Reverend Ike Arguement

Reverend Ike was a black radio preacher of the 1960's who argued that most people were too poor to live the good life. Therefore, people should mail their money to him, he would live the good life, and they could enjoy watching him.

This arguement is essentially the arguement of those asking the voters of the Kansas City meto area to vote a sales tax upon ourselves to support entertainments that most of us can not afford. When Reverend Ike asked people to send their money, at least he would mail them a prayer cloth to spread over their radio during the broadcasts. The Bi-State II Tax people don't even offer a prayer cloth for our money. They tell us to be proud to pay for other peoples entertainments and to "Think Big", We need to "Think Smart" and vote NO on this scheme.

Those in favor of the tax increase have turned to the Reverend Ike Arguement because the main arguement they have used in the past to justify tax increases, that of claimed economic benefits, has proven to be largly untrue. The area around the stadiums is about the same economically as it was when the sports complex was built thirty years ago.

Reverend Ike's Arguement was essentially a reverse Robin Hood arguement of take from the poor and give to the rich. So too is the Bi-State II arguement. To benefit billionaire owners, millionaire players, sports fans who obviously have way to much money, and arts patrons who don't invite most of us to their fancy dress balls, we are asked to vote a tax upon ourselves and upon poor widows and orphans.

At a time when local governments do not meet many of their responsibilities of delivering basic services, we should NOT Vote a tax upon ourselves to support entertainments and pleasures of the well-to-do. They can afford to pay out of their personal funds.

We should Vote "NO" on Bi-State II on November 2, 2004, because governments should deliever basic services and should not fund entertainments and pleasures.

The Loyal Opposition of Kansas City Missouri Richard Tolbert Chairman

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DON"T "THINK BIG"--Think Carefully about the following

Who did you see at the Think Big kickoff besides millionaires and people who expect to get some money out of the arts deal?

 Mr. Kraft at the Coalition of Hispanic Organizations meeting had the arrogance to state "Bi-State isn't very expensive, it will cost you the same as a couple of movie tickets"

 What is the "new" organization that will spend from $1.5 Million to $2.4 Million a year? How come no one is talking about it?

 Did the Arts Council of Metropolitian Kansas City fund a study that states that less than a dollar of public funds per person is spent on arts in Kansas City?

Did they miss the airport's $2.5 Million dollar 1% for the arts allotment?

 Does The State of Kansas have a requirement that each elementary student see an artperson and a musicperson one hour of each week that they are enrolled in school? The answer is NO.

 The State of Missouri provide 31,000 arts experiences each week for elementary school kids in just the Kansas City Missouri School District!!

 An employee of the Arts Council of Metropolitan Kansas City stated " "Kansas City has a great tradition of support from private foundations and individuals, one of the best in the nation"! Actually the amount that foundations and private individuals put into the arts in Kansas City is $44 Million or over $23.00 per person in the Metro area.

 Is the management of the $4 Million restaurant at the stadiums going to be put out for bids ?

Are the playgrounds for kids going to cost over $3 Million Dollars?

Why do the millionaires expect taxpayers to pay for their adminstration building?

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Is this the new sports business model

When baseball's Milwaukee Brewers were begging local taxpayers to build them a new stadium, they pledged that a modern ballpark would enable them to boost payroll, hire better players and field more competitive teams. The public put up more than $300 million for Miller Park, which opened in 2001.

Since then, the Brewers have slashed payroll to the lowest in the major leagues, traded their most popular player and waved goodbye to the team president who fought such moves. Another losing season is in prospect. But Wisconsin's legislature and Milwaukee business leaders have demanded to audit the Brewers' books to see why the public's investment isn't getting the promised return. Two somewhat-limited "financial reviews" are due to be completed within a few weeks. The overdue demand for accountability could be catching on.

 In Pennsylvania, similar requests are being made for an audit of the Pittsburgh Pirates, who also made grand promises, got $300 million for a new stadium and have since cut payroll and performed woefully. Sports moguls who enjoy taxpayer subsidies shouldn't expect to be exempt from scrutiny by a public paying the freight. Posted 4/11/2004 10:30 PM USA TODAY

 This season, Milwaukee ended the season at 0.419 W/L average, and were last in the National League Central Division. Pittsburg was next to last with a 0.444 W/L average.

So much for promises to boost payroll, hire better players, & field better teams.

 Wayne Flaherty Kansans Against Bi-State

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Maybe they are making enough money off of the Media, Concessions, Restaurants, and kids playgrounds and only need what looks like a team. People will still pay the high ticket prices , buy hot dogs and souveniers, corporations will still buy booze and pay for suites. With good players sold off, payrolls cut and no expenses for fixing up the stadium overhead is down and PROFITS GO UP.

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"Personal incomes in Kansas City fall about $40 billion short of the amount needed to support the metro area's three major-league sports teams." check out the whole story on the internet at

http://kansascity.bizjournals.com/kansascity/stories/2004/10/04/story7.html

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Kansas City's Weblog ----- http://blogkc.com

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 NAG Letter from The Neighborhood Action Group Vol.3 #15

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In This Issue:

Trial of Bi-State II to be held on KCPT........

NEW COSTS in Bi-State...............................

From the Mayor of Westwood, Ks.............

The Mid-America Regional Council.............

The Bi-State Commission could spend as much as $56 million distributing the arts and cultural money raised.................

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Trial of Bi-State II to be held on KCPT........

Pete Levi, Jack Holland, and Terry Harmon will face

 

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Kansas City Business Journal finds interesting NEW COSTS in Bi-State-- http://kansascity.bizjournals.com/kansascity/stories/2004/10/11/story1.html

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From the Mayor of Westwood, Ks

To the Editor:                                 October 12, 2004                                                                             It's getting close to the November 2nd time to vote No on the Bi-state, so round up your friends, neighbors, and family over 18 years old and make sure they all vote against this fleecing of the taxpayers.

Actually, you may wonder what happened to the Bi-state Tax, because it has quietly morphed into the Think Pig, I mean Big, Proposition 1 campaign and is currently being pitched into a multi-million dollar warm and fuzzy television blitz emphasizing kids face-painting and cheering sports fans.  A closer look at this turkey clearly demonstrates why the campaign is so, shall we say, non-specific.

When Bi-state was first conceived by Kansas City consensus, it envisioned funding projects of regional importance with a tax of both limited scope and duration.  Its use to restore Union Station is an appropriate example.

The compact was then unfortunately hijacked and totally adulterated by the Kansas City Chamber of Commerce and the sports/entertainment industry.  And where were our elected officials looking out for the taxpayers?  Supine, mute, and even complicit.  In fact, recently some have allowed themselves to be flown around the country on chamber-sponsored trips, inexplicable visiting cities tottering on insolvency due to poor management and planning.  If you asked, these people would tell you they ve gone to get some new ideas and to share their views, but it s embarrassingly obvious they ve simply been co-opted, schmoozed, jerked around, and used.  By any standards, it is shameful!

The current Bi-state is an excessive, arrogant, unnecessary special interest proposal merely masquerading as public policy.  It was put together by people who are used to getting what they want in their private lives, and what they want in this case is your money, all $1.3 billion of it!

This proposal does not include the most basic elements of good public policy accountability, equity or governance.

Consider:  Accountability for pubic money enables taxpayers to know what they ll get if they vote yes, and a mechanism for ensuring those promises area kept.  The arts portion is basically a $360 million slush fund from which grants can be requested. Interestingly, in a recent Business Journal article, a Metropolitan Arts Council spokesman estimated up to $60 million would be spent on administrative costs, more than the $50 million allocated to the Performing Arts Center.  And, overall, what will we get for our money?  Who really knows, but a recent suggestion may provide some clue a museum of national stature to chronicle life in suburbia in Johnson county. You ve got to be kidding!

Consider:  All financial decisions for the Sports Stadiums will continue to be made by the Jackson County Sports Authority whose members are appointed by the Governor of Missouri. The Bi-state Commission merely writes checks.  If you re not a Missouri Voter, Think Big gives you big taxation with no representation. 

Consider: As this is written Jackson County residents are all guaranteed in the stadium leases that they will get first shot at tickets as they always have.  So much for regional equity!  

Spending taxpayer money carries special responsibility of accountability, transparency, governance, and equity; ideas utterly foreign to and completely ignored by the private swells that put Bi-state II together, mostly behind closed doors and with as little input from elected officials and the public as possible.

We simple cannot afford to make a $1.3 billion, 15-20 year mistake. Vote NO on Bi-state II and then we can roll up our sleeves, have a serious public debate and thoughtfully invest together in a Greater Kansas City region.

Very truly yours,

William L. Kostar Mayor, City of Westwood

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Overland Park Mayor Ed Eilert, who is on the Bistate Commission, went on record as believing that the counties should withdraw the ballot question or voters should reject it.

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The Mid-America Regional Council did not providing accurate enough sales tax information to the public. The sales tax projections for Bi-State II use the best case scenario for economic growth by using the years 1990 through 2000. The report was requested by the Chamber of Commerce and produced by the Mid America Regional Council. The Chamber did not want to include the years of 2001,2002 and 2003 because this would have reduced the % growth of sales. This is a case of a report supporting a rip-off.

The sales tax growth will result in less money being used to pay principle and more money used to pay interest. This will increase the length of the tax and cost.

The average per-household cost of the tax should be figured using the length of the tax not the first year.

The sales tax totals for Bi-State I shows that Johnson County($51,833,725) contributed more than Jackson County($48,409,321). How can sales tax contributions be less for Johnson County in Bi-state II when Johnson County is growing faster than Jackson County.

The financial analysis that was used to promote Science City at Union Station is now being used for Bi-State II. Didn't work the first time. Unrealistic.

Terrence Nash

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The Bistate Commission could spend as much as $56 million distributing the arts and cultural money raised by the Bi-State II proposal

Quotes from the consultants who wrote the Cultural Fund Recommended Guide otherwise known as the Arts Council of Metropolitian Kansas City revealed that from 5% to 8% of the arts money will go to a new group for administration and staff, etc. etc. Look at the story --http://kansascity.bizjournals.com/kansascity/stories/2004/10/11/story1.html

5% to 8% of the money from the Arts section of the Bi-State II money!

But the next quote is worse yet. "I've seen it in the 20 to 25 percent range for funding systems that are not too dissimilar from ours" So we can look forward to a hiearchy of arts people who take a big percentage before the grants for the kids programs get handed out.

The original bistate tax required one staff person and a part-time accounting crew to manage.

The so called Cultural Fund Recommended Guide can be found on the website www.artlinks.org. It is also known as the Metropolitan Cultural Fund Operating Plan. This document is presented in the Bi-State II literature as providing "the goals of the Metropolitan Cultural Fund-- arts excellence, arts programs for kids,and arts availability -- as well as the proposal's economic impact, cultural benefit to residents, contribution to quality of life and popular image of the region, contibution to the geographical balance, breadth of popular appeal, and needs of the community.

I've read it and I find absolutely nothing about the Bi-State Art proposal's "economic impact, cultural benefit to residents, contribution to quality of life and popular image of the region, contibution to the geographical balance, breadth of popular appeal, and needs of the community."

In other words it is another smoke and mirrors document that tells you at the very beginning that you "will have a sense of how the structures and processes for the art package might be developed." Anything written in that type of of nebulous language is hot air and phoney pie in the sky promises. It also MIGHT NOT be developed. So much for straight forward honesty. I wouldn't give people who provide such a see through scam a dime until they write exactly what they will do.

Will the Arts Council of Metropolitan Kansas City be a puppet of the new Arts Administration or will they suddenly drop off their caterpillar disguise and morph into THE Admistration and staff that gets $2.4 to $5 Million in wages to tell us which grants have merit??That is one of the things that Arts Advocates Organizations are best at-- building dynasties which they eventually inhabit.

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DON"T "THINK BIG"--Think Carefully

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Think Big or is it Think Small

Remember it will only cost you a dime-- you and the other 1,800,000 people who live in the Metro Area.

Why shouldn't you want to give money to the rich especially if it is such a small amount.

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 NAG Letter from The Neighborhood Action Group Vol.3 #16

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In This Issue:

A Good Question.............................................................

What Can You Do To Stop BI-STATE II.............

The KC Star reported...............................................

ATTENTION ALL BI-STATE OPPONENTS....................

Attorney Lou Austin said...............................................

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A Good Question......by email from Mr. Painter. "I have asked this on several e-newletters and to members of the community; "didn't they put all new seats in Kauffman Stadium and renovate it in 1999 or later?"   No one knows the answer, even though they took out red seats and put in blues ones.    I don't go to the games at either place but are we being mislead?  It isemms hard to get the truth on these ballot issues when they are related to kcmo facilities or functions, why?"

***

Maybe the answer is in the question, it's a kcmo facility. Someone has control of the information and you have to fight to get an answer. It is just like trying to get the Kansas City Star to print the Projects List from the County contracts with the Sports Authority --someone decided that those lists would not be printed for the general public to see. They still have not been printed.    

They are on the internet take a look at

http://www.efg2.com/Meadowlark/2004/09-10.htm

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What Can You Do To Stop BI-STATE II "THINK PIG"

1) Write a letter and fax it to your newspaper saying NO to Bi-State sign your name and phone number so they can validate your letter

Business Journal 472-4010 Dos Mundos 221-4894 The Globe 531-5256

KC Hispanic News 472-6397 - Northeast News 241-3255

Northland Press Dispatch 542-5889 Pitch Weekly 756-0502

SunNews of the Northland 488-4389 The Call 842-4420

Kansas City Star READERS REPRSENTATIVE 234-4818

2) Call all of your friends, give them this list ask them to send letters and call all of their friends. Tell them to be sure to VOTE NO on County Question #1

 

3) Send this email to all of the people on your email list and ask them to send emails to all of their friends asking that they VOTE AGAINST BI-STATE. Vote No on County Question #1

 

4)Take a look at www.TaxHog.com , www.KCNag.com and www.Bi-State.info

Get the actual facts and then you can tell your friends

 

5) Send a donation to help stop this Major League RipOff

Paid for by TAXPAYERS AGAINST BI-STATE II Terrence Nash, Treasurer

P.O. Box 480685 Kansas City, MO 64148-0685

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The KC Star reported that the Think Big Campaign contributors include:

 

$900,000           KC Chiefs (total of 2 donations)

$200,000           Julia Kauffman

$200,000           Hallmark Global Services

$175,000           DST Systems

$ 50,000            Sprint Corp

$ 50,000            The Chamber

$ 50,000            Shirley Helzberg

$ 50,000            Civic Council of Greater KC

$ 25,000            H&R Block

$ 15,000            Kansas City Southern

$ 10,000            the Buliders Association

$ 10,000            J.E. Dunn Construction Co.

$ 10,000            Ann Dickenson

 

$1,745,000 and now add one million from the Royals

Note that the Chiefs are willing to spend nearly a million dollars to get the $1.2 billion Bi-State tax passed, but won't spend a single penny on the stadium. (remember, their money goes for luxury suites from which they keep all the profit) 

On its web site, a Missouri based group called "The Arts Council of Metropolitan Kansas City" is asking viewers to volunteer for the Think Big Campaign. The Arts Council is a 501c3 tax exempt, non-profit organization.They still haven't provided any list of regional art venues.

Mark Esping Neighborhood Action Group

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ATTENTION ALL BI-STATE OPPONENTS

** We have a cartoon showing our tax dollars leaving Johnson County Schools and going to Lamar and the stadiums. We will use it as a flyer and some you will be asked to help distribute it to a, limited but very select, group. Total time asked will be less than 2 hours. If you want to volunteer and avoid a visit from a guy named Vito with a bent nose and no neck, email me. Seriously, if you can spare 2 hours (of your choice), let me know.

  Steve Rose of the Sun said he would vote for the Bi-State tax but will have to hold his nose while he does. I asked him, "If it stinks so badly, why vote for it?"

** Watch the KCPT-TV (Ch 11) schedule for Nick Haines, "Kansas City Week in Review". The mock trial of the Bi-State tax will be on. Bi-State opponents have been coaching our attorney, UMKC law professor Jeffrey Berman, for several weeks on Bi-State issues. With a real judge, lawyers, witnesses, and a jury, it looks like a great show. We expect to expose several key points about Bi-State.

  To date, I know of no area newspaper that has printed the teams work lists for stadium work. This avoids the problem of having to expose the lists for public scrutiny and causing embarrassment to a potential big money advertiser. No one wants to be "Enterprized". Remember that Enterprize Leasing had its contracts pulled after the vote on the downtown arena.

** I was interviewed by "Sports Business Journal", a national publication that will be available October 25. I have no idea how they will treat us, but I sent the reporter 30 pages of documentation. He particularly liked my response when he asked about "Think Big" and I told him we just call it "Think Pig".

  I have yard signs, Be sure and call me so I can tell you how to get here. They are tearing up my street and sometimes I have to park a block away

** The overly optimistic 12 - 15 year estimates that proponents claim for the duration of the tax, is achieved by using only sales tax revenues from selected years (they left out 2002 and 2003 when revenues fell), assuming an instant leap into a 4% per year area tax growth rate, and assuming all five counties will pass the tax.

  Yes, I do object to subsidizing sports teams. Sports are only one of many entertainment venues in our area. We don't subsidize Worlds of Fun. Why subsidize sports? Are billionaire owners and millionaire athletes more worthy of tax money then other people in entertainment businesses?

  The NFL minimum wage is $280,000 per year. Your Bi-State tax dollars are intended to make stadiums more profitable for owners so they can pay the players more. The $30,000 per year taxpayer, that Mr. Adams looks down on, will have to work 9.3 years to earn what the lowest NFL player earns in one year. That $280,000 athlete will pay no more Bi-State tax on his food than the $30,000 taxpayer. The Bi-State sales tax on food alone will add $300,000 per year to Johnson County food costs.

  It is interesting to see proponents of the Bi-State tax simply dismiss studies by the best economists in the country with a wave of the hand and a hearty, "They're wrong". Doesn't it seem strange that any and all scholars, even Deans of Economics Schools with impeccable credentials and years of experience, are simply shrugged off as meaningless, by everyone who favors the Bi-State tax?

 Kansans Against Bi-State and the people of Johnson County are offended by this blatant attempt to buy the Bi-State II election with nearly $2 million in campaign contributions by team owners.

The Kansas City Chiefs are willing to pay $900,000 to get our school tax dollars.

The Kansas City Royals are willing to pay $1,000,000 to get our school tax dollars.

We urge all people in the Bi-State area to examine their priorities and decide whether education is more important than professional sports. We are confident that voters know where their best interests lie.

Vote NO Bi-State this NOvember

Wayne Flaherty Kansans Against Bi-State

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Attorney Lou Austin said at the South Kansas City Chamber of Commerce. "Some people say "Think Big, some people say Think PIG, some people say Think Carefully, I say Think strategically." He continued by saying that businessmen wouldn't do things the way that the Bi-State II proposal was being set up, so why would a person think that someone would vote for it.

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Take a look at www.VoteBig.com and see what Millions of dollars will buy for a campaign. Lots of show, very little content. Take a look at wwwKCNag.com for a little Truth and maybe eventually a little justice.

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We met a couple of interesting people at the Raytown Roundup and here is what they do. Check it out!! If you have teenage drivers...if you own property...if you buy with credit...if you deal with contract laborers or rent your home...you need Pre-Paid Legal Services. Protect the legal rights of yourself and your family the easy, inexpensive way with a Pre-Paid Legal Services membership. as a Pre-Paid Legal member, you get the attention you deserve! Put a Pre-Paid Legal membership to work for you today! Call Dena, independent associate,  816-699-4476  

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Do all of you know that those people behind the Bi-State II will not debate those of us who oppose the Bi-State II proposal.They do not want any dialogue, no discussion, which leads me to believe that they think that what they have proposed is perfect. No room for change. No need for revision. Well I have never seen a perfect piece of legislation that has been introduced by people trying to make money on the deal. Those type of selfish money making schemes usually fall apart. It is better to start with an altruistic small plan rather than a manic, lets do everything for our friends and nothing for the majority proposal. $3 Million wasted on an election rather than spending the $3 Million on fixing a few things at the stadiums. The owners hot air was disingenuous and the people smelled the lies. Bye Bye Bi-State.

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NAG Letter from The Neighborhood Action Group --Special Invitation

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KCPT TAKES BI-STATE TAX TO COURT

BI-STATE II: You be the Judge on KCPT Channel 19

Friday, October 29 @ 7:30 pm

 

(Rebroadcast Sunday, October 31 at 11 am and 3 pm)

 

Picture a courtroom... visualize a 12 person jury.... in another corner, a robed judge with a gavel. Evidence is entered and witnesses are called.

The case before you is that of BI-STATE II, also known as COUNTY QUESTION 1, a controversial November ballot issue that sharply divides Kansas Citians. The program you are watching is an innovative way of connecting average citizens with the sometimes-dry world of politics and elections.

In a community that is physically and psychologically separated by a state line, talk of using tax dollars in one state to help a project in another is considered a heresy in some quarters. This Election Day, Kansas Citians on both sides of the state line will be asked to approve a collective sales tax to fund renovations at the city's two professional sports stadiums and arts programs throughout the metro.

On October 29 at 7:30 pm join KCPT and a randomly selected citizen's jury as they deliberate over the arguments in front of a real judge, two top trial attorneys and witnesses drawn from both sides of the campaign.

Kansas Court of Appeals Judge Patrick McAnany presides over the case. KCPT engaged the services of UMKC trial attorneys Jeffrey Berman and Jim Wirken to present the case for and against the tax. They flipped a coin to determine which side they would represent. Witnesses include local elected officials, as well as Kansas City arts and sports officials. A national polling firm assisted KCPT in crafting the 12-person jury.

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KCUR 89.1 FM on Thursday on UP TO DATE Maybe just maybe the proponents will appear at the same time that the opponents are on. Call in and give your opinion!!

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http://www.TaxHog.com has some new information on their site.

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http://www.KCNag.com has a copy of the "As I See It Column" from the Kansas City Star with some good suggestions for after the election.

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 Share the pain or share the pleasure. Either way it is over. Election Watch at

Harry's Country Club 112 Missouri St. in River Market area. 8:30 P.M.-

Sponsored by Bye Bye Bi-State The Bi-State Coalition

NAG Letter from The Neighborhood Action Group Vol.3 #17

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 NAG Letter from The Neighborhood Action Group Vol.3 #17

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In This Issue:

HEALTH LEVY OR MAST LEVY?.........

Bi-State Spending .........................................

Final total $3,301,950.50 Million dollars...

The Wizards -The 1st casualty...................

W. K. Peters in a conversation..................

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------HEALTH LEVY OR MAST LEVY ? A $13 million tax increase with no direction

On November 11,2004 John Bluford chief executive officer of Truman Medical Center suggested that Truman Medical Center and Children's Mercy Hospital should be guaranteed 55 percent or 12 cents of the 22-cent increase in the health levy. Twenty seven days later, on December 8,2004 the Finance Committee proposed 77 percent or 17 cents to be allocated to Truman Medical Center and Children's Mercy Hospital.  

Children's Mercy is now stating that they do not need money from the potential tax increase.

John Bluford on November 11,2004 stated that MAST should get 30 percent or 7 cents.  

On December 8,2004 the Finance Committee proposed 16 percent or 3.5 cents.

Jason White, assistant director for MAST stated that MAST needs 48 percent or 10.5 cents of the 22-cent increase in the health levy to meet its growing financial needs.

The Neighborhood Action Group believes the medical care that health care providers perform for the indigent is important.

The Neighborhood Action Group believes the medical care and other services that Mast Ambulance provides is equally important. NAG is aware of the increasing costs incurred by the health care providers for their services and the obvious need that health care providers must acquire increased revenue sources, especially in this challenging era of budget cuts.  

We also understand that City Hall diverted more than $5 million from the health levy to fund the health department in fiscal year 2004 - 2005.  This should be restored to the purpose that the voters intended it for in 1989. This type of fund diversion should stop.  

MAST should receive operating funding to ensure quality emergency ambulance service through out the city. The audit produced by Mark Funkhouser, City Auditor provides a starting point for the administration of MAST.   The most important criteria is quality and not low bid or low cost.  The only way to ensure that taxes are distributed in the manner the public intends is to have a separate levy for MAST. A seperate levy for Mast just as the city maintains separate sales taxes for Police, Fire and KCATA.

Terrence Nash

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Bi-State Spending

So why did Oppenheimer and Co. in Neeew Yoooork City give $5000.00 to Freedom Inc. Does Oppenheimer sell bonds? Who works for Oppenheimer and Company in Kansas City? Who keeps encouraging the use of bonds instead of the "pay as you go" method of paying bills?

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Final total $3,301,950.50 Million dollars Over $500.00 for ballons! $6000.00 for the light bulb design for the yard signs!

Election Night Party- $4030

Community for Urban Progress got $5000 for Voter Contact

Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce got $18,931 for Volunteer Support Phone Charges , Catering and Community Outreach

Lathrop and Gage got $25,170 for Professional Services and Expenses

On 11-2 2004 Lathrop and Gage got $120,000 for Professional Fees and Expenses

Arts Council of Metropolitian Kansas City got $10,000 for reimbursement for staff costs and expenses. A non-profit used it's staff for an election campaign?

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------The Wizards -The 1st casualty of the new downtown arena

The cheerleaders at the Kansas City Star for the downtown arena and Bi-State II have failed to analyze the business of professional sports in Kansas City.  Mr. Hunt is selling the Wizards because Kansas City would not be able to support 4 professional sports teams if a NHL or NBA franchise moves to the new arena in 3 or 4 years.  A study done by the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City done in the spring of 2001 shows that metropolitan Kansas City has only 592,000 people to support 3 teams this would drop to 440,000 people if a 4th team is added.  New York and Los Angles have over 2 million people to support each professional sports team.  Kansas City ranks as the 25th largest metro area.  With 3 or 4 professional sports teams Kansas City would rank 45 out of 45 in comparison to population to support each team.

The Kansas City Business Journal on October 1,2004 had an article; Study questions market's ability to support teams.  This article stated an analysis by American City Business Journals Inc. ranked Kansas City as nation's fifth-most overextended market for sports.  This is with the current 3 professional sports franchises.  

In conclusion Mr. Hunt is a businessman and the Wizards would not be able to compete with the NHL or NBA for the limited amount of money available for people to spend on professional sports.  Mr. Hunt is trying to manipulate the uninformed into supporting one-sided lease agreements for Arrowhead Stadium. Terrence Nash

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W. K. Peters in a conversation with several people from the Neighborhood Action Group "It took over $3,000,000.00 for BiState to win in one county. That means that to win in Johnson and Clay it would take near $6,000,000.00 more to guarantee a win in both. Hell that's $9,000,000.00 and you can bet them Johnson County carpetbaggers have started getting that together right now for the next one."

"You guys better get started cause that means that you got to come up with near $70,000 to beat them." "I ain't giving you nothing! cause you wouldn't listen to me last time." "You wasted a lot of your money." " If you guys would just try to get along with each other and quite doing things three and four times it"d cost a lot less money and a lot less time."

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Check them out---------------- be informed or beware www.FieldofSchemes

www.KCNag.com www.TaxHog.com www.KansasMeadowlark

www.blogkc.com www.JacksonCountyTaxpayers.org

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Seasons Greeting from The Neighborhood Action Group

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