Kansas City Week in Review – January 17, 2020
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Kansas City Week in Review – January 17, 2020

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date on KCUR FM Steve Kraske thank you to Eric Wesson senior
writer of the call thank you to forty one action news consumer
investigative reporter Cat Reid and thank you from your Kansas
city star Dave Helling did you know we have some staff members
here KCPT who will yawnif I ever mentione state politics
yet in many respects what happens in our state
governments can have more direct impact on us than
anything that goes on in Washington this week within
four hours of one another the governors of Kansas and
Missouri deliver their annual state of the state addresses we
will build the Buck O’neill bridge
not sure if mayor Quinton Lucas was on his feet and applauding
governor Parson’s next line these mayors understand my
commitment to support the second amendment for law
abiding citizens and let me be clear
during my six years the United States Army twenty two years in
law enforcement and as a lifetime member of the NRA I
have never ever wavered my support for the second
amendment in Kansas governor Laura Kelly taking a dig at
Missouri as she tries to push Medicaid expansion across the
finish line as she outlines her top priorities for the year so
if nothing else surely maintaining Kansas’ one
hundred and fifty nine year tradition of beating Missouri is
something we can all get behind what did we learn anything from
the biggest speeches of the year for both Laura Kelly in
Kansas and Mike parson in Missouri Cat Reid while he live
in the Kansas city metro area the Buck O’Neil announced that
was just a huge deal we knew that these discussions were
under way but the actual announcement is is very big I
actually pulled out an old story we had done nearly two
years ago talking about how they still haven’t found the
funding so that was a major announcement that’s like a two
hundred million dollar bridge I didn’t think the state had any
money well it’s going to be funded by at a few different
things of course we had our local sales tax renewal will be
going towards that there were some grant money and then and
we’ve been told that the way that the state was able to come
up with their portion was through the twenty nineteen
bond issue that the governor raised Eric for you in
those speeches the biggest surprise ar announcement that
was made I guess the lack of an announcement I I saw the
governor say something about the second amendment and the
rights to have firearms but what about the illegal firearms
and what about the violence
that’s going on in Kansas city Saint
Louis and Springfield I would have thought it would have been
more of an impact about was the state’s position on those
things as well interestingly wasn’t just governor Mike
parson not mentioning you know not wanting to do anything on
guns Laura Kelly never mentions guns period
no that’s true she’s I had a long record as a state senator
Nick as being a pro NRA senator which surprise a lot of
Democrats when she became the democratic nominee for governor
that said Mike Parson’s backtracking on gun legislation
I thought was really a notable here he’s up for reelection
this year you just heard his statement no he had indicated
that he might have been open to some tweaks to gun laws
involving like domestic abusers in tough homes situations
but he has clearly walked away from that now given the
election year pressures is the election year pressure also why
he wants to get money for the Buck o’neil bridge then as well
to help get more votes from Kansas city let’s stay on the
Buck o’neil bridge for a minute because it’s part of a very
sophisticated effort by the governor to preempt Kansas city
as a major player in the governor’s race first of all
before we applaud too much for this announcement from
the governor remember the state owns the current Buck o’neil
bridge and in the real world they should pay all of the cost
of replacing it no local money and really no federal money
there’s a bridge in St Louis name for Stan Musual who used
to play baseball they call it the Stan Span no local money
was involved in building that bridge was all state money so I
think the governor is getting a little credit for something
that maybe he shouldn’t having said that he removed Jason
Holtzman as a potential supporter for Nicole Galloway
in this district is now has a state job state senator he
removed Kiki Curls she’s now got a state job she’s not on
the floor defending the Democrats in Kansas city he’s
fully funding the Buck o’neil bridge I mean the whole idea of
pre empting Kansas city as a democratic stronghold in the
governor’s race is pretty obvious from governor parson
we’re going to return to the the state of the state address’s
what this program as we tackle specific issues this week
though the democratic candidates for president
debated for the last time before they face that first big
test the Iowa caucuses remarkably while she wasn’t even
on the stage Kansas governor Laura Kelly became a breakout
star in what some observers
called the most awkward moment of the
debate it was a slip up from senator Amy Klobuchar who has given evidence
of how democratic women can take down Republican men even
in red states like Kansas Kansas have the woman governor
right now and she beat Kris Kobach and her name is I’m very
proud to know her and her name is
governor Kelly thank you I am I am so proud to call her
friend and I know her and and and she and she is known to me
and and she is known by her name of
course and her name which I am coming I am coming to and
shall I say the name you want me to say here Kelly it’s Kelly
one of her names is Kelly it’s either her first name or it’s
her last name or her favorite
color thank you>I can’t
remember last time a Governor Kansas actually had such
national billing in a presidential debate never mind
on the late show is Kelly taking this a good humor Steve
she is she tweeted out afterwards that that democratic
women can win red states in sort of accord with what
Senator Klobuchar was saying I I don’t think this is a huge huge
deal but it was very funny and what it’s one of the most
painful moments I’ve seen in a
while having been on this show before
it can happen I mean you’re
talking about someone and suddenly so
your mind blinks out at having said that though it suggests
that someone talked talked to
Amy Klobuchar before the debate
said Hey mention Laura Kelly yes because their friendship is
probably not what to billed it
but the idea of bringing up Laura
Kelly as somebody was a democratic women in a red
state who actually beat Kris Kobach there are parallels
people say Hey Barbara Bollier who is running for
the United States Senate as a Democrat this time around this
is a great omen for her as she’s running potentially
against Kris Kobach in this year’s a U.
S. Senate race but is that an
unfair comparison are there differences between a Laura
Kelly in a Barbara Bollier there might be Nick we’re
talking about two different races here to begin with you
know Kansans have a long history of going alternating back and
forth between Democrats and Republicans for governor but
when it comes to the US Senate they haven’t elected a Democrat
since nineteen thirty two with the longest streak in the
nation so different set of issues different set of
emotions attached to those issues that said we’re we are
talking about Kris Kobach here and Democrats think they’ve got
a real shot with seantor Bollier you mentioned Laura Kelly was
from Topeka and also out was not as liberal as and many
people thought on the issue of say guns but also other issues
to Barbara Bollier is much more strident on those
issues she’s also from the richest County and the richest
city in the entire state how does that play in places like
Hutchinson and Hays and Colby
and Salina well so far it certainly
hasn’t hurt her fundraising as she says she’s raised about a
million dollars in this race but she is a different
candidate we’re also looking at someone who was a Republican
and switched parties so it’ll be interesting to see how it
plays out the Democrats believe that if Barb Bollier is to
have a chance Kris Kobach has to be the Republican nominee
that’s why many sort of mainstream Republicans now that
Mike Pompeo is out of the race which we all believe are lining
up behind Roger Marshall who’s the first district congressman
Bob Dole endorsed Roger Marshall this week that was an
important signal to a lot of sort of more mainstream
Republicans in the state of Kansas there is still a fear
Kris Kobach and the if there is to be a chance for the doom
Democrats it will have to be because he’s the nominee and
because Bollier runs a campaign assuming she’s
the nominee very similar to what the Laura Kelly did for
governor you know that Senator Bollier is from Johnson County
Nick is interesting because Kansas does have something of a
history of steering away from candidates who are from Johnson
County governor bill graves was from Johnson County sort of
help to break that a little bit but just note that he claimed
he was from Salina that’s absolutely right just to point
out Kris Kobach used to be an overland park city councilman
then he moved to Piper in Wyandotte county I bet that
might have had something to do with this future electoral
prospects this week marks the fiftieth anniversary of the
Chiefs winning their first and only Super Superbowl
it was January eleventh nineteen seventy their opponent
the Minnesota Vikings it was Super Bowl four at Tulane
stadium in New Orleans after
winning the biggest prize in
professional football the chiefs would return the next
day to a hero’s welcome in a parade downtown while the chiefs
still have to defeat the Tennessee Titans on Sunday
before heading to the Superbowl in Miami there’s already talk
of a parade chief of police Rick Smith telling the board of
police commissioners this week that a route has been chosen
and requests for aid from other area law enforcement
agencies have been made now fifty years ago as we saw there
it went around Grand Avenue is that the route is that the plan
still do it downtown I don’t know but it that’s where the
Royals went or at least a sort of circled around someone
assumes that’s where the parade would be it’s a wide street it
can be secured that type of thing you know maybe it’s a
little unfortunate that they’re planning a parade before the
game actually takes place maybe that’ll little me try to keep
it quiet yeah I mean to keep it quiet the word jinx was using
several times I feel a little nervous even discussing it on
the program ah interestingly
when I look back at that old footage and
I’m looking at the dates as wow they played the Superbowl
and the next day they did a parade does it seem hard to
believe that this if the chiefs win the Superbowl in Miami the
next day would be the parade on that Monday that would be
kind of difficult to get back up here that late with all the
interviews and all the hoopla that comes after the game to
fly back up here and have a parade the next day but it’s
doable but I think it should began on Brooklyn the old
Municipal Stadium sight and go down Brooklyn eighteen street
go over to Union Station and then have a really start at the
group where it first started absolutley Steve Nick there’s
not a public official in the
Kansas city metro who wants to touch
these questions right now because we don’t want to be
accused of jinxing this team because they have two more games
to play that they have to win before they get that parade OK
that was fifty years ago for
that person but bowl a hundred years
ago this week prohibition began in the United States while more
than fifteen hundred federal agents were tasked with
enforcing the nationwide ban on the production and sale of
alcohol according to an interesting piece on KMBC nine
news the punitive new law actually had very little impact
in Kansas city we did not recognize prohibition at all
not one alcohol related arrest during all prohibition how was
that possible there’s one reason Tom Pendergast basically
like the mayor reports to him
the chief of police reports to him
but so does the mob boss he bribed law enforcement it was
all because Pendergast was making so much money and was
basically able to pay off everybody that report from
channel nine you may notice a lot of chatter
this week about the parallels between what happened with
prohibition and America’s current ban on marijuana this
is the year those with severe medical ailments can legally
use pot in Missouri yet not one
mention not one word about marijuana
in governor Mike parson’s big speech this week not one word
from Laura Kelly in Kansas so no movement to expand the
legalization of marijuana in
either state well ten petitions
have been filed in Mssouri to legalize recreational marijuana
and four of those have been approved for circulation for
signatures but we haven’t seen the formation yet of any major
campaign around one of those now I would make the point Nick
that the legislative sessions are going to be interesting but
some of the most fascinating action is going to be
completely outside of what happens in Jefferson city and
Topeka in Kansas they’re pushing a constitutional amendment
on abortion which will galvanize everyone or all kinds
of political leaders in the state in Missouri there’s a big
push to expand Medicaid in doing it again outside the
purview of the capital not one what about pot not one word
about sports betting which we were also told was going to be
an easy source of revenue for both Kansas Missouri neither
governor even mentioning that either that’s correct and most
states need money if you if you really look at it so that would
be sound and I think that that would definitely be a
conversation and marijuana the tax on marijuana seems to be
very beneficial to Colorado and other states so why not have
that on your front the paragragh
perhaps taxing you’re Spotify and
Netflix subscription services is an easier a political deal I
see that Laura Kelly is trying
to raise twenty six million dollars by
now taxing you if you live in Kansas and all of that’s going
to be a heavy lift because the popularity of those services and
the difficulties in enforceing
but easier than marijuana and sports betting
I’m assuming on a political basis well we’ll see
by the way we should note that the the state of Missouri will
announce next week where the dispensaries will be for
medical marijuana across the state including the Kansas city
area twenty four dispensaries in the fifth congressional
district when those dispenseries open and medical
marijuana goes on sale I do believe the pressure on Kansas
to do something will increase in part because a lot of Kansans
may go across to Missouri there
are some legal question about what
happens if they go back across the state line there is work on
sports betting in both state capitals but that’s a heavy
lift as well and then this taxation thing is going to be
difficult doctor Martin Luther king junior would be ninety one
years old this year even though his birthday was on Wednesday
most of us will remember on his official holiday on Monday and
as Dave Helling pointed out on last week’s program we’ll be
marking the day here in Kansas city while his name is being
taken down from scores of street signs in the heart of
our city what happened to those plans to find a new way of
honoring king by asking the public what they’d like to see
happen Eric I haven’t heard anything it’s been the best
kept secret in town as far as what the plan B will be I know
some of the people I have kinda lick their wounds a little bit
and kind of there was some focus on a park on
forty seventh street doing some beautifying it and
doing some other things with it I haven’t heard anything
nobody’s even called in and said anything about it Cat the public
comments closes in mid February but it has been
remarkably quiet you know previously when we had this
conversation people talked about sixty third they talked
about other options but I haven’t heard many people in
our city talking about this I think that’s because the city
simply couldn’t come together on a solution on any kind of
consensus as to where to go here and I think that makes it
difficult for the city council members to talk about Nick
there’s no clear path forward here I’m not sure this ninety
day comment period is going to
change much of that and I and in
addition to that the conversation suddenly shifted
to naming a street after the former city manager Troy Schulte
so people are confused about what how does he get
a street and we haven’t resolved this thing for Dr King yet I think there will be some
discussion of this broad issue
next Monday on Martin Luther king day around the community
because I think some of the wounds from that discussion
continue but I think all my colleagues Steve is of right we
still don’t know what to do I mean that that’s the problem
the problem is what do we do and no one has come up with the
aha moment that says do X or Y or Z and as long as that’s the
case you might say Prospect Steve might say Troost up Cat
may say something different what it’s all it’s all
speculation until someone comes up with a a real solution and
so far that’s eluded the city celebrating doctor king is more
than just a street name of course former Lee’s Summit
school superintendent Dennis
Carpenter speaking out about Martin
Luther king day this week in a social media post he says it’s
interesting watching the MLK day folks crwaling out and
pushing that once a year
celebrations but they all ghosts he says
during the year when the real work is happening what are we to
make of that does he feel he didn’t get the support from
black leaders for his efforts to address racial disparities
when he led the Lee’s summit school district well I’ll say
just in general that applies to a lot of people almost everyone
has an MLK celebration every year and
then the rest of the year they kind of forget about what the
man was all about so I don’t know that it’s so targeted I
think that that’s something our entire country does I think it
was more toward the Lee’s summit school district and why
you know some of the parents did come together they’ve organized
and started a group out in the Lee’s summit area but I I think
I haven’t talked to him but I think his position is that
nobody really rallied around to support him and now they got a
superintendent candidate that they have in there there were
four candidates none of them were black yes and so they and
they pick a white gentleman from who was the superintendent
of schools in Wright city about fifty minutes ride west of
Saint Louis yeah I think there’s some trepidation there
Nick again this community just went through this very
difficult conversation about race and you lose Dennis
carpenter the first African American superintendent you
wind up with for white candidates flocked to succeed
him you have a white school board you have white leadership
in the district I think that that has rob some people the
wrong but it was considered Lee’s summit though with few
African Americans who actually applied for the position and
they wanted somebody who had superintendent experts and a
few did well and some people say that in looking at the
candidates they would have preferred to see the the woman
who is serving as an around just go ahead and and keep
moving forward if they were going to choose so a white
candidate I think we will see a lot of changes in Lee’s summit
is with the this next round of school board elections being
because you have a lot of the seats are gonna be filled by
new people Kansas will make is working to reduce racial
disparities this week to at least in one narrow area had a
bill just introduced would ban discrimination against
dreadlocks and other natural hairstyles currently Kansas
employers can find people because of the dreadlocks are
not high in the middle but is the evidence that’s really
happening go ahead I haven’t I’ve seen
incidents were young people have said that they were
discriminated against for jobs because of their hair style not
so much dread locks but braids and other things and in
particular so I’ve heard about that happen we’ve seen these
headlines in the news stories elsewhere in this bill was
inspired actually by I’m in incidents in New Jersey where
high school wrestler had to cut his dreadlocks last year before
a match but you know dial add this the soap company they
sponsor twenty nineteen survey a thousand black in a thousand
white women employed full time in an office or sale setting on
the survey found with black women’s hair was three point
four times more likely to be perceived as on professional
and that’s something I’ve heard also from a lot of women in the
news and broadcast news struggle with that too
California by the way I New York state both happen bands
now one discriminating against natural halo dreadlocks in in
employment or any other settings you get the sense Nick
that this legislation is sort of a preemptive move of no
obvious stories I’ve seen about problems in Kansas but this law
mayor maker wants to make sure it doesn’t happen one of the
issues we have most about formality whiskies about that
free bus if you remember that Kansas city met Quinton Lucas
was one of the special guests of governor Mike parson state
of the state address he was in Jefferson city trying to
convince lawmakers to help with the city’s plans to provide
free transit service in twenty twenty now the city council
voted to approve it but the city still leaves eight million
dollars to make that happen does the man expect the state
to pay for that the mayor would like the state to pay for part
of it and so he’s down there sort of
lobbying force not likely the because I think AA there’s some
skepticism in Jefferson city about free and fair bus service
in Kansas city broadly speaking the state doesn’t have a lot of
money and it has a lot of other things he can spend its cash on
including an underfunded public defender’s office early
childhood education there are other issues that are there but
I do think that the the big argument in Kansas city is
going to be whether or not the street car which now gets a
payment from the city of Kansas city should give up that money
and apply it to free bus service that argument is coming
and we’ll see that probably in the next six weeks yeah I think
mayor Lucas is a smart man he understands very clearly
there’s no money to be run out of Jeff city for a Kansas city
issue right now that said the politics of this issue are
really interesting to me Nick because maybe on some level
they’ve gotten away from city leadership here like the mayor
he’s out of working to get this done people are expecting it to
happen now they almost can’t walk away from it that the that
the the people be so upset if that doesn’t transpiring the
months of from Boston the free bus service people are
expecting it he’s got to deliver this thing now one
night be able to get it from one of those tips maybe one of
the bonuses are community we did the housings program I’ll
the agreement they wanted to provide for the tenants bill of
rights and having a new office in the mayor’s office took to
provide rights for tenants in enforcement that was also
coming from tiff money there’s only a certain amount of that
you can come up to that little white Allah Reid they want what
twenty six million it’s more of a Center some state million
therefore we bust are now than they were
yeah they they always what what is the significance of what
free bus service this is it would help people that don’t
have income are limited income fixed income be able to get
around a lot of people have if you figure if you have to buy a
bus pass as fifty dollars a month or a hundred dollars a
month that’s money you could put somewhere else and the
philosophy is that means that there’s been a more money in a
grocery store there’s more tax money being made and there’s it
would help low income families under estimate for a second
Nick what free bus service would be in for folks who are
mired in poverty in this community for a lot of people
there thinking on no big deal it’s a very big deal for a huge
section of our community an important step forward in again
they’re expecting the mayor to deliver on that have one other
thing the bus companies get paid by ridership bi people
actually get on the bus if they do it free then that means
there’s an increase in ridership so they make more
money from the federal government by having a riders
on the on the bus now when you put a program like this
together every week you can get every headline what was the big
story we missed Kansas city turning bright red
was it a help from high places at the Vatican the pope spotted
with the Holmes Jersey a new man is hitting all streets yes
the potholes are back with a vengeance thankfully I didn’t
company tires but pretty close to get your credit cards ready
because the damage is just about to begin you will no
longer need a photo ID devoted Missouri the state Supreme
Court striking that low down could this be true after
fifteen years of building finally goes up on the mission
gateway site after a slew of negative John headlines a
bright spot the country’s largest senior care referral
service in place for mom announcing six hundred new jobs
as they move to the sprint campus in overland park and
paper all plastic not for much longer in prairie village the
city council ready to adopt the ban on plastic bags I’m up to a
ten cent fianc paperbacks there was a some options to the
story this wasn’t one of those stories or something else cat
well I have to go with cheese but as a secondary story I
would also say all of the job announcements we’ve had
especially concerning hallmark and you also look at the
Crayola cafe closing in crown center twenty years later yeah
syntax when I visit Kansas city for the first time I ate there
when I was in seventh grade I’m interestingly though it’s not
in our neck of the woods it’s in Wichita a bit further away
the twenty eight hundred jobs lost that huge amount huge deal
that will have an impact by the way on the state of Kansas
budget yeah so what was your big story we missed the state
Supreme Court ruling on voter ID in misery we have fought
over that issue for years in misery the courthouse saying
wall the impact on the twenty twenty election on down ballot
races might be profound that Eric I think one has Fargo
flown under the radar locally and nationally a missing black
women and children I think that is a very serious issue that we
have going on especially in this area in independence there
was human trafficking going on and now we get comments all the
time when we actually did a housing for and several people
got up to the microphone and wanted to talk about that issue
even though we were centered on housing but clearly that is an
issue couple things for the record I was here for the
chiefs Superbowl where I was not here for the Great
Depression he was here from prohibitions
on the the importance for this week you talk about the plastic
bag band into curry village between all the Kansas city
Missouri is prohibited by state law from an acting a ban on
plastic bags at the grocery store that should be noted and
that is how we give thanks to a new survey was I Nick Haines
from all of us at KCPT thanks for spending part of the
weekend with this

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