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February 09, 2007

Comments

politicalpal

The neighborhood progress reports sound like a good idea. I hope he requires the city to finally follow through on the FOCUS plan.

Christy

It is great to see Albert Riederer present specific ideas. I am impressed. I have not made up my mind who to vote for, but it is nice to see a candidate with substance finally. Good job Albert!

It's impressive the campaign Albert has put together in three weeks. I'll have to read the details, but I might even go so far as to say I agree with them at first glance (well, maybe not the cracking down on loud parties bit...)

Most of the other candidates have taken months to get to this point, and Albert has kept his nose clean to boot.

Go Al! We all know his resume, but looking forward to seeing what he has to say.

Roscoe

I agree with Christy. We have enough grandstanding and promise making in this field, it's nice to finally see some substantive ideas that are actually feasible. I especially like the idea of the neighborhoods assessing the job gov't is doing. No bad at all!

Eliot Ness

What nothing on organized crime?

Blogotics

Hey Albert how about addressing the Four Freedoms corrupted endorsement. You have people like Gray, Scott Burnett and Steve Glorioso stealing endorsements for your campaign how are we supposed to believe anything you "propose". It looks more like political grandstanding with a bucket of empty promises you don't have to keep. Integrity is a valued commodity and one not associated all the time with political candidates. Your campaign lost my vote when your paid soldiers stole the endorsement from Four Freedoms and proved that you lack the integrity to be the next mayor.

ml

Solid agenda. I think his priorities are right. It all ties together and what is really promising is the Conference on Neighborhoods BEFORE the budget session. I'm excited!!!

Yes 2:47, Albert has always kept his nose clean, and has always stood up for anyone in need. He is head and shoulders above the rest.

Nick Carraway

Hey Spivak why didn't you mention consolidating the IT departmets. I have thought this should have been done for years. Good work Al!

Jake

Kudos Mr. Riederer. Just what the City needs. Good luck to you I hope you make it to the Mayor's office.

ml

Hey Blogistics. Were you at the Four Freedoms voting? Do you know how it works? I'd be interested to hear. No organization is void of politics.

try2Bobjective

Kudos to all of the Reiderer staff for posting entries on this thread.

Note to Redierer staff: we don't buy it.

Another note to Riederer staff: you'll go further and help your credibility by eliminating a few of your more corrupt campaign staff, including (but not limited to) Scott Burnett, Doug Gray and Steve Glorioso.

After all, Scott Burnett and Doug Gray were caught red-handed throwing an endorsement.

What a scary group of people.

Its great the Riederer's campaign staff has discovered the internet. You might recognize them from the coordinated campaign for the '06 election. Neither is actually from Kansas City.

Also boys, Riederer has kept his nose clean? You apparently missed Albert's tenure as Jackson Co Prosecutor and the shenanigans after that. You might want to do some opposition research on your boy, because its coming. And when it does, it will be swift and decisive.

try2Bobjective

Hey ML, to remind youof the facts around the Four Freedoms endorsement, here's one of my previous posts:

A least one person on this blog made the claim that as long as Scott Burnett and Doug Gray disclosed their affiliation with Reiderer everything was “ok”. Based upon the information I have, that is definitely not the case.

I have included (below) the text of the meeting communication, sent to Four Freedoms board members concerning the endorsement vote. Note point 4 below, which asks for a recusal of voting and discussion, in the event of a conflict of interest. I’m told that Burnett/Gray voted and discussed the endorsement.

Violation of these 2 points is pretty clear, so simple disclosure definitely was not enough, and it was not “ok”. If someone would like to discuss whether Scott Burnett (or SGB Communications, his consulting firm) has any financial ties with Reiderer or his campaign, we can talk about that as well.

I believe Point 5 was also violated, but I won’t belabor the point here.

If I have gotten any of my facts wrong, please let me know. It's pretty clear, especially from this letter, that the process was intended to be fair, unfortunately things didn't work out that way.

Text of the letter:

“Four Freedoms Board Members and Candidate Screening Committee Members:

I wanted to share with you in advance the decision-making process I would like us to follow in the Mayor’s race endorsement at our meeting tomorrow morning. Attached is an outline of that process along with some worksheets I plan to use in flipchart form tomorrow.

My intent was to use a process of elimination approach that enables us to come to the best decision possible. It relies on both reaching consensus and casting ballots at various points. By using a thorough, methodical approach, I hope that we can avoid any unintended outcomes, in which the final decision is reached in a way we can all feel confident of, even if the result does not concur with our personal preference.

I head some stories about two prominent groups whose endorsement got shortchanged because of poor process.

Also, a few ground rules for tomorrow:

1. Only one person speaks at a time.

2. Everyone is given the opportunity—and is encouraged—to voice their views.

3. All participants must disclose anything that may constitute a conflict of interest.

4. Participants with any conflict involving financial compensation must recuse him/herself from discussion and voting in that race (however, may be present to hear the discussion).

5. Participants should leave any personal agenda at the door and focus instead on the best interests of the organization and LGBT community.

If you have any concerns or misgivings about what I’ve proposed, give me a call at 816-123-4567.

Thanks and I hope to see you all tomorrow at 10:00 am at the LGBT Community Center.”


Thomas

Riederer On the Issues: RIGHT ON!

Neighborhoods and Basic Infrastructure

Kansas City has made great progress in recent years. Downtown is booming and light rail is finally on its way. But we still face many challenges. Many of our neighborhoods have not received the attention they need and crime is still too much a part of our city. As mayor, I will bring corporate, civic and community groups together to solve these problems.

I will establish an annual Mayor’ Conference on Neighborhoods to be held before the city’s budget is completed. The conference will highlight the needs and successes of our neighborhoods and promote an exchange of information and ideas between citizens and city hall about what it takes to build strong neighborhoods. In conjunction with this conference I will order the Mayor’s Office of Neighborhoods to annually issue progress reports on the city’s performance in each neighborhood. These “Neighborhood Progress Reports” will hold the city accountable to its citizens and measure various indicators such as: the quality of housing; the condition of sidewalks and sewers; economic activity and children’s health. Each neighborhood will be able to assess the city’s success in meeting their needs. Has the number of abandoned buildings decreased? Are the streets and sewer systems in good condition?

The City’s FOCUS Plan defined and prioritized basic neighborhood services that citizens wanted, but the city has not implemented most of the recommendations. We need to quickly update the recommendations and begin to implement the neighborhood priorities. “Neighborhood Progress Reports” will grade our progress and hold the city accountable for addressing identified priorities and ensure that Kansas Citians are getting what they pay for from city hall.


Capital Improvements – The Five-Year Capital Improvements program should reflect balance between deferred maintenance and new improvements, as well as a regional balance to ensure that all neighborhoods benefit from the tax. The tax annually raises some $70 million and makes up one-half of the city’s capital improvements budget. The tax is working and should be renewed for another 10 years. As mayor, I will ensure that the sales tax is allocated on these principles:


1. Must meet citizen needs with respect to core municipal services: roads, sewers, bridges;
2. Must limit escalating costs in future years if maintenance is deferred further;
3. Must leverage sales tax dollars through partnerships with federal, state, county governments, and by working with CIDs, NIDs;
4. Must work within established budgetary constraints. If a project goes over budget we need to look first at reducing the project scope instead of pulling funding from other projects. Otherwise, the ‘budget’ has no meaning;
5. No capital mandates should be approved by the council without first getting input from the Public Improvements Advisory Committee (PIAC). PIAC empower neighborhoods and should continue to make the recommendations as to how all the funds should be used. I also do not support any plans to restructure the distribution formula of the tax, if that change will result in taking funding and power away from the PIAC and tie the hands of future city councils and managers to address needs, many of which cannot currently be anticipated.


Capital Maintenance – As mayor, I will dedicate more general revenue for maintenance and for the deferred maintenance backlog. Mayor Barnes has recommended $54 million for the next fiscal year. This represents a significant increase, and is still well below the $80 million that should be allocated for maintenance. As mayor, I will work with the city manager and staff to fully fund the maintenance budget by the end of my first term. I will also require every new major capital improvement (bridges, public buildings, etc.) to have a maintenance reserve built into the financing and an ongoing revenue stream attached to the project.

The city should also reserve a portion of its bonding/debt authority for an annual neighborhood infrastructure replacement program. These bond issues would enable priority projects to be funded almost immediately and would reduce the burden on the maintenance budget.


Storm/Sanitary Sewer System – Much of the city’s combined sewer system is over 100 years old. Replacing it and controlling overflow is one of the most complex and expensive infrastructure problems in history. This is a good example of a city problem that will require a mayor who can unite the city, the council and our state and federal governments in finding a solution to solve it, and I have the experience and vision to do just that. Here are a few of my ideas on how we should get started:


1. A soon to be released city report on the sewer system has included widespread community and professional input. It is my hope this document will provide a good starting point for the planning process.
2. The plan should provide for the sewer needs of the entire city. All Kansas Citians pay for our sewer system and all citizens should benefit from its improvements. While many of the most serious problems lie within the oldest parts of our city, every community – north and south – have sewer needs just as important.
3. Engage our state and federal officials in solving the problem. Kansas City is the economic engine of this region, and its basic infrastructure must be a priority. I know our state and federal officials personally, and I will use these relationships to secure assistance for our city.
4. The city will more than likely have to provide most of the funding for sewer improvements. We should look at all options as other cities have done.
5. We also need to complete the Brush Creek, Brookside Interceptor, and other storm and sanitary sewer improvements currently in the Five-Year Plan.
6. The city should also consider enacting “zero impact” development rules that would prevent new construction from pouring flood waters downstream into existing developments. This would require a combination of: detention basins, non-impervious paving, and impact fees to pay for mitigating storm and sanitary sewer improvements.


Rental Housing – This is a critical issue in our city, and we are one of the few large cities in the nation that does not have a program to deal with rental properties. In some Kansas City neighborhoods more than half the residential property is rental and many neighborhoods have substandard rental housing units.

The Mayor’s Rental Housing Administrator proposal is being funded in this year’s budget. The program should be given at least a year to work. If we don’t see results in a year, the city should then look at a landlord licensing program. The recommendations of the Rental Property Regulation Task Force should also be put in place. They would require increased code enforcement, but also effective penalties for landlords who neglect their properties.

Jack

Wow, so the folks who just elected Claire McCaskill and Susan Montee are working for Riederer. That is quite an indictment.

Go Albert! The real Democrat.

Yeah, the national climate had nothing to do with that. Its because the coordinated campaign is a bunch of geniuses who have revolutionized politics by posting on the BuzzBlog. Its like MyDD for Kansas City.

Real Blogs Give Props

The only reason Riederer has gotten this far is his ties to the legal community. His wife is a judge! What litigator in their right mind would not support Albert? They may end up in front of Sandy someday. I sure as hell wouldn't want to be arguing a case for my client knowing the entire time the judge is picturing me with a big "Funk for Mayor" button on my lapel.

Issues Matter

Regardless of who is working on the campaign it looks to me like Riederer has the best ideas. Thank you for finally trying to bring City Hall under control.

Jody Gondring

I agree, it is good to see a candidate like Mr. Riederer running for Mayor. Thanks for the great proposals, I am definitely leaning towards voting for you."

dp

I agree with "Real Blogs". With a judge for a spouse you don't even have to pick up the phone and ask for contributions. If I were a litigator I'd be getting my checkbook out right now.

Thank you Al. You are the best. I have never met a leader as compassionate as yourself, and you certainly have my vote for mayor.

I've seen you at least once roll up your sleeves, and help clean up the trash on a vacant lot. It was like watching a saint working in our midst.

I TOTALLY agree with the quality of life crime crack-down. I'm tired of drivers treating my neighborhood streets like highways (Brookside, Wornall, Oak, Rockhill) and the cops absence in speed enforcement. Additionally - it is illegal for panhandlers to camp out in intersections begging for $$ AND the fake "fund raiseres" at every plaza intersection. I'm glad to hear an candidate speak to this issue, even if the mayor has no real control over Corwin (and if Al accepts contributions from the police union we will know that he's really working for them, not for us).

Jack, nobody involved with electing Susan Montee -- no one from her campaign team, anyway -- is in any way involved with Riederer's campaign. Montee's campaign manager is managing Henry Klein's campaign and her media team is consulting with him.

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