Hot Tax Mess

County politics can be an adventure to say the least.

One look at the hot mess that’s taken place across the river in Clay County over the last few years tells that story all too well.

Presiding Commissioner Jerry Nolte has continued to fight the good fight for Clay County taxpayers and continues to be met with corrupted opposition from Commissioners Ridgeway and Owen.

This critically-thinking Newsdog wonders why they, the aforementioned Ridgeway and Owen, continue to torpedo their own boat, especially during election season.

Not content to sit on the sidelines, however, it’s almost as if, when the county crazy train gauntlet got thrown down, Jackson County laughed and said, “hold my beer!”

Hot mess number one—property tax assessments. After assessments went out in July, property owners were shell-shocked, to say the least, with assessed values skyrocketing through the roof.

The Dog spoke with one individual who was slapped with 1,700-1,900% increases on his properties.

Those two were for unimproved parcels near 43rd street and Flora Avenue, not exactly in the city’s well-heeled zip codes.

The Dog editorialized about the debacle earlier this summer but has been eclipsed, and rightfully so, by KCTV5 journalist Angie Ricono, who has blown the lid off the scandal.

Her latest report exposes thousands of emails between the high-dollar consultant and the County Assessor who, by the way, thinks the Jackson County taxpayers saddled with a tax bill the size of Montana should just get a loan or move out of the property. Seriously?

Now, hot tax mess number two— the recent independent audit of the county’s Community Backed Anti-Crime Tax (COMBAT). The results were startling, but not unexpected.

COMBAT has been turned into a slush fund for Jackson County and the recent audit shows that still to be the case.

Apparently, shelling out over $2 million for new jail doors falls under the purview of what a Community Backed Anti-Crime Tax should pay for.

Additionally, County Executive Frank White’s assistant got his county-issued Chevy truck paid for out of COMBAT funds.

Let’s not forget that MLK celebration that funneled roughly $60,000 to line the pockets of the SCLC last spring, too!

Little bit outside the COMBAT mission statement there Mr. Executive, but hey, what’s a little corruption among friends anyway.

Being the purist in the room, this Dog remembers when COMBAT funded such worthy programs as CAT and CAN police officers for Old Northeast Incorporated, the now defunct Community Development Corporation that partnered with Northeast neighborhoods on a variety of development and anti-crime projects.

The Northeast Mobile Crime Watch program, a program that was a national model for community backed anti-crime efforts and was also funded partially by COMBAT.

The drop in crime in ONE Inc. neighborhoods was measurable and appreciated by area residents whose quality of life increased drastically due to the drop in crime.

This Dog thinks it’s all about integrity in oversight, something sorely lacking in government these days.

When high-level county employees abuse the taxpayers and their hard-earned money the way Jackson and Clay Counties have recently, it’s time for systematic change starting at the top.

Note to the County Executive and the County Assessor: We’re not your serfs, you work for us, not the other way around. We’re watching.

Want Northeast News articles sent straight to your inbox each week? Subscribe below!
Enter your email address and click on the Get Instant Access button.
We respect your privacy

Comments are closed.

  • No Free Lunch

    December 11th, 2019

    There are a couple of old adages that this NewsDog uses that would apply to last week’s passing of an […]

    Winning the Internets

    December 4th, 2019

    Last week, the Historic Northeast community won the local internet singlehandedly and all it took was a stray goat wandering […]

    Jackson County’s message to taxpayers: Pay up, sucka!

    November 27th, 2019

        That’s the takeaway from last Thursday’s Jackson County Board of Equalization meeting in which the board chose to […]

    Corporate Welfare: Volume II

    November 20th, 2019

    Last week, our illustrious City Council gave away another $36 million in taxpayer guaranteed bond cash to fund yet another […]

    There’s graceful winning and sore losing. 

    November 13th, 2019

    In last Tuesday’s municipal election where Question 5 sought to return The Paseo name to what was briefly Dr. Martin […]

  • Celebrate HNE

    November 6th, 2019

    In lieu of an opinion column this week, this civic-minded News-Dog would like to take a moment to recognize some […]

    Election Homework Part Duex

    October 30th, 2019

    On Tuesday, Nov. 5, Kansas City voters will have an opportunity to right a horrible wrong perpetrated last year by […]

    Sounds of silence

    October 23rd, 2019

    An eerie silence descended in the northern environs of Historic Northeast last week as the sun set on the Union […]

    Illegal Dumping Update

    October 16th, 2019

    Followers of the News-Dog will remember back in our September 18th edition we caught an illegal dumper in our alley […]

    A rigged game

    October 9th, 2019

    Welcome to Jackson County, where the game is rigged and winning is next to impossible. The Jackson County Board of […]

  • Faces Of Northeast

  • Postcard

  • Remember This?

    Remember This: Wind Up Toys

    December 11th, 2019

  • retorts illustrated by bryan stalder

  • Want articles sent directly to your inbox each week? Subscribe below!
    We respect your privacy and will not distribute your information.