Emily Wheeler
Editorial Intern

 The Public Improvements Advisory Committee (PIAC) invites Kansas City residents to share their ideas in upcoming June and July neighborhood hearings.

 PIAC hearings allow the public to speak directly to the committee members responsible for selecting projects in their districts. PIAC offers two hearing dates per district throughout the summer. PIAC funds neighborhood projects such as flood control, storm drainage, street resurfacing, bridge repairs, traffic signals and enhancements to parks and trails.

Composed of 13 members appointed by Mayor Quinton Lucas and the Kansas City City Council —including two residents from each council district and a chairperson —   PIAC gathers public input during its hearings to provide recommendations to  city council for the city-wide and neighborhood portions of the Fiscal Year 2025-26 capital budget. Funding for these projects comes from the one-cent sales tax dedicated to public improvements, with a budget of $5.3 million allocated for each council district for FY 25-26.

Applications must be submitted by Aug. 31, 2024, with notification of PIAC’s decision expected in April. If a project is selected for funding, the funds will be distributed to the appropriate city department after May 1, 2025.

Larger, multi-million dollar projects are not supported by PIAC, and applicants are encouraged to break down larger projects into phases. PIAC suggests breaking up requests for multiple features into separate applications and providing a priority number, so the committee understands the neighborhood’s most important needs.

Before submitting a PIAC request, applicants should consider the number of people impacted, as requests affecting a greater population percentage have a better chance of receiving funding. PIAC recommends creating a petition with names and addresses of affected individuals and emailing it to piac@kcmo.org by Oct. 1 to be attached to the application.

During Fiscal Year 2022-23, 830 applications were received, with PIAC allocating $30 million — approximately $5 million per district. Projects funded included the purchase, and installation, of eight cameras and wireless radios in the Paseo West Neighborhood. In District 4, improvements included the installation of eight trash cans at Budd Park, slide repairs,  a new landing area at Concourse Park and $138,000 allocated to areas near Northeast High and Middle Schools to calm traffic and improve pedestrian safety with additional signage, sidewalks and raised crosswalks.

For more information on the city’s PIAC hearing process, visit: https://www.kcmo.gov/programs-initiatives/public-improvements-advisory-committee-piac