Third District Candidates: (L to R) Melissa Patterson Hazley, Brandon Ellington (Incumbent), Melissa Robinson (Incumbent), and Sheri Purpose Hall

On Tuesday, Feb. 28, the Northeast News, Northeast Kansas City Chamber of Commerce and Citizens’ Association hosted a candidate forum for the upcoming City Council primary race on April 4, 2023. Candidates running for Third District In District and At-Large attended.

(L to R) Melissa Patterson Hazley, Brandon Ellington (Incumbent), Melissa Robinson (Incumbent), and Sheri Purpose Hall

The questions the candidates were asked at the forum, and some submitted by the audience that time didn’t allow to be asked, are below:

Every year the City seems surprised by the need for low-barrier shelters for our neighbors experiencing homelessness during extreme weather. What plan do you think could address this?

City communication is done almost exclusively in English. The website has a Google translate option, which is often inaccurate. How do you plan to expand language access to city services and programs?

How do you convince developers to build on the East Side when they learn their Return on Investment (ROI) falls short?

The Third District is large, but all six neighborhoods have monthly meetings. Will you commit to coming to our meetings at least once a year to show your support?

No job are (or?) home for homeless people can not medical treatment hydrant. (?)

I was homeless here in Kansas City for 2.5 years and now I’m a consultant for a real estate company, which has inspired me to go forward to become an inspector. But those that are homeless I believe is receiving benefits from the government due to finance their addictions. – Tip Johnson

What can be done to clean up trash throughout the city? Community service hours? We’re the trashiest city I’ve been in.

To follow on the trash question, most of you are likely aware of the landfill issue in South Kansas City whereby a developer is trying to develop a landfill in a residential area. Resolution #23061 addressing this to some degree, comes before the Council tomorrow. For existing councilmembers, what is your position on it. For the other candidates, if a permit request for a SKC landfill came before you, would you approve or deny it?

What can the City do to put pressure on the county prosecutor to do her job to punish offenders & keep them off the streets?

Language devices. In the Northeast, a lot of our residents do not speak English. When you offer solutions like more recycling and you don’t offer instructions for recycling in English only, you guarantee that folks will be left out.

Many of the residents cannot vote and have no way to hold you accountable, what will you do to better serve our non-English speaking neighbors in services, meetings and on your campaign trail?

In St. Louis, the alleys are used to place dumpsters in so that residents can place trash continuously. Is there a way we can improve such as this?

Does the City receive funds for recycling?

Everyone (senior citizens) don’t use apps. How do you address seniors and all the tech. Seniors are being shut out with tech.

Candidate Questionnaires that have been received can be found here: