Support KCK school bonds, Bill Hutton and Kathy Wolfe Moore in Wyandotte County

Voters should approve a no-tax bond plan to improve Kansas City, Kansas, Public Schools

Voters should approve a no-tax bond plan to improve Kansas City, Kansas, Public Schools

The local races aren’t nearly as exciting on the Wyandotte County ballot this fall as they are in  Johnson County. But  three crucial ones deserve attention. Voters have good reasons to:

— Approve a $235 million, no-tax increase bond issue to improve educational facilities for 22,000 students in Kansas City, Kansas, Public Schools.

— Elect Bill Hutton in the 5th District Kansas Senate contest and re-elect Kathy Wolfe Moore in the 36th District Kansas House race.

In addition, voters have the opportunity to elect Democrat Jay Sidie to the U.S. House, ousting incumbent Republican Kevin Yoder.

The bond issue comes at a key  time for the Kansas City, Kansas, school district. Superintendent Cynthia Lane has earned a solid reputation for trying to upgrade teaching skills and academic performances in the urban district.

School officials are stressing the fact that  the bonds would not require a tax increase. That’s exactly what other districts on both  sides of the state line have done for years, with great success. The flip side, of course, is that property taxes would slowly go down as past bonds are paid off if voters reject the new plan.

But in Wyandotte County, which has its share of urban-related ills such as crime and a lower-educated workforce, residents should not turn their backs on this chance to invest in a much better school district.

The district has published lots of information about how the money would be used. They include safety and security enhancements; two new elementary schools and two new middle schools; new playgrounds at nine elementary schools; and plenty of needed maintenance on aging buildings.

In the legislative races, Hutton and Wolfe Moore stand out as solid candidates. Their efforts will be needed in the Kansas Legislature in 2017 to battle any new destructive economic and social policies of Gov. Sam Brownback.

Hutton, an attorney, has the tougher task. A Democrat, he is trying to oust incumbent Republican Steve Fitzgerald. Fitzgerald won his seat in the Brownback-led ultra-conservative purge of more moderate members in 2012.

But Hutton should have the  advantage this year. In the August primaries, voters across Kansas shoved some GOP conservative members out of office. Hutton is speaking on on the need to properly support schools, beyond the pablum that Fitzgerald spouts. Hutton has endorsements from the Mainstream Coalition, the Kansas National Education Association and various labor groups.

Wolfe Moore, business director for the University of Kansas Hospital, has been a top-notch fighter for schools as well as for social programs to help Kansans who need assistance.

Nearby, Johnson County voters on Nov. 8 are getting ready to send more Democrats and moderate Republicans to Topeka, continuing to oust ultra-conservative GOP members in the House and Senate.

Wolfe Moore can provide the experienced leadership needed to help new members hit the ground running and get Kansas back on the right track, even with Brownback as governor the next two years.

 

206 Thoughts.

  1. Mr. Abouhalkah,
    As much as I’d like to support KCKPS in their “no tax increase” bond issue, I can’t — they’ve not proven in the past that they could manage their monies dedicated to facilities. Case in point: it’s been known for some time that they’ve had facilities that needed upgrading. So what did they do? Built a totally-new stadium for a school that already had an athletic field on their property. Why didn’t they just upgrade the existing facility? In the meantime, classrooms have been neglected. A facility that probably only gets used ten percent of the time should not come before classrooms, and that’s what they decided to do.

    Only after they finished their new field did they decide “now we need to go back to the public with our hat in our hand and ask for more.” Priorities need to be adjusted, and I have no confidence in giving the current administration the checkbook.

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