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Archive for Thursday, March 29, 2007

City candidates share their views

March 29, 2007

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The six candidates seeking seats on the Lawrence City Commission have wide-ranging views on how much new oversight is needed for the Lawrence Police Department.

The candidates Wednesday evening were split on the issue of whether a new Citizens Police Review Board should be created that would advise the police department on policy and operation issues.

On one end of the spectrum was Commissioner David Schauner, who said the review board was a good idea.

"Our police department is our police department," Schauner told a crowd of about 70 people who attended the candidate forum at Lawrence High School. "They do answer to the citizens of Lawrence. We should work to have more regular involvement from the citizens."

On the other end of the spectrum, candidate James Bush said he couldn't support the idea of creating a new advisory board because his research had indicated they had not worked well in other communities. He also said he thought the board might be duplicative.

"I believe citizens do have a police review board," Bush said. "It is your City Commission."

The other four candidates all expressed varying levels of interest. Rob Chestnut said he would need to review the issue and wanted to determine whether it would be duplicative of outreach efforts the department already makes. Carey Maynard-Moody promised to study the idea, but said the city did need to get serious about putting more police officers downtown during evening hours. Mike Dever said he would consider creating the board if there were significant amount of interest from the community to do so and if the board weren't duplicative of current outreach efforts. Commissioner Boog Highberger said he was interested in the idea as long as the board had a clear set of guidelines. But he also said the board likely wouldn't be one of his "higher priorities" in a second term.

On other issues:

¢ The candidates expressed varying levels of support for the city's existing living wage ordinance, which requires companies that receive city tax abatements to pay all of their employees a wage equal to 130 percent of the federal poverty level for a family of three. This year that amounts to $10.73 per hour. None of the candidates specifically said the living wage ordinance should be repealed.

But Chestnut stopped short of saying that he supported the policy of automatically rejecting tax abatement requests from companies that do not pay every employee a living wage. He said looking at whether a company met the living wage standard should be a factor, but should not be the "overarching factor" in the decision-making process.

Dever and Bush also stopped short of saying they liked the living wage ordinance, but both said they would not support changing the city's ordinance because they thought it was important that the community not constantly change its economic development rules.

Highberger, Maynard-Moody and Schauner all expressed strong support for the living wage ordinance.

¢ Highberger made a point to tell the audience that some candidates in the race had accepted campaign contributions from individuals who are part of a lawsuit suing the city over its refusal to issue a building permit for a Wal-Mart at Sixth Street and Wakarusa Drive. Highberger said he was not trying to question the character or integrity of any of the candidates, but said he thought it was important that it be pointed out to voters in the interest of full disclosure.

Bush, Chestnut and Dever all listed on previous campaign finance reports that they've received donations from individuals who have an ownership interest in the disputed property at Sixth Street and Wakarusa Drive.

After the forum, Bush, Chestnut and Dever each said they had done nothing wrong in accepting such donations because campaign contributions do not influence their stance on issues.

Bush said he did take some offense at Highberger's comments, which were made during the response to a question that was not directly related to Wal-Mart or campaign finances.

"Too often there have been a couple of candidates who have suggested if you are not giving money to their campaigns but instead are giving money to someone else's campaign, that you're doing something wrong," Bush said.

The forum was sponsored by the Voter Education Coalition, a group of organizations and businesses that have banded together to host candidate forums.

Comments

bearded_gnome 7 years ago

these boards have been completely co-opted by paid bloggers representing some fairly obvious monetary interests. when will the madness end?

ridiculous! I for one have never received a cent and wouldn't take one for posting here. seems, because you can't deal with the opposing position your only recourse is to put it down with a senseless slur.

again, what I said before, the good ship PLC/GRA is getting pretty desperate to resort to this kind of stinking mud throwing and implying evil motives of its opposition. no one should vote for High-burger, yDOOM-dranyam, and Schauner just for this reason alone. if you vote for these you are rewarding this bad behavior which is plainly against the spirit of american democracy.

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tribalzendancer 7 years ago

these boards have been completely co-opted by paid bloggers representing some fairly obvious monetary interests. when will the madness end?

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hawkperchedatriverfront 7 years ago

so, the last election dealt with homeless, affordable housing, streets, sidewalks, jobs, bedroom community syndrome and now two years later , nothing done about those issues...so a police review board is a new item.

do any of the candidates have an idea about something and plan to implement it? Anything please! If not,,,why not include the missing BRAIN on the agenda.

Call Corliss for the reward information...

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

Schauner said to paper,,Im sorry for wasting millionand lying to the people of lawrence Im checking into rehab.

Boog says to the paper,,Im glad I could ripoff,cheat and lie to the people of lawrence.And I wont check into any rehab for what

COOL back away from the bong

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bearded_gnome 7 years ago

again, the evil implied to BCD when the good ship PLC/GRA is sinking. ydoom-dranyam is using global warming scare tactics in her ads. nasty mailings for the other two Boog/Schauner.

desperation. desperation. Lawrence will not be swayed by such negative campaigning and stinking mud slinging.

Bush Chestnut Dever good guys deserve to be honestly considered without the stinking mud.

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cool 7 years ago

VOTE FOR CAREY ! VOTE FOR SCHANUER ! VOTE FOR BOOG !

they are for LAWRENCE the others are as a Texan once said, you can't really buy a politician but you can RENT THEM !

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hawkperchedatriverfront 7 years ago

Neighborhood groups need to go. They are a pimple on the ass of the city. Didn't have them before 1975. Old West Lawrence was the only one. It was made up of neighbors. Neighbors no longer exist in Lawrence.

BRAIN is gone..............along with neighbors.

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bearded_gnome 7 years ago

okay, GM, I think you need a new foil hat.

Liberal, according to these folks developers are by their very nature evil despicable creatures. yet, they live in homes built by developers! may drive every day on roads built by developers. have family living in developer-built homes. oh, I fergut maybe they all live in trailers? or tents? or maybe they live out of a van that drives around and around roundabouts looking for a center, any center?

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grandmesa 7 years ago

the american way is in clear and present danger. millions think that bush is god and that the ucsa [united christian states of amerika] should rule the world

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Liberal 7 years ago

Jafs,

The reason there are vacancies is that more apartments have been built then is needed right now. The affect is single family homes become less attractive as an investment, lowering prices to make the houseing more affordable for families, as the apartmant/housing market is glutted, better deals can be had. Why is this a bad thing.

Investors quit making money and they stop building until they see a need, it is a normal cycle.

Let us use oil as an example, oil supply diminished prices rise radically...oil reserves high prices lower. Pretty simple.

It is all just a market cycle, buyers and sellers markets.

Commonly called the American Way.

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grandmesa 7 years ago

stop free speach? bearden gnome....go back to the shadow!!!! its you and your rightwing f$#k ups who are the problem I can't wait til the revolution... can you???

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Liberal 7 years ago

Reality Check,

If all you can get me on is the phrase if you are not growing you are dying....

Again, you moved here from out of the area, causing sprawl by your way of thinking.

You have not answered my question of the birth rate and people staying to live and work. What about our kids and grandchildren, should we kick them out for wanting to stay near their parents?

The Namesake of Lawrence encouraged growth from the New England area causing sprawl...explain

But the thing I am most interested in is the idea that residential growth has caused taxes to increase, that is just not the case, the lack of commercial, office and industrial growth is the problem with the tax base. We are so far out of balance in that regard the ratio is something like residents pay for 70% of all property tax while business is only 30%, a healthy community is at least going to be 6040 if not 5050.

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Liberal 7 years ago

Merrill,

Developer driven growth? That is all there is.

What are you talking about.

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bearded_gnome 7 years ago

apparently, GM is at least reading 458C's words! funny how the leftists always want to stop free speech that they don't like.


I see since I was here last, Merrill has downloaded some more biosolids. he writes as if he were an authority, cut and paste, and doesn't engage other posters, presuming himself to be above the stinking rabble.


it is pretty clear given the DOL figures, for DG co, that Lawrence lost jobs. no way to sugar-coat/spin that one away. and that was on the three amigo's watch. bye-bye.


the best they can do is put out cards/flyers that try pretty hard to imply some evil intent and evil practices by their opponents. sad. sign of desperation. ah, the good ship PLC/GRA must have hit an iceberg and capn boog is yelling all he can. first officer Schauner is bailing out the lies. and the best that Ydoom-dranyam can do is place enviro scare tv ads to run for the city commish on a blame-mankind-for-global-warming [the sky is falling!] concept. desperation desperation.

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

I print the truth and you cant take the truth evil you

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grandmesa 7 years ago

why don't you shut up 458casul? No one is stupid enough to listen to you.

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

ok lets go there look who got the big barn approved that is 3/4 vacant and is the uglyest sight with a church and a bike shop the three stooges who turned down cracker barrel next to tanger the three stooges,want to keep going BOOG SCAUNER LIARS

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KsTwister 7 years ago

Thanks reality, I went out to look for myself. Type in Lawrence and fly all you want. I found another subdivision I didn't know about too.

http://local.live.com/default.aspx?cp=38.949484|-95.098901&style=h&lvl

Come fly with me.

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Reality_Check 7 years ago

Liberal writes: "I hate to tell you Lawrence is not sprawling."

Really? Come fly with me sometime...I don't think you realize how much we have grown to the west. Much of it is hidden unless you look from above. Just compare aerial photos from 20 years ago to now. Remember, Wakarusa and everything around it was farmland...it was Dragstrip Road back then, and the only development was a dragstrip. And, take a look out side the city limits: "Lawrence" has sprawled so far into the county. There are many, many houses out there that weren't there before. To say otherwise is to be completely misinformed.

"Tell me where would you put the Sears store? The Best Buy?"

They're fine...they didn't require an adjustment to city boundaries. It's the western and eastern developement that is so shocking. [However, a case could be made that we need retail growth to occur in depressed areas, like North Lawrence. Guess what: Everyone who shops at the Sears or the Best Buy or Walmart would also drive to North Lawrence if that's where they were.]

"We are growing at our edges just as we should."

No, we should first fill in under-developed areas before any growth occurs. See above (N. Lawrence). We should grow up, and in, not out.

It's time that citizens had a chance to vote on every expansion of the town's boundaries, and major developments in the county. I bet that idea scares the heck out of the developers!

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Reality_Check 7 years ago

Liberal: First off, thanks for being the first one to tackle this.

"If you are not growing you are dying."

Who says? Please cite a source. I am so tired of hearing this overworked phrase without any acknowledgement of where it comes from...has it been proved to be true?

So, to summarize your response: We got the following from 20 years of growth, and will more of the following from 20 years of growth:

  1. Cheaper housing than if we hadn't sprawled so much or had an urban growth boundary. (Moot for those of us who already own our house, of course.)
  2. More chain stores & restaurants.
  3. Higher taxes.
  4. More traffic.

That's it? What a ripoff!

That's my point...the majority really hasn't gotten much benefit, and has suffered a lot, from the growth.

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hawkperchedatriverfront 7 years ago

the "hawk' has watched the feet stand still for years..from both sides if you will. Pass the mashed potatoes and give me a side of cole slaw. With that in mind, the roast pork is still not complete without the dessert. Lawrence does not have any dessert. LAWRENCE has not seen dessert for years. It is getting and will continue to get, soured YOGURT.

Please, will anyone PRAY for the BRAIN.....god forbids it is out a clinton park and those jam fest dudes try to smoke it. Call corliss to see how much the reward is!

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KsTwister 7 years ago

Thanks hawk I was commenting on 'dadaisms 5:37 post, and I stand corrected, your quote is much much better. People who take the time to look back at facts,whether printed or said will figure it out. I hope.

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hawkperchedatriverfront 7 years ago

KsTwister, commented that you can "give a man a foot, but you cannot make him walk"...well said. Kick the guy in the "a##" and the feet will get moving. The problem in Lawrence is that the feet and the ass are not connected and nothing is moving.

Do not feed the feet that stand still! from the works of the "hawk", 3/30/07

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jafs 7 years ago

Couranna,

It is the most significant election at the local level.

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couranna1 7 years ago

Don't people realize that this is small town politics and that there are major issues in this country and the world that deserve attention. Lawrence will be small no matter how hard it tries. It is like the little 4ft dude who wants to lift as much weight as the world's strongest man ain't gonna happen This election is not significant on any scale JUST A DOSE OF REALITY

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jafs 7 years ago

A few thoughts:

If Lawrence is such a desirable place to live, why are there so many vacant houses on the market and vacant apartments/houses for rent?

Why do people seem to think we MUST grow?

If it is acceptable to put policies into place that make it easier for development to occur, why isn't is acceptable to do the opposite? Neither one of these scenarios is neutral.

Having lived in the area for about 10 years, I can say that it isn't clear to me that Lawrence is a better place to live than it was 10 years ago. It is different - there have been benefits and drawbacks to the growth.

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jafs 7 years ago

The figures on job gains and losses are hard to interpret.

Overall, Lawrence had a gain of about 1800 jobs, which didn't include losses (Chamber of Commerce).

Douglas County had an "average" loss of 900 jobs.

What happened in Lawrence is by no means clear.

And, why is it that some people feel the need to SHOUT all of their comments?

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

MERRILL YOU NEED ELECTRIC SHOCK TREATMENT,

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Richard Heckler 7 years ago

Additional development can often cost local governments more money than it generates. Communities will use protection of open spaces as a means to avoid having to extend sewer lines and build new schools and infrastructure thus avoiding tax increases.

With land conservation generally a whole community benefits because it gives people access to nature. It helps to keep energy costs down, improves the air quality and it can avoid or at least minimize traffic congestion.

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Richard Heckler 7 years ago

Taxpayers get stuck with paying for maintenance of all new infrastructure which is why new housing does not cover the cost of community services. Each new home adds to the cost of community services = more taxes for homeowners. Over built residential drives down the value of homes which is happening as we speak which could increase taxes.

Over built retail does not generate revenue enough to cover the cost of community services nor does it generate the level of sales tax projected/necessary. The only industry that makes money is the real estate industry. Over built retail means spaces sit empty not generating revenue or jobs and comes back on the taxpayer. Every community needs each retail space to generate maximum revenue.

Just because speculators purchase property does not guarantee that construction will be allowed for it is NOT the duty of the taxpayer or local government to maximize profits for speculators. Speculating=gambling. Land speculators know these things.

Every home,office or retail space that sits empty is a tax burden on property owners.

Growth and sprawl are expensive drains on capital budgets and tax dollars.

Sprawl is inherently harmful to the environment.

Growth needs to be confined to developed areas already served by public facilities and mass transit in order to keep the cost of community services contained.

Growth and sprawl consume land and spoil natural landscapes. Green space cost taxpayers nothing!

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bearded_gnome 7 years ago

merrill they are free to give, and don't deserve to be demonized for making political contributions, which are a form of constitutionally protected speech.

my suggestion to you Merrill, ditch the anti-free market liberal spouting. take all that time and energy you waste spouting all that, and go and earn more money by the sweat of your brow. then, use some of your earned wealth to give to the candidates you support because they share your views. then, I will demonize you for giving so much and imply there's some evil intent. okay?

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Richard Heckler 7 years ago

The real estate development industry is giving heavily to Chestnut, Dever and Bush and not giving to Schauner, Highberger and Maynard-Moody.

The real estate contributors include:

Parties suing the City over the Wal-Mart development at 6th and Wakarusa.

Parties who have development plans that will go before the City Commission in the near future.

Political Action Committees for the realtors and varous building contractors.

The contributions have pushed Chestnut and Dever to the top in terms of most dollars raised. Their contributions tend to be large thus, the percentage of contributions from the real estate industry is larger than the percent of contributions.

The UNPLANNED growth machine is working hard to buy this election. Let's get enough votes to protect our city from excessive development. We want planned growth, not developer driven growth.

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Liberal 7 years ago

Response to Cindy...

1.) WHY must we continue to grow at this rate?

If we continue to have a desirable city growth is inevitable, people will want to be here. If the families that moved here when you came here in the 80's had the average 2.5 children and they decided to stay guess what that is growth. I hope my own children will be able to live and work here. If we continue to limit supply of housing as an example pricing will go up which will affect every property owner in town by increasing valuations, thereby raising taxes, if you are on a fixed income you could be taxed out of your house.

2.) How will I, and tens of thousands of other non-business owners who don't work in the construction and real estate industry (in other words, the majority of citizens), benefit from the town reaching a population of 125,000?

(See above)

3.) How is Lawrence better now than it was in 1987, when its population was around 48,000? How have I benefited from all these years of growth, and 27,000 more citizens? All I see are higher taxes and more traffic. (Well, we have a golf course now, but I'm not a golfer.)

How do you suggest we stop people from moving in if they wish? What about the children of residents that have been here. What makes you think that in 1987 the people who lived here then wanted you to move here?

In other words, please explain WHAT'S IN IT FOR ME & THE MAJORITY?

The majority wants services, lower taxes, available restuarants and retail. Increased office/industrial growth will bring greater civic participation i.e. paying for the new library, public art, etc: Keeping people out puts you in a very small minority. If you are not growing you are dying.

1.) Would you consider implementing some policies that prevents Lawrence from growing to 125,000 people?

Absolutely not, we are a free country.

2.) WOuld you support an Urban Growth Boundary that prevents the town from sprawling further into the countryside?

Growing naturally at our boundries is normal, I hate to tell you Lawrence is not sprawling. Tell me where would you put the Sears store? The Best Buy? We are growing at our edges just as we should.

3.) If the answer to the above is "no," would you support charging developers (and, by default, new home buyers) impact fees to pay for the infrastructure expense of new development?

No, Developers already pay for all of the infrastructure of new development. Yours truly,

Liberal

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Liberal 7 years ago

First of all developers want industrial/office growth in this town so that the taxes they pay on the shopping centers and houses go down. Industrial users can get tax abatements, office users do not qualify for abatements under current rules.

Secondly, the candidates who are going to win, Dever, Chestnut and Bush have not stated that they want more retail or residental development but, industrial/office so that our highly qualified work force can remain in lawrence. They have stated repeatedly that they want to have jobs that will allow people to live in Lawrence...guess what if they can afford to live here, we will need to have more housing as more people move into the housing, we will need more retail.

No need to attract housing and retail, it takes care of itself.

Third, there are a whole lot of students here 16 and up that need jobs that pay at the entry job level.

Fourth, by restricting growth in a highly desired community, causes increase pricing due to the law of supply and demand. Which is conveniently the goal of Boog, Moody and Schauner, to create an utopion society in which only the wealthy can live in. (see Boulder) Elitisim at its worst. The funny part is they convince those who seemingly do not think for themselves that they are doing it to help them and help Lawrence and at the same time their actions do the exact opposite...

Reduce supply/increase price

Make it difficult to get a job so that you have to commute/Hurts the environment.

They like to say they are doing positive things, I would love for someone to name one person who recieved a living wage as a result of the legislation they passed...Hasn't happened.

Someone please show me the sprawl, I have been asking for years, and not one person has pointed to sprawl in Lawrence, it simply does not exist.

Tell me how spending time complaining about the Patriot act has had any positive effect on Lawrence.

etc...

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Reality_Check 7 years ago

Dear City Commission Candidates,

For the last several weeks, I have been posing a question to the "all growth is good at all times" group of blowhards on LJworld.com, and they have been unable, or unwilling to answer. Perhaps you can:

I have lived in Lawrence for over 20 years. In the 1980s, I purchased the house in which I still live. I am a [choose one: retired person, government worker, artist, farmer, office worker, factory worker]. During these past 20+ years, I have seen Lawrence "grow" (I call it "sprawl") to the south and west astronmically, and do so without anything to distinguish the new areas from any of 10,000 other American towns and suburbs. Valuable woods, farm and pasture lands have been swallowed up by a sea of housing and strip malls.

Yet I continue to hear from some of you and some of the Usual Suspects that what Lawrence really needs is MORE growth, that, instead of having 75,000, Lawrence must grow at 2-3% in perpetuity, which means that, by 2027, the population of the town will exceed 125,000.

There are several parts to my question:

1.) WHY must we continue to grow at this rate? 2.) How will I, and tens of thousands of other non-business owners who don't work in the construction and real estate industry (in other words, the majority of citizens), benefit from the town reaching a population of 125,000? 3.) How is Lawrence better now than it was in 1987, when its population was around 48,000? How have I benefited from all these years of growth, and 27,000 more citizens? All I see are higher taxes and more traffic. (Well, we have a golf course now, but I'm not a golfer.)

In other words, please explain WHAT'S IN IT FOR ME & THE MAJORITY?

While I've got your attention, let me ask some policy questions:

1.) Would you consider implementing some policies that prevents Lawrence from growing to 125,000 people? 2.) WOuld you support an Urban Growth Boundary that prevents the town from sprawling further into the countryside? 3.) If the answer to the above is "no," would you support charging developers (and, by default, new home buyers) impact fees to pay for the infrastructure expense of new development?

While I await your answer, I'll pose the questions above again to the Usual Suspects to see if one of them has anything to blow other than hot air.

-Cindy Citizen

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Reality_Check 7 years ago

458: Do you have a job or anything else going on with your life?

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

thats right they paid 2500 to have stump betty live in that tree we thew soap at her thats a great point crazys will do anything to get elected BOOG,SCHAUNER,RUNDLE,DUMBFEILD

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

dadaism thats perfect and your so on the money.Lets lie and tell everyone about how they stole peanuts from the kids dam thats not a lie

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Liberal 7 years ago

deec, I was not blaming the current commission for American Eagle leaving I was referring to a comment about AE from another poster.

It is however, accurate to say that the process that AE had to go through to get the approved abatement was so painful due to the comments of many of BoogMcRundleshauners supporters that they decided to go to a more business friendly environment.

That conflict which seems to come from the supporters of people who believe the ideas of the current PLC commissioners is the reason why this town has such a bad reputation. The AE decision rumbled through the economic development communty, like a train out of control, now the damage is done, site selectors have a tainted view of Lawrence.

Hell, some in our town, protested the removal of a stump.

Long Live Stump Betty and her kind...Making Lawrence Business Un-friendly.

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KsTwister 7 years ago

"...decision was not made until Dec 11, 2003?" AE approached Ottawa in August of 2003 to see what they wanted if they moved there but they continued to make requests to your city commission through Dec of 2003----request denied.

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KsTwister 7 years ago

..........you can give a man food, but if you teach him how to grow it. Proof there are many,many people who can find it out for themselves. And they do.

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deec 7 years ago

How could the journal world have an article dated http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2001/apr... regarding American Eagle moving to Ottawa in spite of offered tax abatements if this decision was not made until Dec 11, 2003?

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dadaism 7 years ago

Merrill you seem to be the collector as well as the purveyor of misinformation:. an example is Dunfields inaccurate letter about Douglas County's job growth. Dunfield fertilized the "unfriendly to employer weed" when he was a commissioner.

Examples: Douglas County Development wanted to expand the East Hills Business Park in 2000. Dunfield and Rundle voted against expanding the UGA for East Hills. Dunfield and Rundle voted against annexation of 88 acres into the city at East Hills. Dunfield and Rundle voted against zoning an East Hill site for a major industrial user. And who do you think spoke against the expansion of East Hill from the crowd "Cary Maynard Moody 1645 Barker.

Dunfield and Rundle later teamed up to stop the Home Depot project.

Consider the positive effect to the trade area of having Home Depot, Best Buy, On the Border, and Longhorns plus addition shops on the real estate tax rolls paying sales tax to the city, providing jobs, goods, and services to Douglas County shoppers.

If there is a major development in Lawrence that Dunfield and Rundle supported I'll research it and get back to you later:

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

Trust me it will all be gone when those three leave office

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i_have_only_valid_opinions 7 years ago

Exactly! Get it all out of your system before going to Anger Anonymous. Come out a new person!

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

you mean like this hold your ears dont want you to here the truth,SCHAUNER AND BOOG HAVE DONE NOTHING FOR LAWRENCE AND ARE LIARS that felt good

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i_have_only_valid_opinions 7 years ago

No thanks. I was not shouting in CAPS like someone else. Very calm. Not angry. Just honest and upfront about things. Thank you so much for the offer though.

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

such anger you go with us to anger class

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i_have_only_valid_opinions 7 years ago

All good ideas, 458casul. And throw in a spelling and grammar class while you're at it.


Since we all seem to be content on having half ass city management, why not vote Marion in. He seems to be good at half assin' through life (read: how many businesses have you started and run into the ground in your life?). I guess that's how it's done here. Too bad.

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

WWoftheW your so fine you blow my mind,spin on this your people blew it and you cant stand it that they have done nothing but spend money and lie ,enlighten me what has Chestnut,Dever,andBush lied about

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i_have_only_valid_opinions 7 years ago

Someone give 458casul a valium and a pencil so he/she can sign up for anger management classes. And please hurry, I'm tired of hearing the same one line argument over and over!

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shockchalk 7 years ago

458casul is right on the money. It's time for change and we desperately need to get rid of Boog, Schauner, and Rundle. The good news is, it looks like we will!!!!!

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KsTwister 7 years ago

Correction: $30 million library. speed demon got me.

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KsTwister 7 years ago

But it's ok we have bunches of retail and restaurant jobs to make it up. And we have bunches of new houses for those people and we are going to build a $30 library and laugh daily with the dadaisms. We're going to have to laugh.

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hawkperchedatriverfront 7 years ago

Lawrence has had for far too long an elitist attitude. The lunch box crowd of workers is not welcome. When the Santa Fe Industrial park opened it was like manna had come to town. Kmart dist, the shoe place, then Quaker NONE had tax abatements. They were glad to be here and the city welcomed them. they still do not have tax abatements and meet the wage that BOOG and SCHAUNER want..by the way , remember, BOOG and SCHAUNER are the bedroom community. Can't they find employment in Lawrence? The are lawyers..doesn't seem to hard for all the others to eek out a living. At least their buildings are paying property taxes.

Lawrence is referred to in many areas as FLAW on the KAW....and for very good reason. DOLPH,.... please write a Saturday column about the BRAIN being gone..Forget vision...cannot have VISION unless the BRAIN is functioning. Call Corliss about the reward.....maybe marci would chip in some money to find..hint! hint!..it disappeared around 1975...when she and shontz came on board the slowly sinking ship.

Invest in land in Jefferson County and Leavenworth County,,,the next hot spots for economic development.

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KsTwister 7 years ago

Truth is the current commission is responsible. [Dec 11,2003- look it up.] American Eagle only wanted to start wages at 8.80 an hour. But what was failed to report that after 30 you got a raise,after 9 months a raise, 1 year another raise. And what great wages they are compared to Lawrence now. But the city stood on the $9 mark with no give. Now those employees earn $14 hour. Franklin County has a better tax base so they don't have to give out incredible property tax bill. Sad.

The major cities in Douglas county are Lawrence, Eudora, Baldwin and Lecompton. The list their businesses at their chamber sites. Eudora lost M-Pact, but we lost Kingston Printing to that site. One must assume that the major of manufacturing jobs are in Lawrence. They have to be. If the Department of Labor says job loss to Douglas county then Lawrence lost most-it has to.

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WWoftheW 7 years ago

The only spinning going is the spin doctors themselves - Dever, Bush and Chestnut with their false facts and their wolf in sheeps clothing neighborhood friendly attitude. If you are so fearful of the facts and prefer the lies that is your problem.

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

and look who bob schumms supports the liars about jobs,ok what jobs have they brought Pessimist you tell us

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Pessimist 7 years ago

No, the current commission was not seated when American Eagle chose to locate in Franklin County.

Does anyone remember Bob Schumm's campaign commercial that basically implied that he (and his group of supporters) didn't want their jobs here?

That is the reputation this community has. If you are for no growth, you can't be for new jobs.

And, the problem with the wages here is the type of work we have. The jobs we have in this town don't justify higher wages.

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deec 7 years ago

Name calling and repeating the same run-on sentence with capital letters. That's sort of like making an argument and refuting facts, but different.

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

its very important to me and alot of other people that this stays important because of people like you and others that try to put spin on it BOOG AND SCHAUNER ARE LIARS

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deec 7 years ago

Rabid repetition of the same post is not the same thing as a reasoned argument.

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

DOL stats say 1000 in the bad not 1800 in the good in the paper and on post cards I wonder where they got that great idea of post cards but back to the issue SCHAUNER AND BOOG HAVE LIED BIG AND IT WILL COST THEM VOTES.What are they going to say sorry were stupid

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deec 7 years ago

If corporations choose to locate offshore or leave town when their tax abatements end, this is a decision over which local governments have little control. While local governments can opt to offer further taxpayer subsidies to businesses in order to bribe them to stay, they cannot compete with offshore facilities that do not mandate our federal minimum wage, workers' rights, or environmental controls. Further, local governments have little control over corporate decisions to eliminate jobs in order to maximize CEO's wage and incentive packages.

Apparently NO businesses have opened in Lawrence in the last four years. If they have, these businesses are self-running, with no workers needed. Granted retail and service sector jobs are not ideal in terms of wages and benefits, but they are, nevertheless, jobs.

Also, punctuation. Its a good thing.

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WWoftheW 7 years ago

First of all, I am not Melinda and second of all me thinks you doth protest to loud.

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

Kirk McClure AKA Mr doom and gloom the sky is falling hurry get my tin foil hat as for you you cant change the fact that SCHAUNER,BOOG, AND RUNDLE LOST JOBS LET ME SAY THAT AGAIN LOST JOBS LIARS

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

Melinda glad to see you're back and trying to cover for boog and schauners lying to the people. but anyway you spin it no jobs were created, and 1000 jobs were LOST.

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WWoftheW 7 years ago

THe chamber said that the 2006 employment numbers are not available in the paper. Kirk has always noted that self employment is NOT factored in.
Again your number of 1000 jobs lost is becuase of the peaks and lows that growth goes through and a specific low was misused for this data. Pick - say - January when the college kids leave town and quit their jobs for a month. Your misquotes and miscalulations in order to smear someone who facts are based on facts and not on specifically pick data only shows how low you will go to try and prove a falsehood as fact.

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cognizant 7 years ago

Merrill, Source: KU Professor Don't you mean; Associate Professor Kirk McClure The KU employ with lots of time for politics.

He's a P.L.C. organizer (2002), a Grassroots organizer, a virulent anti-developer spokesperson, a recruiter and advisor to anti-growth city commissioners and planning commissioners.

For over 15 years he's made appearances at city and planning meeting as a self-styled expert on any and all development and job formations. He writes or emails the city staff, planning commissioners and city commissioners opposing land development use issues, retail, commercial developments, tax abatement proposals, and lately even residential projects.

Interestingly in one of the post is the admission that jobs have been lost in the last few years contrary to Schauner and Highberger's assurances that they aided in adding 1800 jobs in 2005 and 2006.

However, the balance of his posts has a number of errors, for example:

  1. 2006 employment numbers are fully reported, even January 2007 are available,

  2. Job growth figures for non-farm jobs does include self employed working

  3. The trend over time is to gain jobs; certainly, if you go back far enough, say to 1910. More recently jobs have been lost. A net loss of 1000 jobs in just two years.

  4. Kirk McClure is using outdated U.S. Census numbers to calculate population growth rates.

The good associate professor's goal is clearly to stop growth. The tactics of using out dated or incomplete statistics, selected information from unreliable sources to attempt to justify the predetermined goal.

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deec 7 years ago

http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2001/apr... "Despite vocal opposition, Lawrence city commissioners approved the abatement. American Eagle later chose to build its distribution center in Ottawa instead." So how is American Eagle the fault of the current commission, which wasn't seated at the time the tax abatement was GRANTED?

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Liberal 7 years ago

According to the Franklin County Treasurer.

American Eagle for '06 paid $214,186.62 in property tax alone.

This does not include sale tax that they bring by purchasing items there.

It also does not account for the money that stays in town due to the employees that work there.

$214,186.62!!!!

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WWoftheW 7 years ago

Why would the chamber not record the jobs that they brought to town and only jobs that anyone has who lives here?

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WWoftheW 7 years ago

The fact that Mike Dever used a down slope in an upward movement towards job growth shows how low he will go to impune the presents City Commission including Sue Hack who has been a chamber spokes person for years. Check the chambers website and you will see that there are peaks and valleys throughout any upward movement nationwide, but to pick a specific low just to get votes is unaccpectable politicing.

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Liberal 7 years ago

How much in property tax do you think American Eagle is paying with their 1MILLION SQUARE FOOT facility. Even with the abatement. Clue....a lot of money that is not in our coffers.

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bearded_gnome 7 years ago

very poor headline!

once again, Merrill cut/and/paste is at it again...as one poster recently asked, is Merrill software that just spams the board with liberal crap? paraphrased.

"living wage" doesn't make sense because some jobs are simply not worth $11 per hour, they don't make that plus overhead for the employer. and, not everybody working at $7-$11 is trying to live independently on it, as the bleeding heart examples imply. this community's pay is lower than the rest of KS...DUH! there's a university in this town full of STUDENTS who often work to SUPPLEMENT their income at $7-$11 per hour jobs. nothing wrong with that!!!

last night was a good forum. all the candidates (except Boog) were well behaved and respectful.

candidates need to rethink their opposition to a new format of city commission in which commissioners represent their own districts of lawrence. I believe infrastructure would be cared for much better as now in the "at large" system, some parts of town don't seem to get represented as equally as others.

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altarego 7 years ago

"Source: KU Professor"

Packs about as much punch as "Source: Online Encyclopedia"

The "Living Wage" issue is a non-issue. Personally, I wouldn't want city functionaries going through my companies books or payroll records for any reason. Every bone head wants to run every company around here.

Having said that, I hope ya'll realize that the American Eagle loss is no loss at all. Thats the place where they take the "Made in Malaysia" stickers off and put the "Made in USA" stickers on.

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jafs 7 years ago

Please read the article on jobs:

Chamber of Commerce cites about 1800 new jobs (gross figure does not include losses).

Douglas County has an "average" loss of 900 jobs.

It is very hard to know what to make of these figures.

Candidates that state the Chamber figures are not lying.

I would very much like to see net figures for Lawrence before forming an opinion about this issue, and suggest the same for others.

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abby 7 years ago

I agree with you sourpuss to an extent. But... this commission has certainly sent an unfriendly tone to any business that would consider coming to Lawrence. A new commission could change that tone to a receptive ear to new opportunities and that can make a difference! Boog and Schauner can say what they want about wanting job growth but the tone they have set on this commission speaks volumes that they are truly no growth and unfriendly to even hearing about opportunities. Most times, their minds are made up before an idea can be presented.

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roger_o_thornhill 7 years ago

Look at the one-trick-pony. FYI ALL POLITICIANS LIE ALL THE TIME. Anyone who says otherwise is a liar.

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sourpuss 7 years ago

I don't think it matters much who is in the City Commission. I don't know of many businesses that decide to put up shop based on a couple of low-rent local politicians who could just as well be out of office before you get your plant built.

Seems to me like the Chamber of Commerce isn't doing THEIR job in attracting the TYPE of business we want here. It is all well and good to get Wal-Marts and Burger Kings, but we can't have an economy based on serving each other stuff.

If you all want to convince yourself that these five people can magically make good jobs for the city, I've got a bridge for sale...

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Marion Lynn 7 years ago

And now ladies and gentlemen, a break from the constant campaigning for the "Progressives" by Merrill and a word from our sponsor.......................

Thanks.

Marion.

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

SCHAUNER,BOOG,RUNDLE,AND MOODY are prime reasons smart growth,dumb growth,retarded growth dosnt work.Merrill can you afford a 400.000 house

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

print all you want SCHAUNER AND BOOG LIED TO THE PEOPLE they have brought nothing to lawrence they lost 1000 JOBS NO GAIN

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Richard Heckler 7 years ago

The bottom line: Is Lawrence becoming a commuter city?

The percentage of workers in Lawrence who commute out-of-county to work is 22 percent, well below the national average of 27 percent and on a par with the state at 23 percent.

This percentage is rising over time indicating that Lawrence is losing its advantage as workers increasingly choose to commute.

Implications

The job growth rate is adequate as it meets, even exceeds, the population growth rate.

Wages are low.  While workers are enjoying real growth in wages (wages are rising faster than inflation), their wages are far below those of other areas.

This wage penalty reduces the attractiveness of Lawrence as workers can get a raise by living elsewhere or by commuting outside of the area.

Economic development should focus on the real problem, low wages, not job growth rates.
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Michael Capra 7 years ago

and dont call me a complainer just stating the facts jack and you and groupies dont like it, to bad,will keep telling the truth

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Richard Heckler 7 years ago

Who said you did not live here?

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

You my son are very mis informed I do live here and pay taxes.The last two years 1000 jobs gone NO GAIN AT ALL THAT MEANS THEY ARE LIARS THEY SAID IT AND PRINTED IT SAYING THEY BROUGHT 1800 JOBS AND THAT IS A LIE

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Richard Heckler 7 years ago

Some of the daily big complainers on this very site do not live in Douglas County much less Lawrence,Kansas.

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Richard Heckler 7 years ago

Every community on the planet loses jobs and gains jobs throughout any given period. You cannot blame city commissioners for for losing a company that pulled up stakes when the tax abatement expired. That situation supports many who question the use of tax abatements or the abuse of tax abatements.

Even of you could blame commissioners that would make Commissioner Sue Hack one of the worst for she has been there longer and you would also need to blame Mike Amyx. Rob Chestnut compared Lawrence to cities that are actually part of big cities that which Lawrence is not and certainly alters the demographics a great deal.

Boog and Schauner were no where around when the American Eagle deal surfaced and selected Ottawa because land and construction costs were so inflated by our local real estate and development industry. They found a better deal on an EXISTING warehouse. Douglas County Development Inc/East Hills Business Park wanted too much money. It was a very smart move on the part of American Eagle.

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

MR COPY PASTE ALL YOU WANT it dosnt change the fact that your group lied for political gain 1000 jobs LOST SMART GROWTH IS NO GROWTH DEPARTMENT OF LABOR PROVES THAT

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Richard Heckler 7 years ago

http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2007/feb/21/power_elite/?letters_to_editor

To the editor:

I am fascinated by the term "development community," used frequently in the Journal-World and most recently in Chad Lawhorn's article about the candidate debate sponsored by Grassroots Action. This innocuous-sounding term seems to embrace developers, builders, real estate speculators and the like. By normal journalistic ethical standards, when using such a term, the Journal-World should always disclose the interests of its own parent company, which uses the megalomaniac moniker "The World Company" to indicate its apparent ambitions, including in real estate and "development."

I believe a better and no more biased term for this "community" would be the one coined by sociologist William Domhoff in his book, "Who Rules America Now?" Domhoff uses the term "power elite" to refer to the "growth coalitions" that dominate local governments with the same sense of ownership displayed by the "corporate community" at the national level. These groups do form a kind of "community," but their interests do not correspond with those of the community as a whole.

Rather, the power elite uses political power to enhance its private profits. That the local media are monopolized by those private interests should not only raise our concern about the health of our democracy, but should also encourage us to join groups like Grassroots Action to build a counter-hegemony to the power elite.

Stu Shafer,

Oskaloosa

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

THATS MY point they didnt gain any jobs they lost 1000 jobs so that makes them liars even with your jacked up smoke and mirror numbers they lost NOT GAINED COPY AND PASTE ALL YOU WANT THERE LIARS

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Richard Heckler 7 years ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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Richard Heckler 7 years ago

ob growth Thursday, March 22, 2007

To the editor:

Misinformation blossoms like spring dandelions during election season. Unfortunately, once erroneous ideas take hold, they become very hard to uproot. Let me try.

In recent letters, Deb Passig and Dwayne Peaslee have both suggested that the current City Commission has stymied job growth, among other alleged failings. Some commission candidates have been making the same assertion.

The fact is exactly the opposite. According to the city's partner in economic development efforts, jobs in Lawrence have grown steadily over the last four years when compared to the years immediately preceding them. Let me quote from an article in the most recent (March 2007) Chamber Newsletter, titled, "And the Progress Continues": "The Kansas Department of Labor indicates even stronger economic development performance for the community during 2006. Civilian job growth in Douglas County/ Lawrence has outstripped Topeka, Kansas City, Johnson County and the state's employment growth rate."

Let's review: According to the Lawrence Chamber of Commerce, under the current City Commission, job growth has shown steady and strong progress and produced a better performance in 2006 than even our famously pro-growth Johnson County neighbors.

Can we agree to pluck this "unfriendly-to-employers" weed and decide the election on the basis of real issues?

David Dunfield,

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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Richard Heckler 7 years ago

What is the growth rate of jobs in Lawrence?

The Kansas Department of Labor provides several estimates of the size of labor force and the number of jobs. These numbers are not reported at the city level. They are reported for metropolitan areas; Douglas County is the Lawrence Metropolitan Area.

The number of jobs in Douglas County is growing at 0.7 percent per year from 2000 through 2005. This figure counts only non-farm jobs but excludes the self-employed,

The claim is made that jobs have been lost. This is correct if one picks a peak year in the past (e.g.: 2001) and compares it to a recent trough year (e.g.: 2006, which is only partially reported to date). However, the trend over time is for the number of jobs to grow.

How does the growth in jobs compare to the growth in population?

The job growth rate at 0.7 percent per year is equal to or greater than the population growth rate (0.4 to 0.6 percent).

While the job growth rate is low, it compares favorably with the population growth rate. If jobs grow faster than population, then the community must import labor.

A note of caution must be taken as the population growth rates are subject to some error and the count of jobs is subject of definitional problems. For example, the count of jobs does not include self-employed persons, federal employees, and a list of other occupations.

How do wages in Lawrence compare to wages elsewhere?

Wages in Lawrence are low, $28,450 in 2005.

Average annual wages in Lawrence are 84 percent of the statewide average ($33,844).

Average annual wages in Lawrence are 70 percent of the average for the Kansas part of the Kansas City metropolitan area ($40,698).

After inflation, Lawrence wages are growing at 0.4 percent per year, but this is below the 0.6 percent per year statewide.

Is Lawrence becoming a commuter city?

The percentage of workers in Lawrence who commute out-of-county to work is 22 percent, well below the national average of 27 percent and on a par with the state at 23 percent.

This percentage is rising over time indicating that Lawrence is losing its advantage as workers increasingly choose to commute.

Implications

The job growth rate is adequate as it meets, even exceeds, the population growth rate.

Wages are low. While workers are enjoying real growth in wages (wages are rising faster than inflation), their wages are far below those of other areas.

This wage penalty reduces the attractiveness of Lawrence as workers can get a raise by living elsewhere or by commuting outside of the area.

Economic development should focus on the real problem, low wages, not job growth rates.

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Richard Heckler 7 years ago

Source: KU Professor

Quick summary:

Job Growth Rates:

Jobs in Lawrence are growing over time, not declining.

Job counts fluctuate, thus is easy to be fooled about a short-term decline.

The job growth rate is greater than the population growth rate, thus it is adequate.

Wages:

The wages in Lawrence are growing faster than inflation, which is good.

The wages are low compared to elsewhere, causing workers to look elsewhere.

The real economic development problem is the wage level not the job growth rate.

Retail development:

From 1995 to 2005, retail space expanded at 3 times the growth in retail spending.

During these years, the City added over 800,000 square feet of surplus space, a scale comparable to adding another downtown.

The City is confronting proposals that continue this pace of overbuilding, which is harmful to the City.

===================================

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Richard Heckler 7 years ago

Boogs Contributors are on his web site ...FYI

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

Lets not forget Jack Rose developer.Boogy could you be doing the secret hand shake with developers.I KNOW HE IS new name SLICK BOOGY

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

BOOGY you got money from the owner of peoples bank Wint Winter that loans money to all the developers,builders and the walmart people.Just thought all the voters know in full disclosure that you lie and have your hands on both sides

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Michael Capra 7 years ago

SCHAUNER AND BOOG why didnt you tell the people you are liars that you just made the numbers up about creating 1800 jobs when infact you lost 1000 jobs and had no gain at all

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