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Archive for Wednesday, July 18, 2012

All in favor? New group making voice heard at City Hall

July 18, 2012

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Gary Rexroad, left, and Zak Bolick are co-chairmen of a new group, CadreLawrence, that hopes to get people more active at City Hall in voicing their support for growth and economic development projects.

Gary Rexroad, left, and Zak Bolick are co-chairmen of a new group, CadreLawrence, that hopes to get people more active at City Hall in voicing their support for growth and economic development projects.

Something interesting happened at Lawrence City Hall when commissioners at a meeting last month asked for public comment about a controversial proposal to build a multistory hotel and retail building at Ninth and New Hampshire streets.

Despite bitter opposition from the East Lawrence Neighborhood Association, more people stepped to the lectern to speak in favor of the project than against it.

Such a public show of support didn’t happen by accident. About a dozen Lawrence residents who believe Lawrence needs a more positive voice when it comes to growth and economic development have formed CadreLawrence. The group began to quietly reach out to members of the public before last month’s vote on the Ninth and New Hampshire project, and presented what group members believed were the community benefits of the hotel/retail proposal.

But Zak Bolick, one of the founders of the group, said the most important thing group members did is urge people to show up. They reminded folks that a City Commission lectern isn’t just for people who oppose a project.

“Several of us have been asking ourselves for a while what has happened to the part of the population that does not have a vested interest in a project but still thinks it is a good project for the community?” said Bolick, who is an assistant vice president for Douglas County Bank. “I know those people exist.”

For several years, it was common to hear some community leaders refer to that segment of the population as “the silent majority” because they often didn’t show up at meetings to express their support for projects, especially development or growth-related projects that produced vocal opposition from neighborhoods or other groups in the community.

The result, CadreLawrence members say, is that public meetings about growth and development projects often have taken on a more negative tone than actually exists in the broader community. They say that has led to businesses becoming wary of pursuing projects in Lawrence.

“We have kept hearing from people outside of this community that there is a pretty negative perception about how hard it is to do business here,” said Gary Rexroad, another founder of the group, who was a classmate of Bolick’s in the Leadership Lawrence program.

In March, Bolick and Rexroad, who is an area manager for the Microsoft Corp., came together and started formulating the idea of CadreLawrence. Today the organization has an 11-member board that meets monthly to stay abreast of current issues related to jobs, economic development and growth. Within the next few days, the group plans to ramp up its public outreach efforts. It is finalizing a Facebook page, a Twitter presence and a website at cadrelawrence.com.

Part of the outreach, Rexroad said, will involve educating community members about how the group works. There are no membership fees or requirements. The group also won’t endorse or donate to any political candidates. Unlike neighborhood associations, the League of Women Voters or the Lawrence Chamber of Commerce, CadreLawrence won’t take official positions on any issues. Rexroad said the purpose of the organization isn’t to create a new group that can throw its weight behind a proposal or project.

“We just want to get people informed and active,” Rexroad said.

At the meeting regarding the Ninth and New Hampshire project, for example, none of the group members even mentioned CadreLawrence when they addressed the commission. Instead, they simply described themselves as Lawrence residents who didn’t have a vested interest in the project but believed it would be good for the community.

That’s what group leaders hope will happen more often.

“If we can get people to be more active, we think that ultimately will produce a more fair and balanced debate,” Bolick said.

Group leaders also are stressing the organization is independent of the Lawrence Chamber of Commerce, which often does speak on behalf of growth and economic development projects. Rexroad said CadreLawrence leaders understand the chamber’s involvement in an issue automatically can spark opposition from some residents.

CadreLawrence’s board includes both chamber and nonchamber members, but Rexroad said the group does not take any direction from the chamber. In addition to Bolick and Rexroad, CadreLawrence’s board includes area bankers Brian Iverson and Michelle Fales, architects Paul Werner and Andrew Pitts, former Lawrence-Douglas County planning commissioners Brad Finkeldei and Stanley Rasmussen, area food bank director Jeremy Farmer, and residents Alex Delaney and Tim Bateman.

Rexroad said he thinks the timing is right for the group to catch the attention of Lawrence residents.

“I might be a little naive, but I think the community is ready for this,” Rexroad said. “I think the people of Lawrence want to be positive. They are hungry to be positive.”

Comments

oneeye_wilbur 1 year, 9 months ago

If Cadrelawrence is interested in reducing the tax load. Then the Cadre needs to be at the school board budget meeting. The board thus far has not shown any mercy in reducing the mill levy and hence the tax burden. What say mr rexroad mr farmer and the other 9 persons?

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Richard Heckler 1 year, 9 months ago

Let's realize that this group is sponsored and encouraged to represent the following:

  1. Real estate agencies

  2. Property owners

  3. developers

  4. building contractors and suppliers

  5. bankers

  6. investors

Yet the largest group of stakeholders in this and other similar circumstances is a good many taxpayers who are being strong armed into supporting a real estate project we do not support for many reasons.

Taxpayers are providing millions of tax dollars to make a real estate project profitable which apparently cannot be accomplished standing on its' own which begs the question "How is this a fiscally responsible use of tax dollars?"

The real estate market is still on shaky ground. Which is to say this property could lose value anytime. Why are taxpayers throwing money at this project? We're not voluntarily.

Nothing has changed much since the meltdown and banks are still playing the same risky investment schemes as before from what I read.

Do the Lawrence cookie jars need ALL of the tax dollars related to any property? Of course they do let's not pretend.

If these tax incentives were put to a city wide vote the incentives would be voted down ..... aka go down in flames. This is why government does not provide the opportunity to the stakeholders.

Then there are guidelines that which are being ignored. Then there are the neighbors quality of life issues and perhaps doing more damage to their property values.

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oneeye_wilbur 1 year, 9 months ago

How can anyone take seriously decisions made by the "local" officials when backdoor deals are made. Case #1: Varsity House was auctioned off, highest bidder got the property. Three lots to the north were not included in the deal. KU maintained they were keeping the lots for parking. And then oneeye finds out that ALL lots are going to be built on, but why were the three not listed for sale? Oh they were and thanks to KU Chancellor's office, oneeye was sent the link for the lots for sale. Guess what! The lots were listed in the Kansas Register. And guess how many offers were made (and you can bet fast at that!!). uh huh 1 offer. Deal done.

Did Cadre Lawrence learn about the Ks Register? Maybe they should, it's a sneaky way.

CadreLawrence members have gone through Leadership Lawrence and they don't understand TIFs and the Neighborhood Revitaliztion Act (a Kansas state program). Even podunk Effingham that was made fun of and none less than our Leadership Lawrence leader, as I recall, wanted to help podunk, well podunk has been using the Neighborhood Act for quite some time and it is inclusive and not exclusive as it is in Lawrence.

To the banker and the others in Cadre. Figure out to teach the school district, the city and the county about financing. In other words, does a bank make any more 125% loans? Doubt it.

If the city for example had to have 20% cash on hand to put into a project, then a 20 million dollar library would have to have 4 million upfront to be considered for a vote. A bit of cash into these projects would make those who have the hairbrained ideas a bit more credible.

As it is, the entire debt is straddled onto the taxpayers. Here's a tidbit for a few. wilbur has followed some listings of houses in Prairie Park. One listed for $160,000 which is under the county appraisal is now off the market. No offers. Another one is listed for $184,900 under the county valuation and no credible offer close to it. Another one down the street has been on the market for over one year and is now $149,500 which is below the original purchase price. I hate to do Chad''s homework, but the fluff in the paper and the spew from the realtors is just that. There are some real facts out there about housing sales in Lawrence and the location does make a difference. Not much , but some. A jail, a homeless shelter, no grocery store and now another hairbrained idea of having a "village" on the Farmland site. Great put the old folks on a chemical site, after all the whackos in Brook Creek wanted Bo's corner to have homes since it is zoned residential. How could a Planning Commission not realize how stupid that is and not change the zoning? Why? Put the 'village" on Bo's land, it is already zoned residential Again, when a backdoor deal is made on three lots on Indiana, the credibilty is shot for the hotshots in town.

it's hot and wilbur needs to rest that one eye, it gets sweaty!

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Richard Heckler 1 year, 9 months ago

Our city's current budget crunch could easily be tied directly to infrastructure expenses needed to serve new real estate developments. The community is way over extended in this regard.

If real estate growth paid for itself and was financially positive, we would not be in a budget crunch. But with increased numbers of real estate you have increased demand on services, and historically the funding of revenues generated by real estate does not pay for the services they require from a municipality.

Now Lawrence is handing out tax incentives like drunken sailors..... how is this fiscally responsible?

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Richard Heckler 1 year, 9 months ago

Also inflated property values is nothing more than a tax increase to meet the demands of an over extended city government.

Basing an economy on new construction starts is no longer a method by which has any substance.

Reagan/Bush/Bush/Cheney home loan scams killed residential. Lending institutions killed retail as well. All on the perspective that real estate is invincible. Property values are down with tons of homeowners owing more than properties are worth which may never bounce back.

Politicians,deregulation and financial institutions have put property owners in a rather precarious position while at the same time eroding confidence with gusto.

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Richard Heckler 1 year, 9 months ago

The jobs are in Topeka and/or Kansas City/Johnson County metro.

So I've read bedroom communities require high taxes to survive. 30 years ago Lawrence was still reasonable. When the "boom town economy" mentality erupted so did the cost of living in Lawrence,Kansas.

Somehow inflation does not improve the quality of life but provides an illusion as to net worth.

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Richard Heckler 1 year, 9 months ago

"Business growth helps create jobs and helps shift tax basis off of residential" That is the theory and the rhetoric

This has not happened in the last 30 years. Rates,fees,taxes have all increased as a result of this bedroom community. Each time the tax base is expanded so are the taxes,rates and fees.

Where are the tax abatements,tax rebates,reduction in city services fees/rates for the taxpayers who have been funding this tax dollar welfare? for the past 30 years?

So what is wrong with the profiteers no matter how many funding their own way in order for them not to appear as welfare queens and tax dollar moochers?

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logicisking 1 year, 9 months ago

looks like Stan Rasmussen, a member of CadreLawrence listed above, is also being appointed to the HRC, coincidence? i don't think so!

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Gary Rexroad 1 year, 9 months ago

Pizzapete

First of all, thank you for the dialogue. While we may see things differently you make very good points which are important and should be heard as decisions are made in Lawrence.

You have some very interesting and positive ideas for attractions to draw people to Lawrence and I hope those ideas develop. As they do develop, and people begin taking personal risks to see them through, I hope they are supported and cheered on by our community. Business growth helps create jobs and helps shift tax basis off of residential. That is the ideal behind CadreLawrence…

Thanks for this dialogue Pizzapete

Gary Rexroad - grexroad@live.com – 785.226.2908

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Richard Heckler 1 year, 9 months ago

I believe all incentives to sell and/or develop property should come from:

  1. Real estate agencies - Owners cut your wage packages by 75%

  2. Property owners - cut your prices to the developers

  3. developers - cut your margins by 75%

  4. building contractors and suppliers - reduce your margins by 50%

  5. Bankers - furnish interest free loans to developers

Incentives NEVER from the taxpayers! 99% of taxpayers are not profiting from the forced investments.

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Richard Heckler 1 year, 9 months ago

Incentives – NOT from taxpayers!

How much will this cost the local taxpayer? A variety of tax increases?

Is annexation expanding our tax base or our tax bills?

There is one consequence that usually goes unmentioned - annexation is draining our pocketbooks and raising our taxes.

Annexation is the result of subsidies paid for by the American taxpayer. These range from the obvious to the obscure and include big projects-like the billions we spend on new roads as well as smaller ones-like the tax-breaks that encourage businesses to move to the edge of town.

We've subsidized annexation at such a basic level for so long, that many people believe the status quo is actually fair and neutral. This is false-what we think of as a level playing field is tilted steeply in favor of developers and the local real estate industry.

How we subsidize annexation:

  • building new and wider roads
  • building schools on the fringe
  • extending sewer and water lines to new developments
  • extending emergency services to the fringe *direct pay-outs to developers

Is it the taxpayers responsibility to guarantee the real estate industry and developers a nice tidy profit on their speculation and/or risky investments? absolutely not!

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Richard Heckler 1 year, 9 months ago

Thanks to republicans,bankers and builders investing in a home or other real estate is no longer a safe investment. Folks are paying way too much to keep doing business. Now they builders come frequently wanting a pre-bailout loan from taxpayers because they claim they don't know how to make money on their investments without taxpayers shoring up their projects up with millions of preferential tax dollars.

That's right regulatory agencies allowed the home and retail markets to be flooded by lending just about anyone who would sign on the dotted line a home. Whether they could afford it or not..... documented.

Not only did they the allow the residential market to flood BUT allowed extraordinary inflated values to go on as if there was a never ending supply of money. This was reckless and stupid.

Then these same people sold off bundles of bad real estate loans world wide thus taking down the world wide economy. Does anyone believe that the bankers world wide are not angry.

Don't expect financial institutions around the world to help or get fooled again. Simply put real estate is not as solid as it once was. Bankers and builders are living a life of pretend at taxpayers expense = business as usual.

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pizzapete 1 year, 9 months ago

There are many things that bring people to Lawrence to visit and to live. A hotel is not one of them. You wouldn't expect anyone to say, for example, I think I'm going to go to Chicago, I heard they have this new hotel downtown that I'd like to visit. No, people go to Chicago for the same things that bring people to Lawrence. They go to see a sporting event, a concert, to visit a museum or other attraction, for a unique shopping experience, etc. When I have friends and relatives visit from out of town they want to eat at Free State, Miltons, Pachamamas, Wheat Fields, etc. because they offer something different from the chain restaurants that dominate many other towns. I have friends that love shopping downtown because of stores like Weavers, Waxman Candles, Love Garden Sounds, Sunflower Outdoor and Bike, Phoenix Gallery, etc., all locally owned businesses with employees that go out of their way to help their customers. Many people come to Lawrence to watch our Jayhawks play basketball, football, and other sports. People come from all over Kansas to see a concert at the Lied Center, Liberty Hall, Bottleneck, etc., places that bring in music you won't see in other similarly sized cities. In short, Lawrence has many things that bring people to our city and a hotel is not one of them. We should be using out TIF money to bring something that will actually bring people and well paying jobs to Lawrence. An aquarium downtown would be such an attraction. A fudge factory or candy manufacturer downtown could be such a place. A Ferris wheel or open air concert/theatre venue could be such an attraction. Yes, a hotel is going to give people a place to stay while they visit Lawrence, but it isn't going to bring any additional people to our city that wouldn't otherwise make a visit. We should reserve our TIF money for a business or project we can all be proud of. One that brings quality jobs and encourages more people to come to visit and live in Lawrence. Why should we squander our TIF money on a hotel that by the developers own admission isn't economically feasible? Lawrence, we can do better.

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grimpeur 1 year, 9 months ago

“We have kept hearing from people outside of this community that there is a pretty negative perception about how hard it is to do business here,” said Gary Rexroad...

Gosh! It was reading so well, too! But it's hard to take any group seriously when their intro press release--I mean, community interest story--has this sort of nonsense in it.

Too bad we don't have a club in town dedicated to demonstrating what a wonderful place Lawrence is, and why so many people think this, instead of telling us that we haven't given someone enough rope yet.

I am for good growth. I am for Lawrence's continued growth. I appreciate the residential projects, both recent and proposed, in our downtown. But this disingenuous claim--that it's hard for some nonspecific businesses which face special but unnamed challenges from the city because of some capricious but uncited policy or regulations, all cloaked in a veneer of vague concerns over outside perceptions by some faceless adjudicators in some other unnamed place--is a toxic falsehood which diminishes our city in the pursuit of what appears to be a generally anti-regulatory agenda aimed at pressuring the city to up its incentives and abatement offers or decrease its scrutiny of projects which skirt existing regulations.

In other words: yes, we still see what you're doing and we know why. You want to help and to be helped? You want cooperation? You want to curry better perceptions from the beginning? Then stop it with this rot. Don't sully the discussion, nor the worthwhile current and future projects in our city, with this negative campaign.

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Kate Rogge 1 year, 9 months ago

Babbitt lobbyists to swell the crowd at mike night. Because it is not enough to own the City Council.

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Catalano 1 year, 9 months ago

THIS is what having a conversation with the neighborhood is like and what the results could be:

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=258800240897154&set=a.257267704383741.50671.254780521299126&type=1&theater

Tony Krsnich rocks! He didn't marry into the Chase family (which one would think would provide enough extra zeroes in the bank account in and of itself) and he's up front and honest about what he wants to do. Any public incentives he received for the Poehler Building RE-development are well-deserved.

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Alceste 1 year, 9 months ago

"In March, Bolick and Rexroad, who is an area manager for the Microsoft Corp., came together and started formulating the idea of CadreLawrence. Today the organization has an 11-member board that meets monthly to stay abreast of current issues related to jobs, economic development and growth."

Funny.....no names and contact data provided......

Any why is showing up at meetings so important? Then again, the reality that appointed "study group members"; city commisioners; appointed city "advisory boards"; city staff; et. all. are permitted to get away with NOT opening emails and reading them (let alone responding to them....); the fact they don't respond to fax communications.....etc., et. all, all underscore the very real fact that the game is rigged; the decisions are made BEFORE meetings; the deck is stacked; the dice are loaded; blah, blah, blah. CadreLawrence.....what a joke! Where's Che when you need him? shrug

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Number_1_Grandma 1 year, 9 months ago

Lets face it folks, downtown Lawrence only became a "landmark" to those other than east Lawrence residents or 'hippies' is when Doug Compton started buying up businesses. He drove up the price for downtown business and ran out the "mom and pop" businesses. Knowing full well the city commission will pay dearly to keep the downtown, downtown.

The difference between a 'good' businessman and a crook is a very fine line!

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oneeye_wilbur 1 year, 9 months ago

That new reccenter is about as decisive. As division gets! along with the refusal to have branvh libraries and the dumping of valuable money into the library when the current one was never maintained and kept clean. Maybe these bankers in Cadre. Should shout loud and clear to city leaders. Nothing new forthe city projects unless 20%. Cash is upfront before any bond issue is floated. Now that would make for some interesting budgeting. Same with the school district. Will Dg Cty bank make a full 100%. Loan or isn't some money required a appraisals as well. I fear Cadrelawrence will endorse more spending. At the overall taxpayers expense. Mrrexroad. Taxes play a role investing!

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Carol Bowen 1 year, 9 months ago

This group may or may not be what some of us want, but communication has to start somewhere. No one is listening. Everyone is taking sides . . many times uninformed. The blogs get vicious. There are no winners. Lawrence has always had "mood swing" representation on the city commission. I for one, would like to see our community pull together. If you don't like this group, start another. Keep community first. This town is not big enough to divide.

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oneeye_wilbur 1 year, 9 months ago

Folks in this group do not understand TIFS? What? Wilbur with one eye understands them. What Wilbur does not understand why the commissioners only extend the benefits to a favored few? What would Mr rexroad do about cleaning house at city hall? After all, that is where the crap starts when someone wants to do business, thus far the commissioners are endorsing the nonsense going on in planning. If not then Mr. Rexroad should explain where the boondoggle is? HRC. ? Dg Cty Planning commission. All appointed members as well. A city that cannot even keep city parking lots attractive. And not more mulch either, well the simplest of maintenance. Is ignored is a city being led by no one. A plethora of problems. And even Cadrelawrence won't challenge the city commission, nor Mr. Corliss or for that matter take the J/W to task once in a while. Wilbur is always skeptical when the suits show up. Anyone remember the dudes from DST that walked away one night from a city commission meeting with $100,000 in tax abatements? Duh? DST is heavily involved in redevelopment in downtown kcmo. But in Lawrence? No. The suits took the money never to return.

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Gary Rexroad 1 year, 9 months ago

Pizzapete I had some of the same concerns about the tax abatements and the TIF district but the more I learned I realized there was more advantage for residents than I knew. These points made sense to me…

•Financial benefits that come from jobs, bed tax, increased shopping in downtown, tourist dollars sticking in Lawrence etc.. from this development can be far greater than property taxes the city would receive in the same period of time.

•The property will only increase in valuation if the developers are willing to invest their money in the project . Without the development, there is no gain in other benefits and without the TIF program, the development may not be feasible.

•The TIF district as proposed is a part of the financial feasibility of the project in total. 100% of all taxes will be collected with a portion being returned to the developer as defined in the program. Some taxes are retained which otherwise would not even exist

For me this seems like a good approach to encourage people to invest their money in Lawrence. TIF districts are used broadly across the US for this very purpose and the city commissioners and staff have structured this program to assure the city will not carry any risk. (Good job commissioners)

Sure, the developers will profit, as they should, but so will Lawrence. Lets talk more if your interested in some of these details...

Gary Rexroad - grexroad@live.com - 785.226.2908

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KansasLiberal 1 year, 9 months ago

Does downtown need a third hotel or more apartments? None of the supporters of this project ever want to answer those questions.

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Gary Rexroad 1 year, 9 months ago

I love this community. Passion and opinions from people who care about the community we live in. CadreLawrence is about all people in Lawrence having a conversation about the things that matter to you. We encourage a facts based conversation of issues and by working to understand and respect each other’s points of view even when we disagree.

The idea of CadreLawrence, and those involved, share a common desire to support efforts which provide jobs, to help reduce the tax load on residents and to provide a balanced perspective to our elected officials. To be positive in support of prosperity. I believe most of Lawrence would agree these are good things for our community and all the people who live and play here, we just sometimes see different ways to get there.

I personally believe this is important work for all of us and that the time is right. Opportunity comes and goes each day and is lost if we are not working together to capture it.

It is our real hope Lawrence will join in this conversation, working through our differences to find common goals we can all share. Please contact me directly to discuss further…

Gary Rexroad - grexroad@live.com - 785.226.2908

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hipper_than_hip 1 year, 9 months ago

Given the ties (direct & indirect) to the development community of some the members, the public at large might be skeptical that CadreLawrence is non-partisan on development-related issues.

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jimmyjms 1 year, 9 months ago

Bozo, Alex Delaney (whom I've never met nor knew existed before reading this story) has attempted to engage you several times, to no avail. Being that it appears that your only contribution to our community is to spend the majority of every day on these boards throwing grenades, how do you possibly have the standing to attack/judge this group?

Get a job, something, anything.

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asixbury 1 year, 9 months ago

Basically people that live next to downtown should expect growth. That is what happens downtown. If you don't want a large building behind your property, maybe you should have thought of that before moving next to a business district.

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puddleglum 1 year, 9 months ago

“We have kept hearing from people outside of this community that there is a pretty negative perception about how hard it is to do business here,” said Gary Rexroad

translation: Lawrence has really strict codes and actually enforces many of them to prevent the city from turning into another Topeka or Johnson County.... that makes it more expensive and less profitable than other towns. why do so many people in this town care about what it looks like? why can't we just level this place and build mcdonald's on every corner? A bank or two on every corner? a burrito hut on every street? forget schools, they are expensive and unnecessary, more churches too, they pay ZERO taxes and really help us. donate the parks to the builders, they can put up new 5 story apartment complexes- oh, think of the job growth (temporary-but who cares?) go buy iphone, connect yourself to worldwide web-you need instant info and gps for taco-hut lunch directions. ring ring chime makes faces smile everywhere, twitter me now, I need to know exactly what you are doing-right now. why doesn't toilet paper come with instructions? oh-wait a minute, i already figured it out. go buy a big mac and wolf that baby down.

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pizzapete 1 year, 9 months ago

It's great to see a group of bankers and lawyers getting together and passing themselves off as just a bunch of ordinary citizens that want to defend corporate welfare. Bankers, lawyers, and real estate developers for too long haven't been able to have their voices heard in the public forum. They're just trying to put a positive spin on something they have no interest in. Bankers and lawyers don't benefit from uncontrolled growth and tax breaks for develpers, right?

I agree the hotel would benefit downtown and I would like to see it built with the developer taking the risk and paying for it themselves. No TIF, no twenty year property tax abatement, and a parking garage the developer pays for. I don't need the people that lend the money and draw up the contracts for these projects telling me what a great deal it is for the city.

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puddleglum 1 year, 9 months ago

“Several of us have been asking ourselves for a while what has happened to the part of the population that does not have a vested interest in a project but still thinks it is a good project for the community?” said Bolick, who is an assistant vice president for Douglas County Bank.

excellent journalism. I appreciate it.

An assistant vice president for a Bank that doesn't have a vested interest? yeah, right. no vested interest, just money. masonic rule #1: transparent 'truth'.... if you lie directly, it is hard to refute, and many will believe you.

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lunatic 1 year, 9 months ago

Looks to me like the positive attitudes outweigh the negative attitudes. Unusual for these commentaries. Also interesting that some of the positive posts (Farmer, Delaney, Bolick) actually use their real names and invite comment. Well done Cadre, Well done! Nice web site too by the way.

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oneeye_wilbur 1 year, 9 months ago

What? Two co chairmen. But where is and who is the co chair? Must need a lot of chairs. ?

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pace 1 year, 9 months ago

Oh, at last, the chamber is going to speak up, so many years they just were so shy. Those regular citizens were just hogging the conversation.

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oneeye_wilbur 1 year, 9 months ago

Which of the two in. The photo is going to run for city commission?

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Finnbar1 1 year, 9 months ago

This sounds like a very good thing Alex, thank you for bringing a positive attitude to Lawrence.

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oneeye_wilbur 1 year, 9 months ago

Now dg city bank is ripping folks off with new checking acct fees.

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oneeye_wilbur 1 year, 9 months ago

This group wants our back. But will they cover ours. I am doubtful. If do they would come full force out and taclkle the hard issue of skyrocketing taxes being led by the school district for starters. Is there anyone in this group that is not of a professional" status. ? Cadrelawrenceis needs to get city hall cleaned out and make it clear that the staff works for the taxpayers. Will the do it. No? Why. They admit they do not take positions. But just show up. Uh huh? I can show this group emails from folks who wanted to invest I lawrence but said communist china is easier to do business with. Fact! Isn't it sad that it takes a new group in front of the commissioners. We apparently have five inept commissioners that react only to "groups". staff at city hall needs to have attitude adjustments! Called pink slips

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Keith Richards 1 year, 9 months ago

I also appreciate this group and what they offer. If it stimulates conversation and gets people involved then that is great.

Thanks for coming on here and giving us some information Alex. Obviously there are some people that will never like anything you say, but I am one that appreciates your point of view.

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rockchalk1977 1 year, 9 months ago

I'm very glad to hear the positive message from this CadreLawrence group. We can't afford to go back to the hippie city commission days when nothing got done. Good luck guys.

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 1 year, 9 months ago

"said Bolick, who is an assistant vice president for Douglas County Bank."

There is nothing new here-- it's just the same ole City Commission controlled by developers, bankers and others in the mindless growth industry.

"Group leaders also are stressing the organization is independent of the Lawrence Chamber of Commerce, "

But they have 100% crossover in membership, and exactly the same viewpoints-- a difference without a distinction.

Not that it really mattered who showed up at that meeting. The commission had already made up their minds well before the meeting.

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Lawrence Morgan 1 year, 9 months ago

"Being positive," is of course, "accepting your point of view."

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