JerryLHarper (Jerry Harper)

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Opinion: Public broadcasting: superfluous yet seemingly immortal

This fellow kind of reminds me of a newspaper columnist who got a $250,000 Bradley prize a few years back for writing good conservative columns of the sort it loves to read. I wonder if he finds tax subsidies for the Bradley Foundaation as offensive as subsidies for public broadcasting?

June 5, 2017 at 10:31 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

After more than two decades of argument, SLT to open; reflections on the fight that enveloped the community

A shout out to the late Richard Larimore and Agnes the Frog. Miss both of them.

November 3, 2016 at 8:23 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

As revenues lag, public access to Sports Pavilion courts to be limited

Disrespecting the Public

At least 3 City Commissioners owe their seats in part to predecessors who disrespected the public in the manner in which they dealt with the Lawrence Sports Pavilion.

Now the City Staff & new Commission continue to disrespect the public by closing all 8 courts up to 20 days a year. That means the courts will be closed to the public nearly every weekend. This has been done without at least demanding a full accounting of revenues & expenses in order to determine the actual reasons for the shortfall?

Parks and Recs is booking the projected number of tournaments already. That suggests the problem is something other than 7 courts or 8.

From the get go, the Sports Pavilion was supposed to be first & foremost, a “community center.” When the plan, heeding the siren call of KU Athletics, ballooned from 3 to 8 courts, the Commission quickly assured the public that at all times 1 court would be reserved for locals - the ones footing the $22 million cost ($8-9 million more than the City could have built the same facility with infrastructure on land it already owned).

Before the faulty concrete started to fracture (& that was almost immediately), P&C came before the commission wanting to change the open-court policy. and use all eight courts - a proposal that was firmly rejected.

No sooner had the new City Manager hit town than P&C (as other staff stood silently by), withholding from him its clear knowledge of the open-court policy, bamboozled him into approving the surreptitious closing of all courts. Only when caught in the act did city staff try to cover its deceit with a quick website update.

P&C admits to letting participants bully local citizens off of the open court during tournaments. No parking is reserved for Lawrencians. (During the KU Relays, parking was reserved.)

There not done yet. The City Manager wants to charge Lawrencians to use the Sports Pavilion because tournament revenue is far short of projections.

A better solution would be for P&C to charge tournament participants more. After all, the highly touted $25,000 feasibility study (which has conveniently been removed from the city’s website) was offered as proof perfect that tournaments would generate sufficient revenue. If that was wrong, take the money out of the visitors' tax revenues.

You just aren’t going to get every tournament unless you low-ball the price & then sock it to local residents for the difference. That apparently is the plan.

Which is more important? Keeping faith with the public or some out-of-town, basketball- tournament promoter?

November 3, 2016 at 5:49 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

City Manager David Corliss to leave Lawrence for job in Colorado

David Corliss is a fine public servant. He's done an excellent job in a variety of positions. Being a city manager has got to be one of the toughest jobs around. Every significant decision usually is accompanied by controversy and, no matter the decision, someone is unhappy and invariably thinks he or she has a better solution (including me). It takes a special personality do deal with the abuse that goes with the job and still treat everyone with respect. It pays well, but not that well.

Lawrence has been very lucky to have him. Castle Rock is lucky to get him.

April 2, 2015 at 6:52 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Rasmussen responds to concerns about out-of-town donations

The campaign reports filed the first of the week, which I hope the Journal-World will cover extensively, should be enlightening. I think most will be surprised at just how much money is being spent on this campaign by Mr. Rasmussen in comparison to other candidates. A letter-to-the-editor writer last week correctly said "Follow the money."

March 27, 2015 at 11:06 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Rock Chalk Park audit, incentives for Peaslee Center, Eldridge Hotel tax break set to be decided by city commissioners

Hold back the $67,000 to fix the concrete floor in the Rec Center. If the accountants get do-overs, we should too.

March 23, 2015 at 4:46 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Rock Chalk Park audit recommends city make final $1M payment, but finds accounting of project was incomplete

What is lost in all of this is the fact that the city could have built the exact same structure on its own land (including infrastructure) in the Free State area for less than $15-million - possibly less because it would have then followed normal bidding, accounting and auditing procedures. A good lesson going forward even if it was an expensive one ($7.5-million+)

February 26, 2015 at 4:45 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Editorial: Paying the price

Municipal Court 'crimes' for the most part aren't exactly capital offenses. Mostly the real crime is either 'drunk and stupid' or 'traffic regulations don't apply to me.' A substantial number of those sent to jail are people who didn't pay their citations in a timely manner - sort of a debtors' prison. And it isn't a very effective collection tool, as noted in the editorial, Wouldn't make more sense to assess community service work in lieu of payment or put them under house arrest (with release to, during and from work) until fines are paid.

It would be a lot cheaper, it would free up a lot of jail cells, and we might not need a $30 million addition to the jail.

I believe the Municipal Court is actually a profit center for the city. If I read the city budget correctly, it appears to take in a lot more than it spends. It has experienced about a 300% growth in staff over the last 35 years while the city has only grown about 70%. Not certain what all those folks do or that it really needs doing.

February 17, 2015 at 4:33 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Letter: Mental health issue

Here is basic information on the KCUR program about what is being done in Wyandotte and Johnson Counties.

Kansas Program Offers Police Alternative To Jail For Mentally Ill
BY STEVE KRASKE ET AL – KCUR PODCAST 24 MINUTES – ORIGINALLY RAN 12-08-2014 -
Area police departments are looking for was to reduce the numbers of mentally ill and substance abusers ending up in jail. A new program in Wyandotte and Johnson Counties is helping to address this very issue.Rainbow Services, Inc. provides a way for law enforcement officers to bring people they encounter to resources that can help them. On this edition of Up To Date, Steve Kraske talks with Randy Callstrom of Wyandot Inc and Captain Doug Parisi of the Kansas City, Kansas Police Department.
Guests:
• Captain Doug Parisi is the Crisis Intervention Team Liaison of the Kansas City, Ks Police Department.
• Randy Callstrom is the President/CEO of Wyandot, Inc., the parent company of Rainbow Services, Inc.
Learn More: You can reach RSI at 913-956-5620 or through its 24-hour crisis line 913-788-4200. There is also a Walk-in Crisis Clinic located at 1301 North 47th Street Kansas City, KS 66102 or 913-328-4600.

December 16, 2014 at 12:07 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Letter: Mental health issue

Here is information on the Wyandotte & Johnson County program.

Kansas Program Offers Police Alternative To Jail For Mentally Ill
BY STEVE KRASKE & ELIZA SPERTUS – KCUR PODCAST 24 MINUTES – ORIGINALLY RAN 12-08-2014 -
Area police departments are looking for was to reduce the numbers of mentally ill and substance abusers ending up in jail. A new program in Wyandotte and Johnson Counties is helping to address this very issue. Rainbow Services, Inc provides a way for law enforcement officers to bring people they encounter to resources that can help them. On this edition of Up to Date, Steve Kraske talks with Randy Callstrom of Wyandot Inc and Captain Doug Parisi of the Kansas City, Kansas Police Department.
Guests:
• Captain Doug Parisi is the Crisis Intervention Team Liaison of the Kansas City, Ks Police Department.
• Randy Callstrom is the President/CEO of Wyandot, Inc., the parent company of Rainbow Services, Inc.
Learn More: You can reach RSI at 913-956-5620 or through its 24-hour crisis line 913-788-4200. There is also a Walk-in Crisis Clinic located at 1301 North 47th Street Kansas City, KS 66102 or 913-328-4600.

December 16, 2014 at 12:04 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

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