Comment history

Lawrence voters to decide whether city should triple spending on affordable housing

Rochelle is correct that one of our primary concerns is the regressive nature of the tax. It is worth noting that the most frequent comment I have heard from voters/taxpayers on any of the three ballot questions is the lack of a plan for question #3. Even if you believe a regressive tax on essential items can somehow solve the affordable housing problem in Lawrence a roadmap for spending/allocation should be the minimal requirement. Nobody disagrees that the availability of affordable housing is a problem in Lawrence - this is not the way to attack the problem.


September 18, 2017 at 9:23 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Renewal of infrastructure sales tax puts $63 million in projects on the line

This is a great story - thanks to Rochelle for her comprehensive review of the .3 ballot question.

As mentioned, the Lawrence Sunset Alliance is indeed concerned about the regressive nature of these taxes. Currently Lawrence is in the .90 percentile for sales tax burden among Kansas cities. Many cities are able to cover a greater percentage of their core services without using a special sales tax.

As Commissioner Amyx acknowledges the city is prepared to come back with a different proposal. This is a negotiation between the city and taxpayers and it is clear this is not the city's best and final offer. A no vote is appropriate for question #2.

For more information please visit us on facebook at

September 10, 2017 at 12:42 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Editorial: Renew transit tax

The Lawrence Sunset Alliance (please check us out at opposes this ballot question. Here are a few facts to keep in mind:

>> The transit system current has over $5,000,000 in allocated funds. According to the 2008 ballot question the use of funds allow for quite a bit of flexibility - "Additional dedicated resources for the transit system will provide for route enhancements and vehicle and facility improvements. Examples include increased bus service frequency on busy routes and alternative fuel buses"

>> It is inappropriate to ask voters for a 10-year commitment until a hub plan is developed. Keep in mind the tax does not sunset until 2019. There is still time to solidify a plan for what the city is actually going to do with the funding.

>> Other potential ways to alleviate taxpayer burden - the funding levels required from any source could be reduced by adjusting the revenue structure or reducing operating costs using a combination of the following: requiring payment for KU Card holders traveling off campus, increasing fares in general, adjusting fares based on length of route to align with costs, renegotiating driver contracts/shifting to salaried drivers, reducing the number of routes, or reducing the frequency of some routes.

We do NOT advocate ending transit service. Our goal is to ensure that there is a legitimate discussion about the implications of extended service and long-term impact before there is a commitment to the city.

August 23, 2017 at 7:57 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Paul Davis makes it official: He's running for governor

Since the LJW continues to ignore them here are 2 active candidates for Governor that have innovative ideas and won't waste time with partisan politics.

September 17, 2013 at 8:38 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Editorial: Drone policy?

"If, at a future date, these devices seem to be needed for some legitimate purpose in Lawrence, then certainly a policy should be developed in the context of the time that’s pertinent to the intended use, providing appropriate guidelines and limitations."

Actually this is the point of the resolution. Waiting until this becomes an issue is bad policy if you value civil liberties.

Patrick Wilbur

August 21, 2013 at 7:53 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Groups band together to push for city to create policy on drone use

Armored_One > the groups/people in this coalition are involved in a myriad of issues (including the ones you mention above). We didn't pick one issue - this is just one of them. I encourage you to be involved as well.

August 21, 2013 at 7:46 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Groups band together to push for city to create policy on drone use

Joshua - please read the resolution. We have no interest in stifling innovation. It would be foolish to think anyone could stop this technology anyway. The language is simple and reasonable. It is to protect civil liberties, which is a legitimate concern. You are correct - there are many uses for drones which are beneficial. I'm sure that research will continue. Thanks - Patrick Wilbur

August 19, 2013 at 10:46 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Editorial: Level field?

"There's nothing wrong with profits"

Well I'm glad the LJW endorses free enterprise (sort of). Now I can sleep at night.

March 31, 2013 at 8:25 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Roy riled up about UNC's seed, not possible KU match-up

The only way this is a legitimate criticism is if Roy names the teams that shouldn't be seeded ahead of UNC. Otherwise it's kind of pointless and theoretical. The committee has to deal with reality and there's just not a lot of separation this year. I think UNC got dinged because the committee didn't think much of the ACC.

March 20, 2013 at 11:56 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Editorial: Court maneuver

"Twenty-two states use nominating commissions similar to the one in Kansas but with variations in how commission members are selected. "

I believe Kansas is the only state where the bar comprises the majority of the nominating commission. Even if the makeup of the commission were adjusted it would still be appointed by the bar (no accountability to voters) or the Governor (limited accountability). The process is political now - it's just much more secretive than the federal model. I'm sorry if I am not naive enough to believe that "merit" is the only criteria for selection.

This change is far from perfect, but it is an improvement. There would be much more light on the process, and all Senators would be accountable for their support or lack of support for a nominee. It is also important to note that judges will still be subject to retention by all voters.

I suspect much of the resistance to this is based on the fact that Brownback supports it. This is a policy change and will not just impact the current Governor and Legislative body. I did not vote for Brownback, but am not so blinded by partisanship to oppose every initiative that is proposed.


January 20, 2013 at 9:16 a.m. ( | suggest removal )