Streetcar District Expansion Goes Down Hard, 60-40
August 6, 2014

Kansas City Mayor Sly James says Tuesday night’s defeat of a plan to expand the city’s streetcar district “stings”.
The proposal to extend the current 2 mile starter line to the east and south was easily defeated.
Final results posted by the Kansas City Election Board showed the measure losing. The measure lost, gathering 39.67% of the vote.
The measure faced opposition from citizens who opposed the idea of using a sales tax to fund the $500 million local portion of the plan. They believed it would hurt some of Kansas City’s poorest residents and neighborhoods because a sales tax is not based on the ability to pay.
Others say the city has more pressing needs that expanding a streetcar line.
The defeat is one of the biggest setbacks for Mayor Sly James, who has enjoyed a relatively successful first term.
City Councilman Jermaine Reed says he expects the city to return to voters with a larger pan in the near future.
Had others approved expanding the streetcar taxing district Tuesday, it would have set up another streetcar vote in November.
That vote would have actually authorized the one cent sales tax and the assessment policies for those who live in expanded streetcar district.
The result Tuesday does not affect the 2-mile starter line running through the city’s River Market district, through downtown to the Union Station area.
That line has been approved by voters and construction is already underway.
The starter line is expected to be operating in late 2015.

Reed Questions Curfew Enforcement on the Pla-
January 22, 2014

City Councilman Jermaine Reed.

Kansas City Councilman Jermaine Reed is again questioning the city curfew laws for teenagers.
Reed says he has a “great concern” that the only entertainment district where curfew violations are being issues is the Country Club Plaza District.
“When you go to the Plaza in the summer months and you see horses and officers spraying mace, or what have you, that’s a great concern, you don’t see that in other entertainment district areas,” Reed said. Kansas City have five designated entertainment zones.
They are the Plaza, Downtown, the 18th & Vine District, Westport and The Zona Rosa District north of the River.
Reed says he has seen underage teens out after the designated curfew times in entertainment zones besides the Plaza.
Today the Muncipal Court administrator told a City Council committee police wrote 63 curfew violation tickets last year. The average fine was about $40, according to Municipal Court records. The fines are assessed against the teen’s parents
Just under half of the tickets result in guilty pleas. . Few teens get a second ticket.
Reed says part of the issue is the fact Kansas City’s curfew laws are confusing.
The are two curfew laws. One deals with the city’s entertainment zone, the other is city wide.
The curfew times and affected age groups vary depending on location and the time of the year.
Reed says he will try to revise the curfew laws soon so they are more understandable.

Reed Says Aim for Peace Fails
April 10, 2013

Kansas City Councilman Jermaine Reed attacked the City’s Aim For Peace anti-crime effort Wednesday.
Reed says the six-year program is failing.
“We’re not really reducing crime and violence with the program,” Reed said during a Council committee hearing.
The attack was spurred by a KC Health Department report on injuries and fire arms in the City.
Health Director Rex Archer offered a report showing how the number of homicides on particular police beats had dropped since 2011.
Reed took exception to the report’s claim. He said it was too early to state that.
He pointed out the numbers from 2013 only consider the first three months of the year.
Archer said it was only a trend.
“Now, will that trend continue for the year? That’s a challenge ” conceded Archer.
Archer says the program, which has been criticized in the past, struggles with stability. He said turnover on the staff has been an issue.
The Director of Aim For Peace, Traci Cole says the group has 14 staffers now and a core group of about two dozen volunteers.
Aim for Peace tries to reduce conditions that can lead to violent crime in some parts of the inner city where it is a problem.
Cole says the fact that the Kansas City Health Care Foundation is willing to give the group $300,000 in a grant is proof the program has credibility.
She challenged Reed to talk to the program’s clients.
“Where are you talking? Who are you talking to? The people we are talking to encourage us. They’re the ones who are asking for our assistance,” she said.
Reed remains skeptical.
“They have to spruce up their efforts. The numbers (of homicides) have to decrease. And their outreach in the community has to increase as well ” he said.

City Councilman Talks About Being Homeless as a Boy
May 30, 2012

Kansas City Councilman Jermaine Reed revealed today he and some of his family were homeless when he was a teenager.
Reed made the disclosure during a committee meeting on the city’s homeless problem.
He has spoken about his experience on a homeless shelter website as part of the fundraising effort. “it was back in ’97 and ’98,” he recalled during the meeting
Reeds say he and his five brothers and his mother stayed at the Community LINC homeless shelter, near 40th & Troost, “until we got back on our feet.”
His admission startled the Director of the Homeless Services Coalition, Vickie Riddle. ” I wish you would have spoke to our dinner earlier this year”, she told Reed. “You should have called me”, said Reed.

Rename Prospect Ave to ML King Says Reed
September 29, 2011

City Council member Jermaine Reed
says it’s time to rename violence-prone Prospect Avenue after civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King.
Reed made the announcement at the corner of 26th and Prospect. That is the scene of a triple shooting Tuesday.
Reed was asked why they should rename the street in light kf the fact so many other streets named in King’s honor are in violent neighborhoods.
He says a study shows just the opposite. Redd, however, did not provide the study when reporters asked for it.
Reed thinks changing the name could help spur an economic and cultural revival of the area.
He says he’ll start working to gather the political support to change Prospect Avenue’s name thus weekend by campaigning for it throughout his district. Sent from my iPhone