Dear KCMO Suckers:
It’s worse than you think. And if you vote Yes to extend the 1% E-Tax, it’s gonna get even worse.
Attached is the list of all the business areas that have suckered KCMO citizens into paying to remodel or redevelop THEIR businesses, while homeowners struggle to maintain their homes. Many on this list are the sugar daddies and pimps who are financing the Yes campaign for Tuesday’s E-Tax.
I want to thank Harley – the KCC commenter who is so seldom wrong (at least he thinks so) – for challenging my previous E-Tax post. He and jjskck claimed that TIF projects are not exempt from the E-Tax. I investigated.
Sorry, boys–you’re wrong. All TIFs are exempt from the E-Tax!
According to the Director of Finance for KCMO, Randall Landes, ALL TIF’s include a rebate of the E-tax.
Regular TIF’s are eligible for up to 50% of their increment (meaning the new income over what the property used to generate.) And the Super TIF’s get up to 100% of the E-Tax rebated.
Here’s the list of active Super-TIF projects in Kansas City.
13th & Wyandotte (hotel)
12th & Wyandotte (hotel)
President Hotel (South Loop)
Blue Pkwy Town Center
KC Live (South Loop)
And get this: employees of those projects still remit the 1% E-Tax, but it’s then rebated back to their plantation owner/boss. Earmarked to pay off their bonds, e.g. the cost of building or remodeling.
So while suckers pay, big business ‘whiners and diners’–do not. They get back their property tax, sales tax and E-Tax–to expand their business.
Steve Kraske, the moonlighting radio jock at the KC Star, was supposed to be reporting such fine points, but told me Friday, that the E-Tax diversion was news to him.
Like most, Kraske thought TIF’s were merely about recapturing and investing property taxes and sales taxes.
This has been one of the worst-reported elections in KC history. Sunday’s paper was mostly about St. Louis’s E-Tax issue. And TV Sunday night was all about the weather.
The Star DID reveal the secret plan, even if the E-Tax is extended: that Mayor-Elect Sly James and the James Gang already planning to lobby Jeff City to overturn the citizen vote last November for a 5 year review. They want 10 years. They claim it’s for the bond rating. But get real–they hate to have to hit up the TIF pimps to finance their next fix. So far, those fat cats have ponied up at least $300,000 to keep the gravy train coming.
This E-tax campaign has been horribly deceptive.
I’m used to ethics, where cities cannot use tax dollars to lobby for more taxes, they can only educate and inform. But the Missouri Ethics Commission’s Betsy Byers says there’s NO control over electronic electioneering. And a 501 c 4, like the EDC, is ONLY regulated by the IRS in WDC. Thus, the City of KCMO finances the EDC, Economic Development Council–and they put blatant LIES on its web site! Pat Gray’s campaign slide show is on the home page of the EDC.
Lie #1: (on slide #9): A NO vote will mean 500 police officers eliminated.
Lie #2: (on slide #9): A No vote will mean fire personnel will be reduced from 760 to 270,
and the closing of up to 20 of 35 fire stations. Really? Says who? In what plan?
Lie #3: (on slide #11): The E-tax does NOT deter businesses from locating here.
Gosh, so why do all of them insist on that rebate with their TIF???
Lie #4: (on slide #11): It does NOT cause businesses to move from here.
Gosh, what about the 50% of workers who moved to Johnson County??
Completely unsourced propaganda. Scare tactics.
SUCKER LIST: These are the “regular” TIF’s (50% off E-Tax) and the Super-TIF’s (100%).
Downtown and Riverfront TIFs
11th Street TIF
1200 Main/ South Loop TIF
12th and Wyandotte TIF
13th and Washington TIF
811 Main TIF
Baltimore Place TIF
Civic Mall TIF
Downtown Library TIF
East Village TIF
Grand Boulevard TIF
Hotel Phillips TIF
Judicial Square TIF
New England Bank TIF
New York Life TIF
River Market TIF
Savoy Hotel TIF
Tower Properties TIF
Crossroads and West Bottoms TIFs
West 17th Street TIF
19th Central TIF
22nd Main TIF
Gateway 2000 TIF
Performing Arts District TIF
Pershing Road TIF
The Summit TIF
East Kansas City TIFs
39th and Prospect TIF
Blue Ridge Mall TIF
Brush Creek TIF
Jazz District TIF
Southtown Urban Life Development TIF
Universal Floodwater Detention TIF
Midtown and Plaza TIFs
43rd and Main TIF
45th Street TIF
Country Club Plaza TIF
Southtown 31st and Baltimore TIF
Union Hill TIF
West Edge TIF
Antioch Mall TIF
Barry Towne TIF
Briarcliff West TIF
Chouteau and I-35 TIF
KCI Corridor TIF
North Oak TIF
Parvin Road TIF
Prospect North TIF
Searcy Creek TIF
Shoal Creek TIF
Walnut Creek TIF
South KC TIFs
87th and Hillcrest TIF
Hickman Mills TIF
Santa Fe TIF
Three Trails TIF
One reason KCMO is so broke is its addiction to tourism–the insecure need to impress visitors. Next up: the James Gang wants to build a $300 million hotel–to subsidize the success of the already wall-to-wall TIF’d downtown.
On Tuesday, a NO vote would end the 1% E-Tax, for good. Phase it out over 10 years.
Tell your KCMO voter friends, they have only once chance to send a message.
After working for KC Mayor Charles Wheeler, then migrating from KCMO in 1992, Tracy Thomas served 5 years on the Shawnee City Council. She writes political commentary and satire. She is NOT working on this campaign. contact her at email@example.com.