After the latest mass shooting, public safety for Kansas City's original party district has now become a top priority for voters across the city.
To wit . . .
LONGTIME WESTPORT IMPRESARIO BILL NIGRO GATHERED HUNDREDS OF SIGNATURES PLEADING WITH MAYOR & COUNCIL TO ALLOW MORE FUNDS FOR SECURITY RATHER THAN POLITICALLY CONNECTED CIVIL RIGHTS MONITORS!!!
We've talked about this mandate for years . . . However, the debate becomes more pressing amid public outcry.
Now, we're not going to include names on the petition but we will share the statement that Mr. Nigro sent to Mayor & Council and then THE RESPONSE FROM MAYOR Q AT THE END OF THIS POST.
Here's the word . . .
Bill Nigro: Civil Rights Monitors
Mayor Lucas and City Council, attached are the people in Westport that have signed a petition requesting the termination of civil rights monitors by city contract, and redirecting those funds for more security personnel at night for our customers safety. WESTPORT IS THE MOST CULTURALLY DIVERSE ENTERTAINMENT DISTRICT IN THE HISTORY OF OUR CITY! Many of you know I've been in Westport a long time. 45 yrs. I was in charge of overseeing security in Westport in the late 80's and 90's when it was a volunteer pay organization. I funded nighttime security out of my own pocket for many years. I used my liquor licence to cover our secured weekend late night area so we could card people and secure our core in the summers. I managed over 1500 drunk cowboys nightly at The Beaumont Club for over a decade. I worked with the City and KCPD in 1993 to create the barricaded area that we now close off on weekends every summer. I lobbied hard thru Senator Ronnie Depasco for the state of Missouri to enact CID legislation with both a property tax and sales tax so that Westport could build a better security team. Westport has the best private security team in KC. Only KCPD and Jackson County Sheriffs have more training but the Westport team experiences everything the KCPD guys do!
We/Westport did an impact study on what we give to KC. Our 3 square block CID gives KC 3% of its sales tax stream and add in the earnings tax of a couple thousand people and we've been giving this city over a Million dollars a MONTH for DECADES! Our competition,the Power and LIght District, gets $1.5 million a month from KC to cover their loans. Westport's been paying for our competition since it opened! The City Market has gotten no less than $500,000 every year since the CID's started and 18th and Vine has been given over $120 million since the mid 90's.
What has Westport gotten since we started our CID besides NO money? A City that doesn't trust us obviously because Westport is the only one in the country being forced to hire civil rights monitors by a government contract according to the ACLU. You DEFUNDED our security account and now we have to give Adhoc 10% of our entire annual nighttime security budget and Adhoc only works 8 hours a week for 5 months. Westport has had numerous shootings the past year and we need that money for security personnel on our perimeters. Everyone walks through the metal detectors so It's impossible to profile. There is nothing for Ahoc to see and there never was! It is a total waste of over $100,000 annually. Why is this city doing this to Westport? Our rights as a neighborhood are being violated and I want answers why! I think the Neighborhood has earned the right to know why we are being singled out! Katherine Shields told our Merchants director that after 2 years and we PROVED ourselves that she would get us out of the contract. IT'S YEAR 5!
This city is putting the customers of Westport at risk and I'm putting the city on notice. I expect a response from everyone on this email. I want to find out who cares about our customers and Westport! I want to know who's going to help correct a social injustice and help protect our customers and employees!
As promised . . .
HERE'S MAYOR Q'S RESPONSE AND SIDE-STEPPING THE DESPERATE WESTPORT PLEA FOR MORE SECURITY:
Having voted against the initial ordinance that applied the payment requirement and vacated the public sidewalks, my position has not changed. That said, the Westport Regional Business League was the party entering into the agreement with the city. I encourage you to connect with them to continue the discussion as to how Westport can speak with a consistent voice on safety concerns.
###############You decide . . .