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November 12, 2009


Kevin Sullivan

HPNA has been in dialogue with the major players (owners, property managers, city council, police, federal representatives, HUD, MHDC) for nearly 2 years now. And we go round and round, fingers pointed to the party not in the room. The city allowed the concentration to happen and it will continue because the city does not have a housing policy. HUD and MHDC are under no obligation to change the situation as long as city policy (or lack of one) allows this. In the meanwhile, we need to constantly apply pressure to the owners to provide the necessary security. Amazingly, they deny the violence is a result of poor management. Instead, they try to blame the community as a whole - insisting the community help them pay for security for their properties.


Tom Coyle needs to be fired.

Keep in mind Wayne Cauthen hired him, and hasn't been able to stand the guy for the last two years, but he won't fire him.



We need to understand exactly what the city did here. They approved this in in spite of overwhelming evidence, research, policy and conventional wisdom.

This is negligence.

Why don't we sue the city for neglkigence in planning (or similar concept) to roll back the section 8?

We also need to understand what Jan and Beth were doing while all of this was going down.

How many employees of Hush Blackwell and Posinelli do we have in Hyde Park?



In fairness, the renewal of the two major apartments in question was passed through Mayor Barnes' office. Most are pointing to an insider into Barnes' staff, Donovan Mouton, as the person who signed off on this. Jim Glover, who was the head of the housing committee at the time and who lives two blocks from one of the buildings, says it never went through the Housing Committee.

So at this point, neither Jan nor Beth can be held accountable for this happening....however, we're on year two of them being in office and thus far, the city has not stepped up to do what it needs to do (create a comprehensive housing plan) in order to fix the problem -- and I know they're both very aware of the issue.


Do you really think a "comprehensive housing plan" will stop the murders on Armour? At best, the plan will disperse these folks and get them out of your neighborhood. What is needed is better security, jobs, and a cultural expectation in these apartment buildings of decorum. That can only be achieved in partnerships - with churches, with Neighborhood Services, with the Full Employment Council. Have they stepped up with "comprehensive plans" of their own? Have they been to your meetings? Get off the soapbox Brett and get moving on approaches to stop the violence.



Did you click through to the link from HUD and their thoughts on project-based section 8 housing? Even HUD doesn't agree with it, but they had to renew it because the city has no comprehensive housing plan.

It should be no secret to anyone that high concentrations of low-income people end up being crime-ridden areas. You can witness this every day in pockets on Kansas City's East side.

There are major social issues that play into this.

However, this is different in that these buildings are areas where the government (HUD, KCMO, Missouri Housing) have FORCED low income people to all live in the same vertical high-rise and consolidated the poverty. So while the same problems that inflict much of KC's east side are based on social issue, this one is 100% government-created.

Virtually every expert in the field notes that concentrating Section 8 does not allow people the same opportunities to get back on their feet as voucher-based systems. Listening to people who live in the buildings that are scared for their lives in their own homes is just tragic -- and no way for people to get back on their feet -- and so the cycle continues.

Yes, there are some things that need to be done to increase security, etc. But the long term solve is to end the use of project-based section 8 -- a system that essentially creates a place for poor people that was designed to keep them away from everyone else (circa the early 1970s when people were intentionally put in these buildings to keep them out of upscale neighborhoods.)

I'm on my soapbox on this because EVERYONE IS WANTING TO IGNORE THE PROBLEM! When we talk with the apartment owners, they deny it is their problem and point to the apartment management. When we talk to the apartment management, they deny it is their problem. When we talk to the city, they point to the apartment owners. When we talk to HUD, they point to the city.

There is a very real problem here -- but until poeple want to admit that it's a problem, it will continue to exist. Even when people point to there being a problem, they get ridiculed for supposedly trying to push the problem just out of their neighborhood and accused of being racist.

The crime statistics support that there is a problem.

Experts in the field indicate that project based Section 8 is not effective solution vs voucher-based systems.

And if everyone wants to ignore this, then I think I have every right to be on my soapbox.

PAMM - People Against Mad Mothers

Robyne didn't even read it close enough to get your name right.



More gunfire last night...

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