|Photo by Joe Calton|
The new Jackson County Legislature has been sworn into office, with Dennis Waits representing the Inter-City area along with Frank White, Jr., representing our area at-large. A formal inauguration ceremony was held at the Truman Library on January 8.
At the meeting on January 14, the legislature announced that they would hold a public hearing on the 20th of January at 2:30 p.m. for people to voice their opinions on the budget and on a proposed tax levy, but nobody came to speak, and the public hearing was over and done with in about 20 seconds.
The $293 million budget was approved, around $4.7 million less than last year’s budget. The county’s tax levy decreased slightly as well.
Since that time, they’ve allocated around $3,250,000 of that budget. Click this link to see what they've spent it on.
All of the spending measures were passed unanimously by the legislators present, with no discussion or debate. Committee meetings where some of these measures were to be discussed were generally conducted in less than two minutes with no discussion or debate.
The legislature also approved the hiring of Mary Lou Brown of Grand Island, Nebraska, for the position of Chief Administrative Officer for Jackson County. Brown was asked to resign from her previous position as Grand Island city administrator in 2012 after a standoff with the city’s fire department that left their town without a fire chief for more than seven months.
Frank White, Jr. serves as the Chairman of the Land Use Committee, with Dennis Waits serving as Vice Chair. Waits is Chairman of the Anti-Drug Committee, and serves on the Finance and Audit Committee. Frank White Jr. was assigned to the Budget Committee and the committees for Health and Environment and Public Works. Each committee has three members except for the Anti-Drug Committee, which has four.
The Legislature meets 2:30 P.M. on Mondays, alternating between the downtown courthouse and the Independence courthouse.
You can find the schedule for these sessions at at this link.
Legislator Waits can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (816) 881-4441, and Frank White, Jr., at email@example.com or by calling (816) 881-4477.