Monday, April 19
Downtown Wichita jobs, sort of

Downtown Wichita jobs, sort of

The claim of 26,000 workers in downtown Wichita is based on misuse of data so blatant it can be described only as malpractice. From April 2017. Have you heard that 26,000 people work in downtown Wichita, defined as zip code 67202? It's likely you have, as this number appears in many places. It appears in the Wichita city budget.[1. City of Wichita. Proposed Budget 2017 - 2018. Page 2. "Over 26,000 workers also populate downtown every day, working in industries such as education, finance, manufacturing, health care, government, and retail.] It is cited by our chief economic development agency.[2. Greater Wichita partnership. Living & Working. "With a highly trained pool of talent and a deeply rooted entrepreneurial spirit, Downtown Wichita is work central, boasting 26,000 daytime wor...
WichitaLiberty.TV: Wichita outreach, city council, and entrepreneurship

WichitaLiberty.TV: Wichita outreach, city council, and entrepreneurship

In this episode of WichitaLiberty.TV: A look at Wichita community outreach and communications, rewriting city council history, and entrepreneurship. View below, or click here to view at YouTube. Episode 102, broadcast December 6, 2015. Shownotes Activate Wichita and Facebook page Video from Wichita City Council meeting and references Complete remarks from Joseph Ashby Show Kauffman Foundation, Video: Myth-busting Entrepreneurship
WichitaLiberty.TV: Judicial selection in Kansas

WichitaLiberty.TV: Judicial selection in Kansas

In this episode of WichitaLiberty.TV: Attorney Richard Peckham joins Karl Peterjohn and Bob Weeks to discuss judicial selection and other judicial issues in Kansas. View below, or click here to view at YouTube. Episode 176, broadcast December 16, 2017. Shownotes Richard J. Peckham: Four justices should be voted out of office
In Wichita, running government like a business

In Wichita, running government like a business

In Wichita and Sedgwick County, can we run government like a business? Should we even try? Do our leaders think there is a difference? From December 2014. As Wichita considers the future of its economy, a larger role for government is contemplated. The views of the people leading the effort to expand government management of the local economy are important to explore. Consider Gary Schmitt, who is an executive at Intrust Bank. Following is an excerpt from the minutes of the May 22, 2013 meeting of the Board of Sedgwick County Commissioners. The topic was a forgivable loan to Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide Inc. These loans are equivalent to a cash grant, as long as conditions are met. At the time of this meeting Schmitt was vice chair of Greater Wichita Economic Development Coalitio...
WichitaLiberty.TV: Senator Jim DeMint and Convention of States

WichitaLiberty.TV: Senator Jim DeMint and Convention of States

In this episode of WichitaLiberty.TV: Former United States Senator Jim DeMint joins Karl Peterjohn and Bob Weeks to talk about the Convention of States. David Schneider, regional director for Citizens for Self-Governance also appears. View below, or click here to view at YouTube. Episode 175, broadcast December 9, 2017. Shownotes Jim DeMint on Facebook and Twitter Convention of States website, newly redesigned Citizens for Self-Governance Convention of States Kansas page on Facebook David Schneider's earlier appearance on WichitaLiberty.TV
Historic preservation tax credits, or developer welfare?

Historic preservation tax credits, or developer welfare?

A Wichita developer seeks to have taxpayers fund a large portion of his development costs, using a wasteful government program of dubious value. From December 2015. When you hear of a program titled "historic preservation tax credits" you might find yourself in agreement. Preserving history: Who can be against that? And tax credits: Aren't those just technical adjustments on someone's tax form? If you look closely, however, you'll find that the historic preservation tax credits program can include buildings with only the slightest historic significance, and has great cost to taxpayers. The Colorado-Derby Building at 201 N Water Street in Wichita has been nominated for placement on the Register of Historic Kansas Places. It's a nondescript building which currently houses administrative o...
In Wichita, we’ll not know how this tax money is spent

In Wichita, we’ll not know how this tax money is spent

Despite claims to the contrary, the attitude of the City of Wichita towards citizens' right to know is poor, and its attitude will likely be reaffirmed this week. From December 2016. This week the Wichita City Council will consider approval of a contract with Visit Wichita, the city's convention and visitor bureau. Once again, citizens will be left out of knowing how the city's tax money is spent. In the past, I've asked that Visit Wichita (formerly Go Wichita Convention and Visitors Bureau) make its spending records available. It's the same type of information that the city will send you about its own spending. But for Go Wichita, spending must -- apparently -- be kept secret. It's not a small amount of money that will be spent in secret. This year the city will send Go Wichita almost ...
Wichita bridges, well memorialized

Wichita bridges, well memorialized

Drivers on East Twenty-First Street in Wichita are happy that the work on a small bridge is complete, but may not be pleased with one aspect of the project. From December 2016. It's a small bridge, on East Twenty-First Street between Mosely and New York Streets. At 49 feet long it is designated a bridge by the Federal Highway Administration. And we're glad it's there. But with city lane width guidelines for arterial streets at 11 feet, this four-lane bridge may not be not much longer than it is wide.[2. City of Wichita. *Street Design Guidelines, Approved by the City Council, December 2014. http://www.wichita.gov/Government/Departments/Planning/PlanningDocument/Street%20Design%20Guidelines-Final.pdf] Does it warrant the full commemorative treatment of a bronze plaque memorializing the e...
In Wichita, converting a hotel into street repairs

In Wichita, converting a hotel into street repairs

In Wichita, it turns out we have to sell a hotel in order to fix our streets. From December 2016. Update: The Council approved these projects. In September the Wichita City Council decided to sell the Hyatt Regency hotel in downtown Wichita for $20 million. Now the council will consider two proposals for spending this money. One proposal is to spend $10 million on street repair, called "one-time pavement maintenance projects" in city documents.[1. City of Wichita. Agenda for December 20, 2016. Agenda Item No. IV-2.] A second proposal is to spend $4 million on transit over the next four years. This is pitched as sort of a "bridge to sustainability." That is, if the Wichita transit system can make it through the next four years, it can -- somehow -- become sustainable. The plan contains ...
NOTA a needed voting reform

NOTA a needed voting reform

"None of the Above" voting lets voters cast a meaningful vote, and that can start changing things. As a voter, would you like to express your displeasure with the choices on your ballot? Are you tired of voting for the lesser of two evils? Would you like to have a reason to go to the polls even though it seems the contests are already settled? If so, then NOTA, or "None of the Above," may appeal to you. In this system, candidates for offices are listed on your ballot. Then, an additional choice is added: "None of the Above." (Sometimes the language is like "None of these candidates.") Politicians don't like "None of the Above." Appearing on WichitaLiberty.TV recently, John Fund told of how a politician worried that he might lose to an empty chair, meaning that "None of the Above" receiv...