1. We need to get our minds and hands around the crime problem. We have to do two things at once: Put community, police, intellectual and spiritual resources around the issue of murder, especially in the Black community and work on keeping small stuff, like burglary and theft, from becoming big stuff. We must protect all neighborhoods from the fear that crime generates.
2. We must improve education, and we must be open minded about how we go about improving education. If this means abandoning the known public ed model, blowing up the KCMO school district--whatever. It is obvious that our educational system is failing our kids, even given that the kids are coming in to school less prepared than in the past.
3. Live within a budget and face facts about pensions. Doing things the old way will not work indefinitely, and people will get hurt. Better to take a lump now, than a BIG lump later, where retirees will get nothing. We also must find true waste and cut it. Whether it is too many firefighters, or too many $90,000 city hall lackeys, the waste has got to go.
4. Stop giving so many tax breaks for development. Kansas City will lose most tax break fights. Concentrate instead on basic services. Stop the downtown hotel. If crime is out of control, no one will want to have a convention here anyway--that's a fact, jack. If there are any breaks from taxes, they should go to individuals and small businesses.
5. Study what fields and occupations are generating jobs and consider easing the way for new businesses in those areas to start up. Smooth the regulatory way--I hear KCMO is an awful place to start a small biz--this is a bad thing, and needs to stop.
I was thinking on this after looking at the newspaper stories in the papers I uncovered during a cleaning project I am in the middle of. I kept having this feeling of retro deja vu--we were there, we did that, we're doing it again.
Let's see if we can put something on the done list.