Lavonta Williams

Wichita City Council Member Lavonta Williams

Lavonta Williams campaign contributions raise a few questions

See end of article for disclosure. Analysis of the campaign finance report recently filed by Lavonta Williams, current Wichita city council member and candidate for re-election, revealed a few interesting insights about her campaign. First: The campaign contributions are concentrated from one industry. Of the $16,550 in cash contributions raised by the Williams campaign and disclosed in this report, $10,500 (63%) came from sources that are real estate developers, or from people closely connected to them such as their spouses. These developers are often asking city hall for subsidy or favor. I asked council member Williams a few questions by…
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Walking Door-to-Door with Marcey — ummm — Lavonta?

Wichita city council member Lavonta Williams just launched the website that supports her campaign for re-election. It's a nice website, but it has a little mistake that gives us a clue as to who might be running Williams' campaign. Her "Get involved" page lists this as one of the ways you can help Williams: "Walking door-to-door with Marcey." Marcey? Who is this Marcey? How could someone make the mistake of using the name "Marcey" when it should be "Lavonta?" I don't know, but last year the campaign for Sedgwick County Commissioner of Marcey Gregory, mayor of Goddard, was managed by…
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Wichita TIF public hearing was bait and switch

This appeared in today's Wichita Eagle. On Tuesday December 2, 2008, the Wichita City Council held a public hearing on the expansion of the Center City South Redevelopment District, commonly known as the downtown Wichita arena TIF district. As someone with an interest in this matter, I watched the city's website for the appearance of the agenda report for this meeting. This document, also known as the "green sheets" and often several hundred pages in length, contains background information on items appearing on the meeting's agenda. At around 11:30 am Monday, the day before the meeting, I saw that the…
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Climate change alarmism in Kansas is expensive

Today's Wichita Eagle reports on the high cost of climate change mitigation. (Climate cleanup costs could trickle down) Before Kansans commit to expensive courses of action that will be ineffective, we need to consider the wisdom of this action. As reported in the article, "there is the worry that regulation will drive up costs and push industry and jobs to other places." Climate change alarmists treat these yet-to-be-passed regulations as a given, and are sure that they'll be implemented. These regulations, however, are bad public policy, and there's no reason why we should base current decisions on the threat of…
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Wichita Mayor Carl Brewer’s Reformulated TIF Plan Still a Bad Idea

Today the Wichita City Council holds a special meeting to consider a reformulated plan to provide tax increment financing (TIF) for the area surrounding the downtown Wichita arena. It's still a bad idea. It appears there are two major changes in the new plan. First, the TIF district is smaller. Second, spending on the district would be 70 percent of the new property taxes -- the "increment" -- instead of 100 percent. Why is this plan a bad idea? Why, you may be asking, aren't I in favor of development and progress in downtown? To me, there's a difference between…
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Wichita Smoking Ban Starts. Sharon Fearey is Excited.

Today, September 4, 2008, marks the first day of the ban on smoking in Wichita. It's not quite a total ban, and that has some smoking ban supporters upset. In a letter to the Wichita Eagle, anti-smoking activist Cindy Claycomb writes "If you are a supporter of clean indoor air, please do not spend your money in businesses that allow smoking indoors, including smoking rooms. If we continue to spend our money at places that allow smoking indoors, that tells the business owners that we do not care -- that we will tolerate secondhand smoke even though we all know…
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