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January 07, 2009

Keep trash pickup free in KC

I want to thank Yael T. Abouhalkah for his column about charging Kansas City residents for trash pickup (12/25, Opinion, “KC residents already pick up the tab for trash”).

I remember well in 1970 when we citizens were asked to vote for increasing the earnings tax half a percent and then telling us if passed, we would never have to pay for trash pickup again and would also receive free trash bags delivered to our homes. As a newlywed, I debated long and hard about voting for a tax increase that would directly affect my take-home pay. I came to the conclusion that it was necessary, so I voted “yes.”

I don’t recall how long the free trash bags were delivered, but after they were discontinued, I knew that somewhere down the road they would also try to discontinue free trash pickup. It seems that time has now come.

I pay my earning tax based on the city’s promise, and I don’t believe in double taxation for the same service. Please keep this issue in front of the public so no one forgets.

Mary Langseth
Kansas City



Good afternoon Marctnts, hope your year is starting well.

Thanks for correcting me. Now I know I'll never go in there, just as I'll never go to the P&L.


"...the announcement of the new grocery downtown made me think of the Barrons grocery built with TIF a few years back."

I'm not sure about the Barron's situation, but the new downtown grocery store didn't directly receive TIF funds, but The P&L, their landlord, received TIF to be used for acquisition due-diligence and infrastructure improvements. As such, the store doesn't have any "affordability" clause that would be associated with a TIF contract. From what I've heard, they're coming out of the gate with higher prices.

To the letter, implementing a new fee for trash pick-up would be political suicide in KCMO. Too many people remember the original E-tax promise, and taking away basic services is a great way to seriously upset the base.


I know you don't live in KC Mia, (or the real world), but taxpayers were promised something and then it was taken away, yet the tax for it remained. Mary, a KC resident with a legitimate right to speak out on KC issues, is spot on.


I have never had "free" trash pick up, welcome to the real world Mary.


How many people were married in the year 1970 only to be lied to repeatedly over the years? How much of our earnings tax has gone to studies on ballparks downtown, light rail, aquariums and the like? How much TIF money breaks was paid with our earnings tax.

A word on the TIF crap, the announcement of the new grocer downtown made me think of the Barrons grocer built with TIF a few years back. After the required time the store was sold to a different chain and low and behold, prices went up.

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