February 25, 2021

BBQ Rib SmokeFest for Charity – March 27, 2021

Grab some slabs of ribs and help the Harvesters Food Network at the Mike Onka Community Hall. Orders must be placed online by clicking the link below:

BBQ Rib Slabs for Sale in Sugar Creek to Raise Money for Harvesters

"On March 27, 2021 members of several Competition BBQ teams will gather in Sugar Creek’s Mike Onka Community Center to smoke more than 250 rack of ribs. This year’s fund raising effort will help us continue the mission of serving as a beacon of hope to end hunger in the Kansas City Community by providing food assistance through fun, laughter, and a lot of smoke."

February 22, 2021

Farmers to Families Resumes in Fairmount

The Fairmount Community Center, at 217 S Cedar Ave., will resume the Farm to Families food boxes and bread on Wednesdays through April.

This is a COVA funded program by the USDA.

Boxes include produce, some protein, and we have milk and bread to distribute. 

Distribution starts at 9 am and all is distributed by 11-ish, depending on the volume of boxes they receive.

The supply does vary each week.

February 2, 2021

Vaccination Center Planned for Independence Center

 By Giovanni Antonio

Perhaps lost in the excitement amid the passage of Resolution 21-713 allocating $200 rebates to IPL accounts, the Independence City council also approved Resolution 21-712.

In doing so they paved the way for a site at Independence Center to be turned into a mass vaccination center.

Independence Center Management offered the 13,000 sq. ft. space, rent free, to the city to host a mass vaccination and testing site. 

 Their one stipulation is that the city would have to cover the cost of utilities.

  Estimated to be around $1,000 a month, at a length of  5 months, the city had to approve where this $5,000 would come from.  

Alternate sites, like the Cable Dahmer Arena,  (formerly the Independence Event Center) were suggested and seemed promising.  Using that venue as a host wouldn't have carried the additional price tag attached for taxpayers.  The city already owns it and thus already pays the utilities.

   However city leaders, including Fire Chief Douglas Short worried that having to take down and reassemble the vaccination clinic when events needed the space would prove to be too big of a detriment.

 After a bit of debate of where to pull the funds from, and 2 failed amendments, the resolution in it original form, passed 4-3.

No word yet on when the clinic will be staffed and up and running.

February 1, 2021

Independence Utility Customers to Get $200 Rebate


By Giovanni Antonio

  In what turned out to be a bit of a contentious vote, Independence City Council passed Resolution 21-713 in a 5-2 vote. In doing so they approved returning approximately 11.2 million dollars, breaking down to around $200 to each IPL account.
 "Citizen speaker" Laura Dominik took the opportunity to video conference in to urge the council not to pass the resolution. Citing several reasons she was against it, reasons ironically enough later repeated by the 2 dissenting votes cast by Council members Karen Deluccie (At-Large) and Dan Hobart (District 4).
 Councilman Steinmeyer spoke of the pandemic and having compassion for the citizens who are in need.
 Deluccie and Hobart expressed concern that issuing a rebate as opposed to a rate reduction might violate the city charter. It was suggested perhaps paying off bonds that would come due soon, in hopes to save the city money. However there weren't any concrete plans laid out as how that would in turn be transferred into a rate reduction for the ratepayers, as the charter directs.
 Mr. Hobart incorrectly stated that this wasn't endorsed by the PUAB, which Mayor Weir later corrected, causing him to issue an apology.
 In the end, after the dust settled, and after cleaning up the language of the Resolution, Deluccie and Hobart voted against returning the excess funds to the ratepayers.
 Mayor Eileen Weir, Council Members Brice Stewart (District 2), John Perkins (District 1), Mike Huff (At-Large) and Mike Steinmeyer (District 3) voted in favor doing so.
 No time-line has been given, but with the approval of Resolution 21-713, around 56,000 IPL accounts should receive approximately a $200 rebate in the near future.