With a proposal on the table for Blue Springs Police to take over law enforcement services in Lake Lotawana, the Blue Springs Public Safety Citizens Advisory Board will host a public forum next week to discuss the possible agreement.
The meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Tuesday at the Howard L. Brown Public Safety Building on Smith Street. Lake Lotawana was scheduled to host its own public forum Tuesday, with Blue Springs Chief of Police Wayne McCoy scheduled to attend, but the meeting was postponed due to the overflow crowd at the lakeside community's city hall and will be rescheduled.
Earlier this month, Blue Springs and Lake Lotawana city officials announced they had been exploring a cooperative police services agreement for several months. If approved, Lake Lotawana would contract with Blue Springs for law enforcement services – including community policing, animal control, crime prevention, investigations and 911 and non-emergency communications support – beginning in April.
Blue Springs would receive funding from Lake Lotawana, which has a population of approximately 2,000 and has a police department of two full-time officers and several part-timers led by Chief of Police Randal Wilson, to increase staffing for services.
“This public forum will allow residents to learn about the proposal and for the board to gather feedback before proceeding with a formal agreement,” Advisory Board Chairperson Robert Morton said in a release. “We want to make sure this cooperative agreement is a good fit for both of our communities.”
Both the Lake Lotawana Board of Aldermen and Blue Springs City Council must approve the contract for it to take effect.
• COUNTY TAX COLLECTION SERVICE ENDING: Blue Springs city officials have announced that Jackson County tax collection services at city hall will discontinue at 5 p.m., Jan. 31.
The city will not be renewing the contract for this service, which it has provided for 30 years – a move planned when city staff put together the current fiscal year budget.
“Payment processes and business needs have changed significantly since the city began this service for our residents in 1976,” City Administrator Eric Johnson said in a news release. “More residents are using Jackson County's convenient payment options, including the ability to pay their tax invoices online. By not renewing this contract, the city can focus on core and critical services to better serve our residents and customers.”
Citizens can use Jackson County tax collection services at:
• County website, www.jacksongov.org/176/paying-your-taxes-online
• Truman Courthouse, 112 W. Lexington Ave., Suite 114, Independence.
• Jackson County Courthouse, 415 E. 12th St., Suite 100, Kansas City.
For more information, call 816-881-3232.
• ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT MANAGER: Johnson has named Mark Stombaugh fill the recently created position of economic development manager, effective Monday.
The city created the position when the Economic Development Corporation was reorganized under the city's umbrella as the Economic Development Council.
Stombaugh, who has served as executive director of the Liberty Economic Development Corporation, will work to retain, support and collaborate with existing businesses while also recruiting new businesses in line with the city's strategic plan, the city said in a news release.
Stombaugh also served as president and CEO of Lebanon Regional Economic Development, Inc., and as a project manager for the Missouri Department of Economic Development. He serves as president of the Missouri Economic Development Council.
“Mark comes highly recommended, and we are fortunate to have him on our team,” Deputy City Administrator Adam Norris said. “He brings expertise in the area of economic growth and development efforts with municipal and state governments and private non-profit corporations that will strengthen our efforts in attracting quality development and new businesses to our city.”