Wichita City Council. This week the Wichita City Council will consider the formation of a STAR bond district in northeast Wichita. While this is a complex issue that will take some study to fully understand, the action the council will consider this week is only to set a public hearing for February 14th. A concern is that the developers for the proposed Wichita project are also responsible for the Village West project in Kansas City, Kansas. On November 22, I reported this regarding that project: “The Legends at Village West, a huge shopping development in Kansas City near the Kansas Speedway, has defaulted on its loan. According to reporting in Commercial Real Estate Direct, the property never met its cash flow projections, topping out at $10.3 million per year in 2008. The loan assumed it would generate $11.1 million. Since 2008 cash flow has fallen. The public policy interest is that this facility, along with the nearby racetrack, received millions in sales tax (STAR) bond financing, to be repaid by taxpayers through sales tax collections.”
Kansas House Speaker speaking in Wichita. This Friday (January 13th) the Wichita Pachyderm Club features Speaker of the Kansas House of Representatives Mike O’Neal, speaking on “The untold school finance story.” The public is welcome and encouraged to attend Wichita Pachyderm meetings. For more information click on Wichita Pachyderm Club. Upcoming speakers: On January 20th: Sedgwick County Commissioner Karl Peterjohn. … On January 27, 2012: The Honorable Jennifer Jones, Administrative Judge, Wichita Municipal Court, speaking on “An overview of the Wichita Municipal Court.”
Legislature starts. Today is the first day of the 2012 session of the Kansas Legislature.
State of the State address. Kansas Governor Sam Brownback will deliver the “State of the State” address this Wednesday at 6:30 pm. It appears that public television and radio are the only way to experience this address. A much-anticipated portion of the address is the governor’s plan for tax reform. The plan has been in the works for several months, and requests for information about the process have been refused.
Kansas State Sovereignty Rally. This Friday (January 13th) afternoon is the 4th Annual State Sovereignty Rally, held at the Kansas State Capitol. Topics include constitutional issues, health care reform, and the Kansas budget. A printable flier with details is here. There are transportation opportunities from Wichita; contact Larry Halloran at 316-777-9352 or [email protected].
Making Economics Come Alive. Tonight the Americans for Prosperity monthly meeting will feature the topic “Making Economics Come Alive” with a video presentation by John Stossel. Topics include Government Spending, Deficits, and Debt, Are We Heading Toward a Debt Crisis?, Can Government Spending Be Cut?, Growth of Government, Spending, Taxes and the role of Government, International Trade and Trade Barriers, International Trade: Criticisms and Responses, Economics of Trade Deficits, Why Some Nations Prosper and Others Stagnate, Why Do Nations Prosper?, and Economic Freedom and Quality of Life. This meeting is at a different location: Central Branch Wichita Public Library, 223 S. Main (3rd Floor Meeting Room). The meeting starts at 7:00 pm. For more information on this event contact John Todd at [email protected] or 316-312-7335, or Susan Estes, AFP Field Director at sest[email protected] or 316-681-4415.