KCMO Mayoral Candidates met for a forum on Thursday, February 28 to answer questions regarding their stance on commercial real estate issues. IREM KC was one of the main sponsors for this event.
Overall, the candidates did not have any major contrasting views or changes for the KC commercial real estate future.
All of the candidates appeared to support the idea of taking the Energy Empowerment Ordinance further to regulations that would require building owners to reduce a building’s carbon footprint. The Energy Empowerment Ordinance was put in to place by Mayor Sly James in 2015. The Ordinance objective is to improve the city’s management of resources by requiring owners of large buildings to benchmark and report their energy and water use. The goal is to help businesses and residents to save money on their utility bills and create local jobs in energy efficiency. This is an ordinance that a majority of property managers are against as it would mean more overall costs by building owners.
None of the candidates support the ballot measure coming out that would limit the city tax incentives to 50%, which is a positive for property managers.
Eleven candidates, including six current city council members, are in the race to replace Kansas City Mayor Sly James when he leaves office this year.
2019 Mayoral Candidates
Alissia Canady: Canady is a first-term Kansas City Councilwoman, representing the 5th district in the south and east parts of the city. She is currently a private attorney. Previously, she was an assistant prosecuting attorney for Jackson County. Canady is running on an initiative to promote equitable economic development in all parts of Kansas City and increasing funding for mental health programs.
Clay Chastain: Chastain’s name may be familiar to voters. He’s been behind several failed light rail initiatives and has run for mayor at least four times. While Chastain keeps a permanent residence in Bedford, Virginia, he is registered to vote at an address on Wyoming Street in Kansas City.
Phil Glynn: Glynn owns a small business in Kansas City’s Crossroads District that finances and supports housing and development projects in American Indian communities. Glynn was previously a member of Kansas City’s TIF commission, which awards incentives to developers, but he was removed after he voted against a plan to approve incentives to build the BNIM headquarters in the Crossroads.
Jolie Justus: Justus is in her first term on the city council, representing the Fourth District. She has also served eight years as a Missouri state senator and is director of pro bono services at the Shook, Hardy & Bacon law firm. Justus initially entered the race last year but withdrew after Jason Kander announced he was running in June. After Kander’s surprise withdrawal in early October, Justus re-entered the race, admitting in a news release that she was disappointed to have suspended her original campaign but believed it was “best for Kansas City.” Since Kander’s exit, she said, “After talking it through at length with my wife, I’ve decided that I can best serve Kansas City as its next mayor.”
Henry Klein: This is Henry Klein’s third run for mayor. He last ran in 2011, but didn’t make it to the general election. On a Go-Fund-Me page, Klein says he won’t ask for donations from special interests groups “knowing full well they expect something in return.”
Vincent Lee: Lee lost to incumbent mayor Sly James in 2015’s general election. Back then, Lee described his top priorities as bringing union contracts back to Kansas City, improving access to health care for low-income residents and improving public education in the city.
Quinton Lucas: Lucas is in his first term on the city council, representing the Third District in the east part of the city. He is currently a private attorney and teaches at the University of Kansas School of Law. In 2016, he sponsored an ordinance that caps tax incentives for developers, with exemptions for distressed areas determined by the city. He has also been behind efforts to motivate developers to build more affordable housing.
Steve Miller: Miller is an attorney in Kansas City. He previously served as chairman of the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission, where he oversaw billions of dollars in infrastructure projects, even as the Missouri Department of Transportation saw significant budget cuts. According to his website, Miller is focused on improving the city’s infrastructure, including the streetcar expansion.
Jermaine Reed: Reed is in his second term on the Kansas City Council, representing the city’s 3rd District. First elected in 2011, he became the youngest person to serve on the council. Reed also serves on the board for the National League of Cities. He’s spent much of his time on the council advocating for Kansas City’s historic 18th and Vine District, where he lives. He also pushed a measure to ban employers from asking about criminal history on job applications.
Scott Taylor: Taylor is in his second term on the Kansas City Council, representing the 6th district in south Kansas City. He’s a private attorney. Last year, Taylor introduced a “Revive the East Side” campaign aimed at increasing jobs and economic development in neglected parts of the city. He was a vocal opponent of Edgemoor, the developer selected to build the new terminal at KCI; Taylor supported Burns and McDonnell for the project.
Scott Wagner: Wagner is currently Kansas City’s Mayor Pro Tem. He is serving a second term on the city council, representing the 1st district in the Northland. He is a small business owner with a background in marketing and public relations. Over the last year, Wagner has worked to implement a rental inspection program to help renters who live in unsanitary or unsafe conditions. That issue became the subject of a citizen initiative petition after it failed to advance in council. He has also taken a role in the city’s effort to exert greater oversight of the troubled American Jazz Museum.
KC MAYORAL ELECTION WILL BE TUESDAY, JUNE 25.