Mayor /CEO Mark Holland delivered his fourth State of the Government Address today at the Jack Reardon Convention Center in KCK.
When Mayor Holland was elected four years ago, he committed to making the Unified Government as transparent and accountable as possible—an issue he stressed during his address. He also shared the progress of his agenda and efforts to making continued strides in economic growth, initiatives to improve city services through new and innovative approaches and programs to address health disparities in Wyandotte County.
The Mayor praised the Commission for its commitment to steady and responsible property tax reductions, and pledged to continue pushing for further reductions this year. Since 2013, he said, the county had experienced $2.8 billion in economic growth and added 11,000 jobs. This growth, coupled with the retirement of STAR bonds, generated new revenue that will allow the UG to tackle much needed improvements to its urban core. Chief among those improvements is a project called SOAR, which aims to make 10,000 improvements to blighted, distressed, or vacant properties by the year 2021.
The Mayor also noted recent improvements that are making the UG more transparent and accountable. Through the Mayor’s leadership, along with the support of Administration and the Commission, the UG is:
- Televising all of it Commission meetings
- Streaming all meetings live and archiving them for future viewing on the internet
- Providing a new online 311 system for residents to request services
- Providing an Open Data platform that allows the public access to a broad range of financial reports. It’s a one-stop shop for all financial activities and functions of the government
And just today, Holland announced the launch of NextRequest; a new online portal that streamlines open records requests, the first in Kansas. Visitors will be able to conveniently submit, track, and browse public record requests online.
The State of the Government Address is an annual event hosted by the Kansas City, Kansas Rotary Club. The Mayor/CEO of the Unified Government delivers an address to residents, UG staff, the business and civic community about the state of local government.
During the State of the Government Address, the Mayor sets the Administration’s agenda and outlines broad-brush goals for the upcoming year, and provides a report on the progress of the goals that were set the previous year.