Lawmaker wants to end cultural compact

http://cjonline.com/stories/030207/sta_153362439.shtml

 

Lawmaker wants to end cultural compact

 

Posted: Friday, March 02, 2007

 

By James Carlson

A Johnson County representative said during a House committee meeting Thursday the “poor” people of her county shouldn’t have to pay for any more Kansas-Missouri cultural ventures.

“We’re tired of the schemes,” said Rep. Judy Morrison, R-Shawnee. “How many people enjoy these artsy things?”

The discussion in the House Federal and State Affairs Committee centered on a bill to repeal a 1991 cultural compact between Johnson County in Kansas and Jackson County in Missouri. It allows both sides of the state line to pool resources and funds on projects benefitting Kansas and Missouri.

“This is just bad policy,” said Rep. Benjamin Hodge, R-Overland Park. “It allows big businesses, the people with money, to get together with local governments to generate big-money projects that are used by very few people.”

During the meeting, Morrison variously referred to the people of her county as “poor” and “rednecks” who are routinely asked for a new tax to help pay for a bistate project.

“We just want to keep a little bit of our money,” she said.

The compact was used in the mid-1990s to help renovate Union Station in Kansas City, Mo. Morrison said she thought the renovation was a success but that now the Science City exhibit within the station is rocky.

She also said not many people from Johnson County cared about cultural activities. She said residents have to use “pathetic things like e-mail” for entertainment.

“It’s elitism,” she said.

The committee also held more discussion on a bill that would prohibit cities and counties from placing restrictions on concealed weapons owners. Proponents of the measure say gun owners need to have a consistent set of laws across the state so they don’t inadvertently break a law.

The committee is expected to vote on the gun bill Monday.

James Carlson can be reached at (785) 233-7470 or james.carlson@cjonline.com.

tax to help pay for a bistate project.

“We just want to keep a little bit of our money,” she said.

The compact was used in the mid-1990s to help renovate Union Station in Kansas City, Mo. Morrison said she thought the renovation was a success but that now the Science City exhibit within the station is rocky.

She also said not many people from Johnson County cared about cultural activities. She said residents have to use “pathetic things like e-mail” for entertainment.

“It’s elitism,” she said.

The committee also held more discussion on a bill that would prohibit cities and counties from placing restrictions on concealed weapons owners. Proponents of the measure say gun owners need to have a consistent set of laws across the state so they don’t inadvertently break a law. The committee is expected to vote on the gun bill Monday.

James Carlson can be reached at (785) 233-7470 or james.carlson@cjonline.com.

Advertisements