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Shelter resources are limited for unhoused who work nights

If you see a homeless person sleeping in public during the day, assume nothing. Though Kansas City doesn’t keep an exact count, nationally nearly 40% of unhoused individuals living on the street work full- or part-time jobs, and a significant number of those choose to work night jobs.  There are many reasons why the unhoused…


Decoding the language of Kansas City’s tax incentives: Key terms to know

Kansas City is known far and wide for its use of tax incentives.  Researchers have studied the use of incentives to move development projects back and forth across the state line as part of the “border war” between Kansas and Missouri.  Many local landmarks, including the Power and Light District, Hotel Phillips and the midtown…

Landlord ignoring your complaint? Here’s how to get your apartment fixed.

As temperatures dip in the winter months, safe homes become all the more critical. Broken furnaces, moldy ceilings and crossed wires all endanger residents who are spending more time indoors. For tenants, problems in their units can be a source of anxiety, especially if their landlord is reluctant to fix them. To protect tenants, Kansas…

Behind the tax incentives ordinance stuck in Kansas City Council limbo

Backers of Ordinance 220701 say it will bring consistency to the way Kansas City government and affiliated agencies can grant a tax break to developers. But it has been on a rocky road. In the four months since the proposed legislation was filed in Kansas City Council’s Neighborhood Planning and Development Committee, it has been…

Resources for people who need shelter in Kansas City

Last winter, social service workers identified at least 711 people in Kansas City staying in shelters or without a means of shelter on a single day. That number is known as the point-in-time count, but the actual number of people who are unhoused is thought to be much higher, with individuals and families transitioning in…

This ballot question would fund ‘deeply affordable housing’ in KC

Housing activists like Maya Neal have had their differences with city hall. But an afternoon in late October found Neal knocking on doors in south Kansas City in support of a ballot question sponsored by Mayor Quinton Lucas and the City Council. “I’m going around talking to neighbors about Question 2 on November’s ballot. It’s…

KC Tenants announces sister organization focused on building political power

Since its creation in 2019, KC Tenants has drafted a Tenants Bill of Rights and secured its passage through the City Council. The group has successfully lobbied for the right of people faced with eviction to be represented by a lawyer. Its members fought against evictions in the pandemic and opposed development deals that give…

Subsidized development in Waldo has 296 new apartments but no affordable housing

Residents of Kansas City’s Waldo neighborhood may soon see changes along a popular commercial strip, where the Kansas City Area Transportation Authority’s development arm has recommended the first of three approvals for tax incentives for an apartment development at 74th Street and Broadway. The six-story project, called Waldo74Broadway, is expected to contain 296 apartment units as…

To attract more developers, Kansas City changes its affordable housing ordinance — again

Just 19 months after passing a new housing ordinance aimed at requiring developers to offer “extremely affordable” housing, the Kansas City Council has decided it hasn’t worked. On Aug. 18, the council voted 9-4 to change the ordinance, with council members Heather Hall, Brandon Ellington, Eric Bunch and Andrea Bough voting no. Now there is…

Formerly incarcerated Missourians struggle for decades to find stable housing

After serving time in prison, Christine McDonald found herself living on the streets of Kansas City and in a pay-by-the-week motel. Robert Richardson, who also has a felony record, settled for a bug-infested apartment with an open hole in the front. They are far from alone in the struggle to find adequate, affordable housing as…

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