Independence, Missouri

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Independence is the fourth largest city in Missouri, and is contained within the counties of Jackson (primarily) and Clay. In 2010, the city had a total population of 116,830.[1] Independence is part of the Kansas City Metropolitan Area and is the county seat of Jackson County. Independence is known as the "Queen City of the Trails" because it once served as a point of departure for the California Trail, Oregon Trail and Santa Fe Trail.[2]

Public employees

Elected officials

Name District
Eileen Weir[3] Mayor
Marcie Gragg[4] District 1
Curt Dougherty[5] District 2
Scott Roberson[6] District 3
Tom Van Camp[7] District 4
Chris Whiting[8] At-Large
Karen DeLuccie[9] At-Large

Administrative officials

The city manager is appointed by the city council and is responsible for the implementation of council policies. Independence adopted the council-manager form of government in 1961. The city manager serves as the city's chief administrative officer and directs all municipal operations. He or she appoints all department directors and oversees enforcement of city laws and ordinances.[10]

Budget

Source of Budget Dollars:[11]

Description

2009-10
Actual

2010-11
Original
Budget
2011-12
City Council
Adopted
Budget

 %
of
Total
Increase
(Decrease)
Over Last
Year


 %
Change
Fund Balance 20,904,689 29,563,030 8,658,341
Taxes 56,490,485 54,917,782 56,640,034 20.5% 1,722,252 3.1%
Payments 14,225,248 16,545,408 17,620,123 6.4% 1,074,715 6.5%
Licenses & Permits 2,922,711 3,349,340 3,353,927 1.2% 4,587 0.1%
Grants & Shared Revenue 9,214,451 7,845,357 8,095,020 2.9% 249,663 3.2%
Charges for Services 2,498,283 2,374,432 2,536,493 0.9% 162,061 6.8%
Fines and Forfeitures 4,510,754 4,614,534 4,716,854 1.7% 102,320 2.2%
Utility Service Charges 150,000,410 173,490,635 182,695,307 66.1% 9,204,672 5.3%
Other Revenue 157,882 520,375 665,785 0.2% 145,410 27.9%
Total Estimated Revenues 240,020,224 263,657,863 276,323,543 100% 12,665,680 4.8%
Transfers In 58,195 (58,195)
TOTAL SOURCES 284,620,747 305,886,573 21,265,826 7.5%

Expenditures of Budget Dollars:[11]

Description

2009-10
Actual

2010-11
Original
Budget
2011-12
City Council
Adopted
Budget

 %
of
Total
Increase
(Decrease)
Over Last
Year


 %
Change
City Council 405,888 410,135 409,522 0.2% (613) -0.1%
City Clerk 349,256 384,342 366,678 0.1% (17,664) -4.6%
City Manager 1,042,907 1,044,054 838,697 0.3% (205,357) -19.7%
Tourism 1,208,327 1,028,661 1,375,508 0.5% 346,847 33.7%
Nat'l Front. Trails Museum 393,776 385,541 372,833 0.1% (12,708) -3.3%
Technology Services 1,783,471 1,786,293 1,824,505 0.7% 38,212 2.1%
Municipal Court 763,593 803,174 751,614 0.3% (51,560) -6.4%
Law 833,256 795,428 790,425 0.3% (5,003) -0.6%
Finance 1,977,443 2,038,737 1,933,957 0.8% (104,780) -5.1%
Human Resources 488,202 445,706 408,934 0.2% (36,772) -8.3%
Community Dev. 3,829,722 2,816,337 2,749,748 1.1% (66,589) -2.4%
Police 27,734,369 27,093,912 28,469,406 11.3% 1,375,494 5.1%
Fire 17,683,585 17,600,534 17,405,713 6.9% (194,821) -1.1%
Health 3,260,342 3,047,409 3,198,743 1.3% 151,334 5.0%
Water 13,132,759 14,245,797 13,147,680 5.2% (1,098,117) -7.7%
Public Works 6,728,265 6,444,574 5,760,843 2.3% (683,731) -10.6%
Water Pollution Contr. 12,413,147 14,622,291 14,754,068 5.8% 131,777 0.9%
Parks and Recreation 4,859,485 4,588,959 4,301,304 1.7% (287,655) -6.3%
Power and Light 90,134,520 101,273,935 105,330,629 41.7% 4,056,694 4.0%
Non-Departmental 20,276,178 31,584,181 32,407,982 12.8% 823,801 2.6%
Debt Service 13,247,801 13,229,280 15,735,804 6.2% 2,506,524 18.9%
Capital Outlay 562,765 513,200 374,848 0.1% (138,352) -27.0%
Total Departments 223,109,057 246,182,480 252,709,441 100.0% 6,526,961 2.7%
Utility/Sales Tax Funds 15,201,307 24,145,350 8,944,043 58.8%
Net Transfers Out 1,114,503 5,177,846 4,063,343 364.6%
Total Uses $262,498,290 $282,032,637 $19,534,347 7.4%

Public Utilties

The City of Independence operates several major public utilities including electric, water and storm water.[12] The City Charter provides broad authority to a Public Utilities Advisory Board to oversee operations of the city-owned utilities (See Section 3.16).[13] The city electric enterprise (Independence Power & Light) is among the 100 largest public-owned electric companies based on customers served.[14]

Salaries

The 2011-2012 budget spent $36,850,595 on full-time employee salaries, along with $681,549 on part-time salaries. Overtime pay totaled $1,180,737.[11]

Pensions

Employees participate in the Missouri Local Government Employees Retirement System L-6 Benefit Program. MOLAGERS members' benefits are vested after five years of service credit within the system. City employees contribute 4% of their salary to retirement benefits upon completion of a probationary period.[15][16]

City costs for MOLAGERS contributions in the 2011-2012 budget cycle totaled $4,286,638.[17]

Lobbying

As of January 6, 2015, information on the city of Independence's tax-payer funded lobbying expenses is unavailable.

Taxes

Breakdown of Sales Tax:[18]

City - General 1.000%
City - Capital Improvement (Police) 0.125%
City - Fire Protection 0.125%
City - Streets 0.500%
City - Parks 0.250%
City - Stormwater 0.250%
County - General 0.500%
County - Sports Complex 0.375%
County - Anti-Drug 0.250%
State 4.225%
Total 7.600%

The 39th Street Transportation Development District tax rate is 0.125%. Events Center Community Improvement District tax rate is 0.5%, while Crackerneck Creek Transportation Development District has a tax rate of 1.0%.[18]

Districts are located generally east of Lee's Summit Road, west of the Little Blue Parkway, north of US-40 Highway and south of 37th Terrace.[18]

Public Safety

The city provides annual reports for the Fire Department and Police Department.

Website evaluation

See also: Evaluation of Missouri city websites

Last rated on Dec. 19, 2012.

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Meetings
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Elected Officials
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Administrative Officials
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Permits, zoning
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Audits
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Lobbying
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Public Records
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Local Taxes
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Transparency grading process

The good

  • Budgets
    • Budgets are posted.[19]
  • Meetings
    • City Council meeting minutes and agendas are posted.[20]
  • Elected officials
    • City Councilors and the Mayor are listed with contact information.[21]
  • Administrative officials
    • Administrative officials are listed with contact information under their respective departments.
  • Planning
    • Building permits and zoning information is posted.[22][23]
  • Audits
    • Audits are posted.
  • Taxes
    • Local sales tax information is posted.[18]
  • Lobbying
  • Public records
    • A public records request form and an overview of the law is available.[25]
    • A public information officer is identified and listed with a mailing address, phone number and personalized email.[26]
  • Contracts
    • Instruction on bidding[27] and current bids[28] are posted.

The bad

  • Contracts
    • Approved vendor contract statements are not disclosed.

See also

External links

Portions of this article were taken from Wikipedia

References

  1. University of Missouri, "Missouri Trend Report 2: State and Complete Places," accessed on January 6, 2015
  2. USA Cities Online, "Independence Missouri Info Page," accessed on January 6, 2015
  3. City of Independence, "Eileen Weir," accessed on December 30, 2014
  4. City of Independence, "Marcie Gragg," accessed on December 30, 2014
  5. City of Independence, "Curt Dougherty," accessed on December 30, 2014
  6. City of Independence, "Scott Roberson," accessed on December 30, 2014
  7. City of Independence, "Tom Van," accessed on December 30, 2014
  8. City of Independence, "Chris Whiting," accessed on December 30, 2014
  9. City of Independence, "Karen DeLuccie," accessed on December 30, 2014
  10. City of Independence, "City Manager," accessed on January 5, 2015
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 City of Independence, "2011-12 Budget," accessed on January 6, 2015
  12. City of Independence, "City-owned Utilities," accessed on March 21, 2014
  13. City of Independence, "City Charter," accessed on March 21, 2014
  14. American Public Power Association "100 Largest Public Power Utilities by Electric Revenues,: accessed on March 21, 2014
  15. City of Independence, "HR Benefits," accessed on January 6, 2015
  16. Missouri Local Government Employees Retirement System, "Home," accessed on January 6, 2015
  17. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named buget
  18. 18.0 18.1 18.2 18.3 City of Independence, Sales Tax," accessed on January 6, 2015
  19. City of Independence, Financial Reports," accessed on January 6, 2015
  20. City of Independence, Council Meeting Materials," accessed on January 6, 2015
  21. City of Independence, City Council," accessed on January 6, 2015
  22. City of Independence, Building Permits," accessed on January 6, 2015
  23. City of Independence, Zoning Search," accessed on January 6, 2015
  24. City of Independence, "Lobbying," accessed on January 6, 2015
  25. City of Independence, "Records request," accessed on January 6, 2015
  26. City of Independence, "City Clerk," accessed on January 6, 2015
  27. City of Independence, Bidding Instructions
  28. City of Independence, "Current Bids," accessed on January 6, 2015