The 2nd District at-large race pits former City Councilwoman Teresa Loar, who came in first in the two-way primary, against Jay Hodges, who worked for more than three years as a member of Mayor Sly James’ staff.
They are seeking to replace Ed Ford, who is term-limited out.
Occupation: Customer relations, State Street
Education: Bachelor’s degree in political science from Park University
Previous public service: Two terms on the North Kansas City Board of Education; two terms on the Kansas City Council, 1995-2003.
Endorsements: Citizens Association; Freedom Inc.; Greater Kansas City Women’s Political Caucus; La Raza; Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 99; Hispanic Chamber of Commerce; Downtown Council.
Position on three key issues:
KCI: The airport should undergo major renovations but not be replaced with a new single terminal. We need to look at similar-sized cities that have proposed renovating or replacing their existing airport. The city has a responsibility to its citizens to be wise with their tax dollars. If through renovation, KCI is able to function more efficiently and effectively while keeping costs low, the precedence has to be given to refurbishment.
Kemper Arena: I can see a repurposing of Kemper if the numbers work. The architecture and design of Kemper and its history are enough to keep trying to find a new owner. But costs matter and if repurposing is not feasible, the city cannot continue to maintain the arena’s upkeep. I can envision where Kemper is used in a myriad of ways, from a sound stage or production facility, a megachurch to a startup small manufacturing facility, a technology/call center, or offer it to the Salvation Army or Red Cross for disaster relief.
Streetcar expansion: We need to take a wait-and-see approach. Before it can expand, I am in favor of a citywide vote. I am not a proponent of using Transportation Development Districts (small taxation districts), as the continuity of the lines and routes can become compromised. We need to shore up our responsibilities first as a provider of basic services and public safety and secondly as a catalyst for change.
Occupation: Director of Mo-Kan LECET, a labor/management trust fund.
Education: Bachelor’s degree in sociology and master’s in business administration from Baker University
Previous public service: Served as senior adviser for economic development and public safety in Mayor Sly James’ administration; oversaw city’s involvement in 2012 All-Star Game, World Series and 2014 Big 12 basketball tournaments. Previously worked for various Democratic elected officials including Dennis Moore, Mark Warner, Mark Udall and Kathleen Sebelius.
Major endorsements: AFL-CIO; carpenters union; FirePAC; Public Safety Concern
Positions on three key issues:
KCI: Wait and see. We need to make a solid financial decision that is in the best interest of the city long-term, and that means waiting until the airline committee concludes its meeting and makes a presentation to the city for consideration. Let’s deal with facts and not feelings.
Kemper Arena: We have to deal with the American Royal, then we can make a good decision about what to do with Kemper. When the City Council 20 years ago handed the American Royal the sweetest lease agreement in the history of mankind, it clouded the city from being able to truly deal with this issue.
Streetcar expansion: Expand it where people want it, i.e., out south.