Northeast Joco

New Roeland Park councilman plans to focus on fiscal responsibility

Fiscal responsibility and generating additional city revenue by attracting new businesses is one goal of Ryan Kellerman, the newly elected Ward 3 City Councilman in Roeland Park.

Kellerman, a lifelong Roeland Park resident, replaces Mel Croston, who resigned earlier this year with two years left on her term. Kellerman gained 187 of the 330 votes cast in a special election held Dec. 9. Scott Ferrel received 141 votes and David Gauwitz received 2 votes.

Kellerman has been a small business owner for the past 12 years, providing audio-visual support for companies and nonprofit organizations in Kansas City. He has also been a Realtor for 10 years. A 1991 graduate of Bishop Miege High School who holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in communications from Pittsburg State University, he is married with children.

Kellerman said he decided to run for the council because he has had a long-time interest in local government. “I felt this was a good time to step up and take a more active role in the development of the city,” he said.

Making Roeland Park more welcoming to both businesses and families is one goal, he said. Increasing the tax base and lowering the budget deficit is another. “We need to concentrate on watching our bottom line and not spending money we don’t have,” he said. “Our taxes are one of the highest in the county and we are one of the smallest towns.”

Kellerman said outside influences have caused rifts in the city “and we need to fix that. We won’t have endless resources and we need to remember that and choose our projects thoughtfully and not based on trends.”