June 15, 2019

Mallory Herrmann

Lee’s Summit has formally approved their fiscal year 2020 budget, totaling approximately $230 million, with a unanimous vote in favor of the ordinance during its second reading this week.

But the budget’s first amendment, allocating funds for a lightning detection system at Legacy Park, was a little less well-received. The $17,500 will come out of the city’s general fund and will be used for the one-time expense of the safety equipment, as well as the first-year service charge.

Councilmember Rob Binney took issue with the process, saying that after many meetings and discussions of the budget among both the full council and the finance and budget committee, the budget committee’s chair went around the process to create this separate ordinance.

“I just can’t support it this way,” Binney said. “The process isn’t right.”

Mayor Bill Baird said that responsibility shouldn’t be put on the chair, Councilmember Bob Johnson, but that other departments “did not step up to the plate” to take care of it.

“You and I should not have to vote against this, I don’t believe, but here we are,” said Baird.

Baird and Binney voted against the budget amendment; it passed 6–2.

Councilmember Trish Carlyle was absent from the June 11 session.