December 31, 2022
U.S. Representative Emanuel Cleaver, II (D-MO) announced that he has successfully secured $91.85 million in Community Project Funding for local projects across the Fifth Congressional District of Missouri in the year-end government funding package. From infrastructure improvements to housing initiatives and job training programs, the funding responds directly to some of the most pressing needs throughout Cleaver’s congressional district.
“After a long, hard fight to get this funding across the finish line, I’m proud to have helped secure more than $91 million in Community Project Funding for the Fifth District of Missouri, ensuring our communities have the resources necessary to meet the needs of Missouri families and workers,” said Congressman Cleaver. “From Kansas City to Independence; Grandview to Gladstone; and communities all across our congressional district, these investments will play a major role in creating good-paying jobs, boosting economic development, increasing public health and safety, and protecting the planet for future generations by combatting climate change.”
Rep. Cleaver championed funding for 15 projects that will directly benefit residents of Missouri’s 5th District, securing $39,250,000 in total—which ranks 27th out of the 344 Representatives who submitted Community Project Funding requests. These projects include:
• $4,600,000 to the City of Grandview for improvements to Blue Ridge Boulevard, which connects two ends of Kansas City and is the main commercial corridor for the City of Grandview. The funding will be used to address safety improvements, including street resurfacing, an expansion of four lanes for traffic, miles of new sidewalk, a wide multi-use path, and all ADA-compliant intersections.
• $4,000,000 to the Kansas City Area Transportation Authority (KCATA) for Low and No Emission Buses and Support Infrastructure. As the KCATA and regional transit partners seek to further incorporate battery-electric buses into the RideKC network, which covers the urban and suburban regions of the bi-state Kansas City region, this funding will help afford replacement buses and support infrastructure necessary for low and no emission buses.
• $4,000,000 to the Kansas City, Missouri Public Works Department to create an 18thStreet Pedestrian Plaza. The federal dollars will be used for the creation of a Pedestrian Mall on 18th Street between The Paseo Boulevard and Woodland Avenue near the Historic 18th & Vine Entertainment District. The Pedestrian Mall will be a flexible, multi-purpose assembly area that will allow for a safe and pedestrian-friendly environment for farmers’ markets, festivals, outdoor concerts, and a general congregations area for the district residents when these events are not active.
• $4,000,000 to Kansas City, Missouri Parks and Recreation Department for a Bruce R. Watkins Connector Community Park Project. This project will create recreational opportunities for the neighborhoods that were fractured by the Bruce R. Watkins Highway Project, which bisects this area North and South, and the Brush Creek Flood Control Project, which bisects this area East and West. The planned improvements will remove some of the barriers caused by these projects, allowing residents to fully access and utilize the park from adjacent neighborhoods. Additionally, the planned improvements will add amenities that will attract more people to the area.
• $4,000,000 to the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce & Heartland Black Chamber of Commerce for a Minority Chamber of Commerce Development Center. The Hispanic Chamber of Commerce & the Heartland Black Chamber of Commerce will be co-located in the heart of Kansas City, Missouri, while jointly serving an array of minority businesses throughout the region. This joint partnership will be the first of its kind nationwide as two of the largest minority chambers unite in their missions to advance business development, workforce development, and leadership development for the betterment of people of color throughout the Fifth District of Missouri.
• $4,000,000 to the Urban Neighborhood Initiative to support a housing initiative intended to build community and unlock the path to homeownership. The pilot program will provide 100 quality, affordable homes to families in underserved communities under a financing structure that promotes resident wealth accumulation through ultimate homeownership.
• $3,000,000 to the City of Independence for the Independence Historic Square Streetscape. The funding will be used for street modifications, including one-way and two-way conversions, parallel parking, sidewalks, and ADA ramp improvements. Additionally, for the safety of the citizens and visitors, the streetlights will be improved as well as the addition of bicycle and pedestrian facilities and amenities.
• $3,000,000 to the Raytown Parks & Recreation Department for Raytown Parks renovation and redevelopment. The funding will address the demolition and redevelopment needs of two parks in Raytown, Missouri. The Super Splash Park closed in the fall of 2016, but the remaining facilities must be demolished to allow for redevelopment projects. The Kenagy Park pond is a part of the Raytown Storm Water system to catch and hold water in major rain conditions. The dam and bank of the pond is eroding, making hazardous conditions for park patrons. The Raytown Parks Department will utilize the federal funding to install ADA-compliant restroom facilities and access trails as part of the redevelopment plan.
• $3,000,000 to the City of Gladstone for an HVAC replacement at the Gladstone Community Center/Natatorium. The funding will be used to replace two indoor air quality units serving the natatorium space. Since 2008, the Gladstone Community Center/Natatorium has served as the swimming arena for the North Kansas City School District and the site for the District’s 3rd-grade water safety/learn to swim project. Indoor air quality is critical to the facility to protect the participants and spectators.
• $2,000,000 to the Digital Storytelling Center of Kansas City for the KC IMAGINE project. The funding will be used to restore this historic studio for members of the public and provide enrichment for the surrounding neighborhood. This facility will become a center for digital media training, job creation, and entrepreneurship serving low-income people in the immediate community and the KC metro.
• $1,000,000 to MRIGlobal for an expansion of their biorepository. The funding will expand laboratory capabilities and resources to advance research and development in new and investigational drugs, as well as new technologies in medical treatments. This project will increase the number of high-paying jobs and services and continue to support Kansas City’s science, technology, engineering, and math education programs and workforce development.
• $750,000 to Alphapointe for the Building Equitable Access to Community Opportunities Now (BEACON) Project. The funding will be used for the expansion of Alphapointe’s current building as well as the creation of a new, nearby facility to provide for the continued rehabilitation and training needs of disabled job seekers and offer new health and child care services to the surrounding, underserved community.
• $750,000 to reStart Inc. for the Thriving Neighborhoods through Cottage Communities Project. Cottage Communities provide affordable single-family housing for low- and extremely low-income households to prevent and end homelessness, ultimately helping to strengthen neighborhoods throughout Kansas City.
• $750,000 to the Full Employment Council for a Career Technology Academy. The funding will help provide training that leads to good-paying careers in (1) Providing housing weatherization/rehabilitation services; (2) rehabilitating, weatherizing, and detoxifying housing for low- and moderate-income families; and (3) information technology, advanced manufacturing, warehouse/distribution or other occupations through classroom training, on the job training, apprenticeship training, or combinations thereof based on the career aspirations of the individual. The Career Technology Academy will enable low- and moderate-income families to earn higher incomes through training and support, help more Missourians live in energy efficient housing, and ensure safer and more sanitary housing in Kansas City.
• $400,000 to SAVE, Inc. for Pride Haven. Pride Haven helps ensure homeless LGBTQ+ youth can access safe, welcoming, and accepting drop-in and overnight shelter. Youth served are 18-24 years old and find a welcoming, supportive environment as well as case management, connection to community resources, shower and laundry facilities, computer access, a safe place to sleep, and healthy meals.
Additional projects that were championed by Senator Blunt and supported by Rep. Cleaver that were included in the year-end government spending bill include:
• $28,600,000 to the Missouri Department of Transportation for the South Loop Link Project. The project will install a deck over a four-block section of Interstate 670 to create an enhanced green mobility hub, enabling multimodal transportation options, regional job access, green and healthy living space, private development, and climate resiliency.
• $10,000,000 to the University of Missouri-Kansas City for facility upgrades and equipment. The funding will enable construction and additional equipment for schools of Medicine and Dentistry at UMKC.
• $8,000,000 to Kansas City University for facility improvements and equipment. The funding will go toward improvements to facilities and additional equipment for a Center of Excellence to improve population health through its health professions programs.
• $2,000,000 to Metropolitan Community College for facility and equipment upgrades. The funding will allow for equipment and construction of the Penn Valley Campus Health Science Center.
• $2,000,000 to Swope Health for facility improvements and equipment. The investment will allow for construction and equipment for the PACE building at Swope Health.
• $2,000,000 to Saline County for Clean Water Improvements near I-70 and Highway 65 Interchange. The funding will pay to install an upgraded sewer system to ensure clean drinking water for residents of Saline County.
The Fiscal Year 2023 government funding package also includes reforms to the Electoral Count Act to protect our democracy; critical investments to combat homelessness and create affordable housing; increased funding for veterans’ medical care and additional benefits for military families; boosts the maximum Pell Grant by $500; makes the Summer EBT Program permanent; and more. Taken together, the funding for Missouri’s Fifth District and the additional investments for critical government programs will continue to support our nation’s economic recovery, the workers and families who fuel it, and communities across Missouri.
The year-end government funding package was passed by the House of Representatives, with Rep. Cleaver’s support, and the United States Senate. The bill will now go to President Biden to be signed into law.
Emanuel Cleaver, II is the U.S. Representative for Missouri’s Fifth Congressional District, which includes Kansas City, Independence, Lee’s Summit, Raytown, Grandview, Sugar Creek, Blue Springs, Grain Valley, Oak Grove, North Kansas City, Gladstone, Claycomo, and all of Ray, Lafayette, and Saline Counties. He is a member of the exclusive House Financial Services Committee; Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Housing, Community Development, and Insurance; member of the Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress; member of the Committee on Homeland Security; and a Senior Whip of the Democratic Caucus.