(Editor’s note: David Haley, a state senator who ran for mayor in the primary election, is not publicly endorsing anyone for the general election, and is not a write-in candidate. He wrote this column concerning his views on the subject.)
by David Haley
First, let’s acknowledge the genuine pride and appreciation I have for those who supported the Haley for UG Mayor 2017’s campaign efforts. It is the most humbling part. Against a backdrop of staggering odds, these are our neighbors who believe that Wyandotte County’s best hope this year was actually in having an executive leader who would deliver after the election on the commitment to uplift the ever overlooked, and taken advantage of, quadrants and people of our county; which each mayoral candidate pledged to do before the election.
Although that opportunity for all in our beloved county to grow may have best lain in proven, aggressive, immediate leadership which I intended to espouse as the only real choice from the then filed, and now remaining, alphabetically, Mr. Alvey’s and Mr. Holland’s, corporate-rewarding status quo.
Accordingly, with integrity and public expectation intact, and being skeptical of either’s true intent of:
A) Reinvesting our “Village West’s windfall” now in small business commercial and residential housing reoccupation along the main corridors of our county’s eastern half;
B) Bringing review and, wherever possible, diminishing some inequity from the BPU “PILOT” and other irresponsible “city”-related surcharges; while instilling transparency in our never-reviewed-since-1997 enabling Unified Government charter, which glaringly, allows a powerful Mayor (whether public servant or despot) to serve an unlimited number of terms, prevents half of the Commission from vying for Mayor without giving up their seat(s), and a host of other anti-democratic election-related anachronisms;
C) Paralleling Bonner Springs and Edwardsville’s UG tax contributions with greater parity of return by the UG to these cities’ necessary services;
D) Aligning our employee pool with more fiscally responsible intake and measured spending for greater public accountability; as well as
E) Restoring a more direct and personal relationship between our citizenry and our local leadership as well as other advancements.
I, David Haley, am not (as repeatedly flattered by having been asked) a write-in “candidate” for any office in 2017 and will only be voting for candidates printed on the General Election ballot for Mayor, Sheriff, Commissioner and the boards for the BPU, USD 500 and KCKCC. But I am not sharing those said choices publicly. Worst case scenario, as a public and responsible elected official, I wouldn’t want to be held responsible for influencing any vote for another Mayor who, if history sadly is any indication, will not meaningfully address between now and 2021 what has not been addressed heretofore.
But finally, optimistically, as we all collectively celebrate twenty years of this marginally successful experiment called “City-County Consolidation,” let us all prepare to be pleasantly surprised by the true progress (beyond all of the expensive “master plan” exercises, campus and neighborhood redevelopment studies; symbolic name-changes and ribbon-cuttings which energize, placate, targeted congregations and constituencies, etc. that comprises most of all we historically get from City Hall today) that, alphabetically, Mr. Alvey or Mr. Holland will as Mayor-CEO exercise and a “Unified Government” that reinvests in our history, our cultures, our entrepreneurship and newfound revisited charter integrity over these next four years.
Thank you again to all of those who supported optimism and real change in the primary by honoring me with your support, your voice and your vote. Please. Vote on (or before) Nov. 7, 2017.
As we have seen in so many examples, when we all don’t vote, we don’t count.
David Haley, J.D. – State Senator – Kansas from the 4th District, Wyandotte County
Primary candidate for Mayor – Unified Government of Wyandotte County – Kansas City, Kansas