Jun 29

Mission Hills Mayor's Update #22 - 6/29/20

Posted on June 29, 2020 at 10:01 PM by David Dickey

Fellow Residents:


I am amazed it has been almost a month since my last update.  Part of me had felt as if we had settled into a “new normal” with the virus still with us, but at bay.  That was a false sense of security.


Four updates for you tonight:


1)    Today Governor Kelly announced a state-wide mask order for indoor AND outdoor spaces.  While her final language has not been announced, there are two points I took from her press conference today that I hope you will all heed:


a.    The pandemic is far from over.  Kansas is neither Florida, nor Arizona, nor New York 60 days ago, but Johnson County is not immune.  Please be smart and safe.


b.    Beginning Friday, July 3rd, face coverings/masks will be REQUIRED in all public spaces where social distancing cannot be maintained.  


Does this mean you need to wear a mask on your morning walk through our City?  No.  


Does this mean you need to wear a mask in the Hen House in Prairie Village?  Yes. 


Please be smart about wearing a mask.  Your mask protects others from you.  We sometimes do not know about the health situations of those around us.


The most current information about face coverings/masks can be found here:


https://governor.kansas.gov/governor-laura-kelly-announces-masks-must-be-worn-statewide/


2)    Our public safety teams continue to function well, and I thank them for their service.  


3)    A week ago, the Governor announced the State would stay in Phase 3 of the “Ad Astra” re-opening plan.  This continuance will last until at least July 6th.  The full text of her release can be found here:


https://governor.kansas.gov/governor-laura-kelly-recommends-kansas-stay-in-phase-3-of-ad-astra-plan/#:~:text=PPE Procurement-,Governor Laura Kelly Recommends Kansas Stay,3 of “Ad Astra” Plan&text=“Though many Kansans and communities,spread,” Governor Kelly said.


4)    The City continues to operate in our emergency mode with meetings being virtual.  We will continue this until we can have a high level of confidence in our ability to put staff and residents in City Hall safety.  Thank you for your patience as we work through this.


Your continued feedback is appreciated!  Please stay safe as we move through the summer.  As always, if you have questions or comments, feel free to call City Hall at 913-362-9620 or email info@missionhillsks.gov.  You are always welcome to email me directly at mayor@missionhillsks.gov. 


And I debated whether to open or close with this quote.  Bono is the lead singer of the Irish band U2.  This quote felt appropriate for our current situation, as well as the 4th of July holiday:


“Anyway, it's not a right/left issue. It's a right/wrong issue, and America has constantly been on the side of what's right. Because when it comes down to it, this is about keeping faith with the idea of America. Because America's an idea, isn't it? I mean, Ireland's a great country, but it's not an idea. Great Britain's a great country, it's not an idea. That's how we see you around the world, as one of the greatest ideas in human history, right up there with the Renaissance, right up there with crop rotations and the Beatles' White album.”


Be safe, healthy and well.  Thank you again.


P.S.  The full Bono quote can be found here:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tg3Xzh2cXD8

Jun 01

Mission Hills Mayor's Update #21 6/1/20

Posted on June 1, 2020 at 9:33 PM by David Dickey

Fellow Residents:

We truly are in unprecedented times.  We continue to recover from the pandemic and then an awful event occurred in Minneapolis late last week.

Not to minimize events unfolding nationally, but I will stick to five pandemic-related updates for our City tonight:

1) Last week Governor Kelly and the Kansas Legislature played what amounts to a game of chicken on the topic of Emergency Declarations.  The net result was to put full control back at the local level.  

Johnson County chose to ask residents and businesses to follow the Ad Astra guidelines.  That said, those are guidelines only, so individuals and businesses are encouraged to use their best judgement.  

2) Irrespective of what the State and County are doing, the City will continue the following through June due to our small City Hall space:

a. Board and Council meetings will continue to be held virtually.  
b. Staff will continue to split time in and out of City Hall to ensure we do not have an infection across our small team.

3) We are working with the Community Engagement Committee on rescheduling several events including Verona en Blanc, the Keim Street Fair (please note it will NOT be this weekend!), and the pop-ups they had planned.  More to come on this once dates are finalized.

4) I communicated with Chiefs Lopez and Schwartzkopf before the weekend and their teams continue to be healthy and are/were ready for any situations that should arise.

5) The Council held its first budget planning session today (Monday).  The City’s finances overall are in good shape.

Mission Hills’ revenue mix is very different than other nearby communities, and the Council took several important strategic actions just over a year ago that have helped cushion the current situation.

Thank you for continuing to walk and bike across our City.  Please stay safe as we slide into summer.  As always, if you have feedback or questions, feel free to call City Hall at 913-362-9620 or email info@missionhillsks.gov.  You are always welcome to email me directly at mayor@missionhillsks.gov. 

May 21

Mission Hills Mayor's COVID-19 Update #20 5/21/20

Posted on May 21, 2020 at 9:51 PM by David Dickey

Fellow Residents:

First, I want to take a moment to thank our veterans as we head into the Memorial Day weekend.  The Memorial Day holiday is dedicated to those who have served and sacrificed so that we all can enjoy our many freedoms.  Reflecting on those freedoms is most appropriate as we re-open the State and KC metro, as I believe we all have a greater appreciation for them.

Dr. Franklin Murphy, a medical doctor by training and chancellor of KU in the 1950’s said this:

“It should be the aim of public servants to encourage individual enterprise, not deny it.  Otherwise one day we shall discover that the source from which this nation has drawn its strength will have been enfeebled beyond repair.  Our graduating men and women must clearly recognize and be capable of assuming their personal obligations, which a true democracy imposes on its citizens.”

Five updates that continue Murphy’s theme:

1) Tomorrow the State and County embark on modified Phase 2 of the Governor’s Ad Astra re-opening.  Modified Phase 2 allows the vast majority of businesses to re-open with certain restrictions.  Details of Modified Phase 2 can be found at this link:

https://www.jocogov.org/article/2020/05/21/13891

2) The Council last week unanimously voiced approval for the City’s re-opening plans to align with the State’s for now.  Thus, most meetings will be virtual in June until the gathering restriction grows from 15 to 45 in Phase 3.

3) I want to congratulate the graduates (and their parents) of all ages in Mission Hills.  I walk frequently in our City and you cannot miss the signs congratulating the high school, 8th grade, 6th grade and other graduations.  

4) The Community Engagement Committee is assessing a new calendar.  They have already postponed Verona en Blanc and the Keim Street Fair.  Be on the lookout for an updated calendar in the coming weeks.

5) Many residents do not realize that almost 90% of the creeks in the City are privately owned.  Having grown up with a creek that provided endless entertainment in old Leawood, part of me has been happy to see so many children rediscovering what fun these waterways can be.

That said, please be respectful and mindful of private property, and please be careful as our waterways are not always as clean as we would like.

As always, thank you for your continued feedback.  Please feel free to call City Hall at 913-362-9620 or email info@missionhillsks.gov.  You are also welcome to email me directly at mayor@missionhillsks.gov. 

Have a safe, healthy Memorial Day weekend!  Enjoy Modified Phase 2.