David Haley, candidate questionnaire

David Haley

Name and office sought: David Haley, Board of Public Utilities (BPU) – At-Large District 2

Age: 62

Occupation and experience:

Lawyer, developer, state senator.


Education:

B.A., Morehouse College, Atlanta, Georgia; J. D., Howard University Law School, Washington, D.C.

Organizations, clubs, groups to which you belong: civic; church; youth sports; political.

Reasons for running: As a native ‘Dotte who has lived in other cities around the U.S., I know for a fact (as do thousands of other Wyandotte Countians sincerely suspect), that our jewel of a monopoly, electric and water municipally “owned and operated” utility, is severely off kilter.

For the average residential and small business ratepayer-consumer, the BPU is expensive compared to other similarly situated electric and water consumers with other utilities (all “for-profit”) in the Kansas City metropolitan area; if indeed the midwestern United States.

Recognized for decades, many candidates have run for BPU as inquisitive, results-seeking “reformers.” Supported by and elected to serve by an equally inquisitive majority of the voting KCK public they have pledged to serve; after their election, as a new member of the board, some actually become accomplice to the carnage.

Whatever else happens, most Wyandotte Countians will sincerely attest that David Haley is as responsive after being elected as I am as a candidate for elected office. I will continue to do my best and to not let the BPU curse affect my established public service record.

What are the three most important issues facing this position and how would you handle them?

1) Better align municipal charges (Like the “P.I.L.O.T.,” water pollution and trash, etc.) on the BPU bill with state guidelines.

Did you know?
Current Kansas state law, as governed through the Kansas Corporation Commission (KCC), limit the total percentage of municipal (or “city”) charges to no more than 16% of the consumption usage. So, for example, if BPU bills were governed like a for-profit utility susceptible to the KCC, a consumer’s bill charging for $100 of actual electric and water usage total bill could not exceed $116.

2) More equal representation

Let’s face it.
With 4 of the 6 board members all living in the northwestern quadrant of the city, it’s no wonder that average homeowners and small businesses have little equality in policy implementation while other “protected” special interests (like the T-Bones baseball team) can game the system with impunity; protected by that benefitting 4 member majority of the board. Living and responsibly representing KCK found east of I-435, if elected I will bring a different perspective and mindset to the 6 member panel; for the rest of the county, too.

3) Continuing the responsible goal of renewable “climate friendly” generation while reducing costs to the consumer

Our BPU is a leader in the strong (moving towards 50%) portfolio derived from renewable, climate responsible, sources. The additional research and implementation I will work towards is to stabilize these new technologies; increase their capacities and efficiencies; and reduce the stranded costs that impact average income ratepayers.

If you are not an incumbent, what would you change if elected?
As a challenger, if elected, I will press for greater transparency for the public of the policies and procedures of the BPU .

Although the pandemic-driven necessity to remove the bimonthly (1st and 3rd Wednesdays of each month) board meetings to remote
(or Zoom) only, the public’s involvement has increased (by being able to attend and participate during the “public comments” section virtually) and decreased (by revoking practically all in-lobby and-or office administrative personal interactivity) at the same time.

Have you run for elected office previously? When, results?

State Senator. Elected (2000 – 2021) .
State Representative. Elected (1994 – 2000) .
Precinct Committeeman. Elected (1986 – Present).

Also : Mayor-CEO. Unified Government of Wyandotte County, Kansas City, Kansas (UG). 3rd place, (2017). 2nd place, (1997).

Lineman’s rodeo to be Saturday at Ag Hall

Five linemen from the Kansas City, Kansas, Board of Public Utilities will compete against hundreds of other utility workers from across the nation and as far away as Canada, Hawaii and the United Kingdom at the annual International Lineman’s Rodeo Saturday, Oct. 16, at the National Agricultural Center and Hall of Fame in Bonner Springs, Kansas.

The linemen will test their professional and trade skills in a unique competition that is open to the public.

Hundreds of utility professionals will be in town for an annual trade show and expo in Overland Park, Kansas, with the highlight being the “Lineman’s Rodeo,” a series of competitions testing various lineman skills and safety techniques on the Ag Hall grounds.

BPU will be represented by one team and two apprentice linemen. Eric Ferguson, Jake Janes, Trenton Overton, Josh Cook and Tommy Wombwell this year will be competing against more than 900 linemen representing over 200 teams from various private and municipal utilities.

The rodeo competition will occur on Saturday, Oct. 16, at the Agricultural Hall of Fame in Bonner Springs, kicking off at 7 a.m. Team and apprentice events will include the Hurtman Rescue, the Pole Climb, and several mystery events. An awards banquet will be held at the Overland Park Convention Center at 6 p.m. that evening.

The International Lineman’s Rodeo was first held in 1984, and was created to maintain a focus on safety and safe work practices and to recognize the technical craft skills of utility lineman. One other purpose has always been for the participants to have fun while sharing work knowledge with others in their trade from different companies and different parts of the country. Go to www.linemansrodeokc.com for more information about this event.

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Democrats to meet Saturday

Mark Holland, former Kansas City, Kansas, mayor, will be the guest speaker at the Wyandotte County Third Saturday Democratic Breakfast meeting Saturday, Oct. 16 at Las Islas VIP Sports Bar and Grill, 4929 State Ave., Kansas City, Kansas.

The meeting will be held in the parking lot at the location. People will start gathering about 8 a.m., with the program at 9 a.m.

Holland, a United Methodist minister, is a candidate for the U.S. Senate in 2022.

Also on the program Saturday will be Hank Chamberlain, Democratic National committeeman, who will give a report of last weekend’s DNC Zoom meeting.

Hana’s Donuts will be available for the meeting.

Candidates on the Nov. 2 ballot who are Democratic registered voters and did not speak at last month’s breakfast are invited to speak Saturday. All Democratic candidates may bring signs and literature for distribution.

The meeting is open to Democrats.