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Pleasant Hill selects new city administrator — The city of Pleasant Hill, Missouri, named Shawn Henessee as city administrator. Henessee currently serves as the county administrator for Marinette County, Wisconsin. Henessee is returning to the region and formerly served as the assistant director in the Jackson County, Missouri, Recorder of Deeds Office. He begins on Feb. 6, 2017.

Blue Springs hires new economic development manager — Blue Springs, Missouri, City Administrator Eric Johnson recently named Mark Stombaugh as the new economic development manager, effective Jan. 23, 2017. The city created this position when the Blue Springs Economic Development Corporation reorganized under the city of Blue Springs as the Economic Development Council. Stombaugh previously served as executive director of the Liberty Economic Development Council, the president and CEO of Lebanon Regional Economic Development, Inc. and as a project manager for the Missouri Department of Economic Development.

KU Public Management Center announces new program manager — The KU Public Management Center hired Leslee Rivarola, currently the Lake Lotawana city administrator, as the new Law Enforcement Leadership Academy (LELA) program manager. Rivarola will begin her new duties in early February. As the LELA program manager, Leslee will manage, coordinate and market the LELA Command School and LELA Supervisor School.

Kansas City, Missouri, has a new communications tool — The city of Kansas City, Missouri, has a new tool to provide residents with the latest news and videos produced by its communications office. KCMOre Snapshots is a digital newsletter that provides links to the newest videos, city news and announcements.

Johnson County improves access to health and human services — Johnson County Human Services is launching Johnson County OneAssist, a single telephone number for callers seeking assistance from county health and human service agencies and departments. One call to 913-715-8989 now connects residents to resources and services from the Departments of Health and Environment, Human Services, Mental Health and the Developmental Supports agency. Contact Brandy Hodge for more information.

Kansas City region ranks fourth in list of metro areas for job recruitment ZipRecruiter, an online job recruitment platform, reviewed job postings and compared them to job-hunter numbers. The website concluded that Kansas City is the fourth-best metro area in the country to find a job in 2017. Key industries include health care, automotive, retail, finance and insurance fields.

Kansas City, Missouri, tops the nation in business growth — The Pennsylvania-based Wendover Corporation released its third-quarter national business growth survey report and found that Kansas City was number one in the nation on its business growth index score. Wendover’s index looks at factors, such as business relocations, expansion into additional space and the opening of new locations. Kansas City's score increased 23.8 percent compared to the same period last year. The national average is a 10 percent increase. More information available online.

Springsted to host 2017 Central States Academy — Springsted's 2017 Central States Academy topic is "Service Excellence and Efficiency — Can you have both?" The academy is on March 30 and will include panels on changes in local government, municipal fire department consolidation, contract optimization opportunities, priority-based budgeting, and cost savings and efficiencies metrics. Contact Connie Russell for more information.

KC Rising Year 2 Update event — From 4 to 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 28, KC Rising will host an event to highlight accomplishments in its second year. The event will be held at the Karbank 1900 Building, 1900 Shawnee Mission Parkway, Mission Woods, Kansas (northwest corner of Shawnee Mission Parkway and State Line Road). Registration information pending.

WWI Museum will celebrate centennial of U.S. involvement in the war — On April 6 at 11 a.m., the National World War I Museum and Memorial in Kansas City, Missouri, will hold an international event to celebrate U.S. involvement in WWI and recognize the sacrifices made to win the war. Also, communities across the country will host events that weekend at their local WWI memorials to honor those who served. More event information is pending.


Board of Directors — MARC's Board of Directors meeting is Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2017. The agenda will be online one week before the meeting.

MARC's Board adopts 2017 federal policy agenda — Each year, MARC works with committees and community partners to identify federal policy, legislative and funding issues of importance to the Greater Kansas City region. With the introduction of a new federal administration in early 2017, this year's report focuses on communicating policy principles and outcomes of importance to the region. The board received an initial presentation of the federal agenda in December and approved the final version at the January meeting. The 2017 federal policy agenda is available online.

Regional Green Infrastructure Plan announced — At the January MARC Board of Directors meeting, members received a briefing on the newly developed regional green infrastructure plan. Phase one of the plan provided preliminary recommendations for conservation priorities and implementation strategies for water, land and air. Contact Tom Jacobs for more information.

MARC introduces new Communications Strategies certificate program — MARC's Government Training Institute (GTI) is offering a new training to help employees communicate effectively in a mobile world. Coursework includes business writing, grammar, communication etiquette and oral presentations. The Communication Strategies certificate program includes five half-day classes that will enhance your day-to-day professionalism. More information is available online.


Next Managers Roundtable focuses on legislative agendas — The next Managers Roundtable luncheon is scheduled for Friday, Feb. 3, 2017. The luncheon will highlight the 2017 legislative agendas for Kansas and Missouri. The event begins at 11:30 a.m. with lunch served at noon. The luncheon location will be at the MARC Conference Center, 600 Broadway, Kansas City, Missouri. Registration is available online. Luncheon dates for 2017 include: Fridays, Feb. 3, April 14, Aug. 4, Oct. 13 and Dec. 8.

Kansas City Regional Purchasing Cooperative news— The Kansas City Regional Purchasing Cooperative (KCRPC) renewed the contract with Heathwood Oil to provide petroleum products through January 2018. KCRPC renewed contracts for emergency vehicle equipment through Dec. 31, 2017, with multiple suppliers. The current contracts to provide ammunition are also in the renewal process. Upcoming contracts scheduled for rebid include Carhartt outerwear and medical waste disposal services. Contact KCRPC for more information.


Most smart city projects slated for midsize cities —A U.S. Conference of Mayors study of 54 U.S. cities found that 168 of 335 current smart city projects and 225 of 459 upcoming projects are in midsize cities. The study also found that governance is the top smart city initiative, followed by mobility and transport. Learn more from ReadWrite.

Strategies to end chronic homelessness — Ending chronic homelessness takes political will, leadership, collaboration and coordination among multiple state and local programs to align resources. Learn more from NACo's County News.

Law enforcement agencies deal with malware, ransom demands — The proliferation of ransomware has grown exponentially in just the last two years — from about five variations in 2015 to more than 100 now. Learn more from Governing Technology.

Housing in the evolving U.S. suburbs — U.S. suburban housing markets are well positioned to remain preferred places to live and work over the coming decades, even as many urban cores and downtown neighborhoods continue to attract new residents and businesses. Learn more from Urban Land.

Local governments use creative methods to bridge infrastructure financing gaps — Aging shopping malls, many burdened with high vacancy rates or even abandoned, are being transformed into vibrant, mixed-use destinations that are connected to their surrounding communities. Learn more from ICMA.

How fire departments could look like the communities they serve — Cities have struggled with diversity in the fire service for decades. But there's a lot they could do to improve things. Learn more from Governing.

Can America's aging stay in their homes? — A recent report outlines a number of challenges to aging in place. Learn more from CityLab.

The nighttime economy — If one has any doubt that changes are afoot in the realities of managing downtown social districts, perhaps the trending title of "night mayor" will serve to underscore the demands of a nighttime economy. Learn more from ICMA.


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