Archive for Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Shilling: Responsible city spending needed

Roger Shilling

Roger Shilling

March 25, 2009

As the only local business owner running for a council seat, Roger Shilling believes he has the right ideas for Tonganoxie’s future.

“You might say that I am a liaison between the business people and the city,” Shilling said.

Shilling and his wife Phyllis own Shilling Electric, where Shilling said he has been working “ever since I was able to walk.”

As a lifelong member of the community, he said he has seen a great change in Tonganoxie over the years in which people don’t cooperate and communicate like they used to.

“The community used to work together … now it seems like they are anti-city, anti-government,” he said. “There is no cooperation within the community. There’s not a lot of communication between the elected officials and the citizens. It seems like (the councilmembers) get elected to office and then their hearing goes. They don’t listen to the people that elected them.”

Over the years Shilling hasn’t always seen eye to eye with the city government. More recently, Shilling has been critical of the city’s plan to fund $1.5 million toward the development of County Road 1. While he wasn’t against the idea of an interchange to Interstate 70 in Leavenworth County, he said he would rather have seen it placed near Reno. He also would have preferred the residents of Tonganoxie vote on the decision. In 2007 a petition he filed to call for a referendum on the city’s decision to fund the project was declared invalid by a district judge.

In late 2002 the Shillings, along with John Lenahan and Don Pelzl, filed a federal lawsuit over allegations that the city violated their civil right by boycotting their companies. The lawsuit was filed against the City of Tonganoxie, former mayor John Franiuk, former city attorney Mike Crow and former City Administrator Chris Clark.

Shilling said he believes the city called for the boycott because the four business owners voiced their concerns regarding irregularities in a $700,000 bond issue for a $1.1 million project to improve Fourth Street. The lawsuit was settled in mediation and the city paid each of the businesses $2,500.

Although the city administration has changed, Shilling doesn’t think the ideas have, saying City Administrator Mike Yanez is “anti-business” and wants Tonganoxie to be a “bedroom society.”

Shilling said he is in favor of more openness and transparency in the government, especially when it comes to its financial records and wants to hire an outside auditor to look at the city’s finances.

“We need to know where we stand, not where we are told we stand,” he said.

He also wants to clamp down on wasteful spending and make sure each department tightens its belt.

“If you can’t afford it, don’t buy it,” he said. “That’s what I do unless I can see a return immediately.”

Comments

tongierosey 5 years ago

I’m not sure how many people will read this but for some people that don’t know who Roger Shilling is I think you need to hear this.

First of all, if Rogers elected, all of us can kiss growth good by. It’s sad to say that but it’s true. Roger is running for city council because he’s been pissed at the city for many years.

Most of you might not recall or even know the city attempted to have Roger clean up the dump he calls a business located west of the library. If you don’t know what I’m talking about take a drive and look at it. This building is located at the southwest corner of Bury and 3rd Streets. It’s an old white building, that has windows broken out, and is crammed full of junk, then take a look around it. Old used water heaters, old used washers and dryers, scrap metal, junk vehicles that haven’t ran in years. This is a public health hazard and he wants to get pissed at the city for trying to do something about it. Who knows what hazardous types of chemicals he has in there or how many gallons of used motor oil he has sitting around or he has dumped on the ground out side of this building.

Then lets more to his store. The main ceiling has been falling down for years, the roof has too many leaks to count. He has crap sitting all over and you can barley make your way through the building. The condition of the building is POOR at best. I personal feel that both of his buildings need to be condemned and stay that way until they are both repaired and are brought up to city code. I’m sure the city would love to do something like this, but I’m sure there afraid of the law suits Roger would bring against them, for attempted to only do their job, and trying to rid this public hazard / Health hazard.

For those of you still wondering where I’m going, here it is. If Roger has this much pride in his business, do you think he’s going to have much more in your city? I can see it now, pot holes in all the roads, water leaks not getting fixed, emergency response being cut. I don’t agree with everything the city has done over the past few years, but we need to look forward and learn from our mistakes. Putting Roger in public office is not our answer. If he wants to run again in a few years, he should at least attempt to show the citizens he has pride in his own business and work on cleaning them up first before he tells the city how fix their problems.

Thanks

Rosey

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straightup 5 years ago

This is about Rosey's views. I was wondering why the city was having troubles bring in and keeping business and now you just answered the reason why. People like you give this town a bad name and a bad taste in our mouths!! Apparently you do not support the local businesses. That's a sham. It sounds like you need to get off your high house and clean up your own house.

People that work hard and try to make a living...you have to cut down? I did drive by and looked at the location you pointed out and it is not that bad.. could use some work... it's a BUSINESS. It did not deserve these comments!!

My views on people that step up and volunteer to become an city leader or volunteer to do community work has a lot to offer the city of Tonganoxie . They have something very special in them. This is why Tonganoxie is a great place to live. But for a Tonganoxie citizen to say something like this is unbelievable.

What I do see from Roger Shilling and the other candidates is that they are offering the people of Tonganoxie their time from their family and work to volunteer to be a city leader. Are YOU! We can put our trust in him or not... but to put this man down like you have is wrong. I'm not saying that I would or would not support him. But you should give him credit for stepping up to the plate and offering the citizen to be a representative for us. The same credit should be given to the other candidates too. Don't be UGLY! We should want to encourage people to step up to the plate like all of these candidate are doing!!

Sham on you ROSEY!!

Thank you Straightup

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jumairs 5 years ago

Just a note to "straightup". First of all, learn to spell. It's much easier to get your point across, if people know what you mean. Last I heard "offing" people was still against the law. Rosey is just expressing her opinion. I also applaud citizens who "step up to the plate" and run for public office but in doing so, they open themselves up to public scruitiny. When you ask for a person's vote, you ask them to put their faith in you that you will be a good steward with the financial stablility of the city budget, the city infrastructures, and the general well being of the city. As a city official, you lead by example. All Rosey was saying was that Mr. Schilling is not setting a very good example with his own businesses. As far as Rosey's comments being "ugly", sometimes "ugly" is what it is. If you attended last night's forum at the VFW, you heard how concerned our citizens were with our vacant structures downtown and what we can do, as a city, to prevent further deterioration of the historical buildings, as well as the four-corner area of Hiway 16 and 24/40. This intersection does not necessarily scream "welcome to Tonganoxie." It was obvious that there is a lot of "community pride" in our city and we don't want it to become a boarded up "ghost town" like so many other little Kansas towns. It is our responsibility as voters to make sure that we elect officials who will guide Tonganoxie through this economic crisis, but at the same time, do not stagnate our growth. All of the representatives of the city council and Board of Education, both elected and candidates at last night's forum, welcomed any input and help from the community. It's up to us to follow through. VOTE on April 7. Thank you.

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tongierosey 5 years ago

First of all I want to make this clear; I have a tremendous respect for people that take time out of their lives to attempt to make the city better. I don’t have respect for people that want to run for office on the sole point that they want to fight the city and hit them where it hurts. That’s what we’re seeing here. Tonganoxie is growing, and each and every one of us needs to help move forward.

MY SECOND POINT IS TO LEAD BY EXAMPLE!

A quote from Mr. Shilling;

“If you can’t afford it, don’t buy it,” he said. “That’s what I do unless I can see a return immediately.”

I see that’s how Mr. Shilling works, just look at his buildings. Sometimes you have to look outside the box and make an investment even if you don’t see a return on it immediately. The return can be as simple as improving the way the city looks (example cleaning up buildings and properties, that increases home values around that area, I sure don’t want to live around a junk yard / public health violation)

I’m not being ugly, I’m stating the facts, and the intentions of the city are not to turn Tonganoxie into a “bedroom society”. First of all we need to look at bring in some business, and not more duplexes. A lot of that falls on the builders looking to make a quick buck on houses, then we have to look at the city for allowing them to build all of these duplexes. That just comes down to poor planning (Mr. Shilling you might want to start off working on the planning commission, seeing what you have to say to the Mirror you would serve a much better purpose on the planning commission, then you would on the city council). Or we can look at it this way; look at how many people fought the post office for wanting to move their building (there is no room for expansion at its exiting location, and the way the city’s growing we have to expand government services). Just think how many people would scream and yell if they wanted to build a box store in town. Our downtown is nice but lets look at this way, the only new business that could move into one of these buildings is some sort of mom and pop shops (you can only find so many of these stores around). If you want a big name brand business to move into Tonganoxie, most of them require buildings to be built to their specs. None of these downtown spaces will meet their specs. It’s a catch 22, what are we to do?

Thanks

Rosey

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Michael Vestal 5 years ago

I hear we have our own little tax evasion scandal going on right here in Tonganoxie. Seems Mr. Shilling is being audited by the IRS. Hmmmmmmmm & he wants to help with OUR cities finances?

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nonbeliever 5 years ago

One thing about all this trash talk--It does show an interest in what is going on in this election, too bad it is almost all negative...Too bad the people who are so determined to tear into Shilling's business and personal life don't run for council--or maybe they are!? Maybe they think there are things an audit of the city would discover that would put a bad light on them.

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straightup 5 years ago

Whatdahay- IRS can audit anyone of us! What makes you think there is a scandal? This sound like someone trying to make something out of nothing.

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Michael Vestal 5 years ago

Sure anyone can be audited. However when you knowingly hide your assets & don't report all income, that's a problem. Also, I believe, but you could call City Hall, the City has an audit every year by a private auditing service. I think it may be mandated by law. I'm sure if you call the City they will tell you.

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Trouble 5 years ago

Elections draws near!! Roger Shilling's sure have some people nervous. A lot of speculation! Some might say "let the mud fly".

Did anyone read this article? The city Boycotted our local businesses. It said the law suit was settled and the CITY had to pay the businesses. No wounder we have little to no business in town. Isn't that Lenahan's hard ware that closed last year? Pelzl True Value that we lost. I hope the city had nothing to do with the closing of these stores. Make you wonder!

Now it seem like "Whatdahey and Rosey" might be from the city .Sure seems "He or She" might think they know a lot about Mr. Shilling's business.

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Sissy 5 years ago

What kinda town is this?

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Ted_W 5 years ago

Sissy, It's not Tonganoxie, its what has happened to America. We are more polarized than ever. The Democrats and Republicans are to blame. The left is spewing propoganda all over the airwaves and the right is fighting back on talk radio and books. Obama, Pelosi and Reid don't really care about America and our constitution. Boener and Limbaugh don't care about what went wrong under Bush. The public at the local level is suffering the same as the national level. Shilling comes off as a hateful person. And his property on 3rd street is a blight.

Certainly Tonganoxie has spent a lot of money, the land purchase south of town was not a good idea. Shilling wants to bring a Casino to Tonganoxie, another not so good idea. Both sides locally have bad ideas. Its a lose - lose situation.

The school board race is better. Just replace all the sitting board members and the board will be much better.

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Michael Vestal 5 years ago

Trouble, You are right, the City did have to pay for their mistake, however, that was a past administration. NONE of the present City council or Administrator were in office then. As far as Mr. Pelzl & Lenahan, If you read the paper they Retired. You like to twist the truth.

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Trouble 5 years ago

I don't twist the truth. Your mistaken- this would be the city leaders that twist the truth. I tell it like I see it. Some may not agree with me but a lot of my friends do agree. But... you see I do not have to answer to no one but myself and the city council has to answer to the citizens. Big difference!

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