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If you want to know what it’s like to sit behind Mayor Sly James’ desk, best not ask him; he’d have to find about 20 minutes in his schedule to clear the space to sit there. There’s two-feet of work stacked on the chair and another couple feet stacked on the desk. Then there’s work strewn across the meeting desk in the middle of his office on the 29th floor of city hall.
If you haven’t yet, listen to the previous two episodes of the podcast on the DIY skate park in Columbus Park called Harrison Street DIY download them and check them out.
After that story aired, the Mayor’s office arranged some time for us to clear some space on his meeting table and talk about how the skate park can be a model for other civic engagement projects.
We also talked about KC’s gut-wrenching homicide rate and the Mayor shared some of the things that frustrate city leaders most when they’re just trying to make a city safe place to live.
We also talked about Turn the Page KC - a program charged with achieving reading proficiency among KC’s 3rd graders that earned KC All American City honors in June from the National Civic League. And we talked about KCNOVA, the KC No Violence Alliance — it’s a collaboration between law enforcement, data scientists and community aid groups aimed at reducing crime by re-directing offenders to social services or bear the legal consequences.
Mayor James also clued me in on what he’s learned about how to solve real problems in our current political climate.
So, here is my interview with Mayor Sly James of Kansas City, Missouri.
Today’s thing is this mayor’s very crowded desk, and this episode is Time Waits for No One.