On September 26, 2019, Mayor Nan Johnston participated in a mayor’s panel discussion hosted by the Kansas City Metro Chapter of the American Public Works Association and WTS-KC held at the Matt Ross Community Center in Overland Park, Kansas. The panel focused on transportation issues from a political perspective.
Mayor Johnston shared the experiences that prepared her for the position of mayor and her motivation to become a government leader. She talked about the challenges the City faces with infrastructure improvements and on-going maintenance, current projects including the Route 9 Corridor, and lack of sufficient federal and state funding.
Mayor Johnston said, “Insufficient transportation infrastructure funding in Missouri for over a decade will have long-term consequences. It will be very difficult to play catch-up with the amount of deferred maintenance of our bridges and highway systems. Local governments are being asked to fund an ever-increasing share of the state’s highway system, which leaves less available to provide basic services to residents.”
Mayor Johnston acknowledged that every city faces the same challenges and encouraged cooperative partnerships among cities. She wrapped up by discussing future planning in Parkville and the consideration of technology in that planning.
TJ Berry, former Missouri State Representative and current Clay County Economic Development Director, facilitated the panel discussion. Other panelist included Mayor Peggy Dunn of Leawood, Kansas, and Mayor Eileen Weir of Independence, Missouri.