Rick Meyers is a Kansas City, MO resident who built his home in 1994 under a set of rules from the City of Kansas City. Unfortunately, they keep changing the rules. He became involved in this because someone needed to get the word out and get folks involved. What started off with dropping off notes at people's houses has grown to 4000+ members of a Facebook page, a PAC with a $250K fundraising goal and multiple opportunities to testify at KCMO City Council, Jackson County Legislature, the Missouri House of Representative and the Missouri Senate.
He, along with thousands of other Kansas City residents, will continue to fight this until they've secured legislation that their neighborhood will be protected - not just for this generation, but for generations to come.
Facebook Group Page: Stop the Lies! Stop the Landfill!
PAC website: www.killthefill.org
Alright everybody, it's the always be cool podcast hanging out with your hosts. Bobby Kerr, Darren Copeland. What's up everyone? Today we have a really, really cool guest, president of Stop the Landfill Coalition, Mr. Rick Myers. Alright everyone, here we go. Longtime resident of Kansas City, Missouri. He is the president, like Bobby said, of Stop the Landfill Coalition. He has a Facebook page of over 4,000 members, which is incredible. He also has a pack with a goal fundraising goal of over $250,000. He's become a look, an expert on local politics. I'm assuming, I'm sure we'll hear some stories about that. He's going to drop some knowledge on this passion of his and, uh, the battle he's fighting, which is really, really cool and interesting to hear about all around cool person, Rick Myers. Welcome to the show, sir. Thanks for having Well, before we get into this and we start asking a ton of questions, Rick, I think this is going to be a really great educational opportunity, especially since we have so many listeners here in Kansas City, that this is going to affect lots of different communities. But before we dive into the questions, you, and then our pre show questionnaire you filled out for us, you said something to the effect of that you're wanting to make sure that your neighborhood is protected. The neighborhoods are protected within where this proposed landfill is going to go. not just for this generation, but for generations to come. And I really, Darren and I love starting the show with kind of like, what's the why behind this conversation? What's the why behind what it is that whatever the guest is doing, right? And this is obviously your why, protecting your neighborhood, your community, the future generations that are growing up in Kansas City, Lee's Summit, et cetera. So why don't you kind of paint the picture a little bit of what's going on from 30,000 feet, and then we can dive. in deeper as we go. Yeah, absolutely. So the whole thing started for us late last year. We had heard rumors about a landfill going in South Kansas City, right on the Jackson County-Cass County line. We thought it was so preposterous, there is no way this can happen. So it kind of sat idle for a couple months. We got through the holidays, and then in January, it came around in full force. We got some information that confirmed that this landfill was real. And it is going into a little pocket of South Kansas City right off of 150 highway. So it's bordered on 150 highway on the north, 155th street on the south, Horage and Peterson on the east and west. So it's this tiny little pocket of Kansas City, Missouri. You can't get any further south than Jackson County. And the most challenging thing about this is it borders these huge neighboring municipalities, Lee's Summit, Raymore, Grandview, Belton. And and because of it physically exists in the city limits of Kansas City. They have no voice So a landfill is gonna go in very close to their borders In fact right across the street from this location is a Lee summit school an elementary school Oh cheese, and they literally have no say in what goes in inside the city limits. What's the name of that school again? Summit point summit point. Okay. Okay, and you were saying basically it's kind of in between 71 or 49 highway, whatever you want call it now and 291 yeah okay yeah so it's right in that little pocket if folks know where Longview Lake is we are two miles immediately south of Longview Lake so you know there there's lots of reasons to be opposed to this in my mind the school is number one there's 500 some kids to go to a grade school literally right across the street Longview Lake there's a creek that drains from this particular piece of ground right into Longview Lake two miles to the north whoa and then and then number three You know, you're dropping a landfill into the middle of an existing neighborhood. There's there's 40,000 homes within a five mile radius of this and it's just crazy. That's why that's why I said We just thought it was preposterous, right? You know one day I just keep thinking I'm gonna wake up and somebody's gonna tell me we're being pumped, right? It's just so absurd, right? Is that a landfill be dropped into an existing location like this? Well and share with the listeners what we were talking about right before the show about the rule about you know, the half mile and how that works with the different cities. Yeah, so within the state of Missouri, there's a current law in the books that says one municipality can't put a landfill within a half mile of another municipality without their permission. So this particular piece of property, because it butts right up to Lee Summit and Raymore, they had a voice in that first half mile. So what the developer has done is backed off on their plans, they made it a little bit smaller, so they've moved to one half mile and one foot. So once you get to that one foot distance, then they can do whatever they want. Now they're still, we think they're still gonna acquire all of that property and then do the other things as part of their development that they wanna do. And things they've talked about are a rock crushing operation. So imagine that a rock crushing operation in the middle of a neighborhood and across the street from a school. I actually have a little bit of schema on this. So where I live at Lake La Tijuana, right across seven highway from Lake La Tijuana is a massive quarry. And... the people. Now I'm fortunate enough to live on the other side of the lake, but everyone who lives on one side of the lake, every single day is post. I mean, I've been there three years, but every single day posts, oh my gosh, that was a big one. Pictures are off the walls, you know, cracking and foundations has started to occur because the city has made this deal with this quarry for, you know, these are not short, like contracts. These are like 20, you know, 10, 20, 30 years long. And so when you do have rock crushing operations near neighborhoods, it is absolutely felt by the residents. Physically and financially, it's gonna hit the value of your home. Right, yeah, and there's lots of talk around the value of your home, right? So one of the things that we heard early on, I wanna say it happened back in maybe February, March at the latest, Keller Williams, big local realtor, they decided that... for every home that sold within a five mile radius, there needs to be a disclosure on that. So they are now disclosing, I don't think it's a legal issue, but I think they wanted to get ahead of it. Yeah, absolutely. So they got ahead of it and on every contract, my understanding, every contract that they're writing right now, there's a disclosure about a potential landfill within a five mile radius. So you can imagine what that's done to property values. So we know of big developers and things that are going on in Raymore, they're... their big subdivision, the crown jewel, the fuel of Raymore, is a subdivision called Creekmore. Right. For all intents and purposes, development, if it hasn't completely stopped, it's slowed way down. Has it? So some homes are for sale. Other homes aren't being built. So things are just stopping. I know one particular landowner who had contracted and had drawings to build a house, he literally stopped. He's like, I don't know what to do. Own 20 acres, right, immediately adjacent to the site. I don't know what to do. I can't build a three, four, $500,000 home here. It'd be crazy. So he backed off and has in turn put his property up for sale. That's just one story. One story, yeah. And there's hundreds of them. Right, because I was gonna ask, has that already started to take an effect? And clearly it has. The word is getting around. So whether people are selling their houses, there's an inventory shortage right now of homes. But... You know, people aren't going to drop three, four or 500,000 on a house or a potential landfill is going to be coming down the pipe. No, absolutely not. And we understand that within about a five mile radius of a landfill, the average price of a residential home will drop between 12 and 15%. The closer you get to it, the higher the percentages, you know, so that averages out the further away you go. So you can imagine someone who's at potentially what we call ground zero, right? You know, they're looking at a possibly 25, 30% decrease in value of the home. In fact, we do know of one property, it's a 29 acre tract of land right off of 150, that the developer has now purchased. My understanding is that piece of property before the rumor of the landfill came out was being marketed at $1.4 million, so a home in 29 some acres, it ended up selling for just under a million. So you could... do some quick math and say that's a 30% drop in property value just because of the rumor of the landfill. What happens when the landfill goes in? So the landfill in and of itself has all the horrible connotations that you can imagine. So number one would be the odor, but it's the noise, it's the dust, the potential of a fire. Those things are there. And then even the EPA on the front page of their website will tell you that all landfills leak. So the developer can talk about, we're gonna put in this clay liner and we're gonna have this monitoring system and they're gonna do all that. At the end of the day, a landfill is still gonna leak. And with the little creek, it's called Lumpkin's Fork, runs right, all that property drains to that location and that runs right into Longview Lake, which is an Army Corps of Engineers lake, which then turns and runs into the Missouri River. So why aren't we concerned about this? This is wild. Yeah. Yeah, right. Exactly. This is why I keep thinking I'm going to wake up and someone's going to tell me I'm being punk because it's so absurd. Well, and this is exactly why the word needs to get out because you know, when Bobby got this together, I'm like, Hey, man, so who's this Rick Myers dude? Right? And he's like, well, it has to do with this landfill and real estate and everything because you know, we have a lot of friends that listen to this and a lot of people who are involved in real estate mortgages and things like that. So this is a massive, massive deal. This is a big problem. Right. I'm shocked. So we listed three things at the very beginning, right? The proximity to the school, literally within feet of a of an elementary school and at least summit school district. The fact that potentially this could drain into Longview Lake. Right. And then of course, the neighboring neighborhoods like Creekmore, which for those of us that are in Kansas City, and especially those that like to golf, Creekmore golf course is one of the nicest golf course public golf courses in Kansas City. And I mean, this is this is massive. It is. And everything you just said about Creekmore is absolutely true. It's a big deal. But let's talk about the Kansas City residents. Yeah. So we live in a this is kind of a rural area of Kansas City. And this area was built by retired firefighters now and retired police officers. So there was laws in the city of Kansas City that these guys had to live within the city limits. A lot of them live out there. And now. feels like, you know, the city's kind of turned their back on them. And yeah. Yeah. I mean, okay. Is that, is this by design in this particular part? I couldn't, I, you know, I couldn't tell you. We get, we get lots of mixed messages from, from the city. Um, you know, some instances we hear that they're all in and other instances, you know, we hear from people like the mayor and different city council members that they, you know, they're, they're opposed to it. They're, they're with us in their, in their opposition. Um, They just had an election. There are seven new members of the city council. I've talked to most of them personally. And they tell me that they're with us. In fact, Raina Park Shaw, who's the councilwoman for District 5, at one point told me, we've already had our landfill in District 5, we don't need another one. So if you think about the old landfill down at 85th and 71 Highway, that's the one she's referring to. We've already, District 5 has already paid their dues. They've already had a landfill here, we don't need another one. So I hope to take them at the word. Right. So what's... What's like, where are we at in the process? Like what's the next step? What's the next achievement that you need to get done in order to continue to move in the right process? So what we're doing right now is trying to build awareness. So the grassroots kind of effort, the Facebook page, Stop the Lies, Stop the Landfill is where we want folks to go for more information. Our team has also built a pack, so killthefield.org. So we're in the fundraising mode, we're in the mode of... trying to get more folks involved in our cause. We have 4,000 followers on the Facebook page. We want 5,000 and then we want 10, right? So by the time we come back to Jefferson City in January, in the next legislative session, we'd like to have $250,000 in the pack and 10,000 followers on the Facebook page because then you become a real political force at that point. I mean, I think we are today with 4,000. We've been very vocal. We've been to... House meetings, Senate hearings, we've been to the City Council, we've been to Jackson County Legislature. We're very vocal, we're very present at all those things. So we're in kind of that awareness mode right now. The process to permit and build a landfill in the state of Missouri is anywhere between a five and 10 year process. So from the developer's perspective, it's still relatively early on and they've got a lot of due diligence. They've got... monitoring and wells and they've got permissions. The Department of Natural Resources is one of the ultimate permitting authorities in the state. So they've got to go through that whole process. Technically because of a vote we had at the City of Kansas City, there's a one-year moratorium that the City Council voted for. There's a one-year moratorium on issuance of a permit. So the issuance of a permit from the city really doesn't happen until much later in the process. Okay, so while it's a nice effort from the city and officially they can't do anything, It doesn't really stop the developer from furthering their cause. They're just kind of kicking the can down the river for another year? For legally and legislatively with the city. The developer can continue to do what they need to do today. They're continuing to acquire property. So between what they outright own today, what they have under contract and what they have control of under an LLC, they say they have enough property to do what they need to do. So they're going to monitor. dig wells and monitor that. So they're gonna do all that due diligence and the testing that DNR is gonna require, but officially they can't get permits. So we're kind of on pause with the city of Kansas City. Same thing with the state, the DNR, they require six months to do this and a year to do that, and so they're kind of in the middle of all that. Officially, with the state and with the city, there's been no formal request for a permit yet. Right. And that's why a lot of, for a long time, we weren't getting any response from anyone at the city or anyone at the state. They're like, well, there's no permit here. We don't have anything to react to. But we also know that in the background, conversations were taking place. And a lot of that's coming out now through some of our Sunshine Law requests. We're digging into some of these conversations and finding out there were conversations happening much sooner than what had been previously admitted to. Gotcha. So we're uncovering lots of information as we go. So then the next real step as we get legislatively is January, when the Missouri legislature steps up again and puts in their spring session from January to May. The bills that we were not successful with last year will come back around. We had HB 909 in the Missouri House. We went down and testified there. Had great support. That bill passed I think 139 to 16. Overwhelming support within the Missouri legislature. And the great thing about it was bipartisan support. So this is a, you know, in today's environment, there's not many things that you can say are bipartisan. This is one of them. So we had lots of wonderful support, like I said, 139 to 16. Then it moved to the Senate. Everyone told us, beware of the Senate. It's a different ballgame. And as we found out, we had great support in the Senate. We feel that the head count gave us, of the 34 senators, we feel we were probably in the high 20s in terms of support. So we felt our bill was gonna pass. However, the developer hired 20 lobbyists. And I don't know how much you guys know about lobbyists, but lobbyists aren't cheap. So they hired 20 of what we heard were some of the best lobbyists in the state. And they worked the system. And as we got deeper and deeper into the legislative session, they had a May deadline. They had to pass the budget. And then they were gonna end the session. So we were up against the deadline. So their plan was to run out the clock. So they... through the lobbyist efforts, got a couple of senators, one from St. Louis and one from Springfield to filibuster. So during the time that our bill, Senate Bill 590, was being heard on the Senate floor, we got to hear about Dr. Pepper and high school events and how wonderful, you know, there was a landfill over here at one time and now it's a park and everybody needs a landfill in their backyard was kind of the message. So it was really just to run out the clock. So basically a senator two different senators from over 200 miles away, in essence, lobbied for a landfill to be put in our backyard, all due to lobbyists. It doesn't affect them at all. Do you have their names? Like, do you get the list of the senators that vote for, vote against? So the primary senator that led the filibuster was Senator Mary Elizabeth Coleman. And then there was another one named Senator Curtis Trent out of Springfield. So they were the two primary guys. who took up this two and a half, three hour session to just talk and basically filibuster. And that's the way the Senate works. If you can filibuster, if you can run out the clock, then you win. And that's the most disappointing thing. You know, if our bill would come to a vote and if there were, so there's 34 senators, if there were 18 senators that voted against us, I can accept that. Right? But what happened here... we the citizens were just denied the opportunity for a vote. And that's frustrating. Right. So they, everybody played within the rules. But it's frustrating that the voices of the citizens were denied a vote because it was politically connected to a certain number of lobbyists. That's for sure. It's got to be frustrating when it's senators that aren't even in this area. Exactly. Right. So I just recently got back from DC on doing some lobbyist stuff on the, on the mortgage side. And it's a very big eye opener of how it is. Like it's amazing how anything ever gets done. Exactly. Right. Because you go inside the state cap or the Capitol building and you've got a bunch of 20 year olds that are almost running the country. Yep. Right. That's exactly right. Right. Which is unbelievable. You know, they've got their law degrees, you know, their masters, PhDs, everything like that. And they are literally the front runners that you have to go through in order to get to one of the House of Reps or the senators and things like that. So. Um, and I can't even imagine, you know, the frustration that would be, but the thing is what you said, which is really cool is once you get up, you know, the Facebook to 10,000 followers and you have the pack going on. Well, that's 10,000 voters. Exactly. Right. That's where you can really get their attention and be like, Hey, you know, cause everyone wants to get reelected. And you know, like you said, this is such a bipartisan and such a makes sense. type of deal. Like you said, it's unbelievable that they were thinking about putting a landfill in that area. So like, don't give up, right? No, we, we will not quit. I mean, we will, we will fight till the end. And we have, we have lots of things available to us as we fight, you know, so again, we had incredible support from, um, almost I think all of the local legislators on, on the, on the house and the Senate side. And we look forward to, you know, their support in the future. Senator Rick Ratten. from Cass County. He kind of led the effort on the Senate side. Representative Hafner from Pleasant Hill led things on the House side. In fact, Senator Bratton was so upset at the filibuster from the other two senators, he threw out his filibuster of his own the very next day. So he held the Senate floor for, I want to say almost nine hours, right up against the- In protest, basically. Absolutely. Just bring this bill to the floor for a vote and I will be happy to sit down. And you know, so it was all over the Facebook pages you can imagine that day and you know, you messed with the wrong Marine was, you know, so we were, you know, we were cheering and at that point, a lot of our followers actually left Kansas City that morning and drove to the Capitol in support of him. So we had, you know, a couple dozen supporters in the Capitol running through the hallways trying to, you know, garner up support, just get back in and vote. And that's That's all we're asking for is a vote. Just a fair square vote. Just give us the vote. And we had support of, like I said, Senator Bratton, Senator Searpoint and Lee Summitt, Senator Razor on the Kansas City side, who's the landfill. It actually sits within his district. So we look forward to more support from the three of those as we get into the next session. So the Facebook group is called Stop the Lies. Stop the land. Yeah, and there's an, it's kind of weird. There's an exclamation point after each one of those statements. Right. So stop the lies, exclamation, stop the landfill, exclamation point. So what exactly are the lies? How much time do we have? Four hours. No, I mean, I think that'll kind of paint the picture because like right now we're saying, well, this is just a, this is a crummy situation, right? Close to schools, close to home, impacting property values, obviously taking a lot of... homeowners and community members attention away from things that it should be on. So like what, what are some of the lies right now that you guys are being told as the community members? Well, the very first ones, and this goes back early on and some of those have now been corrected publicly because quite frankly, they've been called on it. Um, we don't know anything about the landfill. There, there is no permit. There is no application. We don't know what you're talking about. How is this being discussed at the house and the Senate level? But Bobby, not everyone's truthful, brother. I know, but how is it how is not an application? How is an application not like literally public knowledge or being able to be downloaded as a PDF? I think that was the piece that they relied on to say officially. Nothing's happening. Nothing's happening. Right. So they couldn't they could deny that up to the point that, you know, it became too much pressure in one of the one of our true champions here. And he's out doing his job, working hard every day. Is Matt Cleaner from Channel 9? He's been a great advocate for us on this story. I mean, we've had great local coverage from all the stations, but Matt has kind of really dug in deep. My wife jokes, he's been at our house so much interviewing me, I feel like we need to invite him over for Thanksgiving dinner, right? But he's dug into multiple aspects of the story. So on the investigative side, he's dug into the developer. They own a transfer station, and they're doing some things over there that he called them on. And hopefully ultimately is driving some change within the overall trash industry in Kansas City sure But he's been a great advocate digging. He was he was down there for all the House and Senate hearings He's been at the City Council meetings. So he's been he's been all over it But but some of the other lies that we hear So there was there's a behind-the-scenes developer someone behind the developer with the money and So we hear lots of denials around who that is And then there's been some info from I had the opportunity one morning to meet that gentleman directly and the developer of the developer The money behind the developer. Yeah, okay So so I met him and he basically told me that some of the things that were stated at the Missouri House and Senate hearings Were not exactly true. So words coming out of the developers mouth directly. Mm-hmm I can't tell you one way or the other if that's true or not But that's what he told me the you know that morning that I met him Right. So there's just... Any idea what those things are? Well, so at those early meetings between the developer and the state, it is, you know, we have this amount of property, the 900 acres between what we own, what we have under contract, and what we have under control via an LLC. So I asked this gentleman specifically if he was involved in that, and he said no. He is not interested in a landfill. He doesn't want a landfill on his property. He owns a big chunk of the property where this landfills gonna go. Is this the ranch? Yeah, the Flying H Ranch. The Flying H Ranch, yeah. So he told me directly, and I wanna believe him, and I told him that. I said, you know, sir, I want to believe you. I hope that you are with us, and you don't want a landfill here. You know, you have a beautiful Flying H Ranch facility here. Let's keep that going, right? We all, as neighbors, we love that. So he specifically told me that there were things, there were some inconsistencies between what was told down there and what he believes. I couldn't tell you which, you know, what is, you know, where the truth lies. Money's a crazy thing, isn't it? Yes, it is, yes it is. Gosh, so, I mean, I've got lots of questions, but you've mentioned Mayor Lucas's name a couple of times, and we've read that he has publicly stated something to the effect of this spot is better served as residential development as opposed to a landfill. Sure. Are those words in line with the feeling that you and the rest of the coalition are getting as you're talking with him, with other city officials, high ranking city officials, because as we know, sometimes people say one thing and then they do another. So I guess I'm curious on if the city and if the highest ranking officials of Kansas City are staying in line with what they're actually saying publicly? So far. So they're all telling us that. The Mayor, members of the City Council, even the Director of Public Works, a gentleman named Michael Shaw. In my last conversation with him right after one of the council hearings, he told me he doesn't want a landfill. He's an environmental guy and does not want a landfill within the city limits of Kansas City. Okay, great. Let's codify that in law. Right. So how do we do that? Right. You know, you can tell me that all day long. And again, I want to believe you. Sure. But we're not going to rest until this thing is somehow codified in law. And these residences are protected. Right. I mean, at the end of the day, I think I think one of the first questions we have to ask ourselves is, is a landfill even necessary? That's what I was getting ready to ask you. Like, is there a dire need right now for Kansas City to have? landfill of that magnitude? So it depends on who you ask. If you ask the developer who owns a waste management company. Right, but we know, so there's several landfills in town where the majority of the trash from Kansas City goes to. Courtney Ridge out in Sugar Creek, it's our understanding it has 20 years left of life. North Independence? Sugar Creek. Yeah. Two off, two on. Two on, two on. Shout out to Ernie's. The Johnson County landfill, so the old Deafinball landfill, which is now owned by Waste Management. We understand it has over 20 years left. Then there's relatively new landfills in Warrensburg and Sedalia. So it's my understanding from folks within the trash industry in Kansas City that there's over 100 years of capacity within 100 miles of Kansas City. That's a significant number. So with the modern technology, and there's a company in town called Raptor, and there's several others. Mark II and American Waste, I think, down in Harrisonville, that operate businesses called transfer stations. So what a transfer station is, is the local garbage trucks will run through the neighborhoods. And instead of driving those local trucks all the way out to a landfill, they'll go to a localized transfer station. They'll dump their trash into a larger vehicle, and then the large truck will run. and they're comfortable running 50, 75, 100 miles. They'll go to Warrensburg or Sedalia or whatever. Exactly, exactly. So let's leverage the new technology. So Raptor has done a great job. They've got a state of the art facility right off of 71 Highway or 49, whatever we call it now, in Grandview. And they built this massive, beautiful facility that, I mean, trash never touches the ground. It's emptied out every night. They take it to these other landfills. So to me, that's the initial question that we need to ask and answer. And to the City of Kansas City's credit, they've talked about initiating a study. So working with Mid-America Regional Council in the Solid Waste Division, do we even need a landfill? And I think that's the fundamental question. And if we do, then where does it go? Right, and I get that question a lot. If it's not there, Rick, where does a landfill go? And you know, as awful as a landfill is, I would never name a town or a location. I wouldn't wish that upon anybody, right? No one wants it in their backyard. But the way I generally answer that question is when you think about this site, I can tell you that across the street from a grade school is not the right place. Not the ideal place. Yeah, two miles upstream from a US Army Corps of Engineers, like not the right place. No. So put a landfill where it affects a hundred people, not a hundred thousand people. Right? So to me, where is that? I'm not gonna... It's not for you to decide, but it's not here. Exactly. And for those reasons. Wow. Bobby, what's our favorite saying? You don't have to go home, you just can't stay here. Just can't stay here, yeah, right. Man, I don't know if you wanna talk about it, I'll leave it up to you. If you wanna talk about the developer, they're local. Yeah, they're local and it's public information, so I'm not airing anybody out. So the folks behind it are Aiden and Jenny Monheiser. They own Mark II Transfer Station today and several other businesses. They own a transfer station. They do, they do. Okay. And they have lots of... lots of contracts with people like the City of Kansas City. So they're working with them today. And they run a lot of their trash out to Johnson County, is my understanding. And so yeah, so they're already in the industry, they're in the business. And they're the primary folks behind it. We think there's people with money behind them. But from everything we understand, they're the face of it. So Jenny, as a woman owned business, has been to the Missouri House and the Missouri Senate testifying on behalf of the landfill. She's about the only one there on the pro side of it, and we've had lots of people on the opposition side, as you can imagine. And one of the frustrating things is, at the Missouri Senate, she talked about how wonderful this was going to be for the community. It's a need for the community. You know, we're going to take care of it. We have things that can control the odor. How is it a need for the community? Well, it's a need for the city. I mean, trash needs to go somewhere. Okay. Right. So we do understand that. But as a part of that Senate hearing that day, she said that she would reach out to the community and involve the community in the decision-making process and what the final outcome was gonna be. And of course, that's been several months now. And the interesting thing is every time someone like Matt Fleener from Channel 9 tries to talk to him, they literally run away. I mean, you can go on the Channel 9 website and where he tried to interview Jenny, tried to interview Aidan. And they were literally, they couldn't run fast enough. They were literally running away from Matt. So, and he's reached out several times and he gets, you know, talk to our communications team, talk to my VR guy, whatever. And they'll put out statements, they'll put out, you know, some FAQs, different things like that, but they have yet, to my knowledge, have yet to speak publicly and yet to call any community meetings. So let me ask you this, like, looking at the long-term plans, whether... you know, the landfill goes in this location or some other location, because I remember growing up, uh, and my grandparents would talk about, there was a landfill in blue Springs, Missouri, right? Which is now, the stone gaming golf course, which is now a golf course, right? So is there a certain life to where, you know, let's say if one is done properly, that eventually you can build homes on top of it is, I mean, is that out of line? I don't, I don't know that homes could be built on it, but things like parks, golf courses, those kinds of things. Because the homes in Stone Canyon are further south. They're not necessarily... It's a golf course, that's actually... It's like only like several specific holes that are above. Yeah. So all that's possible. But I think the big difference in that situation and the situation out in Johnson County is those landfills were literally there first and homes built up around them. Correct. This is a very different situation where the homes are there. And you know, without... homeowners knowledge or permission or, you know, and there has to be changes in zoning. There's all kinds of issues that go into it. But to drop a landfill into the middle of an existing neighborhood is a very different situation. Well, I mean, they're going to, this is going to be a fight because obviously hundreds of acres have already been purchased. This, allegedly, technically, within the site itself, my understanding is only 29. Okay. What is what they own? I've got a, I've got an article here from That says, Jenny Monheiser of KC Recycling and Waste Solutions told a Missouri House Committee that a company she owns is under contract for or has purchased already nearly 500 acres with plans to build the landfill on 270 of the 500 acres. That's correct. So that's, and she stated that very publicly and stated that at the Missouri Senate hearings, she was pressed on that by one of the senators. I forget which one did that. and she never answered the question specifically. What they own, from my latest understanding and what the Jackson County records state, they own 29 acres, that one home that they bought at a 30% decrease in value, and they have the rest of it under contract. So there are several family members of a large family who owns 300 some acres out there. That property is, to my understanding, is under contract. just hasn't closed yet. Hasn't closed yet. I'm sure it's contingent on certain types of approval from the city and the state. And then the balance is owned by the developer, the owner of the Flying H Ranch. So technically, under their control is different than what they own. And it's my understanding they only own 29 acres. Okay. Okay, that makes sense. So I mean, as you talk about the transfer station stuff, that... for me at least starts to paint the picture a little more clearly of maybe what's going on here. They own a transfer station. They don't wanna have to use a lot of money and gas and resources. Pay the high rates. Pay the high rates to take every trash companies. And pay to take it across the state line. Correct, take it over to Johnson County. It's a big money saver. And so a big, big money saver if you've got this right here in your backyard in Jackson Cass County right here and you're close by. So. That starts to paint the picture a little more clearly. That it's all about money. It's all about money. Yeah, so at the end of the day, you've got all of these homeowners and landowners, 40,000 within just a couple mile radius against literally one person who has, this is third party, has told another person that this will make him a billionaire. The landowner? The developer. The developer, yeah. So he's... So my understanding, he told, so again, this is hearsay, but I heard it from him directly that he told me this would make him a billionaire. Aidan? Yeah, so this is all about money, right? So it comes down to, you know, I built my home in 1994 under a certain set of rules in South Kansas City. Somehow, someway during those years, the zoning changed, where this type of operation could never have been allowed under the previous zoning. Now there's a path. It still requires a change in zoning and permit, you know, special use permits and those kinds of things. But now there's a path and that's frustrating. Did I as a citizen get a voice in that change of zoning? No. So it feels like in one respect, some things are stacked against us from the city. But again, they're telling us all the right things and I want to believe them. But again, until we codify this in law. Right. You know, we're not we're not going to rest. Yeah, we will fight this. And and again, as I started to mention earlier, we've got lots of avenues that we're going to go down. We're going to fight it at the city. We're going to fight it at the state. We know we have legal options. Sure. Right. So this thing, you know, heck, we could tie this thing up in the courts for years. For years. Yeah. Sure. Yeah. And we plan to. I mean, if that's what it takes, if we can't win it legislatively, then that's the path we'll go. And you guys, I think I read you guys have been going door to door to make sure everyone knows. So talk a little bit about that. Yeah. So so that's really how it started for me when, you know, when it once we got past the holidays and this thing became real. I live in a tiny little pocket of Kansas City, Missouri. And, you know, there's a lot of retired folks out there. Again, as I mentioned, Kansas City police officers, firefighters and I, you know, I don't know all my neighbors, but there's not very many of them, you know, because it's kind of rural south along the lake. A lot of us own five or ten acres. So I just decided to create a little flyer and went literally went door to door and started handing out. Of course, everybody's alarmed and nobody knew about it. And it kind of started from there. And then working with the folks in the city of Raymore, they're like, we need to get a little more formalized. Would you mind doing this? So I started a Facebook page. I didn't even have Facebook in January. I know. She told me that you were running a Facebook page. I was like, that's not for Rick. I know. Yeah, exactly. So yeah, so I've gone from not even knowing how to log into Facebook to 4,000 followers in just a couple of months. So, you know, passion is high. And the folks that are, I've met some wonderful people through this process. If there's anything that's positive that's come out of this, you know, the people that I'm working with in the city of Raymore, the residents of Creekmore, Lee's Summit, just met some wonderful folks, folks in Grandview, Belton. South Kansas City. Everybody's opposed. Everybody's fighting. Nobody's afraid to speak up. We've driven to Jeff City. We've had email campaigns. Representative Hafner told us, his colleagues have mentioned to him that there is not one single issue during their tenure at the Missouri House that has gotten so much attention from citizens. It's unbelievable. So a true testament to all the citizens, getting them fired up. it's now time to email 160 representatives or whatever it is and 34 senators, they're on it. My Facebook just lights up, done, done. People are just firing it back, I did it. And it's great to see that level of activity because people are passionate. I mean, the number, people are passionate about two primary things, right? Their family and their money. And this affects both of them. Absolutely, all day. And like we said earlier, keep getting those Facebook followers and keep getting those registered voters to be on there and have that voice because that's when you really get their attention. Absolutely, because like you said, everybody's up for reelection at some point. And if it's not for their exact position, they've got another position in mind, right? So maybe a rep wants to move to Senate or city council wants to move to this or whatever. There's always the next step. Sure. So yeah, so we're intending to continue to go wide and deep, you know, as far as that reach is concerned. I guess one of the... rebuttals to the point of the Monheisers or their PR people are not out there discussing this with the community members. I guess a rebuttal would be, well, technically since we don't have anything yet, there's nothing, there's no information to share. Right? I mean, I would imagine that that's maybe a rebuttal that they've used or that they could be using or that you could be, they could be looking at that as putting the cart before the horse, so to speak. I would guess that's why so much of the legal paper trail has not yet occurred because the more that they can kind of almost deflect and say there's nothing to talk about yet. Yeah. So I think part of the reason that it became as big as it did is it became public, I think, probably before they wanted it to. So it was learned about. It's hard to keep something like that. Exactly. you know, a municipality or citizens begin to learn about things, of course, of course, they're going to fight. Sure. So in response to your question, I would kind of agree. I mean, if I were them, I wouldn't want to go out and talk about it either, because they're going to get attacked wherever they go. Sure. Except for the fact that they promised it to a Missouri senator. Right. So they told them that they would go out and do it. And they didn't put a timeline on it. So I suppose they still have an out. Right. You know, we just haven't done it yet. It hasn't been scheduled. But it's also been, you know, three months. So, you know, I'm pretty easy to find, right? So, you know, coordinate that through me, coordinate that through the city of Raymore or someone, get a meeting, tell us what you wanna do, tell us why this should be acceptable within our community. You know, give us your plans, tell us what you're trying to do. And just, you know, it's crickets. They want nothing to do with that. Yeah, absolutely. No, no, absolutely not. I mean, you've got one of the largest school districts in the state of Missouri with Lee Summit that is right up against it. And even the mayor, from what I read, the mayor of Lee's Summit is out there publicly saying, I'm trying to get information on this so that I can inform my stakeholders who are involved with this community in this school district. And the mayor is saying, no one's telling me anything. Yeah. That's a big deal. Is that Bill? Yeah. And the mayor of Raymore is the same thing. I mean, and we've had incredible, we've had incredible support from all of those communities. So the community of Raymor, Leaf Summit, Grandview, Belton, Pleasant Hill, Peculiar, have all made public votes. They're opposed to this. I think every one of those school districts, almost every one of those economic councils within each one of those cities, everybody's out there saying, we don't want this. I mean, this is a multi-generational decision. Absolutely. And once... once a landfill goes in, you've got the round of owners who own property today. So then what happens when they sell? So property values decrease, but you're not going to get the development. So there's never going to be a new retail store. Eventually, maybe the grocery store down the street closes because the neighborhood's changing or decreasing in value. So it's going to be nothing but a downhill slide. And it's tax dollars out the door, right? It's increasing value. Yeah, and all at a time when Jackson County, you know, real estate taxes are increasing. So, you know, one of the things we've been trying to argue with Jackson County in terms of the real estate assessment is, hey, you know, we know this thing is going to decrease our property values, but yet you've increased my property by, you know, 15, 18, 20%. I should be seeing a 20 or 30% decrease the other way. Oh, no, it's not official. So we can't take it into account. Yeah, it's not. There's nothing there yet. Right. Wow. So that's frustrating. just they'd be better off developing and getting more tax dollars, having more residential retail, get out of the homes for that way. Agreed. But I think the, you know, so this, the city of Kansas city, if they are truly behind it, which again, we don't know if they are. Right. But you know, they're looking at it from a public works perspective of, Hey, we've got, we've got one right here. Maybe we get lower fees. And whatever, whatever those reasons are, again, we're, we're hoping to take them at their word, including Michael Shaw, who's the director of public works. Hey, I don't want a landfill in the city. Okay, great, great. Love that. Let's see something to, again, to codify that. So how do we do that? So again, let's just recap and let's give the people where they can go to go get more information again on this. You know, the website, Facebook page, all that fun stuff. Where can they go? Sure, so the Facebook page is stop the lies with an exclamation point, stop the landfill with an exclamation point. That's where... We're gonna we're gonna keep information updated. It's it's constantly flowing click the little notification button So when things do come through it populates into your feed the second thing for the pack is kill the Phil org So that's where you can make a donation. There's lots of There's lots of there's a calendar with lots of opportunities to volunteer. So, you know, we're going around to Picnics and fairs and art festivals handing out flyers handing out buttons just to get the awareness out I've even gone through Longview Lake on the 4th of July weekend and put flyers on windshields that says, hey, you come to Longview Lake, this thing is threatened. Think about all the people that use Longview Lake, a 5K, maybe the Christmas in the park. Who's going to want to go out there if there's a landfill two miles away? It's just going to change that area forever. Yeah. Have you guys been in touch with other communities across the country that... have gone through something similar and ended up beating this so that you can almost follow a blueprint? We've reached out to a couple. There's even a consulting firm that said, hey, hire us and we can walk you through all this. We interviewed them. We're already doing a lot of things that they've asked us to do or said that we should be doing. We wanted to conserve our resources there. We've talked to some folks in St. Louis. There's currently a landfill on fire in St. Louis that has been for years. So they're saying that, you know, hey, you guys need to fight this. You mean it's been on fire for years? Yeah, I think it's called the Bridgerton. Bridgerton landfill. It is still, it is on fire, has been on fire for years. And you can't put it out. Because it's just so deep. Yeah, once a landfill fire starts, you literally cannot put it out. So it'll be there. So imagine a constant fire with all the challenges that are, you know, so all the toxins and everything that can be in a landfill. Imagine that right across the street from a grade school. Oh my gosh. Wow. That paints a really, really clear picture. You know, I, um, I grew up with Aiden in blue Springs. He's blue Springs kid. Yeah. And, uh, and my age, maybe, maybe there's an opportunity for, uh, maybe he'd want to come on the show. I'm sure he'd love to. And, uh, yeah. Yeah. Great. And talk about, he'd probably want to come into this development they got. And maybe Rick and Aiden can sit down and have a conversation together and you would welcome it. I would welcome it. Yeah. There you go. Mr. Aiden Monheiser. There you go. Yeah. Open forum debate challenge extended. Very good. Well, Rick, thank you so much for joining the show. Thanks for having me. We really appreciate it. Everybody should check out kill the field.org. Also make sure to check out the Facebook group. It's a group, not a page. It's a group. Okay. And that one again with the exclamation points is stop the lies. Stop the landfill. Very good. Guys. Rick Meyer, the coalition to stop this potential new landfill in South Kansas City. We really appreciate you, buddy. You bet. Thank you. All right, guys. This has been the Always Be Cool podcast. Hanging out with Bobby Kerr and Darren Copeland and today's special guest, Rick Myers. Be sure to subscribe and leave a five-star review of the show wherever you listen to your podcasts. Find us on Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube at Always Be Cool podcast. All right, guys, take care. Always be cool. See you guys.