Updates and outcomes from MARC’s March Board meetings

Apr 11, 2024
| Posted in
Blue Springs Mayor Carson Ross receives a vase from Johnson County Commissioner Janee' Hanzlick for his service as MARC Board chair. Commissioner Hanzlick began her term as chair on April 1, 2024.

We’re sharing selected highlights from the meetings for your awareness and use in regional conversations.


The Regional Homeland Security Coordinating Committee’s Cybersecurity Subcommittee is a group of local officials and experts working to prevent and respond to cyber attacks. The co-chairs – Independence, Missouri, City Manager Zach Walker and Overland Park, Kansas, Chief Information Officer Tony Sage – shared committee updates and progress, highlighting tabletop exercises and ongoing projects such as the upcoming Cybersecurity Toolkit for local governments. 

Next Generation 911

The Kansas City Regional 911 System is undergoing a transition to Next Generation 911, which will enable voice, text, data and multimedia communication with 911 call-takers. MARC staff discussed future projects in support of Next Generation 911, including 911 server replacements and disaster recovery efforts. 

Climate action grant application

The Board approved MARC’s $200 million Climate Pollution Reduction Implementation Grant application, which aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and benefit disadvantaged communities. If awarded by the EPA, the grant will fund numerous projects in the region, including EV charging ports, native landscaping and e-bike programs. The EPA is expected to make award announcements in July. 

KCI transit plan

MARC staff shared details of a new transit study that recommends express bus service to downtown Kansas City, Missouri, and Johnson County (with potential interim stops in Kansas City, Kansas) to meet the demands of employees and travelers at the new single terminal at the Kansas City International (KCI) Airport. The KCI Airport Public Transit Services Action Plan was conducted in collaboration with the Kansas City Area Transportation Authority, MARC and other regional partners. The study evaluated the demand for transit access to KCI across the entire Kansas City region, and local and express bus service alternatives.

Regional preventative maintenance

MARC is facilitating over $9 million in improvements to local roadways by leveraging federal grant funding to provide administrative support for the regional preventative maintenance program and to procure engineering services for design and inspection. Two contractors, selected through a competitive process, will perform the preventive maintenance in Cass, Clay, Jackson and Platte counties starting in April and ending in December 2025. The work includes roadway micro-surfacing and mill and overlay.

New Board officers

As approved at the January Board of Directors meeting, the nominating committee welcomed the below officers, who stepped into their roles April 1:

  • Chair: Commissioner Janeé Hanzlick, Johnson County, Kansas
  • First Vice-Chair: Mayor Pro Tem Beto Lopez, Lee’s Summit, Missouri
  • Second Vice-Chair: Mayor Damien Boley, Smithville, Missouri
  • Treasurer: Councilmember Holly Grummert, Overland Park, Kansas
  • Secretary: Mayor Pro Tem Dan Hobart, Independence, Missouri

The Board extended its gratitude to Mayor Carson Ross, of Blue Springs, Missouri, for his service as Board chair. Thank you to all the officers for their commitment to serving the region. Note: Mayor Pro Tem Hobart was not reelected and will leave office on April 15. The MARC Board will take action to fill the Secretary position at an upcoming Board meeting.

Above photo: Mayor Ross receives a vase from Commissioner Hanzlick as a thank you for his service as Board chair. 

Budget and Personnel Committee

At the MARC Budget and Personnel Committee meeting on March 26, attendees took the following actions:

Opioid outreach campaign – As concern about opioids continues in the region, the committee voted to approve a $170,000 agreement with Wyandotte County for MARC to support a media and outreach campaign targeted to county residents. The campaign will use messages and images developed in 2023 as part of the local public health directors’ efforts to design a campaign to reduce the negative effects of opioids.  

Ordnance disposal X-ray machines – To enhance community safety, committee members authorized MARC to use a $130,000 federal grant to purchase two portable explosive ordnance disposal X-ray systems for the Leavenworth, Kansas, and Independence, Missouri, police departments. The machines will enhance bomb disposal capabilities by assessing, inspecting and handling suspicious packages. The machines will be deployed at large or high-risk events to increase security and safety.