City grades itself on snow removal after recent storms

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - The city of Kansas City graded itself Wednesday on its response to the last two massive snowstorms.

"Overall, I'd give it a 'B,'" said Councilman John Sharp, of south Kansas City.

The city's Emergency Operations Manager, Gene Shepherd, detailed a response report to city council members Wednesday morning.

Shepherd also gave the city emergency response a 'B,' but added there is always room for improvement.
       
The EOC manager told council members the city handled the many challenges better than usual with the stalled ATA buses, drivers, snapped trees, thousands without power and 6,400 lane miles to plow.
      
Shepherd said what made the noticeable improvement this year was Mayor Sly James' fast call to declare a state of emergency, urge drivers to stay at home and all city departments meeting in one room to make fast decisions.
     
Still, Sharp said there are a few weak spots.

"I'm still not satisfied with how we do in some side streets and residential areas," he said.

Northland couple Megan and Chad Jackson agreed. They said the city's new GPS had erroneously reported city crews had plowed their street when the city had not touched it. They said this is a problem that has been going on for years.

"A 'D' is the best I'd give them," Chad Jackson said.

Most residents 41 Action News talked to in different areas of the city agreed that snow plow drivers, overall, did a better job than in the past in a city that's been plagued with slow response problems for years.

"I think it's been much better," one resident said.

Sharp said the city made major improvements this year, but may need to dedicate even more city money for more snow plow drivers to hit side streets faster the next time.

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