Re Information For Article ID: 40919

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Mayor Johnston,

Thank you for your reply.

Debbie Topi

On Monday, November 26, 2018 3:00 PM, Nan Johnston wrote:

Please understand this ``contention has been also taking place for the past 10 years under Mayors Dusenbery, Richardson, Brooks, as well as myself. For over 10 years, the only consistency in the players has been Mr Hutsler. There is no power struggle from my personal view point, however I am frustrated that Mr Hutsler continues to make these unfounded accusations against me and has also extended his accusations to the Main Street director. This needless and negative drama affects the ability for the Main Street organization to do its' job and does nothing to promote the positive impact of MSPA and their strong partnership with the City.

Mr Hutsler, POTMCID District Manager Carol Kuhns, MSPA President Mike Carney, Alderman Rittman and I met last Monday to resolve differences. It's my understanding that they will be proposing some changes to be considered by the Board of Aldermen. Since this will take some time to firm up, it was mutually agreed to continue rejecting the slates until the time the details can be worked out by both parties.

The BOA has no desire to control the individual property owners in the downtown area, however, we have every interest in ensuring the downtown thrives. We feel that control of the POTMCID by more businesses and property owners within the district that do not rent from or who do not have business ties to Mr Hutsler ensures a fairer representation of all owners in the district.

For example, using the last slate that was presented:

Gordon Cook (Office use, English Landing tenant, rents from Mr Hutsler)

Tom Hutsler (Antique Mall, English Landing Center)

Dave Williams (Property owner, former business partner of Mr Hutsler)

Milton Wright (Event space, English Landing tenant, rents from Mr Hutsler)

Vacancy (previously held by Art Brown, English Landing resident, rented from Mr Hutsler)

The members approved in 2016 by me and the BOA are:

Nick Casale (manager of American Legion)

Jeffrey Cunningham (Retail business, English Landing Center tenant, rents from Mr Hutsler)

Kenneth Wilson (Resident of English Landing Center, does NOT rent from Mr Hutsler)

Debbie Worley (Retail business, Daughter of Dave Williams)

We do not mean to suggest that there is anything illegal about the board composition, we merely maintain that the makeup of the board could be fairer to all businesses within the district. As you can see, there is a large proportion of existing and proposed board members who rent from Mr Hutsler. Also note, that there are only two entities, the Legion and Finder's Keepers (which will be closing at the end of the year), having a presence on Main Street. None of the existing or proposed slate own businesses or live north of 1st street. The only representatives of businesses paying into the CID are: Mr Hutsler, Dave Williams, Jeffrey Cunningham (retail) and Debbie Worley (retail, Finder's Keepers). The other businesses are exempt from sales tax. It would be fairer to include some of the many businesses located in other parts of the district and include more who pay into POTMCID.

The City's interest in CID's extends only to those where the goal is to construct or maintain public infrastructure. This takes a partnership between the CID and the City, and it is beneficial to have City representation on those entities. In the past, there have been POTMCID discussions about parking lots, moving Farmer's Market, etc, all involving public infrastructure and funding, some of these discussions have taken place without any input from the City.

The Highway 9 CID was formed late last year to provide a revenue stream to be used to match federal and state grants for improvements to the corridor.

From: Debbie Topi
Sent: Monday, November 26, 2018 1:15 PM
To: Nan Johnston
Subject: information for article


Thank you for responding to my previous questions regarding Tom Hutsler. I'm writing a story about the contentious relationship between he and yourself and some board of aldermen members. I have a quick question regarding the 9 highway CID.

Has the 9 highway CID been formed and if so, when was it established? What is this CID's goal/role?

In addition, Hutsler has made a few claims to which I'd like to get your reaction. He believes the motive behind you and the board rejecting a slate of Old Towne CID members that includes his name is about control and power. He believes you and some board members want to control CIDs and downtown Parkville and also would like to limit his power since he owns several downtown properties and has more than one business there. I just need your reaction to these claims.

If you can respond by the end of the day, I can get your comments into my story.

Thank you,

Debbie Topi

The Landmark