Join the Black Chamber of Commerce of Greater Kansas City next week for their first mixer called The Vine: Where It All Started! A Membership Drive and Networking Event. Come learn about the chamber, see what it has been working on in Kansas City for Black businesses, and how you or your company can get involved. RSVP Today! https://lnkd.in/evg46Yy
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Kansas City Black Chamber of Commerce plans an open forum Wednesday on the KCI proposal and minority businesses.
The focus of the meeting Wednesday will be on how the proposed KCI project will impact minority businesses. The forum is free and anyone can come. It will be held Wednesday at 6 p.m. at the Bruce R. Watkins Cultural and Heritage Center.
Kelvin Perkins, President of the Black Chamber of Commerce of Greater Kansas City, said he supports the plan to convert KCI into a single-terminal, more modern airport. However, Perry is concerned that the developer, Edgemoor, is not promising to hire enough minorities and minority-owned businesses.
“We have always supported modernization project itself. Do not support this very weak minority participation plan that has been put forth by Edgemoor,” said Perry.
The Kansas City Black Chamber of Commerce wants minority businesses to be guaranteed 33 percent of construction jobs and 33 percent of architecture and engineering jobs.
Edgemoor Minority business hiring goal is 20 percent minority for construction and 17 percent minority for architecture and engineering jobs.
Edgemoor’s pledge is lower than the KC Black Chamber would like — but higher than Kansas City’s requirement from City Hall of 13 percent minority hiring for construction jobs and 12 percent minority hiring for architecture and engineering jobs.
Edgemoor executives explained that their track-record with Clark Construction for hiring minority-owned businesses should ease any concerns.
“Clark (Construction) built The National Museum for African-American Culture and History. Our goal was 40 percent and we achieved 60 percent minority hiring. At LAX we built a central utility plant where the goal was 20 percent and we achieved 26 percent. We have a great track record of setting goals with our clients and then exceeding them,” said Geoffrey Stricker, Managing Director, Edgemoor.
Edgemoor is also bringing its free minority training and mentoring programs to Kansas City. Minorities who want to enter the construction industry for the first time will get training. Existing minority businesses who want to excel in the construction industry will also get valuable training on how to manage and grow their businesses.
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A revised memorandum of understanding from the company picked to build a new airport in Kansas City will be discussed Thursday.
Members of the Black Chamber of Commerce contend the revised memorandum of understanding with Maryland-based company Edgemoor doesn’t do enough to support minority workers and business owners in the city while building the projected billion dollar airport.
The Black Chamber of Commerce sent out their own memo asking the airport committee to reject the current memorandum of understanding based on four points of contention which include:
Edgemoor Makes No Substantive Investment in Kansas City
Edgemoor seeks to maintain the status quo
Edgemoor Changed Its Financial Terms
Edgemoor’s MBE Goal is insufficient
KC City Council member Jermaine Reed says he respectfully disagrees with the notion that only 20 percent of minorities will be involved. Reed says throughout this negotiating process, he and the council have made minority involvement a priority, and he believes the current memorandum of understanding does as well.
“Edgemoor’s commitment has been 35 percent from a minority perspective in three different areas: construction, workforce, and professional services on this actual contract,” Reed said.
Reed says this is a very complex issue, and he and the council have seen more than 2,000 pages so far.
The meeting is scheduled for 9:45 a.m. Thursday, the committee could move it forward to the city council or hold it in committee for another week.
Read the full news release from the Black Chamber of Commerce below.
“The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between Edgemoor Infrastructure & Real Estate and the City of Kansas City should be rejected because it is not transformative for this community. Since July 2017, the Black Chamber of Commerce of Greater Kansas City, Inc., in consultation with the KCI Airport Urban Consortium, has advocated for a KCI Airport Project that would be transformative for the minority community and the City of Kansas City, Missouri. This is an unprecedented opportunity to revitalize the minority community and to make the City a viable contender in competition with its peer cities for the 21st century. The KCI Airport Project should serve as the cornerstone for a new vision of progress for Kansas City where corporate leadership, labor, construction contractors – large and small, black and white – community groups, and our chambers of commerce and schools forge new relationships in developing sustainable minority enterprises and making workforce inclusion a top priority.
Unfortunately, throughout the process Edgemoor has failed to demonstrate a meaningful commitment to developing a single terminal airport project in a truly transformative manner as demonstrated by the following:
- Edgemoor Makes No Substantive Investment in Kansas City: The original Edgemoor submission was generally devoid of defined and substantive community benefits components and workforce composition goals. Even after members of the City Council insisted that the MOU include a robust Community Benefits Agreement (CBA), Edgemoor has still failed to make an investment toward a comprehensive CBA. Under their MOU terms funding for most, if not all, of the measures are funded from project revenue, and are contingent on or subject to approval of the FAA. Funding for Community Benefits should be a binding obligation of the developer from developer profits – not airport revenues. Edgemoor’s plan, does not assist the community because the community has to pay for it. Much of the funding cost for the programs envisioned appear inflated and some are for Clark Construction employee/consultant staffing positions. These additional costs actually increase Edgemoor’s profit. Any Community Benefit not borne in cost by the developer and subject to or contingent upon FAA approval is unacceptable.
- Edgemoor’s MBE Goal is insufficient: Edgemoor’s MBE goal of 20% is insufficient, not transformative, and significantly less than the 28% the City achieved in fiscal 2016 for construction services. That is shameful. More importantly, MBE goals on this once in a generation project should exceed 28%, as an achievable transformative goal if the City and developer are sincere in their commitment to minority business development. Arguments to the contrary are simply unworthy of belief.
- Edgemoor seeks to maintain the status quo: In its initial proposal and in the MOU terms currently proffered by Edgemoor and currently being considered by the City Council, Edgemoor fails to fully embrace the concept of a transformative project. The lack of significant minority workforce goals is very troublesome. If history is prologue, without specific workforce composition goals most of the high paying jobs will be filled by white men and the few minorities hired will perform low paying tasks directing traffic and cleaning the site. An MOU without workforce goals reflecting the demographics of the community is not transformative and therefore unacceptable.
- Edgemoor Changed Its Financial Terms: It appears Edgemoor has changed its financial terms from a guaranteed maximum price (GMP) to a lump sum in this new version of the MOU, which means they collect the contracted price if they under run the cost of the project rather than returning that money to the City. The lump sum approach is far less transparent compared to GMP where every dollar is reported and accounted for. Provided the project pays all the costs for Community Benefits, it is conceivable that Edgemoor could pocket another $29 million of profit. We believe that would be the ultimate community disservice for which we would never approve.
For the forgoing reasons it is clear that Edgemoor is not committed to transformative minority participation in the development of a new airport terminal. The City Council should not partner with a company that is reluctant to invest in and do what’s best for the citizens of this great City. We therefore, urge the Council to reject Edgemoor’s proposed MOU as non-transformative and immediately commence negotiations with the second ranked proposer in accordance with City procurement practices.”
The Black Chamber of Commerce of Greater Kansas City Inc. is raising concerns over the memorandum of understanding between Edgemoor Infrastructure & Real Estate LLC and the city of Kansas City. The chamber is calling for the city to reject the MOU because it’s “not transformative” for the minority community.
On Tuesday, Edgemoor presented a revised MOU to the City Council for the $1 billion Kansas City International Airport single-terminal project. The MOU met a number of the council’s requests and included a revised $28.9 million community benefit agreement.
Although the community benefit agreement has been revised, it’s still not good enough, according to the chamber. In a release, the chamber said that Edgemoor “has failed to make an investment toward a comprehensive CBA” and that “funding for community benefits should be a binding obligation of the developer from developer profits — not airport revenues. Edgemoor’s plan, does not assist the community because the community has to pay for it.”
The chamber also questioned the CBA investment amount, saying that it appeared inflated and that some of the funds are going toward Clark Construction employee and consultant positions, which boost Edgemoor’s profit.
In the release, the chamber raised several other concerns, including an insufficient minority business enterprise goal, Edgemoor aiming to keep the status quo and how the developer changed its financial terms.
The Airport Committee will meet Thursday morning to discuss the MOU.
Welcome to WordPress. This is your first post. Edit or delete it, then start writing!