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CLAY COUNTY — In 2019, a majority of Clay County commissioners approved appointing a committee to investigate whether county residents would be in favor of changing to a constitution or charter form of government. The committee of 12 members was appointed with each of the three commissioners appointing four people.

Those appointed by Western Commissioner Gene Owen were: Greg Canuteson, Kenneth Honeck, Myron Neth and Larry Whiton. Those appointed by Eastern Commissioner Luann Ridgeway were: Kay and Tom Peca, Dee Rosenkrans and Troy Schulte. Appointed by Presiding Commissioner Jerry Nolte were: Jennifer Langston-Justus, David Slater, Jason Withington and Bennie Abbott.

The committee first met in December and elected Greg Canuteson as chair.  Canuteson, is a Liberty-based lawyer, former state representative and Liberty mayor and is the current chair of the Clay County Economic Development Council.

At the December meeting, the committee, which seeks to make clear it is not being lead by or interfered with by county commissioners, voted to not ask for any assistance from county staff or their legal team.

The committee will be meeting at 7 p.m. Wednesday nights throughout January and February at sites around the county so that residents “will be able to easily share their thoughts on any government changes in open meetings,” states a release from the committee.

The following is a list of scheduled meetings:

• Jan. 15 — Woodneath Library Center, 8900 NE Flintlock Road, Kansas City;

• Jan. 22 — Kearney City Hall, 100 E. Washington St., Kearney;

• Jan. 29 — Smithville City Hall, 107 W. Main St., Smithville;

• Feb. 5 — Excelsior Springs Community Center, 500 Tiger Drive, Excelsior Springs;

• Feb. 12 — location to be determined;

• Feb. 19 — location to be determined; and

• Feb. 26 — Gladstone Community Center, 6901 N. Holmes St., Gladstone.

For more details, email Canuteson at

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