Daily Archives: March 28, 2007

Fight against blight gains unlikely "partners"

The City of Wichita and Sunflower Community Action’s working relationship is improving after the nonprofit group’s meeting with city officials to discuss run-down properties.

The city agreed to provide updates to Sunflower in April and May after Sunflower revealed its “Dirty 20″ list of properties to City Spokesman Van Williams and the city’s Office of Central Inspections and Environmental Services department leaders. Both sides considered the meeting a success – the city was pleased with Sunflower’s grassroots efforts to clean up blight in Central-Northeast Wichita and Sunflower was pleased the city started cases on several of the properties.

“We got to talk to each other, and not through the media or other groups,” Williams said, “and the communication benefited from that.”

Still, four Sunflower members are going to trial on misdemeanor charges the city pressed against them for illegal dumping and trespassing during a protest at City Manager George Kolb’s house in December. The group hoped to pressure Kolb to clean up dumping at a house at 10th and Volutsia.

Mayans doesn’t like polls, polls don’t like him

Ask Mayor Carlos Mayans about polls, and he’ll tell you he hasn’t taken any in six campaigns (five for state representative, one for mayor). A self-described populist, he says there’s only one real poll — Election Day. Mayoral candidate Carl Brewer, meanwhile, spent $14,000 on polling and phone banks.

Now a poll has been taken by KWCH Channel 12 and The Wichita Eagle. It shows Brewer up 22 percent over Mayans in the race for mayor. The automated phone survey polled 470 likely voters and was conducted by Survey USA a week before the April 3 election.

Of those asked, 58 percent plan to vote for Brewer, 36 percent plan to vote for Mayans and 6 percent said they were undecided or planned to pick someone else, presumably a write-in. There’s a 4.6 percent margin of error. In the poll, Brewer leads among all age groups as well as among men, women, black and white voters.