April 6th General Municipal Election

Everything voters need to know


Faith Roach

On April 6th there will be a general municipal election. Visit voteroutreach.sos.mo.gov and input your address to find your polling location and times it will be open.

There are two issues on the ballot this election.

Issue one: Lsr7 School Board

There are five candidates up for election to the Lsr7 board and two open positions. The elected members will retain their position for three years. Here are the candidates:

Christine T. Bushyhead

According to her website, Bushyhead has a BA in Political Science and owns a law firm based in downtown Lee’s Summit. In an interview with the Kansas City Star Bushyhead said, “I believe the leadership style of the Board of Education has been more reactive than proactive. I would encourage my fellow Board members to make Education / Achievement the focus of the work and review the budget with intention to funding educational programs which meet the needs of all students, including early childhood education, dyslexic learners, English Language Learners, Learners with Special Needs, Gifted Learners, and career readiness initiatives, like Real World Learning. Leading a focus on this type of programming and ensuring equitable access to these educational opportunities, I believe a strong foundation can be set for student success.” For more specifics on her platform visit www.choosechristine.com.

Ryan N. Murdock

Murdock is a current member of the Lsr7 board, elected in 2018. He worked as a teacher in the Raytown and Jefferson school districts. In an editorial for the Lee’s Summit Tribune Murdock wrote, “My top priorities for the next three years are the expansion of our Real World learning initiatives and workforce development programs, continuation and advancement of our Equity Plan, especially in the areas of access/opportunities (which encompass so many things) and hiring and supporting a diverse staff, and overseeing the successful completion of our bond projects (all will be completed in the next three years).” For more information on the candidate visit lsr7.org/board-members.

Michele Andrea Surber

Surber is an Executive Director at SCL Health. She has a Masters of Science in Child Forensic Anthropology from the University of Portsmouth. For more information on this candidate visit her Linkedin profile at www.linkedin.com/in/michele-surber-14427050/.

Rodrick King Sparks

Sparks is an accounting specialist for Hendrick Automotive Group. He has experience as a youth minister and counselor. According to his campaign facebook page, Sparks plans on “Strengthening the district’s Community Advisory Committee, so that families have a direct impact on board decisions, enhancing district Covid-19 protocols to safely keep students and teachers in the classroom, expanding mental health services for students through school district partnerships with non-profit organizations, working with the board to create policies that assist students whose academic performance was negatively impacted by virtual learning, and partnering with local businesses and multinational corporations to provide high school students with workforce development opportunities through year-round internships and externships.” For more information on this candidate visit www.facebook.com/pg/SparksforLSR7.

Monte L. Helm

Helm is a professor at Metropolitan Community College-Kansas City. He has a Ph.D in chemistry from the University of Colorado at Boulder. More information about this candidate is available on his linked in profile at www.linkedin.com/in/monte-l-helm-a182b960/. This candidate may have dropped out after the deadline to be removed from the ballot.

Issue Two: City of Lee’s Summit Tax Question

The second issue on the ballot concerns a ten-cent tax increase to be used for general municipal purposes. The city council plans to balance this increase by reducing the general obligation debt service levy rate. This essentially moves ten cents from the debt service fund (which has to do with property taxes) to the general operations fund. More information here: cityofls.net/city-elections/upcoming-city-elections/april-2021-fund-reallocation.

Sample Ballot