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One Year Of Development Tax Breaks Cost Kansas City Public Schools $28 Million

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Elle Moxley
KCUR 89.3
Students at Pitcher Elementary in the Kansas City Public Schools play a cup-stacking math game. Tax breaks for economic development cost the district $28 million in 2018.

The Kansas City Council is now looking at possible changes to how tax incentives are decided, including allowing school districts a say in those decisions, but they face an uphill battle at City Hall.

Tax incentives cost Kansas City Public Schools roughly $1,200 per student. "Incentives are done to us, not with us," district representative Shannon Jaax said. "Projects come to us late, when we haven't had a seat at the table."

Steve Kraske is the host of KCUR's Up To Date. Follow him on Twitter @stevekraske.
Danie Alexander is the senior producer of Up To Date.
Mackenzie Martin is a producer for Up To Date, Real Humans By Gina Kaufmann, and other podcasts at KCUR Studios. Reach out to her at or on Twitter @_macmartin.