Dear Editor:

I am writing to assure your readers that a YES YES vote on the issues on the ballot Tuesday, August 6 will result in the construction of the Heckart Community Center. The Center will be located between Liberty Park Boulevard and West 3rd Street along Limit Avenue. You can see information about the building and its location at

This opportunity is knocking because of Sue Heckart and her gracious and continuing support of Sedalia. Sue has made a multi-million-dollar commitment to the project. Sue’s gift makes this affordable for all of us. In return those involved are doing everything we can to get the project complete by March 18, 2021. That day is the 20th anniversary of Sue’s mom’s passing. It would mean a lot to her to dedicate the Heckart Community Center on that day.

The Heckart Community Center will include a gym area with three multiple use gym floors and an elevated walking track. It will also include an indoor aquatics center for year-round recreation, exercise, swimming lessons and therapy. It will house the new Senior Center with a new commercial kitchen, dining area and gathering area. It will include community rooms, locker rooms and party rooms. There will be an exercise area with equipment and a room for aerobics.  It will also provide child care for parents using the facility. The community center will be open from 5:30 AM until 9:00 PM M-F and 7 AM to 7 PM on weekends. It will support a large increase in park programing and will give us a quality, year-round park system. The Heckart Community Center will benefit all of us.

Voting YES YES on the August 6 ballot will result in a 1/8 of one percent sales tax increase. That’s 1 dollar for every $800 in taxable sales. For me, if I spend $1,600 per month, that’s 2 dollars extra per month. I can afford that, I put more than that in my change drawer every few days. Even when we add the 1/8 of 1 percent to the current sales tax rate, we will still have a lower rate than most of our neighboring towns. This small city sales tax rate increase has nothing to do with assessments and it means everyone making a purchase in Sedalia is helping pay for the construction of the Heckart Community Center. That’s a good plan because, since everyone is paying the tax, everyone will be able to use the Heckart Community Center. 

I have gone over all the budget numbers with Kelvin Shaw (the city administrator) John Kehde (the mayor) and Amy Epple (the park director). I assure you this is a solid plan put together by people dedicated to the service of Sedalia and the surrounding community. The plan will allow us to enjoy the benefits of a community center without impacting our current parks and city services.

Like community centers across the country, this one will benefit community health, wellness and prosperity. Sue Heckart’s gift supporting this project means our Heckart Community Center fits in everyone’s budget. Please call or text if you have additional questions, and please join me and vote yes for both questions on the ballot on August 6. Please vote “YES YES for Sedalia”.  Its time, lets take advantage of this opportunity.

Steve Bloess

Chairman YES YES for Sedalia


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