TARGET 8 FACT CHECK: Columbia Mayor Treece hits the airwaves

10 months 5 days 9 hours ago Wednesday, March 20 2019 Mar 20, 2019 Wednesday, March 20, 2019 5:44:00 PM CDT March 20, 2019 in News
By: Ethan Stein, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Columbia’s mayoral race has moved to television as the municipal election on April 2 moves closer.

Mayor Brian Treece has created two different ads for television. Treece discusses his accomplishments as mayor citing seven different articles in the 30-second ad called “Honor.” KOMU 8 took a deeper dive into the claims made in the incumbent's first ad.

Claim: “I led the fight to prevent politicians from raising your taxes. We’ve added new police officers to keep out community safe.”

Treece did vote against raising property taxes in August 2018, according to city council meeting minutes. However, the city’s property tax rate is one of the lowest in the state, when compared to other cities, and hasn’t been raised in more than 15 years.

Former city manager Mike Matthes wanted to raise the property tax two percent in 2018.  The city wanted to spend additional revenue on departments and projects across the city.  

One project against which Treece voted was a new fire station in southwest Columbia.  The new station would have cut response times for emergency calls. The fire department has been asking for a tenth station since 2013.   

The proposed tax increase would cost seven dollars for those with a $150,000 home, according to past KOMU 8 reporting.

The city is planning on building a new fire station after purchasing land near Scott Boulevard and Route KK this month.

The Columbia Police Department has added officers, however it has a net loss of officers over the past five years.  

The department has added 42 officers over the last five years. However, 68 police officers left over the same time period.

52 of 68 Police Officers resigned, the other 16 retired.

The 30-second ad discusses the building of a new police substation in northeast Columbia. However, that substation was made possible because of a donation from the Columbia Insurance Group.

Violent crime has both increased and decreased under Treece, depending on the year examined.

According to the Columbia Police Department, violent crime is defined as criminal homicide, forcible rape, robbery and aggravated assault.

Verdict: We find this claim needs context

Claim: “A 1,000 new jobs.”

Treece’s claim comes from a story published by the Columbia Daily Tribune in October 2018. The article uses a report from two University of Missouri researchers called "On the Columbia Economy: A Comparison across Missouri and across Companies."

The report calls Columbia “the brightest spot within Missouri’s metro areas with a strong performing economy since 2000.” The researchers attribute employment growth to Columbia’s four largest employers: the University of Missouri, University Hospitals and Clinics, Columbia Public Schools and Veterans United Home Loans.

According to the report, nearly half of new payroll employees in Columbia were added by those four largest employers. The report also said Veterans United Home Loans accounts for roughly one in every five of the new payroll employees added each year.

Verdict: We find this claim needs context

Claim: “And made an open, honest, transparent government the hallmark of our city.”

Treece did make data more accessible through a citizen transparency portal. The portal costs $25,000 each year.

The citizen transparency portal acts as an open checkbook for the city. The portal has detailed reports of all financial records including expenditures, revenues, vendor payments and payroll details.

The portal currently has all of the financial data from the 2017, 2018 and 2019 fiscal years.

Treece has also asked for an independent city audit multiple times.

Verdict: We find this claim true

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - Boone Electric Cooperative is reporting outages affecting nearly 5,000 customers Friday morning. The outages are reported across... More >>
23 minutes ago Friday, January 24 2020 Jan 24, 2020 Friday, January 24, 2020 10:22:00 AM CST January 24, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Officials with University of Missouri announced campus is closed Friday due to weather. The university earlier announced a... More >>
5 hours ago Friday, January 24 2020 Jan 24, 2020 Friday, January 24, 2020 5:29:00 AM CST January 24, 2020 in News
BELLE - The Maries County Sheriff addressed concerned Belle residents Thursday after the town closed its police department earlier this... More >>
12 hours ago Thursday, January 23 2020 Jan 23, 2020 Thursday, January 23, 2020 10:19:00 PM CST January 23, 2020 in News
MID-MISSOURI - A multi-day storm system continues in central Missouri, eventually coming to an end this evening with snow accumulation... More >>
15 hours ago Thursday, January 23 2020 Jan 23, 2020 Thursday, January 23, 2020 7:07:00 PM CST January 23, 2020 in Weather
JEFFERSON CITY - After more than a year and a half of sitting empty, and with holes throughout, a Jefferson... More >>
16 hours ago Thursday, January 23 2020 Jan 23, 2020 Thursday, January 23, 2020 6:16:00 PM CST January 23, 2020 in News
ASHLAND - Winter weather brings more than just frosty temperatures. It brings the unexpected. Especially when parents and grandparents are... More >>
17 hours ago Thursday, January 23 2020 Jan 23, 2020 Thursday, January 23, 2020 5:06:00 PM CST January 23, 2020 in Top Stories
JEFFERSON CITY - This winter has brought above-average levels of snow and ice to mid-Missouri, and now, crews across the... More >>
18 hours ago Thursday, January 23 2020 Jan 23, 2020 Thursday, January 23, 2020 4:18:00 PM CST January 23, 2020 in News
COLE COUNTY - Construction on Route 54 south of Jefferson City will begin on Monday, January 27. The project is... More >>
19 hours ago Thursday, January 23 2020 Jan 23, 2020 Thursday, January 23, 2020 3:32:00 PM CST January 23, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Police Department is asking for the public's help in identifying a man accused of assault. The... More >>
20 hours ago Thursday, January 23 2020 Jan 23, 2020 Thursday, January 23, 2020 2:42:00 PM CST January 23, 2020 in News
A replat of property at the northwest corner of Cherry and Hitt streets to accommodate plans for a six-story... More >>
20 hours ago Thursday, January 23 2020 Jan 23, 2020 Thursday, January 23, 2020 2:21:00 PM CST January 23, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Jim Lehrer, the retired PBS anchorman and a graduate of the MU School of Journalism, died Thursday... More >>
21 hours ago Thursday, January 23 2020 Jan 23, 2020 Thursday, January 23, 2020 12:59:00 PM CST January 23, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Boone County Prosecuting Attorney Daniel Knight is objecting to a defense request for change of venue in... More >>
22 hours ago Thursday, January 23 2020 Jan 23, 2020 Thursday, January 23, 2020 12:22:00 PM CST January 23, 2020 in News
WASHINGTON — U.S. Senator Roy Blunt commended President Trump’s announcement that the Environmental Protection Agency has finalized its Waters of... More >>
22 hours ago Thursday, January 23 2020 Jan 23, 2020 Thursday, January 23, 2020 12:16:00 PM CST January 23, 2020 in News
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration on Thursday published new visa rules aimed at restricting “birth tourism,” in which women... More >>
23 hours ago Thursday, January 23 2020 Jan 23, 2020 Thursday, January 23, 2020 11:15:00 AM CST January 23, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Too much rock salt on your driveway might hurt your yard in the spring. According to the... More >>
23 hours ago Thursday, January 23 2020 Jan 23, 2020 Thursday, January 23, 2020 11:01:00 AM CST January 23, 2020 in News
SPRINGFIELD - The first untested sexual assault kits recorded through Missouri's SAFE Kits Initiative will be collected at the Springfield... More >>
23 hours ago Thursday, January 23 2020 Jan 23, 2020 Thursday, January 23, 2020 10:50:00 AM CST January 23, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Lucky's Market has confirmed that the Columbia location will remain open as they begin closing various stores around... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, January 23 2020 Jan 23, 2020 Thursday, January 23, 2020 10:34:00 AM CST January 23, 2020 in News
BEIJING (AP) — Chinese authorities Thursday moved to lock down three cities that are home to more than 18 million... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, January 23 2020 Jan 23, 2020 Thursday, January 23, 2020 9:56:00 AM CST January 23, 2020 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 33°
11am 33°
12pm 34°
1pm 34°
2pm 34°