Merriam officials press developer about $130,000 in unpaid taxes on former Kmart property

Kmart roof deterioration

Developer Block and Co. manages or represents the owners of both the former Kmart site on Shawnee Mission Parkway, above, and a former Taco Bell across the street. Block is asking Merriam for $300,000 in tax increment financing to redevelop the Taco Bell, but some councilmembers this week balked at that idea because of nearly $130,000 in unpaid taxes on the Kmart site. File photo.

Merriam city councilmembers this week questioned Kansas City-based developer Block and Co. about more than $100,000 in unpaid taxes on the long-vacant Kmart property the company manages.

That discussion came as Block officials asked the city for $300,000 worth of tax increment financing to redevelop another property nearby, the old Taco Bell at 8800 Shawnee Mission Parkway.

The Merriam City Council on Monday did ultimately set a public hearing for Jan. 24 to consider a redevelopment plan at the old Taco Bell but not before several councilmembers expressed reservations about the unpaid taxes at the other site.