Allison Kite

Allison Kite

Allison Kite is a data reporter for The Missouri Independent and Kansas Reflector, with a focus on energy, the environment and agriculture. A graduate of the University of Kansas, she previously covered City Hall for The Kansas City Star, as well as state government in both Topeka and Jefferson City.

Kansas county scuttles talk of converting Leavenworth jail to ICE detention center

By: - September 21, 2023

Leavenworth County officials voted unanimously Wednesday to halt discussions over whether to convert a former private federal jail into a detention center for immigration enforcement.  For years, CoreCivic, the nation’s largest private prison operator, ran a federal pretrial detention center in Leavenworth for individuals charged with — but not convicted of — federal crimes from Kansas, […]

Evergy withdraws request to make time-of-use pricing optional in Missouri

By: - September 19, 2023

Just 10 days after seeking permission to allow customers to opt out of controversial time-of-use pricing, western Missouri’s major electric utility withdrew its request with state regulators.  Under an order from the Missouri Public Service Commission, Evergy is expected next month  to implement time-of-use pricing, which places a premium on electricity prices at times of […]

Missouri company faces criticism over alleged role in Brazilian deforestation in new report

By: - September 13, 2023

A Missouri-based agricultural giant is helping fuel rapid deforestation in Brazil’s eastern savanna, a report by environmental activists claims. Bunge Limited, headquartered in Chesterfield, is the world’s largest soybean producer and sells the overwhelming majority of inputs to Brazilian soy farmers.  The report, released Tuesday by a trio of environmental and human rights groups, says […]

Evergy asks Missouri regulators to let customers opt out of time-of-use pricing

By: - September 12, 2023

The largest utility in western Missouri has requested permission to allow customers to opt out of controversial time-of-use pricing plans imposed by state regulators. Evergy is expected under an order from the Missouri Public Service Commission to implement time-of-use pricing, which places a premium on electricity prices at times of high demand, starting next month. […]

Missouri manufacturer faces accusations it polluted drinking water in the Bootheel

By: - September 8, 2023

Two counties in Missouri’s Bootheel suffer from cancer mortality rates drastically higher than the state or national average.  On the border between them lies a manufacturing facility in Portageville that for more than 50 years has pumped out parts for cars — and according to some residents, also released carcinogenic metals and chemicals into the […]

Shuttered private jail in Leavenworth could become ICE detention center

By: - September 6, 2023

A private pre-trial detention center in Leavenworth beset with violence when it closed in 2021 could house individuals detained by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE.  For years, Nashville-based CoreCivic operated the Leavenworth Detention Center, which held individuals charged — but not convicted — with federal crimes from Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa and western Missouri. Now, it […]

Kansas City police made arrests based on rescinded warrants, records show

By: - September 1, 2023

Kansas City police arrested at least four people on invalid warrants in 2021 following its transition from one tracking software program to another, The Missouri Independent has learned.  It’s unclear from the records obtained by The Independent how many individuals were mistakenly arrested. The department had been warned of possible technical issues that could lead […]

Judge bars Missouri from moving ahead on Randolph County waste lagoon permit

By: - September 1, 2023

The Missouri Department of Natural Resources is barred from moving forward with a permit for an animal waste lagoon north of Columbia following a judge’s ruling Thursday. Cole County Circuit Judge Daniel Green issued a writ of prohibition in a case Randolph County residents filed against the state. The department can’t take further action without […]

Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas speaks at a vaccine clinic

Lawsuit alleges Kansas City mayor tried to intimidate activist over request for records

By: - August 30, 2023

A Kansas City activist has filed a lawsuit alleging Mayor Quinton Lucas attempted to intimidate her into withdrawing a request for public records from his office. Lora McDonald, executive director of the Metro Organization for Racial and Economic Equity, or MORE2, sued the city earlier this month over alleged violations of the Missouri Sunshine Law. […]

Southwest Missouri river’s listing as polluted may set up fight over meatpacker permit

By: - August 25, 2023

The Pomme de Terre River’s status as an impaired waterway is poised to set up a fight between environmentalists and a meatpacking plant in Southwest Missouri. Missouri Prime Beef Packers has requested permission from the state to discharge treated wastewater from its facility near Pleasant Hope directly into the river. It currently applies the water […]

Biden supports expanding compensation to radiation victims in Missouri, New Mexico

By: - August 10, 2023

President Joe Biden on Wednesday said he’s interested in expanding a federal program to compensate people who have gotten sick because of the country’s nuclear weapons development and testing programs.  The Associated Press reported Biden told a crowd in New Mexico he was ”prepared to help in terms of making sure that those folks are […]

Energy secretary stops short of endorsing atomic waste victims fund in Missouri visit

By: - August 8, 2023

ST. LOUIS — Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm in a visit to Missouri on Tuesday would not commit to supporting bipartisan legislation meant to compensate people who have been exposed to radioactive material from U.S. weapons development and production. “I can’t speak for the administration on that particular piece because I just don’t know the answer,” […]