KC City Hall and Jackson County Courthouse closed, leaving some residents frustrated

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- A water main break Thursday caused water to pour into the basements of KCMO City Hall and the Jackson County Courthouse.

The flooding happened in the electrical area of the building, causing a loss of power, which meant neither building was open for the day.

But for people who didn't hear about the closures, they were met with signs taped to locked doors, busy signals on the phone and little information online.

In a news release sent out early Thursday, the county and city announced the building closures. Then Thursday afternoon, the county said in a news release that anyone with a court hearing scheduled that day at the downtown courthouse would have their hearing rescheduled. The other county court facilities operated as normal.

But a lot of people who showed up for court didn't have that information.

"They say they are closed, but what are people who have appointments or court dates down here -- what do we do?” Marcia Dunn asked. “Do we have a warrant issued on us or how are they going to handle this?"

She wasn't the only one the only one a little frustrated.

Since summer, Ralph Sanders has been looking forward to a hearing that would have set up visitation for his daughter who lives in Texas.

"It is always hard to reach somebody over the phone,” Sanders said. “I took off work to come down, and no one is here to take down our information. The judge won't know if we showed up or not, and then we have no idea when it is going to be reset."

Besides the news release, many people who showed up Thursday said the county didn't do enough to tell people about the closure.

The courthouse's phone number rang busy Thursday, and its website didn't include details about what people should do.

On Friday, City Hall will reopen, but the county's downtown courthouse will once again be closed as crews work to make repairs. Like Thursday, those with hearings at the downtown courthouse will be notified of their rescheduled date.

Jackson County residents can still conduct business with the county's collection, assessment and recorder of deeds departments at the Historic Truman Courthouse in Independence from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday.

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