KANSAS CITY, Mo. — For someone who’s called Heart Mobile Village her home since 1970, 90-year-old Joy Ufford has a surprisingly cavalier attitude about the prospect of being uprooted.
“Doesn’t do any good to cry about it. Whatever they decide, they decide,” Ufford said with a laugh.
The mobile home park sits on a 99-acre plot of land up for sale. And, while not commenting on-camera, Jackson County lawmakers have told FOX4 the location is an ideal spot to build a new county detention center.
Halfway between the courthouses in Kansas City and Independence, the eastern Jackson County spot is right off the highway and adjacent to a nearby metro bus stop.
Jackson County legislators have been reluctant to speak openly about the prospect of buying the land for fear of driving up the sale price, which would increase the burden on taxpayers.
“We’ll probably have to throw a lot of things away that we probably should’ve thrown away a long time ago,” Ufford said.
Her son, Gregg Ufford, points out that the land sits in a flood plain.
“It flooded in ‘76 or ‘77 and then in 1990,” Gregg Ufford told FOX4. “It was full up until 1990, and that’s when a bunch of people moved out.”
Jackson County lawmakers have told FOX4 there are plans for a potential compensation package if the land is purchased to build a new detention center. It could potentially cover all of the moving costs, three months rent, and $5,000.
“Well, I don’t know. I hope I can buy a place for $5000,” said Jeannie Anderson, another longtime resident.
Anderson is less diplomatic about the prospect of being forced to move.
“I don’t deserve this crap, and that’s all I’m getting is crap,” Anderson said.