Archive for Saturday, June 7, 1997


June 7, 1997


City bottom line for June 10, 1997

Commissioners will get a chance to rule on two divisive issues related to proposed demolitions:

  • Valentin Romero's request for a federal Community Development Block Grant to raze a property he owns at 909 Pa. The city estimates the cost of demolition to be between $3,000 and $4,000.
  • A request from Darrell A. McManness, Leland D. McManness and Michael C. McManness to raze a property at 740 R.I., which is located within the historic environs of at least one property listed on a register of historic places. City building inspectors had called the structure "unsafe and dangerous" and had scheduled a public hearing to decide whether commissioners should order the property razed. The hearing will go on, although the McMannesses, who own the property, have since asked for a demolition permit.

Last month, Romero pledged to proceed with his demolition plans, despite knowing it would draw opposition from preservationists. The home at 909 Pa. is at least 124 years old.

"I want to get rid of it," Romero said. "Everything has its time -- nations, people, land, whatever. Now it's time."

City Background

City background for June 10, 1997

Lynn Goodell, the city's director of housing and neighborhood development, recommends giving Romero money to raze the home.

"This is an eligible CDBG activity," Goodell said, in a memo to City Manager Mike Wildgen.

Commissioners are being brought into the process because a few weeks ago, Marci Francisco, a member of the Lawrence Preservation Alliance, complained that not only shouldn't a grant be approved, but the home shouldn't be demolished at all.

Commissioners agreed to make the decisions themselves, after putting the issue on the regular agenda for a commission meeting.

Romero filed his demolition permit application April 29. The mandatory 30-day waiting period has elapsed, and the home is not located within the environs of any listed historic property, Goodell said.

The one-bedroom brick house, with limestone foundation, was built sometime before 1873, according to city documents. In Plain View, a neighborhood history compiled by Mark Kaplan and Jim McCrary, estimates that the home actually was built in 1860, or six years after Lawrence's founding and three years before Quantrill's Raid.

In 1988, Romero had applied for a demolition permit, saying the home had deteriorated beyond the point of repair and needed to be torn down to prevent use by vagrants.

Other business

City business for June 10, 1997

  • Approve appointments recommended by Mayor Bonnie Augustine: Bob Mikesic, Jack Hope and Lynn Goodell to the Housing Advisory Council; John Immel to the Lawrence Housing Authority Board of Commissioners; Darrell G. Flyingman to the Human Relations Commission; and herself, Paul Bahnmaier, Charles Becker, Mark Buhler, Don Johnston, Charles Krider, Peter Krueger, Jim Martin, Shirley Martin-Smith, Jean Milstead, Elaine Nelson, Dwayne Peaslee, Sue Pine, Randi Tveitaraas and Jennie Washburn to the Economic Development Board.
  • Agree to buy a power sweeper from Tennant Co., for $18,426.
  • Hire Larkin Excavating, for $34,541, to handle sanitary sewer improvements along Greenway Drive in the East Hills Business Park.
  • Set a 2 p.m. June 20 deadline for bids to handle aircraft parking and taxiway improvements at Lawrence Municipal Airport.
  • Set a 2 p.m. June 24 deadline for bids to handle street, storm sewer and waterline improvements along Greenway Drive at East Hills Business Park.
  • Agree to pay Black & Veatch another $56,500 to handle engineering services for wastewater disinfection and alkalinity facilities.
  • Approve an ordinance, on final reading, to prohibit parking from midnight to 6 a.m. in parking lots at the Union Pacific Depot and the southeast corner of North Second and Locust streets.
  • Approve a resolution declaring 444 Lincoln environmentally blighted and allowing the property owner 30 days to abate.
  • Approve a resolution to authorize the sale of $7.9 million in revenue bonds, to finance construction of a wastewater biosolids handling facility and North Lawrence relief sewer.
  • Approve a resolution of intent to grant Jayhawk Bowling Supply a 50-percent tax abatement for its relocation project. Commissioners OK'd the abatement May 20.
  • Approve final plats for: Skie Subdivision No. 5, a two-lot area covering 20,099 square feet at the southeast corner of West 27th Street and Crestline Drive; and Space Saver Addition, a one-lot commercial area, covering 2.7 acres, for mini-storage units along the south side of West Sixth Street, 285 feet east of Comet Lane.
  • Approve site plans for sidewalk dining at Juice Stop, 812 Mass.; and parking lot improvements at Hallmark Cards Inc., 101 McDonald Dr.
  • Consider an appeal from Brent McClur concerning the revocation of his permit to operate his "Taco Barn" business at the northeast corner of Ninth and Massachusetts streets.
  • Conduct an executive session to discuss matters related to employer-employee negotiations. The 30-minute session would give city administrators a chance to brief commissioners about the status of negotiations with Lawrence police and Lawrence-Douglas County firefighters and paramedics, whose work agreements expire Dec. 31. Commissioners expect to hear proposals from both sides of each dispute during public hearings June 17, after which commissioners will have to choose the best offers.

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