Archive for Wednesday, June 6, 2001

City Commission Briefs

June 6, 2001

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Residents oppose Burress rejection

Controversy over appointments to the Lawrence-Douglas County Planning Commission appears to be abating, but it stayed alive Tuesday at the Lawrence City Commission.

Two Lawrence residents, Marie Stockett and Robert Casad, expressed their disappointment that city commissioners in May rejected Mayor Mike Rundle's appointment of "smart growth" proponent David Burress to replace architect Paul Werner on the planning board.

And Casad suggested a city ordinance banning developers from the planning commission. "I believe I'm expressing the outrage that's present in the community," he said.

Commissioner Jim Henry said his vote wasn't against Burress or smart growth, but against a process he said treated Werner badly.

"The vast majority of this community doesn't understand this commission's reason for rejecting the appointment," he said.

Higher ruling sought on plumbing codes

Lawrence city commissioners agreed Tuesday to ask a higher authority rule on the meaning of several plumbing codes.

The city's Plumbing Board asked for the clarification, saying city inspectors were incorrectly approving plumbing work at the Marriott Hotel being built at Riverfront Plaza.

Commissioners said they hoped a ruling by the International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials would solve ongoing conflicts between plumbers and city inspectors.

"I think we need to move forward, and we need to move forward so that there's a level playing field," Commissioner David Dunfield said.

The city expects a ruling in about a month from the organization, which helps write the Uniform Plumbing Code, used nationwide.

Payment approved to complete house move

The Lawrence City Commission approved payment Tuesday of $32,000 to complete the work of moving a Civil War-era house from 909 Pa. to the southeast corner of 10th and Delaware streets in Hobbs Park.

In May 2000, commissioners gave $30,000 to help the project. The money was set aside for excavation, site preparation, utility expenses and other improvements at Hobbs. Mark Kaplan, area historian and administrator of the Hobbs Park Memorial Fund, said $13,000 still remains in the fund, but he requested $32,000 to help cover the unanticipated overruns associated with the move.

Commissioners also agreed to ask Congressman Dennis Moore, D-Kan., to seek federal money for the project.

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