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Archive for Monday, February 8, 2010

City releases list of priorities for federal earmarks

February 8, 2010

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A flood of federal money would be helpful in dealing with North Lawrence flooding.

City commissioners at their Tuesday meeting will be asked to designate a proposed North Lawrence stormwater pumping station as the top project in the city worthy of federal funds. Commissioners will consider submitting four projects to the city’s Congressional delegation in hopes of receiving “earmark” funds as part of the 2011 federal budget.

“I’m certain these types of requests will have a lot scrutiny attached to them, so we’re trying to be careful about which ones we’re suggesting,” said Diane Stoddard, an assistant city manager. “We want to really be able to justify that they will have significant impact on the community.”

The North Lawrence pump station — slated for Fifth and Maple streets — rose to the top of the city’s list, Stoddard said. The project is designed to alleviate flooding by increasing the amount of stormwater the city can pump from North Lawrence into the Kansas River.

The city has included the project as one that it plans to fund in the future with the new 0.3 percent infrastructure sales tax approved by voters in 2008. But Stoddard said if sales tax money is the only funding source for the project, construction likely won’t begin until 2013 or 2014.

“We’re looking for any help we can get,” Stoddard said.

The project is expected to cost about $5.5 million. The city is seeking $2 million in federal funding.

The other three projects, in priority order, are:

• An extension of 31st Street from Haskell to O’Connell: Seeking $2 million of the estimated $7.5 million project.

• Stormwater improvements to the intersection of 23rd and Ousdahl: Seeking $1 million of the estimated $2 million project.

• Intelligent transportation systems for the city and university’s public transit buses. The equipment would allow people to track the movements of buses via wireless phones and other devices, giving people the ability to see more precisely when a bus will arrive at a destination. Seeking $1.8 million of the $2.16 million project.

Commissioners meet at 6:35 p.m. Tuesday at City Hall, Sixth and Massachusetts.

Comments

d_prowess 4 years, 10 months ago

Yeah, I was and still am a supporter of the T (as long as it improved, which seems VERY slow going...), but this seems a bit much.
How about we just keep working on a schedule that allows the buses to run on time? Then people won't need to "track" them!

kansasredlegs 4 years, 10 months ago

"Earmark funds" - Just another word for "Pork Barrel" "Federal Money" = OUR TAX DOLLARS

"Stormwater Improvements at the Intersection of 23rd & Ousdahl" - Are you kidding me? That intersection used to be a creek bed back in the day. Does this mean that the City has done nothing to improve this intersection since it's original installation? Will this "flood of federal money" alleviate the problem once and for all? Why does the movie 'Falling Down' come to mind?

So, the City couldn't have put away, say, $5,000 per year over the last 50 years and built the darn thing itself. What a joke. Also, why am I visualizing our City "pigs", er, commissioners, running to the 'federal feeding trough" to get some of that tax payer Obama shovel-ready federal slop... Suueee!!! Come and get it lil' piggies!!!!!

Sunny Parker 4 years, 10 months ago

Unbelievable. Do people believe that there is a federal money tree someplace?

Federal money = MY TAX DOLLARS!

Sinking one more dime into that bus system is a mistake! Get rid of that money pit system!

Richard Heckler 4 years, 10 months ago

An extension of 31st Street from Haskell to O’Connell: Seeking $2 million of the estimated $7.5 million project = tax increase. How you ask?

traffic control plus maintenace elementary school plus staffing fire department/ambulance plus land cost plus staffing law enforcement water line,sewer and street maintenance/snow removal trash service

Developers are expensive budget items. Now we have tons of new development aka expanding the tax base which is not paying back the community aka no economic growth. Something went wrong.

if residential growth paid for itself and was financially positive, we would not be in a budget crunch. But with increased numbers of houses you have increased demand on services, and historically the funding of revenues generated by residential does not pay for the services, they require from a municipality.

Higher taxes and user fees are financing what the expanded tax base is failing to do. This is not economic growth. This is you and me paying for what should be paying for itself

What do new roads bring with them? Development…..seldom long time relief from traffic congestion. New development brings new and more traffic congestion.

Consider if residential growth paid for itself and was financially positive, we would not be in a budget crunch. But with increased numbers of houses you have increased demand on services, and historically the funding of revenues generated by residential does not pay for the services, they require from a municipality.

More streets = more cars = more people = more tax increases.

Developers consistently increase our tax liabilities: How you ask?

*Over built retail

*Over built residential

cowboy 4 years, 10 months ago

congressional staffer receives the lawrence list....

  1. uh hmm
  2. uh huh
  3. oh , uh huh
  4. pppffffffftttttt......spits coffee all over computer and begins laughing hysterically

been_there 4 years, 10 months ago

Will the pumping station improve our CRS rating with the NFIP and lower flood insurance rates?

overthemoon 4 years, 10 months ago

I would sure like to see the city and the school district collaborate on reinvesting in our neighborhoods and schools. They are not separate issues when it comes to the vitality of our town. Use Federal money to create a public/private partnership to improve the core of the city. This would be a huge step toward recognizing that the day of 'beigeland' over-development is over and infill development is the sustainable model for the future. Public transportation would be a part of the overall plan, but fixing roads and sidewalks, providing grants/low interest loans for property improvement and truly collaborating to make existing schools viable as community centers would make Lawrence a better place to live for many years.

The number and variety of professions and trades that would be involved would provide a lot more jobs than a few overpriced street projects.

Kontum1972 4 years, 10 months ago

i love pork-rinds...mmmmmm..pass the salsa

ralphralph 4 years, 10 months ago

pork rinds ... and Salsa?!?!?!

Low carb madness!

Richard Payton 4 years, 10 months ago

Pork barrel dollars wasted again in Larryville and everywhere else! Stop the madness tell the Obama insane crowd that giving fairytail pretend money isn't worth it.

paisley 4 years, 10 months ago

More waste. The first project is valid. The rest are not. The interior of the city falls apart while it grows beyond it's capabilities. Improvements to a road going where? Quicker route to the jail! 23rd and Ousdahl has been worked over and over. Why does it remain prone to floods? Intelligent transportation for the city would be to get rid of the T. It is a waste. And just how many jobs will these ideas create?

ralphralph 4 years, 10 months ago

Jobs? Don't be silly. It's not about creating jobs, but about creating the impression of jobs and raising esteem all around.

3 issues in the way of jobs = 1. China. 2. China. 3. China.

Anybody in DC have the guts to deal with currency manipulation, market manipulation, lack of environmental and safety standards, and funding the Communist Behemoth? Doubt it.

Robert Rauktis 4 years, 10 months ago

Anyone who can afford an intelligent phone, isn't riding the bus.

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