Archive for Saturday, January 22, 2011

City Commission agenda for Jan. 25

January 22, 2011


Bottom line

City commissioners will consider rezoning 51 acres of property at the southwest corner of North 1800 Road and East 1000 Road from suburban home residential to general industrial. Commissioners were scheduled to consider the rezoning at last week’s meeting but deferred it.


The property is adjacent to the Kansas Turnpike and is just east of the Lecompton interchange on the turnpike. A development group led by Steve and Duane Schwada have requested the rezoning to begin marketing the property to potential industrial users. Several neighbors have opposed the rezoning, saying that the rural nature of the site makes it inappropriate for industrial development currently. Some city commissioners also have questioned whether the site is suitable for general industrial development, or whether it should be limited to lighter industrial development.

Other business

Consent agenda:

• Approve minutes from the Dec. 7 and Dec. 28 meetings.

• Receive minutes from boards and commissions.

• Approve claims.

• Approve licenses as recommended by the city clerk’s office.

• Bid and purchase items:

a. Authorize the city manager to execute an engineering services agreement for $110,601 with Professional Engineering Consultants for design phase engineering services and property acquisition for relocating utilities for the 23rd Street bridge replacement project on East 23rd Street west of Haskell Avenue.

b. Approve extension of the ESRI Enterprise License Agreement (GIS software and maintenance), for Jan. 22, 2011, through January 21, 2012, for $50,000.

• Approve a substantial amendment to the 2010 CDBG Annual Action Plan of the 2008-2012 Consolidated Plan for Tenants to Homeowners Inc. reallocating $100,000 from the First Time Homebuyer Land Trust Rehabilitation Program to the Accessible Rental Options Rental Rehabilitation Project.

• Authorize the mayor to sign a release of mortgage for Pelathe Community Resource Center, 1409 and 1411 Haskell Avenue.

• Receive 2010 Lawrence Police Department Racial Profiling Report.

• Receive city manager’s report

Regular agenda items:

• Consider rezoning about 51 acres from County A-1 (Suburban Home Residential) to City IG (General Industrial), on the southwest corner of North 1800 Road (Farmer’s Turnpike) and East 1000 Road (Queens Road Extended). Submitted by Venture Properties Inc., property owner of record.

• Consider text amendments to the city’s land development code related to the density and development standards in the RM32 (Multi-Dwelling Residential) District including potentially increasing the maximum dwelling units per acre limit in that district.

• Reconsider text amendments to the land development code to review standards related to “boarding house” and expanded to consider parking standards for multi-dwelling structures and nonconforming standards for boarding houses.


thefisherman 7 years, 4 months ago

"City Commissino Agenda for Jan. 25"

Great typo. So great, in fact, that it was too good to use in just the headline. No, you had to put that baby in the URL too.

Stay classy, LJWorld.

Richard Heckler 7 years, 3 months ago

Is annexation expanding our tax base or our tax bills?

There is one consequence that usually goes unmentioned - annexation is draining our pocketbooks and raising our taxes.

Annexation is the result of over five decades of subsidies paid for by the American taxpayer. These range from the obvious to the obscure and include big projects-like the billions we spend on new roads as well as smaller ones-like the tax-breaks that encourage businesses to move to the edge of town. We've subsidized annexation at such a basic level for so long, that many people believe the status quo is actually fair and neutral. This is false-what we think of as a level playing field is tilted steeply in favor of developers and the local real estate industry.

How we subsidize annexation:

  • building new and wider roads
  • building schools on the fringe
  • extending sewer and water lines to new developments
  • extending emergency services to the fringe
  • direct pay-outs to developers

Is annexation expanding our tax base or our tax biils?

Richard Heckler 7 years, 3 months ago

Is Annexation Expanding Our tax base or our tax bills?

How do we subsidize annexation? Through an array of state, local and federal programs-and through incentives built into the develop-ment process itself. The biggest federal contribution to annexation is the billions of dollars spent on building new roads. This massive network of roads has done more than speed us from point A to point B - it has reshaped the landscape by opening up rural areas to suburban development and it has reshaped our society by making the car king. Travel by car has become not just another option-in too many places, it has become the only option.

Other programs are also encouraging annexation. For years we have subsidized construction in flood plains while making it far too easy to destroy critical wetlands. This encourages the destruction of open spaces.

The growth of suburban annexation is also the product of decisions at the state and local levels. The corporate enticement game-played by everyone from governor to county supervisor-encourages commercial development all over the outskirts. Over the past few decades, corporations have become increasingly skilled at playing one community against another in an effort to wrest greater perks from state and local governments.

Big-box retailers and isolated business parks are unwittingly subsidized by our own tax dollars which brings on over built communities and economic displacement instead of economic growth.

Subsidies are also built into the development/annexation process itself. Most new development costs more to build and service than the taxes or fees it generates.

When a new residential or commercial development is built outside of an existing community, roads, sewer systems and water lines have to be built. As the development expands, it requires schools and emergency services. Where does the money for all this come from? In most cases, neither the developers nor the new residents pay their full, fair share - it is the rest of us who make up the difference.

The bottom line is that new development is costing us money.

Instead of expanding our tax base we are expanding our tax bills!

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