Council addresses creek erosion issue
The city got one step closer Monday night to solving the erosion on the bank of Springs Creek in Lion’s Park.
During a work session prior to the meeting, a consensus was made to grant a preliminary assurance to Watershed Institute that if the company helps fund the streambank stabilization project, the city will issue a permanent conservation easement along the area.
“I don’t know why we wouldn’t want a perpetual conservation easement,” said City Manager John Helin. “I don’t see us ever getting rid of Lion’s Park.”
No financial obligations have been made, but now that the city has agreed to the conservation easement stipulation, Watershed Institute will begin to put together a study and plan, which will result in a final cost value.
The city has already obtained $6,665 in funding for the project from the Lower Kansas Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy, but that will not cover the entire cost. Instead, through the partnership with Watershed Institute, the city can apply for funding assistance with the company to get additional help for the remaining costs, which Helin said was unknown until Watershed Institute finishes its plan.
“We don’t know all the answers yet other then we know we have a problem, and we need to fix it,” Helin said.
The streambank restoration will not only fix the creek’s erosion problem, but will also restore the stream’s natural habitat and increase recreation opportunities such as fishing.
As far as the conservation easement goes, which would just cover the part of Springs Creek that is on city property, council member Jeff Harrington asked whether possible future walking trails along the bank would be excluded.
Helin said that the city would be able to build a walking trail along the bank, despite the conservation easement. He said that trails would add to the enhancement of the area, which was the main concern of Watershed Institute.
“It’s a good thing,” said council member Jerry Jarrett. “It’s about time. We need to do that.”
The council will take no further action on the issue until Watershed Institute returns with a full plan and cost estimates.
In other business Monday, the Council:
• Discussed a policy to establish a maximum number of grinder pumps that could be placed in the Grandview subdivision’s low-pressure sanitary sewer system.
Helin said, in the past, the residents of Grandview expressed concerns that a developer would come into the area, which has about 25 acres and 15 plated lots open, and overwhelm the sewer system. Helin said the city reviewed the capacity restrictions on that pumping station and found out that another 120 pumps could be added before reaching full capacity.
Helin said he recommended staff set the limit at 95 pumps, which would give the city a buffer space to negotiated with future developers. He added that the reason for this policy would not only give the developer a clear set of restrictions to follow but also put the Grandview homeowners at ease knowing that their sewer system would not be overwhelmed.
The issue will come before the Council for official action at a later meeting in January.
• Unanimously approved minutes from the Nov. 24 meeting.
• Unanimously approved claims for city operations for $505,182.97.
• Unanimously approved Public Housing Authority claims for $5,137.23.
• Unanimously approved the cereal malt beverage license renewals for Arwa Enterprises, Inc.; Bonner Springs Thriftway LLC; C.J. & R. Gas, Inc.; Papa Bob’s Bar-B-Que; Bonner Springs Price Chopper; Quick Trip Corporation; Sunflower Hills Golf Course; Wal-Mart; and Wood’s Oil.
• Unanimously approved the arcade license renewals for Wal-Mart Super Center; Side Pockets; Sisters Restaurant & Bar Inc.; and Speedway Bar & Grill.
• Unanimously approved the sale/ consumption/ possession permit fee and recreation fees.
• Unanimously approved the massage therapy business license renewal for Bodyworks Massage.
• Unanimously approved to schedule a public hearing for the Neighborhood Revitalization Plan No. 3 and Neighborhood Revitalization Plan No. 4 for Jan. 12, 2009.
• Unanimously approved a resolution to write off uncollected Public Housing Authority rents in the total amount of $4,151.
• Unanimously approved the 2009 Public Housing Authority operating budget.
• Unanimously approved to award the bid for the purchase of a public works 2009 dump truck to Diamond International of Kansas City in the amount of $74,310.
• Unanimously approved a resolution authorizing the beginning of condemnation proceedings to acquire permanent utility and temporary construction easements for the Front Street Improvement Project.
• Unanimously approved to close City Hall and to give city staff the day off on Dec. 25 and Jan. 2.