Commission Board Meeting on Mon, August 30, 2004 - 8:30 AM

Meeting Information


      -Pledge of Allegiance



      -Proclaim the week of <1/2xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />September 5-11, 2004 to be "Lawrence Literacy Week" (Christine Kenney)



      (1) (a)   Consider approval of Commission Orders

            (b)   Consider approval of Agreement with the Kansas Department of Transportation for

                    inspection of bridge hinge pins on Kansas River Bridge at Lecompton DGCO

                    Bridge No. 21.30-06.15; NBI Bridge No. 000000000230240 (Keith Browning)

(c)      Authorize execution of consent on waiver of potential conflict of interest for legal

        work on Interlocal Agreement with City of Baldwin for business park (Craig


(d)      Consider authorization to execute Drainage Easement at East Hills Jones called the meeting to order at 8:34 A.M. on Monday, August 30, 2004 with all members present. The Pledge of Allegiance was recited.

McElhaney moved approval of the following Consent Agenda:

  • Approve Commissioners Order No. 5260. Order is on file in the office of the County Clerk;
  • Approve Agreement with the Kansas Department of Transportation for inspection of the pin and hanger assemblies on the Kansas River Bridge at Lecompton Douglas County Bridge No. 21.30-06.15; NBI Bridge No. 000000000230240 for an estimated cost to Douglas County of $1,200;
  • Authorize execution of Consent on Waiver of Potential Conflict of Interest for legal work on Interlocal Agreement with the City of Baldwin for Business Industrial Park; and
  • Authorize the Chair to execute Drainage and Utility Easements at East Hills Business Park.

Motion was seconded by Johnson and carried unanimously.

The Board considered approval of a letter to the Kansas Department of Transportation regarding local road issues in conjunction with the US 59 Freeway Construction Project. The Board made various revisions to the draft which to be finalized and executed on Wednesday, September 1, 2004. No action was taken.

Christine Kenney, District Attorney, read a Proclamation proclaiming the week of September 5-11, 2004 to be "Lawrence Literacy Week" in Douglas County. Jones moved approval of the Proclamation as read; Johnson seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

PLANNING 08-30-04
The Board considered Item No. 10A of the minutes of the Lawrence-Douglas County Metropolitan Planning Commission dated June, 23, 2004. This item is Z-05-18-04: A request to rezone a tract of land approximately 159.32 acres from A (Agricultural) District to A-1 (Suburban Home) District. The property is generally descried as being located at the northeast corner of E 50 Road and N 1600 Road along County Road 442 (1636 E 50 Road). Submitted by Bartlett and West Engineers, Inc., for Core Investments, LLC, and Martin B. and Doris J. Caldwell, property owners of record. Sandra Day, staff member of the Lawrence-Douglas County Metropolitan Planning Department, was present for the discussion. This item comes to the Board with a unanimous recommendation for denial from the Planning Commission based upon the following Findings of Fact:


Zoning and uses of property nearby. All of the property surrounding the subject tract is zoned A (Agricultural) District with a number of single-family homes developed on large tracts of land that include agricultural activities. Martin Marietta Quarry is located northwest of the subject property.

Character of the area. Land uses surrounding the subject property consist of agricultural uses combined with rural single-family residences. No residential subdivision is contiguous to the subject property.

Suitability of subject property for the uses to which it has been restricted. The subject property is located outside of any identified Urban Growth Area. The subject property is immediately contiguous to A (Agricultural) District zoned property in all directions. The subject property is not contiguous to any platted subdivision. Based on the site location, surrounding uses and the comprehensive plan Horizon 20200 (specifically the Growth Management Policy), the subject property is currently suited for the uses to which it has been restricted.

Length of time subject property has remained vacant as zoned. The subject property is currently developed with a rural single-family residence and outbuild ing. The property has been zoned A (Agricultural) District since the adoption of county zoning.

Extent to which removal of restrictions will detrimentally affect nearby property. Approval of a rezoning from A (Agricultural) District to A-1 (Suburban Home Residential) District may impact the surrounding agricultural and low-density residential character of the area by introducing a higher density use outside of the Urban Growth Area and non-contiguous to another platted subdivision. It is recognized that there is a need to address direct access to county roads in a manner that achieves safety to the greatest extent possible. This is representative of a type of "leapfrog" development as the area is beyond the planning horizon of either Lecompton or Lawrence to serve in the next 20+ years. Once zoned and platted, this development would provide the platted subdivision criteria for additional suburban development.

Relative gain to the public health, safety and welfare by the destruction of the value of the petitioner's property as compared to the hardship imposed upon the individual landowners. There is a potential for this rezoning and subsequent plat to have a negative impact on surrounding A (Agricultural) District land because of an increase in residential density and future impact of converting other A District land for higher density residential uses. Denial of the request will not destroy the value of the petitioner's property since it may be subdivided through an alternative means. The identified community benefit is the improved vehicular access and safety to the County Road network provided through platting of internal streets rather than direct access to a County Arterial Road.

Conformance with The Comprehensive Plan. The rezoning application is located in the area defined as the rural area and beyond the designated UGA for "which city services cannot easily be extended over a given period of time and are unrelated to any capital improvement project or service delivery plans of nearby incorporated cities or designated urban growth areas." The property is not adjacent to another platted subdivision The only ability to assure cluster development and retain agricultural continuity is through the subdivision process. The proposed request is not consistent with the land use recommendations related to the proximity of the Urban Growth Area and therefore is not consistent with Horizon 2020.

Jones noted the 250' access problem. Jones also noted open space issues.

Johnson stated that this proposal has fewer access points that could occur through the 5-acre exemption if the rezoning is not approved.

Charlie Dominguez, member of the small corporation owning the property, stated there would always be open space and he would be willing to put that in writing.

McElhaney stated that the Public Works Director noted that one access point is a major consideration for safety on the well-traveled road. McElhaney also stated he had conversations with Kanwaka Township officials, the fire department and various neighbors who are all supportive of this proposal. The ground is not suitable for crops and is only good for grazing activities. Potential buyers will know that they will be next to a quarry and will never get city services such as trash, sewage, etc. McElhaney indicated he would vote for the proposal.

Jones stated that he believed the contiguity requirement is a good requirement. It is sound, reasonable planning and the Board would be making a serious mistake by weakening a good policy. He noted that the 5-acre exemption is bad policy which has been discussed over and over but nothing seems to happen. The Board needs to push aggressively to get something together to avoid this type of situation. Although he appreciated the applicant's plans and efforts, he was not supportive.

Johnson stated he prefers to vote in support of the Planning Commission's recommendations, however this is a difficult decision. He d s not believe this would be weakening good policy, but it is exposing a flaw in current policy. The Board needs to rethink the current policy and put themselves in a position where these issues won't need to be dealt with. Johnson further stated he would vote for the request because the safety aspect overrides the contiguous issue. In the long term, it is better to have platted than to have a series of 5-acre plots. Johnson then moved approval of Z-05-18-04; McElhaney seconded and the motion carried with Jones opposed.

Jones directed Keith Browning, Director of Public Works to work with Linda Finger, Director of the Lawrence-Douglas County Metropolitan Planning Department, and Craig Weinaug, County Administrator, to develop a hard schedule to review access policies.

PLANNING 08-30-04
The Board considered SP-07-44-04: A site plan for River of Fire Church and Daycare, to be located at the former Bishop Seabury Academy site at 1411 E 1850 Road. Submitted by Tom Wilson with the River of Fire Church for Victor Shenouda, property owner of record. Paul Patterson, staff member of the Lawrence-Douglas County Metropolitan Planning Department, was present for the discussion. Patterson explained that this request is a revised site plan to include a church in conjunction with a previously approved Child Care Center. The facility is located in the unincorporated portion of Douglas County between Lawrence and Eudora, on 5 acres on the west side of E 1850 Road, approximately 300' north of N 1400 Road.

River of Fire is proposing to oversee the management of the Child Care Center. The River of Fire will also have their church office in the building, with 1 to 2 employees of the church. Church services would be held in the gymnasium. The River of Fire Church services are currently held on Sunday mornings, however, they will, at times, also have some meetings in the evenings. The Sunday morning services currently begin at 9:30 A.M. When they do have evening or special meetings they usually begin at 7:00 P.M. and end at approximately 10:00 P.M.

A Conditional Use Permit for the Child Care Center was approved by the County Commission on November 17, 2003.

Jones questioned the notification process for the neighbors. Patterson was unclear as to whether proper notification had been sent. It was the consensus of the Board to table consideration until staff had an opportunity to make sure the proper procedures had been followed. No action was taken.

Lavern Squier, President and CEO of the Lawrence Chamber of Commerce, presented a proposal for the purchase of an incubator building for the Lawrence Regional Technology Center (LRTC). The City of Lawrence and Douglas County originally appropriated $250,000 and $200,000, respectively, for the acquisition of a facility for a business incubator operated by LRTC. Squire requested action to acknowledge the transaction in order to move forward with the intended purpose. Ted Haggart, Douglas County Bank, Matthew McClorey, President of LRTC, and Gene Meyer, conducted brief presentations regarding the status of funding and oversight arrangements involving real estate acquisition.

Jones indicated he was supportive of the concept and asked if there was a certain clause in place if LRTC were to disband. McClorey stated there was. Jones then noted various discrepancies in the document and suggested clarification.

Johnson stated for the record that he was a member of the Board of Trustees of the Rice Foundation, a tenant in the building. He did not believe this was a conflict of interest.

Jones and McElhaney agreed they did not believe this was a conflict. Jones then indicated he was supportive and requested the document be returned with a few minor revisions for approval. No action was taken.

The Board discussed a proposal to for conversion of AS400 data for the District Attorney and District Court. Pam Madl, Assistant County Administrator, stated that the AS400 computer that is being used by the District Court and District Attorney's offices needs to be moved since the machine is nearing the end of its "supported" life and would be very costly to the County to continue using this type of computer. Additionally, both the Court and District Attorney's offices will be implementing software developed by the State of Kansas, mostly at the State's expense, wich requires a server rather than an AS400 for operation. Madl presented a proposal from Jerry Manweiler for conversion of the data currently on the AS400. The data will have to be reconfigured so that the server can read it which is a highly technical and difficult process. Mr. Manweiler has proposed to accept this task for a fee of $88,680 which will take at least seven (7) months to complete. After discussion, Jones made a motion to waive the Purchasing Policy and authorize Pam Madl to negotiate a final contract with Mr. Manweiler for the conversion of the District Court and District Attorney data in the amount of $88,680. Johnson seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

The Board discussed an enhanced 911 system. Jim Denney, Director of Douglas County Emergency Communications, was present for the discussion. Denney requested direction/authorization to either make independent formal requests of the cellular companies in Douglas County to provide enhanced 911 data or to make formal application to Mid-America Regional Council (MARC) to join their regional 911 system.

Jones stated he was not inclined to get involved with MARC. Jones then made a motion to authorize Denney to contact relative companies and negotiate a contract for action by the Commission. Johnson seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

The Board discussed a proposed letter to the Kansas Department of Transportation with regard to the Highway 59 project design. Jones moved approval of the letter, seconded by McElhaney and carried unanimously.

Johnson moved approval of accounts payable in the amount of $427,661.42 to be paid 08/30/04. Motion was seconded by Jones and carried unanimously.

The Board directed staff to earmark the $500 scholarship earned from the purchase of office supplies to Cassandra Woosley, Eudora Student Representative. The Board also indicated that future scholarship earnings would be earmarked for other Commission student representatives.

Jones moved approval to expend an amount up to $10,000 to match the City of Lawrence's investment engaging the firm of Lathrop & Gage to serve as counsel for the possible acquisition and redevelopment of Farmland property. Motion was seconded by Johnson and carried unanimously.

Jones made a motion to adjourn; Johnson seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

______________________________ ________________________________
Charles Jones, Chairman                       Bob Johnson, Member


______________________________ ________________________________
Patty Jaimes, County Clerk                   Jere McElhaney, Member


County Courthouse
1100 Massachusetts St, Lawrence, KS 66044, USA