Thursday, July 6, 2017

Council Fills Vacant Council Seat

Kevin Surbaugh

At the beginning of the July 5, 2017 Baldwin City council meeting, the council held a public hearing regarding the First Street improvements.  One of the several First Street residents to air  their concerns was Bill Braun, who had concerns about the numbers and percentages having changed from the initial proposals.
He was referencing that the County was agreeing to pay ten percent more then their original proposal. Braun asked, if the city had done a benefit district before?  In response Glenn Rodden, City Administrator, said that typically the city does a benefit district when a new subdivision is built. This particular district is unique, because the subdivision was put in twenty-two years ago, so First Street is being done retroactively.
Currently the half of the gravel road is considered in the city limits. The road is currently maintained by the Palmyra Township, after it is paved by the county, it will be maintained by the city, even though one side of the road is in the county rather then the city limits.

During the regular portion of the meeting, the council heard a presentation of the First Impressions program.  A program provides an assessment and improvement of the community. Marlan Bates, K-State Research and Extension, said that representatives of Baldwin City will go to another city to assess that city. Likewise representatives from another city will come to Baldwin City to asses the community.  He likened it to the secret shopper program utilized by many retail establishments and restaurants.  The assessment will probably occur in October, Bates said.

A. J. Stephens
photographer Kevin Surbaugh
Under old business, Mayor Marilyn Pearse announced that city council candidate Shane Starkey, had decided not to be considered to fill the unexpired term of Steve Bauer. Starkey, who is a candidate for city council, wanted to continue running for a four year term, rather then being appointed to serve two years.

With that Pearse announced that she was appointing A.J. Stevens. Stevens, who was another of the six candidates that had filled to run for the council, agreed to accept the appointment.  Tony Brown made a motion to approve and Kathy Gerstner seconded. The council unanimously approved the appointment.

In other business:
  • The council unanimously approved the consent agenda, which included special event permits for the Baldwin City Recreation Commission's Sprint Triathlon and the annual Baker Wildcat Welcome. 
  • Tabled draft resolution 2017-12 creating an Improvement District.
  • Unanimously agreed to purchase, through a lease/purchase agreement a crack sealer to fill the cracks in the cities streets, prolonging their life and saving the city money on road maintenance. Total cost will be $39,000-$42,000.
  • Unanimously approved the purchase of a street sweeper through a lease/purchase agreement at a total cost of $65,000. 
  • Unanimously approved the final plat plan of 1.7 acres on High Street .
  • Heard Ordinance 1374 rezoning a property owned by Casey Simoneau  from R1 to R2.  Because, it is an ordinance, there was no action taken unitl the next council meeting on July 17.

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