Lawrence Association of Neighborhoods (LAN) Meeting Minutes – April 6, 2017
LAN met at 7:00 p.m., April 6, 2017, at Peoples Bank, 745 New Hampshire Street, with Co-Chair Courtney Shipley presiding.
The following attendees were present: Becky Pepper, City of Lawrence Planning and Development Services; Charlie Bryan, Lawrence-Douglas County Health Department / Monterey Neighborhood; Courtney Shipley, Dad Perry Park/Kasold; David Longhurst, Downtown Lawrence Inc.; David Mosher, Schwegler Neighborhood Association; Emily Hensley, Pinckney Neighborhood Association; Jane Gibson, Barker Neighborhood Association; Jim Carpenter, Planning Commission Member; Kathy Richardson, City of Lawrence Solid Waste Division; Kirk McClure, Old West Lawrence Association; Kyle Thompson, Oread Neighborhood Association; Lisa Larsen, Lawrence City Commission; Robert Lewis, West Hills Homes Association; Shannon Kimball, USD 497 Board of Education; Steve Braswell, Pinckney Neighborhood Association.
January and February minutes. It was moved by Kirk McClure, seconded by David Longhurst, to approve the March 2017 minutes. Motion approved by unanimous consent.
Treasurer’s report. Cindy Suenram was not present but sent the following treasurer’s report via email: $2,305.11 is in the LAN bank account. Membership dues were received from Barker Neighborhood Association and Sunset Hills Neighborhood Association.
Update from City Planning and Development Services. The April 6, 2017 Neighborhood Update for LAN, available at https://lawrenceks.org/pds/neighborhood_information/, was reviewed by Becky Pepper. The update was also sent out via the LAN listserv. The Planning Commission will meet on both April 24 (Monday) and April 26 (Wednesday) this month. Becky to follow up about Airbnb.
Guest speaker. Kathy Richardson, Solid Waste Division Manager for the City of Lawrence, presented on upcoming changes to solid waste collections expected to begin on May 1. Starting Monday, May 1, residential collection services for trash, recycling, and yard waste will begin at 6:00 a.m. Residents should set out carts by 6:00 a.m. on their day of service or set out carts the night before, and remove empty carts from the curb within 24 hours after collection service. Weekly yard waste collection service will be provided on the same day as the customer’s trash day starting in May. In addition, yard waste will now be collected year-round (as winter weather permits). Approved set-out containers for yard waste collection are compostable paper yard waste bags and 95-gallon brown yard waste carts sold by the City. Additionally, residential collection routes will change for approximately 30 percent of residents. For additional information, including a detailed collection map, visit lawrenceks.org/swm, or call 832-3032. Kathy also shared information about the household hazardous waste program. The household hazardous waste facility is at 2201 Kresge Road near the K-Mart Distribution Center. To drop off household hazardous waste, call 832-3030 to make an appointment. Staff are available to assist with removing household hazardous waste in special cases. Finally, Kathy addressed concerns about glass recycling. The Hamm Material Recovery Facility, where Lawrence’s recycling goes to be separated, was built after decision to include glass recycling in single-stream. Hamm recycles broken glass. Overall glass recycling has increased. Ripple glass recycling has decreased by about half, but glass recycling from single-stream has increased substantially.
Guest speaker. Shannon Kimball, Vice President for the USD 497 Board of Education, volunteering for the Vote Yes for Lawrence Schools Committee, presented about the proposed $87 million bond issue to be decided by a mail-in bond election. The Douglas County Clerk’s Office will mail ballots to USD 497 voters on April 12, and ballots must be received in the County Clerk’s Office by noon on May 2. The bond issue would address the needs of the middle and high schools, especially Lawrence High School ($50.8 million for LHS), with the goal of creating equity across all facilities. Overcrowding at LHS would be addressed; currently, only 29 percent of LHS classrooms meet minimum standards (about 24 square feet per student). The bond issue would also allow for accommodation of future growth, creating capacity for each high school to accommodate 2,000 students. The bond issue would also allow upgrades to HVAC, mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems that would lead to future savings in operating funds. The bond issue would address needs for improved safety and security as well as for creating more flexible spaces to enhance students’ educational experiences. The bond issue, if approved, would increase local property taxes by an estimated 2.4 mills, which is about $55 per year for the owner of a home with an assessed value of $200,000. Shannon will be participating at a school bond town hall event sponsored by the Voter Education Coalition on Sunday, April 9, at Lawrence City Hall. For more information about the mail-in bond election, visit usd497.org.
- Sidewalks. The City Commission deferred approval of the proposed sidewalk hazard repair program. The Commission will discuss the issue of sidewalk maintenance as part of the city’s upcoming budget process.
- LAN goals. In follow up to discussion during the February LAN meeting, the following LAN members met on March 20 to further discuss the LAN mission and goals: Courtney Shipley, Charlie Bryan, Jane Gibson, and Kirk McClure. Steve Evans was not able to attend the meeting but provided input via email prior to the meeting. The group identified the following three goals for further consideration by LAN: 1) conduct outreach to increase the number of neighborhoods represented in LAN, 2) develop and disseminate a survey to better understand the needs of neighborhoods, and 3) regularly meet with city commissioners to improve communications between LAN and the City Commission. These initial goals were presented and await further discussion at a future LAN meeting.
- Horizon 2020. Since the last Horizon 2020 Steering Committee meeting, City staff has been working to complete a full draft of the comprehensive plan update based on the Committee’s directions. The first draft is expected by the end of May, and the committee will likely meet in June.
The meeting adjourned at 9:25 p.m.