LAN met at 7:00 p.m., January 3, 2018, in Meeting Room C of the Lawrence Public Library, 707 Vermont Street with Co-Chair Courtney Shipley presiding.
The following attendees were present: Becky Pepper, City of Lawrence Planning and Development Services; Bill Winkler, Barker Neighborhood Association; Charlie Bryan, Monterey; Cindy Suenram, East Lawrence Neighborhood Association representative; Courtney Shipley, Dad Perry Park/Kasold; Gary Webber, Sunset Hill Neighborhood Association co-representative; Jane Gibson, Barker Neighborhood Association representative; Jim Carpenter, Planning Commission Member; Lisa Larsen, Lawrence City Commission / West Hills neighborhood resident; Melinda Henderson, Brook Creek Neighborhood Association representative; Pam Burkhead, University Place Neighborhood Association co-representative; Rachel Lietz, Represent Lawrence resident; Suzanne Mills, Hills West Homes Neighborhood Association representative; Travis Harrod, Springwood Heights representative.
Nomination of Secretary: Jane nominated Gary Webber for LAN Secretary, Cindy seconded. Motion passed unanimously.
October, November, and December minutes: tabled until February meeting
Treasurer’s Report: Cindy reported that current balance is $2505.11, including four paid memberships (North Lawrence Improvement Association, Downtown Lawrence Inc., East Lawrence Neighborhood Association, Hills West Homes Neighborhood Association) and one individual membership. Courtney will send out a dues reminder. Member organizations not renewed by Jan. 31 will be unable to vote until dues for 2018 are paid.
Discussion of change of meeting date: The meeting evening was changed from Thurs. to Wed. during the December 2017 meeting to accommodate Courtney’s schedule. However, Brook Creek Neighborhood Assn. meets on first Wednesdays. Jane moved to meet on third Wednesday in February, February 21. Pam seconded. Motion passed unanimously. If the third Wednesday is workable, this day will be adopted for meetings in 2018.
Speaker: Rachel Lietz with Represent Lawrence. Rachel stated that she and most people do not feel they are well represented in state and federal governments. This is supported by research. However, the top ten percent, those who spend money and lobby, have much more influence. Represent supports the American Anti-corruption Act. The three main components of this act are:
- Stop political bribery, stop revolving door with 5 year ban
- End secret money
- Fix our broken elections
Represent submitted a non-binding resolution to City Commissioners in early September, stating that the city supports the act, and calls on the city and state to support the act. She has not had any significant response. Rachel would like LAN support, and would like to visit all neighborhood associations. Melinda encouraged her to contact her state representatives. Charlie asked if there was such a thing as a binding resolution. Jane suggested Rachel supply LAN with a copy of the resolution, and that LAN representatives consult their neighborhoods. Rachel will send the resolution to Courtney. Neighborhoods can contact Rachel at firstname.lastname@example.org. Travis stated that we also need to elect better quality representatives, and improve the primary election system. Jane commended Rachel for taking on this fight, and asked if she was also working on the Citizens United decision. Rachel replied that corporate donations are not Represent’s primary focus. Melinda suggested Rachel submit the resolution to the city manager.
Update from City Planning and Development Services: Becky Pepper, city planner – Becky presented the January Neighborhood Update from Planning & Development Services. These reports can be viewed at: https://lawrenceks.org/pds/lan17/.
East Lawrence: Martin Luther King Chili feed, Tuesday Jan. 16, New York School.
Sunset Hill: Sunset Hill will hold their first Neighborhood Cleanup and Potluck in spring of 2018.
University Place: Association leadership are compiling information to see if the neighborhood is interested in an historic designation.
Barker: Lots of building in the last few months, well placed duplexes, new home on Delaware, new home and garage on small lot on Mass. Sunrise opening a coffee shop.
Springwood Heights: Travis addressed the student housing development proposed at Crestline and Clinton Parkway. Neighborhood representatives will attend the Planning Commission meeting on January 24 to make it clear that they are strongly opposed to this large student housing complex surrounding a preschool. The child care center on Crestline and the Presbyterian Church across Crestline would be impacted. The neighborhood believes that the traffic increase will have a significant impact on the neighborhood and the intersection of Crestline and Clinton Parkway. Springwood Heights would appreciate LAN support of their position on this development. Jim suggested the neighborhood submit their materials to the Planning Commission for inclusion in the packet. Jane asked when this would go before the commission. Melinda estimated Feb. 20 at earliest, no sooner than 14 days after the planning commission. Deadline for submitting to Planning is 10 am on Monday prior to the meeting. Deadline for submitting to City Commission is noon on day of the meeting. The representatives discussed whether they believed they had the authority to vote on this motion without consulting their membership. Charlie suggested that to avoid this discussion at future meetings, the representatives clarify their voting authority with their various organizations. Melinda quoted the LAN bylaws with give representatives authority to vote for their organizations. Travis moved to have LAN send a letter to the Planning Commission in opposition to: amending the comprehensive plan, rezoning from RSO to RM15, and creating preliminary development plan. Melinda seconded. Five voted in favor, none opposed, 3 abstained. Motion passed. Travis will draft a letter and send to Courtney for editing and submission.
- Equitable funding of sidewalk repair: Gary reported that PedCo and Sustainability Action Network have hired Boog Highberger to investigate the feasibility and legality of a Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety Fund paid by all property owners in the city. This fund would be based on a similar fund implemented in 2014 in Edina, Minnesota.
- Sidewalk poll: Poll will wait until PedCo lawyer has reported on feasibility of fund.
Cindy moved adjourn, Melinda seconded. Motion passed unanimously. Meeting adjourned at 8:50 PM.