City Services, Informational, Infrastructure

Council Meeting Recap

Posted by Bonnie Limbird

These meeting recaps are indicative of how I will update residents twice monthly in my efforts to increase transparency and communication as your Ward 3 Councilwoman so you always know what’s happening at City Hall. I make an effort to pull together references from previous meetings, topics, and issues that are relevant in hopes of making some of the ongoing issues more clear.

This is the Prairie Village City Council recap for Monday, July 1st, 2019. You can see the full agenda and board packet HERE.

Council members present at roll call: Herring, J. Nelson, Schermoly, R. Nelson, Poling, Myers, Morehead, McFadden, Odell, and Gallagher (via phone).

If you wondered why I didn’t do a Council Meeting Recap for the 17th, it was because that meeting was cancelled. Due to summer vacations and a visitation for the family member of a fellow council member, most of the councilors could not make the meeting. All of the items from that week were moved to July 1st, so this is a long recap.

Here are some highlights from this meeting:

Consent Agenda

Well, the consent agenda was pretty long this meeting since it was essentially two meetings in one, but of all the items on there that I would have thought might come out for discussion, I didn’t think it would be my appointment to the Arts Council (see Your Newest ARTS Council Member).

Mayoral appointments are pretty rote business items because the recommendations come from the committees themselves after the application and interview processes. I’ve observed dozens of meetings now with multiple appointments, and only one was pulled off the agenda to my knowledge and that was in response to a resident question so that the process could be clarified.

I guess since that resident was me (LOL!), this was karma? Nah, it was actually couched as “inappropriate in an election cycle” since I’m running for Council. An illogical point since our Mayor was on a committee when he ran for Council back in the day, and another current candidate is also on a City committee right now. There were other, better arguments in support of the appointment, but I won’t waste any more of your time here on that. We already spent 17-1/2 minutes of Council and City staff time last night on it. (Feel free to watch from minute 6 on the July 1st STREAM if you have time to kill.)

The appointment passed 9-1 with a floppy 9th right before the nays were requested.

Committee Reports

The Environmental Committee is partnering with VillageFest for education and activities around composting, recycling etc. They also voted unanimously to recommend the following in regards to solar panels:

  1. Increased systems ability to go two feet from the roof to get optimal exposure
  2. Remove restrictions stating systems be parallel to roof pitch

These recommendations were shared with Council, but would need to ultimately be voted on by the whole Council to become part of the Ordinance. The process for how to do that is in question. Stay tuned.

VillageFest is only [two] days away. Look for your local elected officials to be in attendance, including House Representative Sharice Davids. It may rain, so look for Sister Act Face Painting and balloon artists to be moved inside City Hall if it does. See the Village Voice for the schedule of events.

Parks & Recreation will have a meeting Wednesday, July 10 at 5:30 p.m. – The topic of discussion is the pool and how to deal with complaints/the process.

The Tree Board has created a new Arboretum Tree Map of all the trees and species in our Prairie Village parks PLUS the seven Champion Trees of Kansas, three of which were just added this year!

Mayor’s Report

Mayor Mikkelson led the Council in observing a moment of silence in honor of Elizabeth Gallagher, daughter of Councilor Terrence Gallagher, who recently passed away.

The Johnson County Library, YMCA, and the City of Prairie Village are continuing the discussion about a partnership community center somewhere in the Harmon Park municipal area. Talks have been very positive and very cooperative so far. The parties are moving quickly toward a 3-party Memorandum of Understanding seeking to authorize up to $50,000 of shared cost for a very preliminary market study of residents that might use it, amenities that they’d be interested in, and what residents would be willing to pay. There is NO obligation for any of the parties to move forward beyond that. Note: this would be in place of the Paul Henson facility, not in addition to.

A few other updates:

  • Mayor Mikkelson and City Administrator Wes Jordan met with the local president of the NAACP, Fred Jones, Sr., and discussed ways to cooperate on local initiatives.
  • Electric Vehicle (EV) charging stations are now operational in Meadowbrook Park and will be operational soon in the PV shops.
  • The KS Supreme Court ruled Friday that cities can raise the age for buying tobacco products, known as the Tobacco 21 initiative, above the state minimum of age 18.
  • In an ongoing legal battle, the 3-person Kansas Board of Tax Appeals “ruled Friday that Johnson County had overvalued Walmart and Sam’s Club properties by $60 million, charging them millions too much in taxes“. This decision is based on “dark store theory“, but will be appealed, and the case could go on for years. Both the County and the City have been aware of this possible decision for the last few years, though, and are preparing for changes if the appeal isn’t successful.
  • If you’d like a sneak peek of the current Corinth Square South plans and renderings, check out the Planning Commission Agenda for this evening.
  • Wassmer Park is on schedule to open this fall.

Staff Reports

Chief Schwartzkopf pointed out new signs in parks, ‘Hide Your Things, Lock Your Cars, Take Your Keys’, and is in talks with local commercial retailers to add in their lots also.

Kieth Bredehoeft, Public Works Director, noted that the Delmar Fontana drainage project is ongoing and has already had a significant impact to the neighborhood. Public Works is very appreciative of the efforts of the neighbors to work with Public Works to make the project a success so far. There are some closures on Somerset while Water One replaces a main and other work, and the Porter park restrooms will be online by end of day Friday.

Jamie Robichaud, Deputy City Administrator, attended a UCS Summit talking about access to affordable housing and how it directly affects the health and well-being of our community about which she provided a synopsis to Council members (I’d love to read that!). Johnson County municipalities are also partnering with UCS to put together a task force and housing study. (The last one was in 2004!)

Wes Jordan, City Administrator, noted some items that we can expect to see on upcoming agendas: residential rental property inspections, limitations, etc.; citywide traffic study with Public Works; incentivizing electric vehicles; KCP&L presentation and Q&A August 5th; and JCPRD presentation August 19th on future phasing at Meadowbrook Park.

New Business

Keith Bredehoeft presented the final design for the the historical marker at Wassmer Park. Upon questioning, Keith confirmed that including this marker, or something of this sort, was part of the contract of sale from Faith Lutheran.

Keith Bredehoeft also presented the agreement with New Line Skate Parks FL, Inc., for the preliminary design and public outreach for the Harmon Park Skate Park. This award went through the full RFP, short list, and interview process. There was discussion about removing the performance pad scope from the design agreement, but it ultimately stayed as is.

Council Committee of the Whole

Jamie Robichaud introduced Chris Brewster, City Planning Consultant, who presented the proposed zoning regulation changes to the following sections:

  • Commercial landscaping standards (a new section)
  • Sign standards (revisions to existing chapter 19.48)
  • Site plan criteria (revisions to existing chapter 19.32.030)
  • Alternative energy systems (revisions to existing Chapter 19.50)
  • CUP/SUP/Uses and Districts (revisions to several sections of the zoning code)

There was discussion about incorporating the Environmental Committee recommendations above into these proposed changes and disagreement on the process for that. A motion was made by Tucker Poling, Ward 3, to send these recommendations to the Planning Commission to review and considering incorporating before the final draft, but it failed.

The next steps are to get community input and then set the proposed changes for public hearing at an upcoming Planning Commission meeting, followed by final adoption by the City Council late this summer.


The City Council took the following actions:

  • Approval of regular City Council meeting minutes – June 3, 2019
  • Approval of expenditure ordinance #2979
  • Approval of revisions to CP001 – City Committees
  • Reappointment of City Municipal Judges and Prosecutor
  • Reappointment of City Treasurer
  • Appointment to the Arts Council – that’s Me! 🙂
  • Approval of utility easement on City Hall property
  • Approval to publish the 2020 budget
  • Approval of inter-local agreement with Overland Park related to the 2019 Crack Seal/Micro Surfacing program
  • Approval of proposal for installation of foot lockers in Police Department men’s locker room

Upcoming Events

  • July 2019 Gallery Feature: State of the Seniors Art 2019 — Celebrate the artistic contributions of seniors in our region in the City’s inaugural juried show for senior artists age 60 and over!
  • July 1 City Council Meeting
  • July 2 Planning Commission Meeting 7:00 p.m.
  • July 3 Arts Council Meeting 5:30 p.m.
  • July 9 JazzFest Committee Meeting 5:30 p.m.
  • July 12 Artist Reception in the R.G. Endres Gallery, 6-7 p.m.
  • July 15 City Council Meeting

Take care and reach out if you have any questions or concerns,


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