City Council discussed Meadowbrook Park updates, a PV Foundation matching gift, Drug & Alcohol Council allocations, and more. Read on for details.
This is the Prairie Village City Council meeting recap for Monday, November 16, 2020. You can see the full agenda and board packet HERE.
Council members present at roll call: Herring, J. Nelson, Selders, R. Nelson, Poling, Limbird, Myers, Reimer, Runion, McFadden, Graves, and Gallagher.
Here are the highlights of this meeting:
Meadowbrook Park Update
✓ Additional Furnishings
✓ Seeding / Sod
✓ Bus Stop off 95th Street
✓ Pickleball Court Lighting
✓ Trail Connector
✓ Storm Pipe Replacement
✓ Great Lawn Lighting
✓ Trail Counters
- Maintenance Building Improvements
- Pedestrian Bridge
- Additional Tree Plantings
- Public Art
Possible Next Steps
- Northeast Corner
- Sculpture Garden
- Picnic Shelter
- Lake Loop Lighting
- Iconic Garden
- Spray Ground Feature
- Additional PickleballCourts
- Environmental Learning Area
I shared multiple residents’ hope for more Pickleball courts and thanks for the new court lighting.
Councilwoman McFadden shared concerns about the location, or lack, of memorial plaques in the park. I’m waiting on more information on that topic because I don’t think she was given an answer Monday night. She also expressed concerns about the ever-increasing hard surface in the park considering that the intent was to keep as much greenspace as possible at Meadowbrook.
Obviously, our comments contradicted each other, but that’s bound to happen with 12 council members and will hopefully encourage creative thinking. Also, Courtney followed up with me to let me know that all of the Prairie Village park courts are painted for Pickleball now, too, so that should reduce demand at Meadowbrook. If you’ve played on one of these newly painted courts outside Meadowbrook, let me know how it is.
It is worth noting, though, that JCPRD owns Meadowbrook Park, not the City of PV, and Prairie Village City Council only has “input” on the park amenities and some special use restrictions. We only get to approve or reject changes/adds if they represent a “major deviation” from the master plan, and what we’ve been told is that so far any adds (firepit, maintenance building, sledding hill, etc.) have not represented a major deviation.
Meadowbrook Park Financing (TIF) Update
- The Kessler (apartments) is 97% full and thriving
- The single-family component has maintained its momentum in spite of the pandemic and continues to produce higher valuations than originally modeled.
- The Inn at Meadowbrook has had fewer than expected bookings due to COVID-19, but the average daily book rate (the cost of the room rental) is higher than expected.
- The senior-living construction is underway and the developers have been good partners so far.
- 2020 is the first year that 100% of the debt service has been paid by the revenues of the project.
- Incremental revenues that JCPRD captures and sends PV’s way are exceeding expectations.
- Everything is looking good, and we’re on the right trajectory moving forward.
Civic Center Ad Hoc Committee
Councilwoman Myers leads this temporary committee to study the feasibility of a Civic Center partnership with the Y and the Johnson County Library. The committee met last week for the first time since before COVID-19. The Civic Center idea is on indefinite hold. The JoCo Library has about 2 years before they have to make a decision, and the Y may have less than that. Until then, we will just be keeping the lines of communication open until we either have to make a decision or things are better with the pandemic.
SMSD Board Liaison Update
Councilwoman Reimer monitors the SMSD Board meeting for City Council, and she updated us on the upcoming Bond proposal that will require a mail election in January 2021. The Bond will raise $264.2M for a variety of construction projects AND allow for the hiring of additional staff to reduce class sizes and improve learning. The District’s estimate is that for a $100k home, the cost to the homeowner would be $8 per year.
I found this 2 minute video on the SMSD YouTube channel as well if you’d like more information:
I reported that the State of the Arts People’s Choice voting is now open through Sunday, November 22nd at noon(-ish). Vote at vote.artspv.org.
- Amazing news to report: The Prairie Village Municipal Foundation has received an anonymous matching donation of up to $10,000 for all donations made before the end of 2020! You can donate to this worthwhile cause at the PV Foundation website or by mail:
- Attention: Mayor’s Holiday Tree
- 7700 Mission Road
- Prairie Village, KS 66208
- The Mayor’s Holiday Tree Lighting has gone virtual this year. December 3rd at 6:00 p.m. on Facebook.
- Current COVID-19 standings:
- In the last two weeks, our 14-day average went from 9.9 to 16.5!
- Johnson County is under new countywide COVID-19 restrictions. The City is awaiting further guidelines on enforcement.
- *From the Shawnee Mission Post: “A new report from the White House Coronavirus Task Force describes the spread of COVID-19 in Kansas as “exponential and unyielding.” The report recommended state officials improve enforcement of mask mandates and work with local influencers to spread the message about the importance of wearing a mask.”
- Sgt. Roth led the election detail in Prairie Village this year without incident.
- The Diversity Task Force has its final scheduled meeting on November 18th at 6:00 p.m. where they will finalize their recommendations to Council.
- The next Village Vision 2.0 council work session is November 30th, and will cover two topics:
- Neighborhood patterns (lot splits would fall under this topic)
- Civic Center
Wes Jordan, City Administrator, updated Council on the search for a new Finance Director to replace Lisa Santa Maria, who is retiring in February. They have interviewed 6 great candidates and have narrowed it down to three. The next round will include the Finance committee chairperson and a few other key personnel in the interviews.
Councilman Herring, Ward 1, asked Wes how Council could appropriately express our gratitude to staff and committee members since we won’t have our annual appreciation dinner that we typically do this time of year. Wes indicated that he and/or Meghan would get back to us on that.
Police Chief Tim Schwartzkopf informed Council that Detective Caroline Van Cil took a civilian position with the Olathe Police Department as a Criminal Intelligence Analyst. We are sad to lose her, but she and another PVPD officer are engaged to one another, and the department has an anti-nepotism code of conduct so one of them would eventually have to move on. They decided as a family to make the change now when this opportunity in Olathe presented itself.
Detective Van Cil will be missed. She has a vibrant personality, a welcoming demeanor with residents, and a passion for her job in public safety. She’s also a fellow UCM grad, so I felt an alumna kinship. 🤪
Meghan Buum, Assistant City Administrator, took my question about the availability of city committee openings this winter. Meghan said that half of the seats on every city committee come open each year, so theoretically all of those seats are open. Some folks will ask and/or be invited to stay in their positions for another 2-year term, though.
We take applications through January 1st. The committee chairs will do interviews and make recommendations to the Mayor, who will then make the appointments at the 2nd meeting in February.
Here is the LINK to the City Committee page with brief descriptions of each. I encourage anyone who’s interested in getting involved to take a look. 😊 There are some volunteers who have been on the same committee for over a decade, and I’m of the mind that new blood can be good, and we should make room for the next generation of volunteers. Committees definitely shouldn’t feel like exclusive cliques either. So don’t hesitate to apply for any committee; I’m always open to new faces.
Consider Emergency Declaration Extension
Council voted 10-2 to extend the emergency declaration with Councilors Myers and Runion voting nay. Councilwoman Myers asked the Mayor again why we need to do this. Mayor said that the declaration provides two benefits to the city. One, it makes violations of an order (like the mask order) a class C misdemeanor for enforcement, and two, it helps the City recover expenses due to the emergency if that becomes a federal requirement.
United Community Services Presentation & Allocations
Christina Ashie Guidry with UCS was in attendance to present the allocations as seen in the agenda packet, and Council voted unanimously to approve all.
Happy Thanksgiving week.
Please stay safe & wear your mask.
Just a Couple Reminders:
Residents and visitors are STILL required to wear masks or cloth face coverings in Prairie Village and ALL of Johnson County as well as most of Kansas and the KC Metro on the Missouri side.
BUT, if you can, please stay home. Stay out of large crowds. Protect the most vulnerable among us. Do your part.
- November 26-27th – Thanksgiving Holiday – City Offices Closed
- November 30th – Village Vision 2.0 Council Work Session, 6:00 p.m.
- December 7th – City Council Meeting via Zoom, 6:00 p.m.
STAY WELL & enjoy the week!