Arts Council, Budget, civic/community center, Construction Projects (City), COVID-19, Environment, Events, Recreation, Retail, Taxes

Council Recap – 4/5/21

Posted by Bonnie Limbird

Recap – better late than never…. 😉

Presentation: Mindy Corporan, Faith Always Wins Foundation & SevenDays

The Faith Always Wins Foundation was created by the Corporon family in 2014 after a white supremacist murdered William L Corporon, MD, his grandson, Reat Underwood, and Teresa LaManno. Their mission is to promote dialogue for the betterment of our world through kindness, faith & healing.

The Faith Always Wins Foundation produces the SevenDays® Make a Ripple, Change the World experience and hosts Interfaith Discussions throughout the year. Each action taken is with intent on healing the hearts of humans allowing us all a path to choose respect, understanding and kindness for one another.

Mayor Mikkelson made a proclamation designating the week of April 13 through April 25, 2021 “SevenDays Week 2021”.

Presentation: Teen Council, Sydney Newton & Macy Cherra

In lieu of a service project this year, the Teen Council members gave a presentation on small businesses and how to support small business owners. They shared, via www.nber.org, that active small business ownership has dropped 22% since the beginning of the pandemic! Here’s how we can help our local small businesses:

  • Buy local (Hatties, French Market, Bijin, Caffetteria, Made in KC, Land of Paws, Scoobie, Euston’s, RSVP, Rimann Liquors, etc.)
  • Share and tag local small businesses on social media
  • Spread the word, bring a friend shopping with you
Environmental Committee

The environmental committee modified their meeting schedule to help them better plan events and respond to issues in a timely manner. They are currently looking at a creek clean-up and a native plant sale.

Police Pension Committee

The police pension committee updated council on their recent activity. Over the previous 10 years, the pension investments have averaged an approximate 8% return. On April 15th they held a special meeting where they heard a presentation on possible solutions to the current underfunding. Underfunded here means that if every eligible police officer in PVPD retired today, we wouldn’t have the the funds available to cover it. As that is unlikely at any given moment, and because this level of current funding is pretty standard across other pension funds – as a matter of fact we’re in a better position than most of our peers – this isn’t of great concern to most folks who follow the pension fund. We are funded per the actual requirements of such a fund, we have consistently put more money into the fund than required over the past several years, and we are on track to be fully funded by the time these obligations come due.

Unfortunately, many residents have been misled to think that a) this is an issue for major concern, and that b) the city might opt to build a community center instead of funding our police pension. Neither of those is correct. If you’d like further information on this issue, I encourage you to contact Mayor Mikkelson for details. Also, if you hear of others talking about this misinformation, I encourage you to direct them to Mayor Mikkelson. I say him, instead of myself, because he can better answer these questions with his experience serving the city, while I’m still learning. I’d actually love to sit in on the conversation! 😜

After this discussion, several members of council made it quite clear that this type of misinformation spreading and manipulation of our residents worries are embarrassing and shameful to those doing it. This is at least the second time in as many months that we’ve started receiving angry and sometimes quite rude emails out of the apparent blue on a topic that isn’t actually true.

As for the possible community center in our future, rest assured that issue will be fully vetted and brought to the full council, as well as the city, for a vote. I hope that eases any minds out there who have heard otherwise. 😊

Arts Council

The 4th Annual Art of Photography (virtual) exhibition is live at artspv.org/aop2021! Please check it out and see who the winners are. All artwork is available for purchase! Here are a few of my favorites:

Mayor’s report
  • The tax lid repeal law has been signed. SB13.
  • Our new Fire Chief, Steve Chick, has been sworn in. PV has had a great partnership with Consolidated Fire District No. 2 over the years, and we expect that will continue under Chief Chick’s leadership.
  • We’re going to start seeing Bird scooters around PV.
  • Visit recyclespot.org and JoCo Hazardous Household Waste for disposal and donation of items BEFORE Large Item Pick-up.
Assistant City Manager Update

Meghan Buum let us know that tennis enrollment with JCPRD is now open, and Johnson County Library’s Walk-n-Read is at Franklin Park (sorry, this has passed).

Chief of Police Update

Chief Roberson alerted us to a new program PVPD is working on with unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs or drones). These can help with fleeing suspects, use heat signals to locate suspects, and aid in reconstruction of accidents. More info to follow.

Public Works Update

Keith Bredehoeft updated us on the work at 71st and Mission at the culvert – they’re finishing the final stonework and then it will be complete. I let him know how great it all looks. When I drove by, the sod was down and you could hardly tell any construction had wrecked the place for the previous 60 days. 😉

The skate park construction has also begun. Demolition actually. And the Public Works building is trucking along. There have been some concerns raised by nearby residents, so Keith is working with those resident to get additional trees planted to screen the view.

I asked Keith about the orange fabric taco-looking wraps on some of the power poles spotted in Ward 3, and he confirmed those are temporary. It may take a while for Evergy to complete that work, but they are temporary.

In Person Meetings

Sheila Myers moved to open council chambers back up to in-person meetings in June. Discussion ensued about precautions to be taken, whether this includes public or no public, how the technology can be adapted to allow half the council in person and half remote, and how vaccination status might affect the decision. Wes Jordan, City Administrator, let us know that our council chambers tech is almost ready to go with the capability to have a hybrid meeting. Staff will come back with tech updates and a plan at a later date, and council will review options.

Historic Trail Markers

Council approved the next step to add neighborhood-level informative historic trail markers to provide information on the westward expansion that brought settlers to our area and also pushed out Native American tribes. The signs will have a link/QR code to a website or a cool phone app with lots of great information.

Council will have the opportunity to get further updates on this before it is finalized including the researched information that will be provided. I had a couple one-on-one conversations with Keith Bredehoeft prior to this meeting, and we agreed that we will also bring in subject matter experts to vet our research and offer additional insight and help. I’ve been in conversation with members of the Haskell Indian University Indigenous & American Indian Studies faculty on this topic for several months now, and look forward to what we can learn from them and come up with together.

Here is an example of what the signage might look like:

graphic mockup
Committee Budgets

Council gave preliminary approval to the 2022 committee budgets for VillageFest and JazzFest, and they gave preliminary approval to the 2022 budget requests from the new Diversity committee and Arts Council. But Arts Council still has to provide a line item budget for approval before the overall 2022 City budget can be approved. Arts Council will do that after we finalize our 2022 calendar.

PV Pool 2021 Season

The pool, at this time, will open as usual Memorial Day weekend 2021. Here are some things to note:

  • Our capacity will be capped at 400. Guests will be counted at the door
  • Deck chairs will be configured in pairs, placed 6 feet apart from other chairs
  • Physical cues will be placed in areas where lines could form (upon entry, slides, diving boards, concession areas, etc.) to denote proper distance
  • Plexiglass barriers at counters
  • Occupancy limits on shared spaces (bathrooms, locker areas, breakrooms, etc.)
  • One way entry/exit
  • Encourage patrons to come “swim ready” to reduce impact on locker rooms and bathrooms
  • Will require masks as outlined by the county.
  • Half the tables in concession area will be closed to allow safe removal of masks for eating and drinking
  • Masks will be available for patrons who do not have them.
  • Will use CDC developed materials on A-frame at entrance and throughout complex in highly visible locations
  • Broadcast announcements will be made over the PA system on a frequent basis
  • The pool manager and assistant manager will be in charge of deck oversight. I.e. making sure guests are following the rules. Not the teenage lifeguards or other staff.
  • Shared objects and frequently touched surfaces (such as doorknobs, handrails, drinking water fountains, faucets, bathroom surfaces, diaper-changing stations, and structures for climbing or playing) will be properly disinfected at least daily.
  • Hand hygiene will be encouraged with sanitizer stations throughout the pool complex
  • Wipe stations will be available throughout the complex for patrons to sanitize pool chairs and lounges prior to use
  • Professional Bio-Protect application on frequently touched surfaces

Due to the unique nature of changing public health recommendations, this plan is subject to change.

New Sustainability Grant Program

Council approved the work so far on this by staff. The purpose of the Residential Sustainability Grant program is to encourage residents to reduce their carbon footprint by improving the energy efficiency of their homes. It will be very similar to the Exterior Grant program in many ways, but won’t be limited to certain areas or maximum home values. Watch for more information.

Agenda Packet for your reference

Closing

So that’s it for this week. Some things I’m working on:

  • STILL Purging the basement and closets for PV’s annual Large Item Pickup! Ward 3 = April 24th!
    ** You have time to donate before sending items to the landfill! In addition to the resources in the Mayor’s report above, there’s also this donation event happening that I read about in the Shawnee Mission Post:

Take care, continue wearing your masks, and get vaccinated as soon as you are eligible.

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