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Council Recap – 01/18/22

Posted by Bonnie Limbird


Updates from County Commissioner Becky Fast

Commissioner Fast focused her update on programs outside of public health tonight.

  • CARS (County Assisted Roads).
    • Prairie Village Funded Projects – $630,000
      • Nall Ave: 79th to 83rd Street
  • SMAC (Stormwater Management) We’re the only county in Kansas that has a program like this.
    • Prairie Village Funded Projects
      • 2022 – Windsor Pipe Repair Project – $150,000
      • 2021 – Canterbury Street and Village Drive – $72,000
      • 2021 – Brush Creek at 68th St. and Mission Rd. – $1,731,5000
    • New Voluntary Home Buyout Program – for homes that have been flooded out.
  • Also the Tomahawk Wastewater Treatment Plant is now open. Would you like a tour? Reach out to Commissioner Fast!
  • JoCo will be doing a greenhouse gas inventory to find areas for improvement. First since 2013!
  • During the pandemic, we’ve had 25% increase in trash across the county. It’s important to remember that in 2023, our landfill will be full. If we have to start trucking our JoCo garbage elsewhere, homeowner costs will go up, so we need to recycle as much as we can and recycle the right way. ‘Recycle Right’ can teach homeowners how to recycle. If you’d like them to come to Prairie Village, please reach out to the environmental committee to let them know.
  • There is a solar project coming to JoCo – it’s a large scale utility that will benefit the whole county – even PV.
  • Mental Health and Housing
    • Improving coordination between fire department, Med-act (ambulance), mental health, sheriff, and more.
    • Continuing the Mental Health Co-Responder program (PV participates) – The program now includes 18 co-responders, serving 12 law enforcement agencies and one school district.
  • 988 National Suicide Hotline– we need #ksleg to support this program in Kansas.
  • BOCC using County Housing study to explore options like Housing Trust Fund, Exterior Housing Grant Program Enhancement, Weatherization and Energy Efficiency, First-time homebuyer tools
  • New Antioch library breaking ground soon. Will be LEED Silver certified per resident interest
  • Do you have questions or a request for Commissioner Fast? Contact her here:
    • 913-715-0725
Update from Dr. Sanmi Areola, Director of Johnson County Department of Health and Environment

Dr. Areola started by thanking Commissioner Fast for her diligent support of all public health measures in JoCo during this pandemic.

  • As of today (Tuesday), numbers may look like they’re dipping, but it’s because of the 3-day holiday. We have NOT peaked yet, so do not reduce your caution. Expect a peak in next few weeks. Even after the peak, there will still be a plateau and still high risk.
  • We’re still seeing record numbers of hospitalizations.
  • School districts are having to close because of lack of staff due to high COVID infection numbers.
  • Virtually all of our long term car facilities have outbreaks at some level.
  • Ventilators are in short supply, and we can’t afford to stay at this level of infection for long.
  • Don’t try to infect yourself to get it over with. If everyone does that, even the 1% who get badly sick would destroy our healthcare system. “We can not infect ourselves out of this pandemic.”
  • When will we get a testing location in NE JoCo? Open now in Roeland Park!

Committee Reports

Arts Council

The Celebrating Strength in Diversity exhibit is now open at Meadowbrook Park! Join us February 2nd at 6pm to honor the artists in this inaugural show at this new gallery!

BIG Thanks to the PV Public Works crew for making sure our streets were clear and safe for Arts Council members to get to Meadowbrook Park and install this show! 😊

Police Pension Board of Trustees

New Councilmember Cole Robinson attended his first Police Pension Board of Trustees. UMB, the fund manager, reported that the fund outperformed their projection by well over 5% for the last calendar year.

PVPD is one of only a few departments across Kansas that has their own police pension fund. Since 1994 it has returned 7.78% annually, and in the last 10 years it’s returned over 9%,. It has always overperformed benchmarks.

The police department is actively involved in this pension fund with a seat on the board, and they are in full support of the decisions that are being made by the police pension board.

Parks & Recreation

New P&R Chair Councilmember Gallagher hopes to have a prioritized list for the Parks Master Plan to City Council by March so it can be part of the 2023 budget process.

Teen Council

The Teen Council has begun the process of putting together their presentations to culminate their service to Prairie Village and that they will present ot City Council in the Spring.

Diversity Committee

Councilmember Selders reminded us that the MLK Jr. event has postponed to February 26th. Get more info HERE!

Mayor’s report
  • Mayor & staff met with Senator Corson and have a meeting coming up with U.S. Representative Sharice Davids to review the PV Legislative Platform.
  • JoCo Charter Commission’s work is nearing an end. So far no recommendations have been moved to a ballot, but there are still some recommendations to review.
  • YMCA will likely be in soon to give Council an update on the Paul Henson property
  • The upcoming annual Council work session is tentatively schedule for February 12th, but may have to move to a virtual version. Stay tuned.

Consideration of proposed incentive package to assist with recruitment and retention of City employees

Council unanimously approved these changes:

  • Allow sworn police officers to participate in the City’s supplemental retirement plan – approximate cost of $182,841 annually
  • Provide all full-time employees with a one-time inflation bonus of 3.8% – $259,051 one-time cost
  • Offer a sign-on bonus for new hires – $26,500 one-time cost to fill current vacancies
  • Offer a time-in-service bonus of 5% to all employees on their 3rd anniversary and every subsequent 3 years – approximate cost of $104,121 annually

Consider approval of changes for the 2022 exterior grant and residential sustainability grant programs

  • Increase the appraised value maximum for the 2022 Exterior Grant Program from $275,000 to $350,000.
  • Remove the $25 application fee for the Exterior Grant Program.
  • Update the sustainability grant specifications per below:
    • Set the minimum efficiency for all central air conditioners at 14 SEER. Clarify that window/room AC units are not eligible to be reimbursed through the grant program.
    • Increase the minimum efficiency for warm-air furnaces from 80% to 92%.
    • Add minimum R-value requirements for insulation as follows:
      • For basement joist insulation: fiberglass must have minimum R-value of R30 and spray foam must have minimum R-value of R15
      • For attic insulation, a minimum R-value of R60
    • Increase the required performance for both storage and instantaneous water heaters from 80% to 90%.

Approved consulting services agreement with McGrath Human Resources for the completion of a comprehensive compensation and benefits study

COVID-19 discussion

Wes Jordan, City Administrator, updated Council that the 2021 CARES funds dollars were zeroed out in the last calendar year. All new expenditures will be allocated from ARPA funds, including the COVID tests approved by Council last regular meeting.

Tim Schwartzkopf, Assistant City Administrator, updated Council on the test kit order which was placed January 4th. The vendor is now saying they will hopefully ship our kits this week for distribution to residents. This may change as the resources in the supply chain are reallocated to the federal government program. KN95 masks were delivered to the City Tuesday for City staff use as stipulated by the state of Kansas who provided them. They should have enough for about 6 weeks. The only reason we were able to get these masks form the states was because of the mask mandate for staff, so that worked out well.

City Council also voted to allocate $25,000 from the ARPA funds for emergency expenditures related to the COVID-19 pandemic, which will pay for things like purchasing at-home test kits for residents and personal protective equipment for city staff.

Consider 2022 recreation fee schedule

Council approved unanimously removing the evening pool rental option (at least for now), and added a commercial rental charge for tennis courts similar to the commercial rental fee for parks. The pool rental option has rarely been used, doesn’t cover the actual costs, and we currently don’t have the staff capabilities to cover that extra shift. The tennis courts are seeing more outside reservations for paid lessons and such, so this creates a higher fee for those proprietors for using our facilities and taking slots away from residents.

Consider approval of revisions to CP509 – swimming pool schedule

The Prairie Village Pool Complex will have slightly different hours in 2022. Nothing major, but double check the opening and closing times for your preferred swim times, because they may have been adjusted by half an hour one way or the either here and there.

Agenda Packet for your reference

Some things you may have missed:

Covid-19 home test
Order your free COVID-19 Home Tests at this link:
Infographic for new Property Tax Rebate Program. Details at link.


So that’s it for last week.

Some things I’ve been up to:

  • Watched my daughter play in her first club volleyball tournament of the season and take the Silver home!
  • Attended the 2022 Shawnee Mission Journalism Showcase at the SMSD Center for Academic Achievement.
    • I was disappointed that Every. Single. Hand sanitizer dispenser was empty (at the beginning of the event). 😢
Abi Limbird, Shawnee Mission East Hauberk (yearbook) Photographer
  • Celebrated our 18th wedding anniversary with dinner at Capital Grille!
photograph by Abi Limbird
She has joined us for most of our anniversary dinners in her lifetime – LOL!
  • Attended the first City Finance Committee meeting of the year to discuss attraction and retention of City employees.
  • Held our first PV Arts Council committee meeting of the year where we approved several new things for 2022, so be on the lookout for a bigger Arts Council presence throughout Prairie Village! Sign up for the newsletter HERE.
  • Convened a Special City Council meeting and approved a temporary mask ordinance for Prairie Village to help us slow down COVID-19. We have been joined by Mission, Roeland Park, and Fairway so far. Northeast JoCo mayors met with Board of County Commissioners Chairperson Ed Eilert on Friday, so I’m hoping more municipalities will follow suit.
  • Enjoyed a phone chat with a prospective Arts Council member. Yay! I’ve emailed two other interested applicants too. Stay tuned!
  • Took my teenager to get her COVID-19 booster shot.
  • Enjoyed the beauty of our first significant snow of the season:
  • Got to see all the kids in PV on Mount Meadowbrook:
  • Helped install the inaugural art show at Meadowbrook Park Clubhouse Gallery with the PV Arts Council and JCPRD!
Be sure to check out the exhibit available everyday at Meadowbrook Park Clubhouse!
Artist Reception | February 2nd, 6-8pm
  • Zoomed into the Johnson County Library Foundation’s “Must Reads for 2022” event and added to my ever-growing “to read” list. Check out the list HERE.

Be well and have a great weekend!


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