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Council Recap – 05/1/23

Posted by Bonnie Limbird


Start Seeing Monarchs Day proclamation

In celebration of Monarch butterflies and in recognition of all that they and other pollinators contribute to the ongoing health of our environment, PV proclaims May 6, 2023, as Start Seeing Monarchs Day in the City of Prairie Village and encourage citizens of all ages to enjoy and celebrate the majestic Monarchs as they repose in our community this season along their great journey south and to do what we each can to provide safe harbor for them.

National Gun Violence Awareness Day proclamation

Whereas, gun violence touches every segment of our society and impacts people of all ages; it increases the probability of death in incidents of domestic violence; raises the likelihood of fatality by those who intend to injure others and among those who attempt suicide; it places children and young people at increased risk of physical harm and injury; and disproportionately affects communities of color; and
Whereas, Gun Violence Awareness Day honors the many lives that have been cut short by gun violence in our country and supports efforts to reduce gun-related crimes in the United States; and
Whereas, it is important to recognize community organizations which assist families that have been directly impacted by gun violence and provide a continuum of care to grieving parents or spouses who must continue to provide for surviving family members; and
Whereas, the City supports continued statewide efforts to strengthen gun safety laws and educate the community on safe gun storage; and
Whereas, it is appropriate to set aside time to honor those Americans whose lives are cut short each year by gun violence, and the countless survivors whose lives are forever altered;
Now, Therefore I, Eric Mikkelson, Mayor of the City of Prairie Village, Kansas, do hereby proclaim June 2, 2023 as National Gun Violence Awareness Day in Prairie Village, to honor and remember all victims and survivors of gun violence and to declare that we as a country must do more to reduce gun violence.

DeeDee Cooper from Moms Demand Action spoke briefly about the statistics of gun violence and the fact that gun violence is now the number one killer of children. Moms Demand Action encourages building owners and homeowners to light their buildings orange June 2nd – 4th and to attend their events on Saturday, June 3rd: the Wear Orange Blood Drive at the Community Blood Center (10568 Metcalf Ave) from 9am to 1pm; a Wear Orange Safehome Donation Drive at Meadowbrook Park Clubhouse (9101 Nall Ave), and a walk from 9:30-11:30 at Meadowbrook Park.

Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month proclamation

Formally designating the month of May 2023 as Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month and encourage everyone in our community to commemorate this important occasion in recognition of the numerous contributions made by the Asian American and Pacific Islander communities locally, nationally, and globally.

Public Participation

Mayor Mikkelson called residents to the podium one-by-one to speak for three minutes. There were 4 or 5 residents who spoke at this meeting.

  • Pat Philips – opposes the idea of a PV community center due to cost and challenges the results of the statistically valid survey of the market area. Also opposes the idea of a new library building and updating the City Hall building.
  • Leon Patton – concurred with Councilmember Selders that people are confused about what ADUs include, but that the confusion originated with the lack of definition by the housing ad hoc committee and council.

I used to try to recap all of the public comments to get to their basic intent, but it’s harder and harder as the messages being shared around the community have too many inaccuracies, outdated information (including ignoring the priority outcomes of last week’s Council Work Session) and outright lies, so I don’t share those anymore. I could try to list all the misinformation and respond to each of them, but that would take too much time, and instead, if you have questions, I encourage you to reach out to me directly. I’d love to chat.

Thankfully, Councilmember Dave Robinson did a redirect after this evening’s public participation to explain all the ways Council has clearly listened to residents, found compromise, and removed or prioritized specific topics based on resident feedback and Council discussion. He says maybe the City needs to do a better job of getting the word out about these – and that’s probably true. We represent the residents, but the residents are of many varying minds and perspectives on this issue, he said. I couldn’t agree more.

Committee Reports

Planning Commission: Consider Ordinance 2483 to approve an amendment of a special use permit for Highlawn Montessori School at 3531 Somerset Drive

Council had a robust discussion on the upcoming and future possible upgrades to the Highlawn Montessori property after Councilmember McFadden brought up a lot of great questions clarifying the request. We ultimately approved the request after the understanding that the soccer field was a future project that would go through Public Works approvals and Planning Commission review before that specific piece could be approved and not part of this request.


Committee Chair Councilmember McFadden reminded us that VillageFest is coming! Get baking! 🙂

Arts Council

The Prairie Village Arts Council will be hanging a new show this coming weekend, so this is the last week to view the current show here at City Hall of Donna Yeager’s eclectic artwork. The opening reception for the next exhibit, the Art of Photography will be next Wednesday, May 10th here at City Hall from 7:00 – 8:30pm.

First Washington Realty has also started planning in earnest for the Prairie Village Art Show June 2nd through June 4th. All of the artists have been selected, and you can find the list of artists on the pvartshow website. Look for the Prairie Village Arts Council tent at the show again this year!

In conjunction with the PV Art Show, the PV Arts Council is also working on a possible tie-in opportunity for PV-resident artists with our annual ArtWalk that some of our new committee members are working on. Watch for more information on that.

Diversity Committee

Committee Chair Councilmember Cole Robinson shared that the 3rd Annual Juneteenth Freedom Celebration 2023 is coming up on June 17th at Harmon Park from 4:00 – 7:00pm. There will be vendors, food trucks, inflatables, water features, face painting, a balloon artist, and more including a poster contest for ages 5-12, and a new essay contest for middle and high school students.

JoCo Drug & Alcohol Council

DAC Representative Councilmember Reimer shared that the council recently received an update on the county-wide co-responder program, and they will be renaming the fund to the Substance Use Continuum of Care Fund to account for the newly allocated opioid funds.

Environmental Committee

Committee Chair Councilmember Reimer shared that the Recycling Extravaganza with Overland Park was a huge success two weekends ago, and the committee showed up in a big way to help.

SMSD School Board

SMSD School Board liaison Councilmember Reimer shared that high school graduations are coming up the week of May 15th. East’s graduation will be the 16th. The last day of school is May 23rd. The District hired a new Coordinator of DEI, Kaitlin Shulman, who currently works for Lawrence Public Schools to replace outgoing coordinator Tyrone Bates, Jr., the district’s first-ever DEI coordinator, who announced his resignation earlier this year.


Committee Chair Councilmember Dave Robinson shared that JazzFest 2023 will be Saturday, September 9th at Harmon Park, and we’re hoping for a beautiful sunny day.

Mayor’s Report

  • PV Peace Officer Ceremony, Monday, May 15th at 7:30am. See more info below.

Staff Reports


Wes Jordan, City Administrator, shared that the monument sign has been restored and that our lobbyist, Stuart Little of Little Government Relations (LGR), will be at an upcoming meeting to recap the KS 2023 legislative session. He thanked LGR for their immense help on session updates and drafting language for written testimony.

Staff is currently working on the MOUs with the library and the Y, and also an RFQ for an owner’s representative.

Regarding Neighborhood Design Guidelines, the top Council priority that came out of the R1 Housing work session last week, staff has some ideas that they will likely bring to an upcoming meeting.

Bulky Item & Mattress Pick-up Update: continues this weekend until all of PV is complete. Week 2 went much smoother than Week 1, and all homes were picked up by Saturday afternoon with ample communication from Republic to City staff.

If you want to have a mattress picked up, they will be picked up the FRIDAY before your Bulky Item weekend, and you must report it for pickup at least three days before your pickup date at
Public Works

Keith Bredehoeft, Public Works Director, said that the pool project is nearing completion right on time for the pool season.

Melissa Prenger, City Engineer, updated Council on the newly redesigned park signage.


Captain Ivan Washington shared that the annual Peace Officers Memorial Day Ceremony and Breakfast will be Monday, May 15th at 7:30am. The ceremony will take place around the flags in the Municipal Complex courtyard at 7:30 a.m.  Attendees are invited to stay for a hot breakfast put on by the Department with the help of Scott Lamaster and his crew from Taking It To The Streets.

Council considered seven items relating to several upcoming projects

  • Second addendum to contract for planning advisory services
  • 2024-2028 County Assistance Road System (CARS) program
  • Approval for the Harmon Park inclusive playset package
  • Construction contract for Harmon Park inclusive playset improvements
  • Approval of design agreement with BBN Architects, Inc. for the design of park improvements at Harmon Park
  • Agreement with Black and McDonald for streetlight maintenance services (costs have gone up about 20%! See highlights below about inflation.)
  • Agreement with Integrity Locating Services for underground line location services related to the streetlight system

All 7 items were approved unanimously one-by-one.

2024 Capital Infrastructure Program Budget presentation


  • The Windsor Park Restrooms package is out for bid – it’s happening! It’s happening!! 😆
  • We currently have ZERO arterial streets in the “Poor” condition category. Woo hoo!
  • We still have about 22% of collector and residential streets in the “Fair” and “Poor” categories that will be getting love soon.
  • Cost of street repair (mill/overlay) is up 20% to 1.2M per mile.
  • Cost of full reconstruction is up to 2.1M per mile.
  • Inflation usually averages 3-7% every single year, but inflation is a bigger deal now, and we need to plan for at least 7% cost increases year over year to maintain our existing levels of street care and not fall behind.
  • Park construction (shelters and playsets) costs have increased (due to inflation) about 27% over previous years
  • Through better funding and planning in PV, what used to take 7 years to get a street in fair/poor condition back up to excellent, we’re now at 2-3 years!

Council meeting recording / livestreaming discussion

Assistant City Administrator Tim Schwartzkopf thanked Council and residents for their patience with tonight’s technical difficulties when the “handshake” between Zoom and Facebook Live did not work. Staff tried to troubleshoot the issue on the fly but they had no control over the problem. Luckily staff had the quick idea to share the Zoom link on the Facebook page so residents could tune in directly to Zoom to watch live. Anytime streaming is now available HERE.

He then went through the current 5-stop process, and shared an alternative 2-step process that saves hours of time for city staff and still allows live streaming and saving for future viewing directly on our City website. The 2-step process also removes an unpaid 3rd party (Facebook).

Preferred process:

Record directly through Zoom to Boxcast (which we already pay for to store our videos), which will live stream and post on the City website.

  • The public is still able to view meetings in real time through the website (even on phones or other mobile devices).
  • Removes unpaid third party from the equation.
  • This option will automatically record to the website, eliminating staff time to process the recordings.
  • Any Staff member can manage the livestreaming options. (They don’t have to have a personal FB page to manage.)\

Councilmember Gallagher confirmed that residents will still be able to watch the meeting live or watch it later.

Councilmember McFadden said this is a no-brainer, and the ability to live chat is not something the City or Council is required to provide. This eliminates security risks and a 3rd party application that has its own security risks.

Councilmember Graves pointed out that the current process has numerous problems, and if we ever did want to look at a YouTube option (in lieu of Facebook), Boxcast has that capability. Followers can also still share a link to the feed on their personal pages and start a comment thread of their own there.

Mr. Schwartzkopf also pointed out that staff has also talked already about adding a quick-link/button on the homepage of the City website to make it a quick one click so residents don’t have to navigate through the site to the correct page.

Councilmember Herring asked that if this is approved, staff still make a post on meeting nights on Facebook alerting followers of the meeting and including a link to the stream.

Councilmember Wolf said this is more access not less access. Many folks don’t have or don’t want Facebook, and this is more accessible to them.

Councilmember Dave Robinson thinks Facebook probably limits our reach to residents instead of improving it, so he’s largely in favor of the new process. These tech firms, like Boxcast, Zoom, etc. (but not social media platforms) are more incentivized to stay ahead of the technology needs for “anytime anywhere any device”, and they will continue to improve and change with the times.

Councilmember Cole Robinson pointed out that driving residents to our website with this proposed process, where all of our helpful information is stored, is a win for everyone.

Councilmember Shelton pointed out that Facebook has plateaued and YouTube is outpacing it as a user experience.

Assistant City Administrator Meghan Buum shared that the City used to stream in multiple locations at once, but Facebook stopped playing nice, and we were limited to only that platform limiting our reach.

Councilmember Selders said that she believes residents would find the YouTube option very favorable and would like to have more research done on that.

City Council had a great discussion on this topic, and as Courtney said, it was ultimately a no-brainer. This motion passed unanimously.

Agenda Packet for your reference


Thank you for reading, and please feel free to share this newsletter/post with your PV neighbors! Again, I’m happy to chat live if you have any questions.

Please be well and have a great week!


P.S. If you haven’t heard, I’m running for re-election, and I need your support to win the upcoming election. More info, including ways to volunteer, will be forthcoming! Thank you in advance! ❤❤❤

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