MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING
LENEXA CITY COUNCIL
CITY OF LENEXA, KANSAS
The regular meeting of the Lenexa City Council was called to order at 7:30 p.m. on the 3rd day of March, 1998, at the Lenexa City Hall, Council Chambers, 12350 W. 87th St. Pkwy.
The following Councilmembers were present with Mayor Bowman presiding: Jane Klein Larry McAulay John Ramsey Todd VanWyngarden Diane Linver Michael Boehm Tom Nolte Dick Dyer
Motion to approve the minutes of the Regular Meeting of February 17, 1998 was made by Councilmember VanWyngarden, seconded by Councilmember Klein, and unanimously approved.
Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Week, March 2 Ė 8, 1998.
Resolution honoring Scott Benolkin
for achieving perfect scores of 36/1600 on ACT/SAT exams.
Councilmember Linver arrived at 7:33 p.m.
Mayor Bowman asked that Scott, his parents Larry and Connie, and his sister Kelly, come to the front. Mayor Bowman advised that Scott is a senior at Shawnee Mission West and is being honored this evening for achieving perfect scores of 36 and 1600 on his ACT and SAT exams. Mayor Bowman read the proclamation into the record. She also noted that Scott plans on attending the University of Minnesota with a major in electrical engineering.
Councilmember Nolte arrived at 7:35 p.m.
Scott Benolkin expressed his appreciation to his family for their support and felt it was also a privilege to live in Lenexa a safe and supportive community.
Recognition of Samís Club for Samís Club of the Year Award.
Mayor Bowman asked that Mike Gonce, General Manager of the Samís Club Lenexa, come to the front. She read a proclamation honoring Samís Club Lenexa for being the 1997 Samís Club of the Year. She also noted that Samís has been a part of Lenexa for 10 years and expressed her appreciation that they elected to locate in Lenexa.
Arts Council Vacancy
Term Expires 4/30/2000
Mayor Bowman submitted the name of Millie Mehnert to serve the unexpired Arts Council term until April 30, 2000. Ms. Mehnert had been interviewed some time ago but her involvement with the Federation of Music Teachers has made it difficult for her to serve. Her term will expire in May and she has agreed to accept this position.
Motion to approve the Mayorís recommendation was made by Councilmember Klein, seconded by Councilmember Ramsey, and unanimously approved.
BUSINESS FROM FLOOR
Hearing none, Mayor Bowman proceeded with the regular agenda items.
Motion to approve the Consent Agenda, as written, was made by Councilmember Ramsey, seconded by Councilmember McAulay, and unanimously approved.
Ms. Harmison advised this is a standard ordinance that we amend almost every year, which designates main trafficways. Staff has added roadways that are now part of the CIP. Placement on this document as a main trafficway allows bonding authority.
Motion to adopt the ordinance was made by Councilmember McAulay, seconded by Councilmember Nolte, and unanimously approved. (Ordinance No. 4134)
Ms. Harmison advised that in June 1997 the City issued approximately $20 million in IRBís for their Health Care Facility. The Series 1997A Bonds were issued as variable rate bonds. Because the interest rate varies on such bonds it makes it difficult to estimate the amount of construction period interest which should be sized into a bond issue. An interest rate Swap Agreement provides a hedge against interest rate uncertainty in this context by creating a fixed rate during the construction and occupancy period which permits more precision in funding construction period interest from bond proceeds. This in turn provides greater security for bondholders during the construction and occupancy periods of a project like Lakeview Village. The ordinance included on the agenda provides the necessary authorization and consent of the City to the amendment, conditioned on the required findings by the Trustee that the amendment will not prejudice the interest of the Trustee or the bondholders. The Trustee has indicated its willingness to make such findings, which will be evidenced by its consent to the amendment.
Mayor Bowman requested verification that this action would not place any liability on the City. Ms. Harmison advised that was correct.
Motion to adopt the ordinance was made by Councilmember Nolte, seconded by Councilmember Klein, and unanimously approved. (Ordinance No. 4135)
COUNCIL COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATIONS
Committee of the Whole
(Meeting of February 24, 1998)
Mr. Watkins advised that he has read the memorandum from Ms. Harmison, which he felt did an excellent job of consolidating the comments of the Governing Body members regarding Economic Development Incentives. Staffís recommendation is for adoption of Option #1.
Councilmember Klein asked if Laura Lawson had been given a final copy of this proposal. Ms. Lawson advised she had received a copy.
Councilmember Boehm indicated he did not have a specific problem with the suggested Option, however, he felt there needed to be a mechanism for the checklist to be updated from time to time.
Ms. Harmison advised that the checklist is not actually a part of this document but it is important that it reflect the City Council goals.
Mayor Bowman indicated there was one comment she had on the last page of the checklist. Ms. Harmison questioned if it was the typo, which stated 200 hours, which should have been 2,000? That has been corrected. Mayor Bowman indicated he had not caught that but her question was with geographic consideration. She hoped that the City would consider deleting the portion in parentheses (i.e. Renner Boulevard, Western Lenexa) and (subsurface space) regarding the location at which the City desires to grow. Some members have indicated that we have already started growth on Renner Blvd. and perhaps it should not be designated as a target area.
Councilmember Boehm indicated under Capital Investment it states the City should not include personal property. If personal property were not included the business moving into a new space would have to meet the $10 million investment rather than the $5 million since, as a tenant, they donít have real property. Ms. Harmison indicated that is the way it is worded but she was not sure that was what was intended. Realistically an existing business would have to do a $10 million or larger facility in real estate versus a counting their existing $5 or $10 million dollar investment in computer equipment that would be moved to a new site. Ms. Harmison indicated if the policy is truly intended, as she thought it was, to include the improvements and the real estate they could go on to define the term capital investment. "In a situation when a tenant is the applicant they would be allowed to use the real value of the building they are located in." Their rent or lease payments would incorporate the value of that land.
Councilmember Boehm indicated he understood what she was saying but was not sure what the relevance of the existing building they are a tenant in has. A new business that is an existing tenant in Lenexa would be held to a higher standard than a new business coming into Lenexa. It interpreted as written it would require a higher threshold for existing businesses that are tenants. Mayor Bowman indicated that would take into consideration tenants at Southlake who donít own the buildings and that would exclude a lot of businesses who are tenants in building that we donít want to exclude. Councilmember Boehm felt it was real property versus personal property rather than tenant versus owner.
Councilmember Boehm indicated the policy also states that the PILOT may include, but not be limited to, a clawback provision. He was not sure when they would not want a clawback. Ms. Harmison indicated she made the change in that she stated the Governing Body shall include a PILOT and may require a clawback. It would be dependent on what factors are most important. If jobs are not most important in a specific instance a clawback may not be beneficial. There may be other items that are more important such as how long they stay at the location. Councilmember Boehm indicated he didnít realize a clawback was that specific.
Councilmember Boehm indicated that on item 5 that states no abatement shall be transferred and indicates if a property is sold we would have a new application. How do we do abatement on an existing project versus a new project? If we build the building on abatement how is a new application handled. Would that be an actual new application or ratification or denial of the existing. Ms. Harmison indicated it would be either a ratification or denial.
Councilmember Boehm indicated that on the checklist he had some concerns about the number of jobs created including part-time positions. If we include part-time positions the hourly wages may be high enough at one level he would not like to see the City incenting part-time positions with no benefits. Ms. Harmison indicated that was intended to pick up flex type or job share employees that result in full time employment, but it is open to interpretation.
Councilmember Boehm indicated he would probably have to vote no on this item tonight. A no vote is not a criticism of Staff efforts. He has distaste for abatements in general. If he supports this now, when applications come before the Council he may have a hard time saying no, even if they comply with the policy, whether he agrees or not.
Councilmember Linver indicated she has some concern about the part time employment expressed by Councilmember Boehm but she knows there are people out that that want flex time so they can spend more time with their families. She felt that perhaps this needed to be reviewed on a case by case basis or perhaps a maximum percentage of part time employees.
Mayor Bowman indicated she had also suggested deleting Renner Boulevard as a target area. She asked if there was any objection to that and felt it was something that could be updated each year. Ms. Harmison indicated she felt the part-time be kept in since it is not actually part of the policy but only the checklist. She noted that last incentive granted temporary employees were not permitted.
Mayor Bowman asked about the tenant versus property owner issue and if that needed clarification. Ms. Harmison indicated as long as everyone understands how it works it is fine. Essentially under this policy you would be treating a tenant as an new applicant, someone who has not been in the City before. If you are comfortable with that it is OK as drafted. If you want a tenant relocating within Lenexa to be treated like a property owner is leaving a building and building a new one it would have to be defined differently. Mayor Bowman indicated there was a suggestion by Ms. Harmison for additional definition. Ms. Harmison indicated you can treat a tenant just like an owner if preferred. Councilmember Boehm indicated that would scare him until they really had a chance to look at it. If you are a tenant in a multi-tenant building how much of the building cost could they count.
Councilmember McAulay indicated he also has some concerns on that point. He felt that perhaps they should leave the statement as it and if problems arise the policy could be amended. Another concern he has is what would they be doing to the landowner if they allowed tenants credit for their ownership to allow them to move to another location? He was also leaning toward Councilmember Boehm opinion of not liking abatements. But he was not sure he would say he could not support any. We have done fine without them but if they can help attract a type of business the City is trying to attract he wants to have them available. He feels that the test will be time and he wants to give the policy a try. He was somewhat skeptical and he may not support all proposals that are presented in the future. In addition, if he doesnít like the way the policy is working he will also push for a no-abatement policy.
Councilmember Nolte was not sure an existing business should be held to a higher threshold. He felt that $5 million is appropriate if they are an existing facility and they want to upgrade in Lenexa he felt that level of loyalty was commendable. He noted this is basically an instrument that our Economic Development people can use to keep up in the game and he felt he could support it as written.
Mayor Bowman indicated in item 3, it states that prior to granting a tax abatement the Governing Body will hold a public hearing and the City Clerk shall notify the Board of County Commissioners and the Board of Education of the School District affected. She questioned if that shouldnít include the Johnson County Community College and perhaps other groups. Ms. Harmison indicated that Johnson County Community College is the only other agency that derives support from taxes but they should also be notified.
Mayor Bowman requested that she would like for the Governing Body to be notified of the results of the annual reviews.
Ms. Harmison noted the changes she has on the policy are:
Changes to the Checklist are;
Motion to approve the policy and checklist as amended was made by Councilmember Klein, seconded by Councilmember Linver, and approved by majority vote with Councilmember Boehm voting nay.
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Mayor Bowman introduced students from Westridge Middle School, Bonjour Grade School, Rockhurst High School and Apache School.
Committee of the Whole
(Meeting of November 25, 1997)
Mr. Watkins advised that in the packet are two items. First is the procedure for placement of Art and the second addresses some issues the Council may want to discuss. You canít make decisions tonight about budgetary items but we will be in that process soon. To begin on the resolution regarding public art placement the Arts Council did a lot of research. Also procedures about once a location is picked and art located who does the negotiations and he felt that should be handled by the City Attorneyís Office.
Ms. Harmison indicated she has a suggested amendment regarding procedures. On the first page, second sentence should read "The Governing Body shall review and approve the location list. Also changed subheading to read Governing Body Review, Approval and Prioritization. The next change is in number three. The location list approved by the Governing Body shall be provided to the Arts Council for art recommendation. The Arts Council shall identify a list of various art options from the priority list and make recommendation for there placement at the locations on the Governing Body locations list according to the priority identified by the Governing Body. Or if not applicable specify the Arts Council recommended place of location. Otherwise, it was discussed quite a bit at the last meeting and we have tried to incorporate those discussions.
Mayor Bowman clarified that the priority list is not actually part of the policy and will be reviewed yearly.
Councilmember Linver questioned if the Arts Council found a piece of art that was perfect for Location No. 5 could they still present that even it Location 1 had not yet been found? Ms. Harmison did not feel it would preclude submittal of alternate pieces but the emphasis is to be placed on the items by priority. Considerable discussion ensured regarding purchase of art items by priority. While the primary intent is to focus on art purchases for the locations by priority it would not preclude bringing another piece, out of sequence, to the City Council.
Councilmember Boehm indicated he was surprised to see this on the agenda this evening. It has been a while since Committee reviewed this and he did not feel he could vote on the proposed changes without some additional review and discussion. He also stressed that art purchases should be for priority locations. He would not want to see a purchase request for location number 10 if no other pieces had been acquired. He also requested explanation of how rankings were established. It was determined the proposed should go back to committee for review. Mr. Watkins felt that the Community Development Committee should discuss this.
Mayor Bowman asked that the Committee look at priority number 2, which is City Hall. The design of the expansion was done with the intent that Artwork would not be needed because it makes its own statement. If the Committee decide they do want artwork at City Hall she felt the project architect should be brought into that discussion. She also asked for more detailed information on what other cities are spending. Matt Jordan indicated that funding sources in some cities are multiple and exact amounts are difficult to determine. He will see what he can find out but felt there would be limited comparison.
Councilmember VanWyngarden asked if the funding level discussion would go to the same committee. Mayor Bowman felt that the funding issues should be discussed by the Administration and Finance Committee and that could be considered after procedures for placement are in place. She advised the procedures for placement would go on the April Community Development Committee meeting.
Councilmember Nolte complimented Matt Jordan on the article in todayís paper.
Mayor Bowman advised that the K-10 Corridor meeting will be next Friday at the Falcon Ridge Clubhouse at 8:30 a.m. She also advised that she and Council President Nolte attended the ribbon cutting for Homegate last week and they were very impressed with the new facility. The suites are very reasonable at $49, $59, and $69 a night and have full refrigerators. If you book for a week or longer the rates go down $10 a night. She felt this was something the business community has been looking for.
The meeting adjourned at 9:03 p.m.