Leavenworth County Commission approves funding for the Lansing Project

Leavenworth County’s officers have decided to allocate $ 240,538 to design a Lansing sewer expansion project.

The commissioners approved the funding when they met on Wednesday.

Lansing city administrator Tim Vandall said the project could help drive development of additional land along the Kansas 7 Highway Corridor by expanding the sewer service further south to McIntyre Road.

According to Vandall, city officials anticipate engineering costs for the design work of around $ 500,000. He said the project could not be planned until 2023 or 2024.

“But once this project is planned, it will finish the sewer shovel and accelerate real estate development in the area,” he said.

A request for $ 240,538 to pay for the draft was previously reviewed by Leavenworth County’s Port Authority. However, a majority of the Port Authority’s board of directors voted against a recommendation to the County Commission to fund the Lansing Project last month.

The Port Authority is a government-affiliated organization with board members appointed by Leavenworth County and local city governments.

“Lansing is willing to raise money to fuel economic growth, but we believe that growth can best be achieved when all parties can work together,” Vandall said on Wednesday.

County Commissioner Doug Smith noted that the county had promised improvements to McIntyre Road as part of a voter-approved statewide sales tax election.

“So we did that,” he said. “This is the next piece I think.”

District Administrator Mark Loughry said there was money left from another project that would be available for the Lansing Project.

The money would come from funds left over from developing the Tonganoxie Business Park. The county donated $ 5 million to the city of Tonganoxie for this project.

The development work on the industrial park left $ 1.7 million of the $ 5 million the county had allocated. The remaining funds were returned to the county.

The County Commission later returned $ 1.2 million of the $ 1.7 million to Tonganoxie to expand sewer service to the business park and improve water service on the property. This left $ 540,538 of the $ 1.7 million that was not yet spent.

Loughry suggested Wednesday that Lansing could potentially use federal funding for channel improvements. He said the planning work for the sewer project could help the city get ready to use federal funding for the purpose.

Commissioner Mike Stieben said Wednesday that the commission had used the port authority to look into these types of funding requests. He asked if there would be time to ask the Port Authority to reconsider their previous decision on the Lansing project.

District Councilor David Van Parys said reporting the request back to the port authority would essentially mean “asking them to reverse their own decision”.

He said the port authority acted as an advisory body, but the county commission is making the final decision.

Commission chairman Mike Smith said the $ 240,538 was a drop in the bucket compared to “some of the other things we’ve done in the county”.

The commissioners voted 4-0 to approve funding for the Lansing project. Inspector Vicky Kaaz was absent.

In other stores

The Leavenworth County Commission:

• Approved special use permit for a mechanic’s facility at 17405 Gatewood Street.

The commissioners also approved special use permits for a mooring, car repair facility, and boat storage facility at 31962 235th St.

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