Corbin H. Crable
City Administrator Stewart Fairburn updated the Gardner City Council on the newly formed Gardner Lake Rules Advisory Committee at the governing body’s meeting July 6.
The task force was formed late last month in response to concerns raised by Gardner Lake residents and the city about private construction on city-owned land at the lake.
Lake residents, at a meeting last month, urged the city of Gardner to sell its property to adjacent property owners to avoid entering into a lease agreement. The decision of whether or not to sell was a central question at the committee’s first meeting on June 30, Fairburn said. He added that the city is open to suggestions on the course of action the committee should recommend.
“All ideas that come forward will be considered,” he said.
Fairburn said that if the city decides to sell the land to lake residents, price and boundary – which would be based on elevation — must be determined.
The committee will continue to meet for the next month and debate the pros and cons of land sale. Committee members will make a presentation to the council at its Aug. 9 meeting and voice its recommendation on whether to sell the land.
In the meantime, the committee will host several public input sessions over the next couple of months. The council is expected to reach a consensus on whether to sell the land by its Oct. 18 meeting.
Fairburn said this was the quickest timetable the committee could organize. Gardner Mayor Dave Drovetta called the timetable “aggressive.”
“Hopefully, by October, we’ll have a resolution (on land sale) and can move forward,” Drovetta said. “It’s a pretty daunting task.”
Gardner Lake resident and committee member Tom Steele said he was satisfied with the work and discussions in which the committee was participating.
“It’s the first time I’ve actually heard everyone working together,” he said. “I think all of you are doing an excellent job in getting everything started.”
The committee’s members are Steele, Fairburn, council member Brian Broxterman, Johnson County Commissioner Calvin Hayden, Gardner Planning Commissioner Tory Roberts, Johnson County Planning and Development Director Dean Palos, Gardner Lake Association President Suzie Townley, and lake residents Pete Adams, Karen Barber, Herb Klemp and Harold Quaintance.
In other business, the council:
• authorized the city administrator to execute 36-month agreements with CenturyLink/Embarq for phone service and long distance service. The council approved the measure 4-0, with council member Kristy Harrison abstaining.
• joined Assistant City Administrator Melissa Mundt in presenting Amy Kynard as a Certified Planner. Kynard’s new title is bestowed by the American Planning Association.
• approved an interlocal agreement between the city, KDOT, the Mid-American Regional Council, the Lawrence-Douglas County Metropolitan Planning Organization, Edgerton, Baldwin, and Johnson and Douglas counties regarding the U.S. 56 Highway Management Plan.
The council, in a special work session, also continued talks on specific city departments’ budgets for fiscal year 2011. Look for that story on The Gardner News website early next week and in Wednesday’s print edition.
In addition, Drovetta will host a town hall meeting on the 2011 budget at 10 a.m. Saturday at City Hall, 120 E. Main St., according to the city’s website.
The council will next meet for a work session at 6:30 p.m. Monday, July 12 at City Hall.
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