Archive for Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Basehor sewer concerns draw attention

July 25, 2007

Leavenworth County Commissioners and Basehor City Administrator Carl Slaugh met Monday to determine what to do with sewer lines that are beyond capacity in southern parts of the county.

Building permits for homes in certain subdivisions continue to be issued, Commission Chairman J.C. Tellefson said, while discharge levels at the wastewater lagoons that the sewer lines flow into are above what is permitted by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.

The subdivisions in question are Cedar Lakes and Glenwood, both south of the Basehor city limits and serviced by Sewer District No. 7 and Sewer District No. 3, respectively.

As an interim solution, the city of Basehor will now provide connections to the county septic system for homes built in the two subdivisions, Slaugh said.

In a June 28 meeting, Commissioner Clyde Graeber said he thought Basehor had agreed to fully assume the responsibility of Sewer District No. 3, but noted that nothing official was ever signed.

On Monday, Tellefson asked Slaugh why Basehor doesn't just annex the Glenwood property.

Slaugh responded that the liability of maintaining the roads and infrastructure associated with annexation was a consideration and that the city "would have to extend services that (Glenwood) already gets."

Glenwood property owners already have water service, electricity and other utilities provided by a private homeowners association.

Commissioners alluded that they would like to see Basehor take over the reins in Sewer District No. 7 as well, where sewage from the Cedar Lakes and Cedar Falls subdivisions fill the lift station there.

Slaugh said the Basehor-Linwood School District has announced it was pursuing a bond issue for improvements to the Glenwood Ridge Elementary but that costs for the project "have not been pinpointed."

"If a sewer system doesn't presently exist, then there will be additional costs involved," Slaugh said.

While Monday's meeting was mainly to have a face-to-face discussion between the city and county, another meeting was scheduled for Sept. 10 to discuss sewer expansion projects.

Storage concerns

The commission also further discussed what to do with dead legal files that are temporarily being stored in the basement of the Justice Center on Monday.

As renovations to the building's basement draw nearer, a permanent solution has yet to be found.

Commissioners had discussed gutting the old jail adjacent to the Justice Center to use as a storage facility as well as scanning all agencies' documents to a digital format in previous meetings.

District Court representatives, who are mandated by the state to keep some physical records for up to 10 years, said a major concern of theirs is keeping records nearby.

"We have to retrieve those on a daily basis," District Judge David King said. "And to have one person go to a remote location to do so would not be conducive to our department."

Graeber reiterated his viewpoint that all options discussed thus far have been unreasonably costly and said he would like to further explore all possible alternatives.

"I know for a fact that we could store these materials temporarily at a lesser cost," he said.

Graeber suggested going back to look at existing records that spelled out how space in the Justice Center is to be allocated and to come up with concrete numbers on exactly how much space is needed by each user group involved.

Also Monday, the board:

  • Heard quarterly reports from the county appraiser's office, counselor-at-large, geographical information systems department, and the information systems department.
  • Voted unanimously to hire Donna Martin as the new county health administrator at an annual salary of $57,000.

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