Archive for Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Officials contemplate county-road ATV ban

June 20, 2007

The days in which all-terrain vehicles can be used on county roads could be coming to an end.

At their meeting Monday, Leavenworth County commissioners discussed a ban on the three- and four-wheel vehicles on county roads -- but came to no conclusion.

According to County Counselor David Van Parys, the Sheriff's Office has received at least 30 complaints of such use.

On Sunday, an Olathe man was killed when a Gator ATV he was driving fell from a bridge at Sycamore Ridge Golf Course in Spring Hill.

"If we don't do something, we're opening it up for (people) to use these vehicles and it opens liability for (the county)," Commissioner Clyde Graeber said.

Commissioner Dean Oroke agreed but wondered if exceptions would be granted for residents that employ ATVs for agricultural uses.

"We would have to be very careful in how we craft (a resolution) to say what's included and what's not," he said.

In other business Monday, the board:

  • Listened to a briefing from Commission Chairman J.C. Tellefson on a meeting Saturday to discuss the possibility of a regional airport.

Local municipalities are requesting that the county step forward to run the project and to make nominations for a seven-member airport committee.

"I think it's important for us to define what this is and to see the consensus of the public," Tellefson said, adding that the issue could potentially be included in an August 2008 ballot initiative.

  • Fielded a request from Carolyn Singleton, executive director of the Carnegie Arts Center in Leavenworth, for $50,000 to be used for structural improvements to the center and to repay endowments for the building.

"The long-range plan is to keep the structure strong," Singleton said of the Carnegie Center, which features a gallery, offers art classes, private music lessons and, currently, summer camp for 20 children ages 3 to 4. "I just think we have substantial benefits to the entire area."

Oroke questioned whether the description of the arts center as a "self-supporting institution" was accurate.

No funds were committed, but Graeber told Singleton that the Carnegie Center could apply for a cultural grant to be offered to area museums that will be discussed in public session this week.

  • Met in two executive sessions totaling 30 minutes to discuss personnel matters.

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