Fifteen years of backpay is suitable compensation
Maybe the words of land surveyor Dennis Boltz served as the best bottom-line solution for the dispute between a Eudora landowner and the city, which wants to buy the land that includes an unknown city-owned road.
The road, existing only on some obscure Douglas County records, was on the middle of a 1.5-acre lot that has caused the city to reconsider the purchase price. This doesn't sit well with Jim and Sheila Moses, the property owners for the last 15 years.
Enter Boltz, who did a survey on the land and confirmed what no one knew all along: Part of the Moses property sits on a former county road that was annexed into the city.
Moses has "been mowing that yard for a long time," said Boltz, adding that that should account for something.
Indeed it should.
The solution is simple: If the city wants the land at its price, then by all means pay it. However, we suggest it also cut a check to the Moses family for 15 years of maintenance on the land.
That's an equitable alternative, we think.
When the Moses family bought the property, it was never disclosed that a county road existed. To blatantly deny Jim and Sheila Moses fair market value for their land all of it is a bad-faith move by the city.
We think the city wants to do the right thing in resolving this issue. The right thing is making certain the Moses family comes away from this episode with the satisfaction of knowing it sold the land on its own terms.
Besides, fair market value would be considerably less expensive than 15 years of maintenance.