Archive for Thursday, February 6, 2003


February 6, 2003

Bitter benefit
I am confused. The Eudora News report of the benefit district discussion at the joint City Council, Planning Commission meeting has me confused.
It was reported that the Grand Addition (south of Eudora Nursing Center) will increase traffic on 15th Street and, therefore, 15th and adjoining streets will need to be improved to city street standards for this extra load.
City consultant Cecil Kingsley, of BG Engineers, stated that current property owners have the financial responsibility to keep the street in front of their property up to city standards. He suggests that current area property owners should pay for the street improvements to accommodate the new Grand Addition by the means of a benefit district, which would attach a special debt to the current resident's property for the cost of improvements and pay your new debt with special taxes on your tax bill.
Planning Commission Chairman Kurt von Achen stated that the new house owners would contribute in alternative ways ... they will pay taxes. City Administrator Mike Yanez states that this may be the new policy of the future.
Yes, I am confused.
The current residents in the nursing home area gain nothing from this development except increased neighborhood traffic and special tax assessments. The use of a benefit district benefits whom?
The current streets were constructed as dictated by the city. The city complimented the developer for the fine streets, and the city accepted ownership of the streets as constructed. I take exception that I have the responsibility for city property which was built to city standards and for which I am not impacting.
I did not understand that property taxes were an alternative. How are the taxes that new home owners will pay any different than that which the current property owners pay?
It seems to me that we all pay taxes to the city to support city maintenance and improvements in general. If the city feels that the Grand Addition is a benefit to the city, then the city in general should pay the costs to gain this benefit, not just the adjoining neighbors who will bear the burden of this Grand Addition benefit.
Fred Freeland

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