Archive for Thursday, December 29, 2005

Resolution lists require community involvement

December 29, 2005

With the start of a new year, people look with optimism for fresh starts and improvements. As a community, Eudora, too, can look to the new year with real optimism. It will be realized with the resolution of a number of issues in which the community as a whole will be involved.

The last year saw the Eudora City Council and the downtown business community work together to move forward with a plan to revitalize downtown through a state grant. The tough task of enlisting the cooperation of downtown storefront owners and businesses, which derailed the last attempt, is in place, including an important agreement from Kaw Valley Bank to offer low-interest loans to property owners in the area. In this case, resolution is out of local hands and in those reviewing the grants on the state level.

Using much the same method that proved effective in the downtown revitalization effort, city leaders are floating a proposal to replace Eudora's aging swimming pool and add a community center. BG Engineering is drawing up plans for "basic" facilities that should be made public in about two months. In the meantime, City Administrator Cheryl Beatty and others are meeting with residents to get their views of what such facilities should include. Together, those two efforts should give residents the opportunity to resolve the proposal's fate when the plans are revealed. If enough see merit in the concept, final resolution may come in a bond referendum in the November 2006 general election.

That same date could see a resolution of Eudora USD 491's proposal to build a new stadium for football and track. A proposal to move ahead with a lease-purchase plan to build such a facility using the district capital outlay fund authority was withdrawn after a protest petition earned enough signatures to force a referendum. Neither Eudora Superintendent Marty Kobza nor the school board have backed away from the plan and have invited opponents to a January meeting to hear the reasons for that support. Once again, it will be the community at large that determines if those arguments make sense and if district officials have found the proper resolution to Law Fields' limitations.

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