Overland Park & Leawood

April 9, 2014

Council delays vote on special taxing district for Camelot Court

Plans for a renovated shopping area at Camelot Court, 119th Street and Roe Avenue, have been delayed once again so Leawood City Council members can examine more closely how money from a proposed special taxing district should be allocated.

Plans for a renovated shopping area at Camelot Court, 119th Street and Roe Avenue, have been delayed once again so Leawood City Council members can examine more closely how money from a proposed special taxing district should be allocated.

The council put off until June 2 the decision on a Community Improvement District, which would fund about $10 million of the $40 million it would take to redo the center. The proposed sales tax increase would add a penny to the 8.65 percent shoppers pay in that area.

The council has agonized over how best to proceed with public financing because it would be Leawood’s first CID. The council last month approved building plans for the center, which is on the northeast corner of the intersection. Plans to update the center call for new building facades, more trees, shrubs and lower and more numerous lights, as well as about a 20,000-square-foot expansion of the Hen House supermarket there.

The council will hold a work session May 5 to discuss what parts of the developer’s costs would be eligible for reimbursement.

City Administrator Scott Lambers has said he opposes the creation of the special taxing district because he does not think it meets the standards the city has set for that type of public funding.

Some people were unhappy with the council’s decision to delay the vote again.

Councilman Andrew Osman said the council should have considered details of the taxing district as the other parts of the plan were taking shape. Camelot Court has been in the works for a year and a half, he said. “Basically I’m saying we should have had this resolved in the last year and a half,” he said.

John Petersen, who represents developers Ninety Five West, also was disappointed at the delay, especially since the council has already approved the development plan. Failure of the public part of the funding would be a deal breaker, he said.

Also during Monday’s meeting, the council honored Deputy Fire Chief Wayne Harder for his role in treating a woman who became ill during a flight from Kansas City to Santa Monica, Calif.

Harder helped the woman stay calm and comfortable while she received oxygen on the flight on Jan. 24, he said. The Southwest Airlines flight was diverted from its first scheduled stop in Las Vegas to Albuquerque, N.M., so the woman could be taken to the hospital.

Harder said he never talked to the woman after that, but he heard she made a full recovery. He’s been with the Leawood Fire Department since 1986.

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