Wamego property owners came out in force to protest several issues at Tuesday night’s Wamego City Commission meeting. City Manager Merl Page introduced the rezoning of the James Ebert property located at 1603 Fourth Street. The original request was to rezone from an R-1 to R-3, but was sent back to the Planning Commission for reconsideration to an R-2 several times after neighbor protests. Those neighbors were in attendance at this meeting and went over the same issues as before, even citing conflict of interest, and requesting the issue be sent back to the Planning Commission again. After a lengthy discussion, Commissioner Bill Ditto made the motion to approve the Planning Commission’s recommendation. The motion was approved 4 to 1, with Commissioner Bob Morse abstaining.
The discussion continued with the recent amendment to the City’s Building Code requiring a Permit and Licensed professional for any work performed on property owned, but not the primary residence. This would include commercial and rental properties. The issue came up because a local contractor purchased properties after the ordinance was adopted, and requested an exception to the ordinance allowing him to move forward on the properties. Those in attendance cited the cost in both time and money in having to secure a permit and licensed contractor for any work performed on their properties. The Commission voted 5 to 0 to table the issue and further study the ordinance until the next meeting.
The meeting opened with a Public Hearing. At Tuesday’s meeting, City Manager Merl Page reviewed the petition to vacate a portion in the North Ridge Addition, Unit 3 of an 85 square foot utility/drainage easement. Page said the easement was not as pressing as originally granted, and there is a grant- back utility easement with the new construction. With no public comment, a motion was made and approved by a vote of 5 to 0.
In other business, the Commission authorized City Staff to advertise the issuance of General Obligation Bonds that will mature in 2020. The new issue would be used to refinance the City’s existing debt obligation, saving $82,000 in interest costs. To cover the issuance of these new Bonds, the Commission adopted a resolution that would prescribe to all the bond covenants. According to Page, this is a required regulatory document for bond issuing.