s t n u o C
CITY OF LEE’S SUMMIT NEWSLETTER
This Issue... PREPARING FOR WINTER WEATHER
Begin with City’s Snow Brochure Pages 4&5
LEE’S SUMMIT MEANS BUSINESS
The City’s Development Center is one way this occurs. Page 3
IN NEED OF FREE TAX PREPARATION? You may qualify for EITC Page 7
MORE CITY NEWS INSIDE!
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IMPORTANT PHONE NUMBERS General Information................... 969-1000 Airport.........................................969-1800 Animal Control............................969-1640 Chamber of Commerce.............. 524-2424 City Hall...................................... 969-1000 Mayor..........................................969-1030 City Council................................969-1010 City Manager..............................969-1010 Development Center.................. 969-1220 Downtown Lee’s Summit Main St. 246-6598 Economic Dev. Council.............. 525-6617 Fire Department Business Office...........................969-1300 Emergency Calls........................... 911 Gamber Community Center....... 554-3809 Municipal Court.......................... 969-1150 Parks & Recreation.................... 969-1500 Planning & Codes Administration Inspect. & Plans Review.............969-1200 Neighborhood Services..............969-1200 Planning & Development............969-1600 Police Department Business Office...........................969-1700 Emergency Calls.............................. 911 Public Works.............................. 969-1800 Recycling.................................... 969-1800 Social Services........................... 525-4357 Treasury (tax info.)..................... 969-1139 Water Utilities............................. 969-1900
Mayor’s Memo Our community is a step closer to the much needed improvements to the Highway 50 & Route 291 South Interchange. The new interchange, estimated to cost $16 million, is expected to begin construction in 2017. The Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) is already beginning the process to select a consultant to enter into a design contract as well as working on an intergovernmental agreement with the City, which will outline funding, responsibility for maintenance of completed improvements, and the transfer of SW Blue Parkway between Jefferson and 3rd Street to the City’s jurisdiction. All agreements are expected to be in place by the first of February 2015. In April, many of you supported a no tax increase bond issue to fund improvements to the interchange. I am appreciative to the citizens of Lee’s Summit for overwhelmingly approving the bond initiative – the first major funding source for this project. Funding for the project is being provided through a combination of sources. • $8 million will be provided by the City as a result of the 2014 no tax increase general obligation bond election. • $6.8 million will be provided by a Surface Transportation Program (STP) grant obtained by the City. The grant is from federal funds allocated through Mid America Regional Council for roadway and multi-modal projects on eligible routes. • The balance of the project costs will be provided by MoDOT from funds set aside previously for the bridge replacement. MoDOT will be responsible for management of all design, right-of-way acquisition, and construction processes. Improving the interchange will enhance safety by reducing vehicular crashes associated with traffic congestion, providing dedicated pedestrian and bicycle facilities through the interchange and constructing new bridges to replace the existing one at the end of its design life. There will be improved connectivity by enhancing the north-south connection and providing a gateway to the heart of downtown Lee’s Summit. The interchange improvements will also improve access to educational centers such as Pleasant Lea Middle and Elementary schools and Summit Christian Academy. The completion of this project can spur economic development for the business community in Lee’s Summit as well. Just south of the new interchange, local business leaders predict that 300-plus acres of developable land will open up near the project. Reducing congestion and opening up traffic flow both to the south of the interchange, along U.S. 50 and into downtown Lee’s Summit via Jefferson Street will spur private investment into the areas and create new job opportunities.
Yours Truly, Mayor Randy Rhoads
Monument Welcomes All to Yours Truly Lee’s Summit On the south side of I-470, just east of View High Drive, a monument featuring native rock has been erected to represent the quality and community identity of Lee’s Summit. The nearly 20-foot-tall tower, with the tagline of “Yours Truly,” rises above a 6-foot wall displaying the City’s name in capital letters. The monument is sized to be seen from approximately 1,000 feet with completion soon of solar lighting. Native plants will also be added to the base of the monument to further enhance its beauty. A Gateway Task Force that included city staff, parks department staff, former councilmembers, construction and design firm staff, and others was formed to oversee the project. The monument cost about $140,000, which was paid for entirely by the generous donations of our highly engaged civic, residential, and organizational communities. Read more about the monument and the individuals and organizations that made it possible at cityofls.net. ■
Lee’s Summit’s Approach to Business Development Realizing Success! Since the debut of Lee’s Summit’s highly anticipated “Development Center,” in January, the center is bustling with activity due to the new approach of cultivating and fostering entrepreneurial success in the community.
CITY HALL | 220 SE GREEN | LEE’S SUMMIT, MO 64063 816.969.1220 | DevelopmentCenter@cityofLS.net LSmeansBusiness.net
Located on the first floor of City Hall, the Development Center is a one-stop shop that acts as a single resource for entrepreneurs who are starting or operating an existing business. Prior to its debut, the City’s traditional Codes Department and Planning and Development Department required entrepreneurs to conduct transactions with multiple divisions of City government to open or grow a business in Lee’s Summit. Now, the new Center combines development resources into one location, streamlining the process for Lee’s Summit entrepreneurs.
The Development Center’s team consists of a director, communications director, three project managers, a business service representative, and a customer service representative. With a combined level of experience of more than 100 years, team members guide entrepreneurs through project planning, construction plan review, permitting, and inspection and business licensing services. The project managers and service representatives communicate, coordinate and act as a single resource for each applicant, which helps applicants understand and navigate the business and development processes much more efficiently with less “transactional friction.” Equally important, the team consists of individuals who love the community, understand today’s business owner, and are dedicated to performing their roles to the highest standards. Check out our “Developing Lee’s Summit” podcast from City Hall! Developing Lee’s Summit will bring you the latest economic development news, plans and topics from businesses, elected officials and those in the know around Lee’s Summit. Visit LSmeansbusiness.net and cityofls.net to listen to Developing Lee’s Summit each week. If you’re interested in learning more about starting or growing a business in Lee’s Summit, call 816-969-1220 or visit LSmeansbusiness.net. ■
Snow Control FAQs & Tips Private Streets, Driveways, and Sidewalks • Plowing snow on private property is the property owner’s responsibility. • Shoveling snow to the side of your driveway will lessen the amount of snow left at your driveway entrance and/or sidewalks during plowing.
The City’s crews plow and treat more than 1,000 lane miles of streets and cul-de-sacs in Lee’s Summit. Snow Control Response Levels Lee’s Summit has established snow control goals which include a completion time for each level of response. The goal time starts when accumulating winter precipitation ends and is dependent upon the severity of winter weather conditions.
Level 1: pre-treatment Level 2: one inch or less; 24 hours Level 3: one to six inches; 32.5 hours and six to ten inches; 40 hours Level 4: more than ten inches; 48 hours Level 5: sustained winds of 30 MPH; 48 hours
Street Classifications Three street classifications are used for snow control. Primary and secondary roads are the main priority when the snowfall begins. Residential streets are plowed last. • Primary: major four-lane or high volume two-lane streets • Secondary: minor thoroughfares • Residential: local streets, includes dead end streets and cul-de-sacs
Residential Streets When snow is falling or when heavy snowfall is predicted, Public Works plows one pass on residential streets and around cul-de-sacs, which allows for a drive lane down the center of the street. Once snowfall stops or one pass is complete, crews will return and plow streets open as much as attainable.
Does the City have a law requiring sidewalks to be cleared? No. However, property owners are encouraged to clear snow from sidewalks for everyone’s safety.
When does snow plowing begin? Crews are scheduled to report before the winter storm arrives. In many cases, crews are pre-treating ahead of the storm. Crews work on a 12 -hour rotating shift until all streets are plowed and treated.
When will my street be plowed? Public Works uses a time-based goal for snow control. The goal is to have all streets plowed and treated once precipitation ends within the time frame, which is determined by the severity of the winter weather and can range from 24-48 hours.
Can emergency vehicles access roads safely when responding to an emergency? Plow trucks are dispatched along with emergency equipment to assist during fire or police emergencies, as necessary.
If I call the Snow Desk, will a snow plow come down my street sooner?
Why is my street still covered with snow after a City truck plowed it?
The Snow Plan has a scheduled route system. Snow plows are only redirected to assist police and fire emergencies; they are not otherwise pulled off of their routes.
Lee’s Summit does not have a bare pavement policy. Snow packed onto the roadway becomes difficult to remove especially on residential streets.
New this Winter! The City prohibits plowing or pushing snow by way of a motor vehicle from private property into a public roadway. This law does not prevent residents from using snow blowers or shovels to remove snow from driveways and sidewalks. We only ask that residents shovel or blow snow to the side of their sidewalks and driveways to lessen the amount of snow left at driveway entrances by crews.
Tips to Remember • Remove vehicles, basketball goals and trash cans from streets to prevent delays and to improve the snow control process. • Clear snow from around fire hydrants so they can be easily located during emergencies. • Do not make snow tunnels on or near the street and driveways. Snow plows and other drivers may not see these and could accidently injure someone playing inside of them.
Additionally, it is prohibited to place obstructions and encroachments in the City’s streets, sidewalks, and rights of way. Examples include: basketball goals, building materials, landscaping or fencing installed behind the curb and sprinkler systems.
What does the City use to treat the streets? • Salt brine is an anti-icing, saltwater solution used to prevent winter precipitation from bonding to the pavement. • Rock salt is used as an anti-icing material and also as a de-icing material. • Calcium chloride mixed with rock salt is used when temperatures drop into the teens. Most materials are ineffective below 5 °F.
What can I do if my mailbox or yard is damaged by snow plows? Mailboxes are sometimes damaged during snow control operations when there is wet and heavy snow rolling off the plow onto the right-of-way. Trucks also occasionally scrape sod near the curb line because it is difficult to distinguish between a curb and road during heavy snowfalls. Oftentimes the snow plow driver reports the damage; however, citizens can report damage to the Snow Desk at 816-969-1870.
Visit LSsnow.net, the City’s new Snow and Ice Control page, to find tips and other important information conveniently accessible whether viewing from your desktop or mobile devices. Sign up for alerts at Nixle.com. ■
Google Fiber Construction in Lee’s Summit The City has received numerous inquiries about Google Fiber’s activities in Lee’s Summit relating to the construction and deployment of its network. In an effort to provide updates to the community, the City has prepared the following information. Please be aware that while the City supports business development activities within the community, we cannot endorse the products and/or services of businesses. The installation of the Google Fiber network should begin this winter, weather permitting. Once the installation of the fiber network begins, residents can expect to see Google subcontractors working within the City’s right-of-way and utility easements. As is typical with underground utility work of this scale, digging could be required in your area. Residents should receive door hangars from Google Fiber prior to construction activity beginning in their neighborhood. A timeline for Google Fiber residential service availability is not yet available, but is expected to start sometime in 2015.
Google Fiber FAQs When can I get Google Fiber service to my home? For questions about Google Fiber service, contact Google Customer Service at 866-777-7550 or visit fiber.google.com/cities. Where can I find out more information about Google Fiber?
Who do I contact with questions or concerns about Google Fiber construction work, or if my property is damaged due to the construction work? Contact the Google Construction Phone Line, that’s staffed 24 hours per day, at 877-454-6959. You also may contact the City’s Public Works Department at 816-969-1800 or firstname.lastname@example.org. What is the right-of-way? Right-of-way is an area in which a municipality has the legal right to access and use the area for the benefit of the public. Typically this would be for transportation purposes (i.e. roads, sidewalks, etc.) and extends to approximately 10 – 15 feet behind the edge of the street or curb. What is a utility easement? A utility easement (typically 12 – 20 feet in width) is an area in which the municipality or a utility has the legal right to access and use the area to construct new or maintain existing utility infrastructure. Utility easements can be located adjacent to rightof-way, but typically are located along property boundaries. What is the City’s role in the Google Fiber project? City staff will: • Work with Google Fiber representatives on coordination efforts for this project, as well as ensure City ordinances are being followed. • Provide Google Fiber project updates to the community as they become available. ■
Contact Google Customer Service at 866-777-7550 or visit fiber.google.com/cities.
Lee’s Summit Water Utilities Maintains Sewer System Our sanitary sewer system consists of more than 500 miles of public underground sewer mains, 11,000 manholes and 22 pumping stations designed to keep the City’s wastewater moving toward the Little Blue Valley Sewer District treatment plant. At Lee’s Summit Water Utilities, our job is to keep everything running smoothly so your wastewater arrives at the treatment plant with no unnecessary stops along the way.
Every day, our crews work hard to inspect, clean and maintain our public sewer system. Additionally, Lee’s Summit Water Utilities has rehabilitated several miles of sewer lines through the Community Sewer Line Rehabilitation Project during the last few years. The process, which essentially installs a new pipe within the existing lines, is specifically designed for minimal impact and disruption to neighborhoods and residents, while extending the life of our wastewater infrastructure. For more information about the public sewer system and maintaining your private service lateral, call 816-969-1900 or visit LSwater.net. ■
Minor Home Repair Program If you are in need of minor exterior home repairs or minor private sanitary sewer improvements, the City’s Minor Home Repair program is worth considering. The City will continue to accept applications for this program on a first come, first served basis until all funds are committed. Only single-family, owner-occupied, residential homes are eligible for this program. The following is a list of some of the repairs: • windows and doors • roof • paint • porches and steps • foundation walls • walls and trim • flashing and guttering • private sanitary sewer repairs (lateral repair/backwater valves) Low-to-moderate income homeowners are eligible based on total household income and must fall within the following HUD guidelines:
The applicant will be required to contribute a share of the fix-up cost. The homeowner’s contribution will not be below $20 or above $500, and will be scaled based on income & cost of repairs. The maximum grant amount is $10,000 per household for home repairs or $3,000 per household for private sanitary sewer improvements. Grant funds will be approved on a first come, first served basis following eligibility verification, on-site inspection of the property, and needs assessment. All repairs are subject to federal environmental regulation & lead-based paint compliance. Applications are available from the City’s Planning & Codes Administration Department located in City Hall, 220 SE Green St. and online at cityofls.net | Development. For information, call 816-969-1200. ■
*Source: FY 2014 HUD LMI Guidelines for Jackson County Area
Save The Dates! Do you qualify for the EITC? The City, Lee’s Summit Chamber of Commerce and United Way of Greater Kansas City, are conducting annual FREE tax preparation services for qualifying Lee’s Summit residents on February 3, 10, and 17, 2015. • Appointments available: 3 – 4:30 p.m. (Registration for appointments begin January 12, 2015.)
New to EITC this year: If you signed up through the Market Place for Affordable Health Care, you will receive a 1095A form from your insurance provider. You will need to bring that form when you get your taxes prepared. If you do not receive the 1095A form prior to January 20, 2015, you will need to call your provider to obtain the form. We will not be able to assist you without the form. Contact United Way at 816-472-4289 for more information, other locations offering free tax preparation, or if you have tax-related questions.
• Walk-in clients taken: 6 – 8:30 p.m.
2015 Dr. MLK Celebration
The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is a refundable federal tax credit for low-income individuals and families. To qualify, you must meet certain requirements and file a U.S. Individual Income Tax Return. The amount of your EITC depends on whether you have children, the number of children you have, and the amount of your wages and income.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration at 5 p.m. on Mon., Jan. 19 in the Pavilion at John Knox Village, 520 NW Murray Road, Lee’s Summit.
• December 2014: Check cityofls.net for income guidelines and other important information.
Join us for a traditional event featuring music and singing entertainment and much more! Watch for more information about this exciting event at cityofls.net in December. ■
PRSRT STD U.S. POSTAGE
Permit No. 79 Lee’s Summit, MO 64063
220 SE Green Street Lee’s Summit, MO 64063 (816) 969-1000 cityofLS.net
Celebrate Truly 150!
A culturally rich community with diverse economic sectors to create a prosperous and dynamic community in perpetuity.
Lee’s Summit is the kind of place that has to be seen to be believed.
Mission Our mission is to create positive community relationships and a progressive organization delivering valued programs and services.
Understanding the past is fundamental to understanding the present. Inspired by our rich, colorful past which echoes its timeless cultural traditions, Lee’s Summit has been welcoming residents and visitors alike since 1865. That brings us to a milestone that is 150 years worth of traditions and time to celebrate! Excitement is building as we plan our Sesquicentennial celebration. The big celebration will begin January 2015 with a montage of fun-filled events. See the many ways you can get involved by visiting our website and join the fun! www.truly150.com ■
Yours Truly 8