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Posted on: January 24, 2024

City Commission Meeting Update - January 23, 2024

On Tuesday, January 23rd the Liberal City Commission addressed the following items during their regularly scheduled meeting:

Consent Agenda items (airport leases and Liberal Housing Authority meeting minutes) were approved by the Commission.

The Commission reviewed two options for sewer rate changes in order to ensure available funds to cover loan payments for the City’s wastewater treatment plant through 2038. Option 1 included a $15.75 surcharge and a 3% annual sewer rate increase until 2038. Option 2 included no surcharge cost, a 25% increase in sewer rates in 2024 and 2025, and a 3% annual increase from 2026-2038. Following discussion, the Commission gave consensus for staff to prepare an ordinance for sewer rate changes following Option 2 recommendations. The Commission also gave consensus for staff to prepare an ordinance allowing customers moving to a new residence in Liberal to carry over their current sewer rate until the next sewer evaluation is complete, as well as for new customers to pay the City’s minimum sewer rate until they reach a sewer evaluation period for usage to be measured. Both ordinances will go before the Commission for a final vote.  

Following recommendation from the Liberal Planning & Zoning Board, Commissioners voted to approve Ordinance No. 4611 to repeal Article 28 of the City Zoning Ordinance in its entirety. This vote eliminates the “Kansas Avenue Overlay District” zoning ordinances which required specialty board approvals for renovations such as exterior building paint colors.

Commissioners also approved Ordinance No. 4612, amending portions of city code Chapter 12, Article 2 pertaining to the Liberal Cemetery. The amendment changes burial schedules for Sundays, City observed holidays, and weekends prior to City observed holidays. The amendment also requires the use of sealed vault casket containers or adult graves and removed headstone side specifications for the location of vital statistic dates engraved on new monuments within the cemetery.

The Commission also voted to approve a consultant agreement with Lochner to perform environmental surveys in preparation for demolition of the existing Liberal Airport terminal and construction of a new terminal building, parking lot, and runway apron expansion. The survey expense is eligible for partial grant reimbursement through the Federal Aviation Administration.

The next regularly scheduled Liberal City Commission meeting will take place February 13, 2024 at 5:30 p.m.   

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