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Winter weather advisory issued for Wyandotte County

A winter weather advisory has been issued through noon Thursday, Feb. 22, for Wyandotte County, according to the National Weather Service.

Sleet, possibly mixed with snow and freezing rain is possible before 3 a.m., then freezing rain, possibly mixed with sleet between 3 a.m. and 5 a.m., followed by freezing rain after 5 a.m., the weather service said. The overnight low will be 26. Less than a tenth of an inch of nighttime ice accumulation is expected, and the total snow and sleet accumulation should be less than a half-inch.

Drivers should be prepared for reduced visibility and difficult travel conditions in the morning, the weather service said, and should use caution.

Thursday, freezing rain is likely before 2 p.m., followed by a chance of rain, according to the weather service. Thursday’s high will be near 34 with an east wind of 5 to 8 mph. Less than a tenth of an inch of new ice accumulation is expected.

Thursday night, drizzle is likely before midnight, then a slight chance of rain between midnight and 4 a.m., followed by a slight chance of freezing rain after 4 a.m., the weather service said.

For more weather information, visit www.weather.gov.

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Piper school bond election to be Thursday, Feb. 22

Piper Public Schools voters will go to the polls Thursday, Feb. 22, to vote on a $35 million school bond issue.

“This is so crucial for our kids now, to help with overcrowding,” said Piper school board vice president Ashley Biondi. There is overcrowding at three school buildings currently, she said. “We have kids split between buildings, and having to travel between buildings.”

There is a modular unit at the middle school, and there are third-graders who are between two elementary buildings currently.

The new school bond issue would address the overcrowding and add more safety for the children, she said.

Housing permits in the Piper area have increased dramatically in recent years, Biondi said.

Many classes now number 26 to 28 students in the elementary building, and the bond issue would allow the district to keep the class sizes down as low as possible, she said, which is believed to matter in student achievement.

Good schools also are a reason many people cite for moving to a community.

“Quality schools help our community thrive,” Biondi said.

The weather, if it snows on Thursday, may play a role in the outcome of the election.

While she can’t predict the weather, Biondi said she would urge, regardless of the weather, that people get out and vote, if they have not already, because of the huge impact it will have on the community if the bond issue fails.

8 things you should know about the Piper school bond election on Thursday:

1. What’s on the ballot? A $35 million bond issue that will build a new elementary school, for third to fifth grades, at 131st and Leavenworth Road. Registered voters in the Piper Public Schools district may vote.

2. When is the election? The election is from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 22, at five voting locations in the Piper area, according to the Wyandotte County Election Commissioner’s website, https://static1.squarespace.com/static/56606b47e4b0b9403ad6ff96/t/5a4bd4f1ec212d89879c2efa/1514919153183/Poll+Locations+-+USD+203+Bond+Election+022218+Alpha.pdf. Voters are assigned to polling places according to their ward and precinct numbers.

3. What are some of the features of the proposed school building? The center could have a flexible design, and could accommodate 800 or more students in two stories. It is the first phase of an expansion plan, and only the first phase is on the ballot. The new school building could open in 2020 if approved.

4. What would happen to the other schools if it is passed? West Elementary School would change into kindergarten through second grade levels; East Elementary School would be transformed into a sixth grade center; and Piper Middle School would be converted to a 7th and 8th grade center.

5. Why is the new building needed? According to district officials, there is currently overcrowding and a study has projected a 3.5 percent annual growth in enrollment in the future. New home building permits grew to 131 in 2016 and 196 in 2017. Without a new building, class sizes could increase from the current 26 to 28 students. Another modular building would have to be added if the bond issue does not pass.

6. What happened to a previous bond issue two years ago? Piper voters defeated a $67 million bond issue project two years ago, but this bond issue is smaller and would not cause as much of a tax increase as the previous proposal.

7. Will property taxes increase? Yes, about six mills, which is estimated to be about $15.07 per month on a $250,000 home, or less than 50 cents a day.

8. Where can I get more information on this bond issue? The Piper district website has a bond issue page at https://ks02212490.schoolwires.net/domain/137.

“8 things you should know about the Piper school bond election” is based on comments from Piper board vice president Ashley Biondi, Piper information, plus a previous Wyandotte Daily story on the Piper bond issue, at http://wyandottedaily.com/piper-district-plans-35-million-bond-election-for-new-school-in-february/.

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UG meetings scheduled on Thursday

The Unified Government Commission has scheduled meetings on Thursday, Feb. 22.

At 5 p.m. a special session of the UG Commission will be held in the fifth floor conference room at City Hall, 701 N. 7th St., Kansas City, Kansas, for National Incident Management System training, followed by a presentation on the Northeast Master Plan.

The 7 p.m. Feb. 22 UG Commission meeting will be in the commission chambers, lobby level, City Hall, 701 N. 7th St., Kansas City, Kansas.

On the agenda for the meeting will be an ordinance to amend the buildings code, to use a third-party vendor for implementation and monitoring. It includes a registration statement for persons who own but do not live in vacant buildings or on vacant parcels.

An ordinance is on the agenda to add two properties to the Safe Routes to School Group E, in the Edison, Noble Prentis and William Allen White elementary schools area. The ordinance would allow legal proceedings to acquire property for these improvements.

Another agenda item is a base lease and lease with the Public Building Commission for the new juvenile justice facility.

Also on the agenda is a resolution for a base lease and lease with the Public Building Commission for capital improvements to the courthouse and adult jail facility.

Several nominations to boards and commissions are on the agenda, including:
• Loren Taylor, Landmarks Commission, submitted by Commissioner Tom Burroughs;
• David Spero, Wyandotte-Leavenworth Area Wide Advisory Council on Aging, submitted by Commissioner Burroughs;
• Alvin Sykes, Housing Authority Board, submitted by Commissioner Burroughs;
• Kimberly Dominic, Advisory Commission on Human Relations and Disabilities, submitted by Commissioner Jane Philbrook;
• Denise Tomasic, Housing Authority, submitted by Commissioner Philbrook; Maria Cecilia Ysaac, Law Enforcement Advisory Board, submitted by Commissioner Philbrook;
• Chuck Stites, Wyandotte Library Board, submitted by Commissioner Philbrook;
• Pat Gates, UG Board of Park Commission, submitted by Commissioner Philbrook;
• Linda Johnson, Wyandotte-Leavenworth Area Wide Advisory Council on Aging, submitted by Commissioner Philbrook.

Several Land Bank items also are on the agenda, including:
Applications
• 731 and 733 Lafayette Ave. – Kenthedo Robinson, yard extension
• 832 Lafayette Ave. – Mazen Iskandrani, yard extension
• 834 Lafayette Ave. – Mazen Iskandrani, property acquisition
• 2501 N. 22nd St. – Antonia Ayala, property acquisition

Transfers from Land Bank
• 714, 716, 718 and 720 Everett Ave. – CHWC, Inc.
(CHWC, Inc. will build two single-family houses in the Douglass-Sumner neighborhood)
• 727 and 743 Barnett Ave.; 732, 740 and 750 Tauromee Ave. – UG of WyCo-KCK
(Property for the Juvenile Complex project)

After the 7 p.m. Feb. 22 meeting, the UG Public Building Commission meeting will begin in the commission chambers.

Scheduled for that meeting are acceptance on the sale of Public Building Commission bonds; approving the issuance of Series A bonds and execution of leases to fund the new juvenile justice facility and surface parking in downtown Kansas City, Kansas; and approving the issuance of Series B bonds and execution of leases to fund improvements to the existing courthouse and adult jail facility in downtown Kansas City, Kansas.

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