Property taxes in Leavenworth County have continued to rise as a result of rising valuations. The BOCC made a call for action to our state legislators in July 2021 regarding ad valorem transfers from the state to the county. RLI hosted the County Appraiser and County Clerk for a discussion about valuations (replay). Additional programs are planned. Citizens are encouraged to validate the details of your property on the lookup tool and submit an appeal if you feel anything is incorrect.
The BOCC approved changes to eliminate time limits on special use permits on 3/30/2022. Special use permits are required when someone wants to operate a business that does not comply with the Table of Uses in the Zoning Regulations. SUPs go through a Planning Commission review including conditions recommended by the Planning Department. Once the P/Z makes a recommendation to approve or deny, the SUP goes to the BOCC for a vote. There is now a category for temporary permits for short term needs as well as an annual review process. The changes save time for staff, Planning & Zoning and the citizens.
A consulting firm was hired to update the county's comprehensive plan. A survey was conducted as well as numerous community input sessions. The Planning Commission recommended adoption of the Plan and the BOCC approved the plan on 10/28/2020. The annual review was completed in March, 2022 and BOCC voted to keep the land use map as is.
Kaw Valley Companies proposed the Lenape Sand Quarry in the southern part of the county by De Soto. On 2/5/2020, the BOCC un-tabled the Special Use Permit. A public hearing was held on 7/8/2020 and the BOCC approved the SUP on 7/15/2020. Kaw Valley subsequently sued the County for the condition related to rebuilding the haul route. The lawsuit is still pending. Citizens are concerned about safety on the roads, quality of the air, and the negative impact on the rural character of the county. For more information see the It's the PITS! Linwood Sherman Sand Quarry
CR-1 (aka 222nd) south of Tonganoxie is in the process of being rezoned. The commission passed a proposal on land use after studying the issue and having public input sessions. The Table of Uses in the County Zoning regulations was updated in 2020 . The were numerous line items that changed from Special Use Permit to Approved which means there is no longer a public notice and hearing requirement. The changes also included new zoning categories that align with the CR-1 corridor proposal. The BOCC approved CR-1 rezoning on 12/16/2020.
A task force recently made a recommendation to increase funding to address gaps our community has in serving those with mental health issues. In December 2019, the County Commission voted to place a question on the ballot in August, 2020 but later decided to remove it from the ballot due to COVID-19 pandemic and its negative impact to citizens. It is anticipated this issue will resurface at some point in the future. Next step is educate the community on why a tax increase is necessary to fund the improvements.